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Torture of Suspected Terrorists

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MultiCanimefan
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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-11 02:10:53 Reply

I personally think torture is wrong, and when it comes to getting information, I just don't know.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-11 03:36:11 Reply

Torture is unethical, but stripping a bomb to your chest and conspiring to kill thousands of innocent people is not? Sometimes one should think above the collective moral code and if needed, collect vital information from a terrorist through torturing.
Ethical treatment should be a privilege, not a right.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-11 20:51:26 Reply

At 7/10/08 11:42 PM, Memorize wrote: -Playing loud music

Playing loud music all day long, and all night. The purpose is to keep them from sleeping, thus making them confused an disorientated. If you are doing this, and the goal is to try and extract information fromt hem, I would say this is atleast inhumane treatment, if not mild torture.

-Putting people in cold rooms

Again, depends on how cold the room is and how long they are in there. You look them in a room that could double as a meat locker, thats is again pretty close to torture.

-Forcing people to stand for a long time

Once again depends on how long. But the same theme is reoccurring, you are trying to destabilize them, trying to make them mentally crack. Torture of the mind is still torture.

-Grabbing people by the collar during interrogations

That I am going to have to agree with you is not torture, its abuse. But depending on what you do with them. If you are just grabbing the collar, then yeah its abuse, if you shake them for 20 minutes, then that may be a little more.


Heh, that would be "abuse", not torture. Waterboarding is murky. But those who do physical torture are typically dealt with and punished.

Mental torture is still torture. Just because you aren't stretching them on a board or frying their testicles, does not mean you are not torturing them. You can mentally torture someone, and it can still have some of the same damaging effects.

And to saw waterboarding is not torture, thats just ridiculous. You know I am not by any stretch a hippie, and more often then not I come down on the right-side of things, not the left. I am all for security and military and police, and even I think waterboarding is torture.

Article 1
1. For the purposes of this Convention, the term "torture" means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.

Article 2
2. No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political in stability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.


Bellum omnium contra omnes

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-11 21:14:01 Reply

At 7/11/08 08:51 PM, JoS wrote:
Playing loud music all day long, and all night. The purpose is to keep them from sleeping, thus making them confused an disorientated. If you are doing this, and the goal is to try and extract information fromt hem, I would say this is atleast inhumane treatment, if not mild torture.

Confused and disorentated...

Time to chuck those prescription pills away.

-Putting people in cold rooms
Again, depends on how cold the room is and how long they are in there. You look them in a room that could double as a meat locker, thats is again pretty close to torture.

Meh, as long as they're not getting frostbite.


-Forcing people to stand for a long time
Once again depends on how long. But the same theme is reoccurring, you are trying to destabilize them, trying to make them mentally crack. Torture of the mind is still torture.

So... by standing up indefinitely to cause my legs to hurt until I talk, it's going to cause severe mental... torture?

And to saw waterboarding is not torture, thats just ridiculous. You know I am not by any stretch a hippie, and more often then not I come down on the right-side of things, not the left. I am all for security and military and police, and even I think waterboarding is torture.

Well, see, that's the thing.

It doesn't cause any physical pain, and all it really does is cause panic and fear; which is really no different than being a warzone.

So to call "panic and fear" as torture during a time of war just seems a little... weak.

Not "weak" as in "you're a weakling", just as in that's kind of a 'weak' reason.

Article 1

Article 2

Yeah, but we're not exactly dealing with a rational, sane, enemy. Who aren't even fighting as part of a nation.

I'm trying to seperate what is torture and what would simply be "abuse". And a lot of the things that people today consider "torture" are really no different than what some idiot college and highschool students do to themselves all of the time.

And no one is going to say "That highschool is torturing himself by blasting that music up to the loudest volume".

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 00:47:05 Reply

At 7/11/08 09:14 PM, Memorize wrote:
And to saw waterboarding is not torture, thats just ridiculous. You know I am not by any stretch a hippie, and more often then not I come down on the right-side of things, not the left. I am all for security and military and police, and even I think waterboarding is torture.
Well, see, that's the thing.

It doesn't cause any physical pain, and all it really does is cause panic and fear; which is really no different than being a warzone.

You fucking kidding me right? Water boarding can be very painful. Drowning is one of the most painful ways to die, however a lot of people are unconscious for it, which is why they drowned. Water boarding you are awake, you feel the water going into your lungs, you choke and gag, and you literally feel like you are going to die (and very well could).

CIA Agents last on average 14 seconds before caving in.


Article 1

Article 2
Yeah, but we're not exactly dealing with a rational, sane, enemy. Who aren't even fighting as part of a nation.

Did you not notice the text of Article 2 section 2? It said there is no exceptions, including times of war, political instability or any other national emergency.


I'm trying to seperate what is torture and what would simply be "abuse". And a lot of the things that people today consider "torture" are really no different than what some idiot college and highschool students do to themselves all of the time.

There is a difference, in highschool they don't blast the music all night and day, keep moving your cell every 3 hours and not let you sleep for weeks on end. And if its self-inflicted, that means you can turn it off whenever you want. You cant just go up to the guards and say excuse me, could you turn the heat up a bit in here.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 11:12:40 Reply

At 7/12/08 12:47 AM, JoS wrote:
You fucking kidding me right? Water boarding can be very painful. Drowning is one of the most painful ways to die, however a lot of people are unconscious for it, which is why they drowned. Water boarding you are awake, you feel the water going into your lungs, you choke and gag, and you literally feel like you are going to die (and very well could).

"Choke and Gag" =/= Pain.

Which is also why I was saying. It's a warzone. People shoot at each other and have constant fear of death. So why is Waterboarding so much different?


CIA Agents last on average 14 seconds before caving in.

One guy lasted (I think) 20 minutes, or close to it.

Besides, 14 seconds... hm... that's almost nothing, really.

Article 1

Article 2
Yeah, but we're not exactly dealing with a rational, sane, enemy. Who aren't even fighting as part of a nation.
Did you not notice the text of Article 2 section 2? It said there is no exceptions, including times of war, political instability or any other national emergency.

How very illogical.

"Your very nation could fall into collapse... but uh... yeah, no waterboarding on suicide bombers. That's just wrong"

It sounds like one of those really old laws that no one seems to give a shit about.

There is a difference, in highschool they don't blast the music all night and day, keep moving your cell every 3 hours and not let you sleep for weeks on end.

And...?

Even if they came in and blasted the music only 1 song at a time with a 5 hour break inbetween songs, people would still call it torture.

And if its self-inflicted, that means you can turn it off whenever you want. You cant just go up to the guards and say excuse me, could you turn the heat up a bit in here.

Next thing we'll know, telling them to write their names on their penis with a marker will be torture.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 11:59:45 Reply

I don't understand this arguement where people are saying it's ok to torture because they do it to us or do something just as bad. We're supposed to have the moral high ground, we're supposed to be an example of what a country/goverment should be. Is this the example we want to set for the rest of the world?

So what if they have terrorists blow themselves up with the purpose of killing people?
If we're really going to stoop to their level, why not just let the nukes fly and be done with it? Hey, after all, it would be ok, since this is war and shit.


When all else fails, blame the casuals!

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 12:20:20 Reply

At 7/12/08 11:12 AM, Memorize wrote: "Choke and Gag" =/= Pain.

There is a difference between the feeling of the gag reflex when you stick your toothbrush in the back of your mouth and the gag reflex feeling when you are drowing. Asphyxation by drowning is very painful, a feeling which waterboarding creates. Get water into you lungs hurts and is a terrifying feeling.


Which is also why I was saying. It's a warzone. People shoot at each other and have constant fear of death. So why is Waterboarding so much different?

Because the feeling in a warzone is, I could get shot and possible die at any random time. The feeling during waterbaording is, OMFG I am dying right now.


CIA Agents last on average 14 seconds before caving in.
One guy lasted (I think) 20 minutes, or close to it.

Besides, 14 seconds... hm... that's almost nothing, really.

That shows you how scary and painful it is, that the average CIA agent can only withstand this for 14 seconds.

Article 1

Article 2
Yeah, but we're not exactly dealing with a rational, sane, enemy. Who aren't even fighting as part of a nation.
Did you not notice the text of Article 2 section 2? It said there is no exceptions, including times of war, political instability or any other national emergency.
How very illogical.
"Your very nation could fall into collapse... but uh... yeah, no waterboarding on suicide bombers. That's just wrong"

Besides the fact torture has been found to result in little to no intelligence of value. Most people will lie or say anything under torture, even if it is untrue to make the torture stop. So not only have you harmed this person (who may be an innocent individual which has happened many times), but you may have also just gained false intelligence that will waste your time and effort chasing. Look at Mahar Arrar. he was sent to Syria (despite being a Canadian/Syrian citizen flying from Switzerland to Canada, normal protocol would have been sent to Switierland or Canada) based upon faulty intelligence from Canada. He was tortured for almost a year in Syria, providing no intelligence, and the Syrian intelligence service cleared him of having any ties to terrorists, as well as a subsequent Canadian government investigation.

And then if you are totally willing to torture your captives, what incentive at all do your enemies have of not torturing their captives? Would you want US soldiers to be waterboarded if they are captured by al Quida? What applies to one side has to apply to the other.


It sounds like one of those really old laws that no one seems to give a shit about.

Drafted 1984, effective as of 1987. So its not very old at all as far as treaties go.


Even if they came in and blasted the music only 1 song at a time with a 5 hour break inbetween songs, people would still call it torture.

Thats not what they are doing though, they are playing the music to prevent them from sleeping at all. they are moving them to prevent them from sleeping. They are intentionally depriving them of sleep for extended periods of time. That is mental torture.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 14:39:05 Reply

At 7/12/08 12:20 PM, JoS wrote:
At 7/12/08 11:12 AM, Memorize wrote:
There is a difference between the feeling of the gag reflex when you stick your toothbrush in the back of your mouth and the gag reflex feeling when you are drowing. Asphyxation by drowning is very painful, a feeling which waterboarding creates. Get water into you lungs hurts and is a terrifying feeling.

The amount of water actually coming into contact with the throat and lungs is very small. The government waterboarding technique involves placing a rag or cellophane sheet over the subject's mouth, occasionally with a small hole for water to drip through. It's simulating drowning, but you can't actually drown from it because the amount of water is so small.

Because the feeling in a warzone is, I could get shot and possible die at any random time. The feeling during waterbaording is, OMFG I am dying right now.

I wonder how wounded soldiers feel.

Besides the fact torture has been found to result in little to no intelligence of value. Most people will lie or say anything under torture, even if it is untrue to make the torture stop. So not only have you harmed this person (who may be an innocent individual which has happened many times), but you may have also just gained false intelligence that will waste your time and effort chasing. Look at Mahar Arrar. he was sent to Syria (despite being a Canadian/Syrian citizen flying from Switzerland to Canada, normal protocol would have been sent to Switierland or Canada) based upon faulty intelligence from Canada. He was tortured for almost a year in Syria, providing no intelligence, and the Syrian intelligence service cleared him of having any ties to terrorists, as well as a subsequent Canadian government investigation.

So on the basis of one example you are declaring all interrogation to be useless? For one thing, it wasn't even Americans that were examining him, but Syrians. For all we know, their interrogators are inferior to ours and their more violent techniques are less effective.
Another thing to consider is how "torture," however you are defining it, can still be used if it's 90-100% ineffective? Do you think US interrogators don't acknowledge the possibility that subjects may say anything? I would imagine there are ways around that, but don't ask me what they are; I'm not an expert.

And then if you are totally willing to torture your captives, what incentive at all do your enemies have of not torturing their captives? Would you want US soldiers to be waterboarded if they are captured by al Quida? What applies to one side has to apply to the other.

You're joking, right? US news couldn't even mention the horrible things Al-Queda did to those two soldiers they captured because it was so excessively gruesome. And we aren't talking about "mental" consequences. And what about all the Iraqi civilian bodies that turn up? They didn't do shit and they suffered Medieval-style cruelty.
There are two concepts you need to abandon: reciprocity and regulations. Terrorist organizations by definition do not adhere to rules of armed combat developed by civilized peoples. Secondly, I've already mentioned how the UN convention against torture doesn't apply.

Thats not what they are doing though, they are playing the music to prevent them from sleeping at all. they are moving them to prevent them from sleeping. They are intentionally depriving them of sleep for extended periods of time. That is mental torture.

So where were all the war crimes trials against the Germans for bombing and shelling British, French, and Americans during the night? I bet they lost a lot of sleep. And if you are calling noise with the intent to prevent sleep torture, then what would you call bombing with intent to kill?

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-12 19:47:15 Reply

At 7/12/08 02:39 PM, adrshepard wrote: So on the basis of one example you are declaring all interrogation to be useless? For one thing, it wasn't even Americans that were examining him, but Syrians. For all we know, their interrogators are inferior to ours and their more violent techniques are less effective.

Orr for all you know they are better than yours? A probe by the Canadian government also cleared him,a s well as Syrian intelligence officials. Are you telling me Canadian intelligence officials are in cohorts with Syrians?

Torture does not yield reliable information and is actually counterproductive in intelligence interrogations. This was the conclusion released by retired senior military interrogators and research psychologists during a press conference at Georgetown University......

The interrogators participating in the research have conducted interrogation and other human intelligence operations in various military operations, including Vietnam, Grenada, Desert Storm, Bosnia, Kosovo, and the ongoing war in Iraq. They maintained that, even in the most urgent situations, torture can not be considered a viable option. The involuntary circumstances of the disclosure would compromise the integrity of the information obtained.

Source

Even military intelligence interrogators are saying it is unreliable. In some cases it may work, in other cases you get lies, and in some cases you get nothing. The problem is if you get a lie, how do you know its a lie, just something to get you to stop torturing them? What about when you torture people who genuinely do not have any information to give you?

Another thing to consider is how "torture," however you are defining it, can still be used if it's 90-100% ineffective? Do you think US interrogators don't acknowledge the possibility that subjects may say anything? I would imagine there are ways around that, but don't ask me what they are; I'm not an expert.

Yeah, try and beat it out of someone else, but even then, if they trained in how to resist torture, they could be telling them same pre-made lies. So in reality there is no way to find out if you are getting the truth or not until you take resources to actually go out and investigate it, wasting time and resources chasing ghosts, or end up bombing innocent people.

Secondly, I've already mentioned how the UN convention against torture doesn't apply.

yeah, it does. You can't just ignore law when it suits you to do so. You condemn other countries for torturing people, yet you are more than willing to do it, or get others to do it on your behalf. Whats the phrase, the kettle calling the the pot black?

My country is committed to upholding our national and international obligations to eradicate torture and to prevent cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. We also are committed to transparency about our policies and actions, and we hope other countries will be equally forthcoming. This is not just a legal obligation -- we are fulfilling a higher moral obligation, which our nation has embraced since its earliest days. Indeed, the United States is proud that it was among the leaders in the international community who established the Convention against Torture. ...

Our commitment to protecting individuals from abuses does not stop with torture. My government is similarly committed to investigating and prosecuting credible allegations of other such forms of unlawful treatment against persons in custody of law enforcement - including in the War on Terror.
Source


So where were all the war crimes trials against the Germans for bombing and shelling British, French, and Americans during the night? I bet they lost a lot of sleep. And if you are calling noise with the intent to prevent sleep torture, then what would you call bombing with intent to kill?

Where is the prosecution of British and Americans for bombing Germans at night, I am sure a lot of Germans lost sleep too.

There is a difference between a battlefield and people being held in detention. The people you are holding are in custody are your responsibility to provide protect and the necessities of life. The UN Convention states It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions. Incarceration alone is not torture. torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity.

It clearly states mental and physical pain are both considered torture.

And provide to me a single piece of evidence based anywhere in US law that proves the President has the authority to over rule acts of congress, federal laws and international treaties to which the US is party to. As Commander-in-Chief, the President does not have this authority and is still bound by the laws of the country.

em>Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer President is still bound by the laws passed by Congress and Constitution, even in wartime. As Justice Jackson wrote "There are indications that the Constitution did not contemplate that the title Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy will constitute him also Commander in Chief of the country, its industries and its inhabitants...he has no monopoly of 'war powers,"


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-13 10:24:23 Reply

At 7/11/08 08:51 PM, JoS wrote:
At 7/10/08 11:42 PM, Memorize wrote: -Playing loud music
Playing loud music all day long, and all night.

;;;
Little side note
Did anyone else see the news article on MSN ? I believe it was yesterday, where the music industry had a blurb about getting royalties paid to the bands who's music is used by "Torturer's "
Those record companies will take a cut anyway they can get it !


Those who have only the religious opinions of others in their head & worship them. Have no room for their own thoughts & no room to contemplate anyone elses ideas either-More

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-13 12:41:29 Reply

At 7/13/08 10:24 AM, morefngdbs wrote: Little side note
Did anyone else see the news article on MSN ? I believe it was yesterday, where the music industry had a blurb about getting royalties paid to the bands who's music is used by "Torturer's "
Those record companies will take a cut anyway they can get it !

That was one of my original points, that people were talking about royalties for the songs.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-13 13:40:41 Reply

At 7/12/08 07:47 PM, JoS wrote: Even military intelligence interrogators are saying it is unreliable. In some cases it may work, in other cases you get lies, and in some cases you get nothing. The problem is if you get a lie, how do you know its a lie, just something to get you to stop torturing them? What about when you torture people who genuinely do not have any information to give you?

However, that is not a call to stop interrogation. It is a call to improve our intelligence so we can be sure that someone has useful information.

But yes, it is very stupid to torture someone in an attempt to find out if they have information.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-13 15:52:41 Reply

At 7/12/08 07:47 PM, JoS wrote: Orr for all you know they are better than yours? A probe by the Canadian government also cleared him, as well as Syrian intelligence officials. Are you telling me Canadian intelligence officials are in cohorts with Syrians?

I would wonder on what grounds the two investigations drew their conclusions. If they depended on the revelation that the initial intelligence was wrong, then that makes it more of an institutional problem rather than a policy one, since it implies that the consequence (deportation and interrogation) is sound, but the buildup (the data that made him targeted) was not. If they "cleared" him by the means that they couldn't inductively prove he had significant enough ties to terrorism, and so used a "reasonable doubt" standard, then it seems to me just as possible that he very well could be a terrorist but kept his mouth shut.

Torture does not yield reliable information and is actually counterproductive in intelligence interrogations. This was the conclusion released by retired senior military interrogators and research psychologists during a press conference at Georgetown University......

Did they classify US interrogating techniques as "torture" or are they refering to violent techniques?

Even military intelligence interrogators are saying it is unreliable. In some cases it may work, in other cases you get lies, and in some cases you get nothing. The problem is if you get a lie, how do you know its a lie, just something to get you to stop torturing them? What about when you torture people who genuinely do not have any information to give you?

That's probably why authorities have only used waterboarding about 3 times. I would also imagine there is a lot of discretion and personal judgement going on, so I don't know if any scenario I could come up with would be realistic.

Yeah, try and beat it out of someone else, but even then, if they trained in how to resist torture, they could be telling them same pre-made lies. So in reality there is no way to find out if you are getting the truth or not until you take resources to actually go out and investigate it, wasting time and resources chasing ghosts, or end up bombing innocent people.

Or they could be telling the truth. And who knows what could turn up while pursuing a "false" lead? I'd say a mix of truth and lies is better than nothing at all.

Secondly, I've already mentioned how the UN convention against torture doesn't apply.
yeah, it does. You can't just ignore law when it suits you to do so. You condemn other countries for torturing people, yet you are more than willing to do it, or get others to do it on your behalf. Whats the phrase, the kettle calling the the pot black?

Not quite; the US signed the convention with the following reservation: "... nothing in this Convention requires or authorizes legislation, or other action, by the United States of America prohibited by the Constitution of the United States as interpreted by the United States." This is an affirmation of the sovereignty of the Constitution as the basis for US law, basically implying that nothing in the convention can be used to overrule it. As the Commander-in-Chief with war powers, Bush has the authority to take certain measures in regard to foreign intelligence gathering, which includes interrogation techniques. This authority overrides the convention.

Our commitment to protecting individuals from abuses does not stop with torture. My government is similarly committed to investigating and prosecuting credible allegations of other such forms of unlawful treatment against persons in custody of law enforcement - including in the War on Terror.

Rhetoric and couched language. After all, he may not consider waterboarding torture.

Where is the prosecution of British and Americans for bombing Germans at night, I am sure a lot of Germans lost sleep too.

I don't think it was a moral compass that prevented Allies from being tried for war crimes. More likely it was because we were victors.

em>Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer President is still bound by the laws passed by Congress and Constitution, even in wartime. As Justice Jackson wrote "There are indications that the Constitution did not contemplate that the title Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy will constitute him also Commander in Chief of the country, its industries and its inhabitants...he has no monopoly of 'war powers,"

Notice he said "there are indications that" and not "the Constitution does not..." That means he isn't sure or is not offering a judgment. If you could provide the link I'll look at it.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-13 16:56:26 Reply

At 7/13/08 03:52 PM, adrshepard wrote: I would wonder on what grounds the two investigations drew their conclusions.

Initially he was labeled as a suspected terrorist, when based on the intel he should have been classified as merely a person of interest. However it was the former that was passed onto Americans, who then decided to arrest him during his stop-over and send him to Syria, where he was tortured. The information passed to the US should have had caveats attached, it did nto, and it should not have been the whole file, which it was.

I think the only intel was an acquaintance of his or something else minor. However despite a Canadian inquiry clearing him, the US still keeps him on the no-fly list.


Did they classify US interrogating techniques as "torture" or are they refering to violent techniques?

The study was conducted looking at the techniques of the US and other countries over several decades of research. I am pretty sure they are going on the UN definition (and more widely held definition) rather than the re-vamped Bush Administration version.


That's probably why authorities have only used waterboarding about 3 times. I would also imagine there is a lot of discretion and personal judgement going on, so I don't know if any scenario I could come up with would be realistic.

There is no realistic scenario which it could be used. They even mention the ticking time-bomb theory (aka jack Baauer) where there is a ticking time bomb and this person knows its location. The individual knows how long he has to hold out until it explodes, while his interrogators do not, giving the suspect the advantage. Secondly he can give a false confession that would be difficult to verify (remote or hard to reach location) to buy more time for himself. Once the bomb goes off it does not matter anymore.


Or they could be telling the truth. And who knows what could turn up while pursuing a "false" lead? I'd say a mix of truth and lies is better than nothing at all.

I would disagree, especially when you do not know which is which. You could end up on a witch-hunt and more innocent people could get hurt or wrongly accused. The problem then becomes, if that person and his family and friends were not already against you, they most likely will be now. You do not make yourself more secure, it actually makes you less secure by making more enemies.

What could you turn up on a false lead? Nothing? That would be the definition of a false lead, takes you no where. Not like he is going to accidentally give you another terrorist training camp or another terrorist, he is going to give you some boy scout leader. You then waste time and resources chasing this false lead for weeks.


Not quite; the US signed the convention with the following reservation: "..

Is there a specific portion of the Constitution that allows for torture?

As the Commander-in-Chief with war powers, Bush has the authority to take certain measures in regard to foreign intelligence gathering, which includes interrogation techniques. This authority overrides the convention.

As I displayed din my previous post, the SC has ruled that the Commander-in-Chief title does not give him the ability to over rule the Constitution or laws passed by Congress. He is the CiC of the Army, Navy and Air Force, not CiC of society. The only reason he was given CiC is so that the title would and control would be in the hands of a civilian, not the military itself.

Congress added in a clause to a defense spending bill in 2005 to ban any cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment of prisoners. The President is legally required by the Constitution to abide by this. Regardless of even a signing statement made on an act of Congress he has to obied by it, the Constitution forbids a line veto. the President must veto the bill in its entirety or pass it in its entirety.


Notice he said "there are indications that" and not "the Constitution does not..." That means he isn't sure or is not offering a judgment. If you could provide the link I'll look at it.

Justice Jackson's opinion which was concurring, meaning that the majority of the SC ruled that the CiC title does not give him absolute privilege and he must still respect teh laws of Congress and the Constitution.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 17:35:54 Reply

At 7/13/08 04:56 PM, JoS wrote: The study was conducted looking at the techniques of the US and other countries over several decades of research. I am pretty sure they are going on the UN definition (and more widely held definition) rather than the re-vamped Bush Administration version.

I've re-looked at the source you linked and I think it's interesting that it doesn't even mention what the experienced interrogators thought about the current US techniques. One can follow their stated reasoning but that is no guarantee of what actually occurs. I also wonder how research could have discovered the effectiveness of torture abroad because I would think it would require access to secret intelligence briefings. I've tried accessing the report but you have to buy it, and there is no record of a "journal of peace psychology" on JSTOR or any of the other databases I can use.

There is no realistic scenario which it could be used.

I was referring to how interrogators interrogate in the first place, how they figure out if someone is reliable or not. It can be done, as handbooks for US soldiers in Vietnam and earlier warned against trying to feed false information as it would only be used against them

I would disagree, especially when you do not know which is which. You could end up on a witch-hunt and more innocent people could get hurt or wrongly accused. The problem then becomes, if that person and his family and friends were not already against you, they most likely will be now. You do not make yourself more secure, it actually makes you less secure by making more enemies.

Well, obviously you don't just bomb wherever the suspect says his leader is. You perform some sort of investigation, and who knows what you may find. My point is a lead is a lead, and even if all of the suspects try to decieve you in the exact same way and are perfect at it, they still have no way of knowing your current intelligence from other sources. Isolated from the battlefield, they have no idea of what has developed, and I would imagine any elaborate scheme of deception would be only useful for a limited point in time, and that's even if it is executed flawlessly.

Is there a specific portion of the Constitution that allows for torture?

Come on, you know better than to go along on some explicit interpretation argument. The Constitution does not say anything about how foreign non-nationals should be treated.

As I displayed din my previous post, the SC has ruled that the Commander-in-Chief title does not give him the ability to over rule the Constitution or laws passed by Congress. He is the CiC of the Army, Navy and Air Force, not CiC of society. The only reason he was given CiC is so that the title would and control would be in the hands of a civilian, not the military itself.

Granted, but...

Congress added in a clause to a defense spending bill in 2005 to ban any cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment of prisoners. The President is legally required by the Constitution to abide by this. Regardless of even a signing statement made on an act of Congress he has to obied by it, the Constitution forbids a line veto. the President must veto the bill in its entirety or pass it in its entirety.

...this sounds like a toothless clause. No binding laws are ever crafted in such subjective terms. Unless it specifically outlawed waterboarding or stress positions, Bush is under no legal obligation to cease endorsing those techniques. After all, who decides that loud music is inhumane? Congress apparently did not want to take a stand on it. Give me a link for the bill.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 21:39:55 Reply

SEC. 9011. Congress, consistent with international and United
States law, reaffirms that torture of prisoners of war and detainees
is illegal and does not reflect the policies of the United States
Government or the values of the people of the United States.
Source

Notice the phrase consistent with international and United States law. I have already posted the international definition of torture.

US Federal law on government agents committing torture.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:14:38 Reply

At 7/10/08 11:42 PM, Memorize wrote: Anywho. Define torture. Is it:

-Playing loud music
-Putting people in cold rooms

Heh, that would be "abuse", not torture. Waterboarding is murky. But those who do physical torture are typically dealt with and punished.

We should take everyone who claims that these sorts of things don't amount to torture and ask them if they're willing to be chained in a hot or cold room with blaring music in a stress position for ten hours a day every day for a week to prove that it isn't.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:20:54 Reply

LIBERALS MUST READ THIS POST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THERE IS NO ******* TORTURING OF SUSPECTED TERRORISTS OR PROVEN GUILTY TERRORISTS!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:26:27 Reply

At 7/14/08 09:39 PM, JoS wrote: SEC. 9011. Congress, consistent with international and United
States law, reaffirms that torture of prisoners of war and detainees
is illegal and does not reflect the policies of the United States
Government or the values of the people of the United States.

Two things: the section does not alter any conditions of international or domestic law, but takes the opportunity to reiterate them. Interestingly, I wonder why it does not say "compliant," which implies abidence, while "consistence" can suggest coincidence.

With this in mind: Our acceptance to the international convention was made with the reservation I specified, and the domestic statute, regardless of whether the US techniques would be considered "torture" or not, does not have jurisdiction in Guantanamo Bay, because the area technically is not US territory. While the Supreme Court has recently granted nominal habeus corpus rights to the detainees, it does not automatically attribute all other rights and laws as well. That's for future cases to decide.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:29:19 Reply

The Gitmo falls under the jurisdiction of Cuba? Its either US territory, or its Cubans, and would be subject to Cuban laws.


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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:32:01 Reply

At 7/14/08 10:14 PM, Elfer wrote:
At 7/10/08 11:42 PM, Memorize wrote:
We should take everyone who claims that these sorts of things don't amount to torture and ask them if they're willing to be chained in a hot or cold room with blaring music in a stress position for ten hours a day every day for a week to prove that it isn't.

How about someone finds a way to intentionally infect you with a massive dose of hemrrhoids and see how you feel after a week?

Or how about you get a choice between electrodes to your balls, having your fingernails slowly extracted with pliers before being smasheed with a hammer, or crouching uncomfortably near a jacked-up stereo? I mean, they are all pretty much torture, right? One's just as bad as any other?

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:36:20 Reply

This forum really needs an edit feature.

At 7/14/08 10:29 PM, JoS wrote: The Gitmo falls under the jurisdiction of Cuba? Its either US territory, or its Cubans, and would be subject to Cuban laws.

Christ, I don't know! There's leasing and sovereignty and gray areas and all sorts of shit I don't feel like researching at the moment. Come back tomorrow.

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Response to Torture of Suspected Terrorists 2008-07-14 22:45:59 Reply

At 7/14/08 10:32 PM, adrshepard wrote: How about someone finds a way to intentionally infect you with a massive dose of hemrrhoids and see how you feel after a week?

I don't support hemorrhoids, and I never claimed to.

Or how about you get a choice between electrodes to your balls, having your fingernails slowly extracted with pliers before being smasheed with a hammer, or crouching uncomfortably near a jacked-up stereo? I mean, they are all pretty much torture, right? One's just as bad as any other?

You appear to be making one of two possible claims here:
1) If loud music and stress positions are torture, classic torture techniques are not as bad or equally bad. This doesn't make sense, so I'll assume that you're trying to make argument 2:
2) "I can think of an example of torture that is worse than what you've described, therefore what you've described is not torture, because in my imagination, all forms of torture must be perfectly equal in severity"

Yeah, let's stop arresting rapists on the basis that they're not as bad as rapist-murderers. QUITE A VALID ARGUMENT YOU HAVE THERE SIR.