OpEdNews Op Eds

The Current Debate Over The Use of Torture

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Well Said 1   Supported 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H3 5/6/11


With the killing of Osama bin Laden has come a renewed debate on the value of torture.

To some people particularly those who initially authorized its use, notably former Justice Department lawyer John Yoo (the man who drafted the infamous "torture" memos giving the use of "enhanced interrogation" the "legal" cover requested by his bosses in the Bush administration) and those of his ilk believe the use of waterboarding, sleep deprivation, growling dogs, slamming into walls et al   conducted by American interrogators gave them the ability to piece together the whereabouts of bin Laden and develop the plan to take him out.

However, many retired and former CIA and FBI interrogators strenuously object saying the use of torture produces nothing of value (actionable intelligence) and more often leads to misleading intelligence (as in the case of Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, the admitted mastermind of 9/11). Those tortured will also resort to say what they think their interrogators "want to hear" just to stop the barbarism they are being subjected to.

Torture of course in not a new phenomenon. But it was formally associated with (but certainly not confined to) autocratic, dictatorial regimes. The Japanese used torture during W.W.II as did Hitler's Germany, Stalin's Soviet Union, Mao's China, Lon Nol in Cambodia and more recently Qaddafi in Libya, Mubarak in Egypt, Pinochet in Chile to name some of the more were notorious practitioners.    

  It was seen by Americans (and most of the world's peoples) as barbaric. It's been condemned and outlawed by the U.N. as a crime against humanity. Besides it was believed (naively it appears) to be a practice we would never stoop to use and antithetical to our "supposed" democratic principles.

Well the "official" pronouncements emanating from this White House (as well as his predecessor) that "we don't torture" is nothing but pure propaganda. Not only do we practice torture we are doing it on a wide scale believing (one supposes) that we are somehow immune from being held to account i.e. not a member of the World Court (though a judge in Spain has attempted to file charges of crimes against humanity against former members of the Bush administration [namely former V.P. Cheney] who have openly admitted they authorized it, thus far nothing concrete has developed).

As to American attitudes today on our use of torture it appears most people accept it. There have been no loud outcries or widespread demonstrations (other than anti war opponents) against its use. Even those pictures of G.I.s torturing prisoners at Abu Ghraib in Iraq didn't sufficiently arouse the American public to demand those officials who approved the torture of detainees be held to account (if the public's general acquiescence and passivity to its use is any guide).

9/11 didn't change the world, but it appears to have hardened many Americans attitudes who seem to have bought into the "official" propaganda on our use of torture and the triumphalism by the media to our military's "daring do".      

One supposes now after that fateful day almost 10 years ago that "all" the cards are on the table, including the "genie" of torture.

  These acts of barbarism let loose by the Bush administration have continued unabated with the present administration. The advent of Barack Obama has essentially changed nothing.

 

dglefc22733@aol.com

Retired. The author of "DECEIT AND EXCESS IN AMERICA, HOW THE MONEYED INTERESTS HAVE STOLEN AMERICA AND HOW WE CAN GET IT BACK", Authorhouse, 2009

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

Go To Commenting
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

An Ominous Foreboding, Israel vs Iran

The Evolving Populist Political Rebellion in the Arab World

A Nuclear War Would Be Insane

The Rich Get Richer, the Poor Get Poorer, While the Middle Class Gets Decimated

Iran Offers 9 Point Plan to end Nuclear Crisis, U.S. "No thanks".

The Danger of an Israeli Attack on Iran

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
3 people are discussing this page, with 4 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

It's illegal - a crime against humanity and anyone... by Dennis Kaiser on Friday, May 6, 2011 at 9:43:56 AM
The debate only legitimizes the criminal acts of t... by Dennis Kaiser on Friday, May 6, 2011 at 12:27:10 PM
your article made the one point I have been making... by liberalsrock on Friday, May 6, 2011 at 3:21:46 PM
Right?Yet all it took was a Memorandum for us to s... by Taylor on Friday, May 6, 2011 at 7:45:15 PM