Can We Call It "Torture" Yet?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Tiassa, Jul 1, 2009.

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  1. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    Can we call it "torture" yet? Two out of three ain't bad—

    (1) I can see why the Obama administration wants this kept quiet.
    (2) It is certainly going to inflame passions against the United States.
    (3) There is no excuse for suppressing this administration.​

    —but neither is it good. In fact, it is repugnant.

    The interrogation and detention regime implemented by the U.S. resulted in the deaths of over 100 detainees in U.S. custody -- at least. While some of those deaths were the result of "rogue" interrogators and agents, many were caused by the methods authorized at the highest levels of the Bush White House, including extreme stress positions, hypothermia, sleep deprivation and others. Aside from the fact that they cause immense pain, that's one reason we've always considered those tactics to be "torture" when used by others -- because they inflict serious harm, and can even kill people. Those arguing against investigations and prosecutions -- that we Look to the Future, not the Past -- are thus literally advocating that numerous people get away with murder.

    The record could not be clearer regarding the fact that we caused numerous detainee deaths, many of which have gone completely uninvestigated and thus unpunished. Instead, the media and political class have misleadingly caused the debate to consist of the myth that these tactics were limited and confined. As Gen. Barry McCaffrey recently put it:

    We should never, as a policy, maltreat people under our control, detainees. We tortured people unmercifully. We probably murdered dozens of them during the course of that, both the armed forces and the C.I.A.


    (Greenwald)

    This is our War on Terror. This is the Bush legacy. And, unfortunately, President Obama seems to want to make it part of his. It is now part of our American heritage.

    Liberty gasps. Justice weeps. Our nation is diminished, and rightly so.

    This is one of the things that make me wish I had a religion, that I might then beg, "May God forgive us."

    The CIA Inspector General's report should be released sometime today.
    ______________________

    Notes:

    Greenwald, Glenn. "The suppressed fact: Deaths by U.S. torture". Unclaimed Territory. June 30, 2009. Salon.com. July 1, 2009. http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/06/30/accountability/index.html
     
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  3. superstring01 Moderator

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    This is more a "presidential" thing than a "Bush/Obama" thing. Once in the position, they get the CIA and DOD briefings every day and begin to see the world much as their predecessor did. This is, perhaps, a terrible thing, but then again, who knows what's in that red binder that the CIA attaché delivers each morning!

    CIA Guy: "Sir, we were able to stop 21 of the nuclear warheads from leaving Kazakhstan, but the other six are unaccounted for..."
    Obama: "Dude, where's agent Smithers, he usually delivers this brief?"
    CIA guy: "Sir, he had alien eggs implanted in his chest just last week. They broke through his rib-cage this morning and... well... he died."
    Obama: "Oh. I... never... saw this coming."

    Presidents have a long history of covering for their predecessor, regardless of how hostile the election process went. Bush did this on a few occasions for Clinton. It's no surprise that Obama is burying Bush's old skeletons in some dark closet somewhere in Area 51.

    ~String
     
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  5. takandjive Killer Queen Registered Senior Member

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    Someone wrote regarding Obama (and I bet someone more political than I am can spout it off) wrote something like, "I've seen the audacity of hope; now I'm hoping for some audacity." Grow a pair, Barry.
     
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  7. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    This and that

    Agreed. Except theirs are the names to be associated with it.

    • • •​

    That would be Bill Maher, in a recent "New Rules" monologue:

    I'm glad Obama is president, but the "audacity of hope" part is over. Right now, I'm hoping for a little more audacity.
    ____________________

    Notes:

    Maher, Bill. "New Rules". Real Time With Bill Maher. HBO, New York. June 12, 2009. BillMaher.com. July 1, 2009. http://www.hbo.com/billmaher/new_rules/20090612.html
     
  8. countezero Registered Senior Member

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    I will for IG report. ACLU memos and a Glenn Greenwald column are hardly reputable for the hundreds of deaths that are being claimed here.
     
  9. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    That the number of captives dying under suspicious circumstances has been many dozens has been reported for years, from several sources. Greenwald did not come by that recently.

    Considering the number of incidents that have been verified, and the idiosyncratic circumstances under which so many have come to light, it isn't really reasonable to presume such deaths have been rare or that any substantial fraction of them has been made public.

    That would be like presuming - as an assumption, without public and thorough investigation - that the one and only interrogation death at Abu Ghraib happened to be photographed.
     
  10. countezero Registered Senior Member

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    I will wait for the report and leave assuming to you. That's your bag, remember?
     
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    When the IG report comes out, will you be assuming its superior reliability and thoroughly complete accounting regardless of what it says, and regardless of the circumstances of its composition and release, or will you be allowing some reasonable credibility to the many dozens of reports, investigations, accounts, and interpretations of circumstance that we already have?
     
  12. leopold Valued Senior Member

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    the CIA doesn't investigate these claims, the FBI does.
     
  13. tuberculatious Banned Banned

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    killing prisoners during interrogation isn't necessarily torture. They might have killed them in a humane manner.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 5, 2009
  14. countezero Registered Senior Member

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    Not the claims themselves, but the agency has an internal auditor that came out of the Church Commission that produces reports on agency behavior. Typically, they are pretty thorough and unbiased.


    I will do what I always do and assess the data as best I know how. Much of what I've seen up to this point is speculation and claims that cannot be substantiated by former prisoners. In the meantime, why don't you post some of these "many of dozens of reports, investigations, accounts, and interpretations"?
     
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