This is one of the roots of the problem. Once you have a class of people without rights, you can arbitrarily identify people as part of that class and they have no chance at due process. Unless absolutely everyone has basic legal protections, no one has them.
Edit: In other words, they were not recognized as a proper army and were deemed to be something like internal rebel forces, subject to internal law only, with no International protections, such as the Geneva Convention. They were treated horribly when taken into custody and often tortured.
Blatant violation of Article 2, United Nations Convention against Torture, United States Signatory 18 April 1988, ratified 21 October 1994.
To be proven by ACLU:
"...For more than a month, Suleiman endured an incessant barrage of torture techniques designed to psychologically destroy him. His torturers repeatedly doused him with ice-cold water. They beat him and slammed him into walls. They hung him from a metal rod, his toes barely touching the floor. They chained him in other painful stress positions for days at a time. They starved him, deprived him of sleep, and stuffed him inside small boxes. With the torture came terrifying interrogation sessions in which he was grilled about what he was doing in Somalia and the names of people, all but one of whom he’d never heard of. ..."
Overall 54 countries participated and cooperated with the US on it's extraordinary rendition program from Iceland to Iran.
This would be an interesting trial indeed...
Yale Law School Lillian Goldman Library:
Article 2 & 5:
"...Prisoners of war are in the power of the hostile Power, but not of the individuals or corps who have captured them. They must at all times be humanely treated and protected, particularly against acts of violence, insults and public curiosity. Measures of reprisal against them are prohibited.
: "...No coercion may be used on prisoners to secure information to the condition of their army or country. Prisoners who refuse to answer may not be threatened, insulted, or exposed to unpleasant or disadvantageous treatment of any kind whatever. ..."
Take an hour or two to read the executive summary at the beginning and you will be better informed that just about anyone. Going to the primary sources is easy enough, and it's really enjoyable (a weird word in this context) to form opinions based on the rawest information available. Of course the actual report is a political document in itself, but that aspect is as much a part of the coverage of the report as the contents itself.
Is this the same study that you linked?
Like the older:
United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary
Hearing June 10, 2008
"Coercive Interrogation Techniques: Do They
Work, Are They Reliable, and What Did the
FBI Know About Them?"
(39 pages, some interesting points are made, among them some pretty clear arguments that torture is illegal, and harsh techniques that for some reason or other are deemed to not be torture may also be illegal...)
-- That is simply fucking abhorrent.
So... for an anti-torture position to have some meat to it, you have to make it clear that you think torture is unacceptable even when it does work.
If you're not willing to sacrifice real lives and safety to avoid torture, I don't think you are meaningfully against it, and you certainly stand no chance of persuading those convinced of its efficacy.
If someone wants to claim that some action has some effect it is on them to prove it not the rest of us to refute it. US torture advocates have had every opportunity to do so and failed.
What about all of the people that are tortured that don't have anything to do with terrorism? What sort of reparations do they receive? What sort of penalty does the US citizenry or the US government pay for those types of mistakes? It's easy to throw others under the bus to save yourself, but I'm not sure if the US can really claim to be the world's Moral Authority when they are doing such things.
Or they like torturing. (They are torturers, after all.)
Hypothetical: someone kidnaps a child and the police capture someone who definitely knows where the child is. The child's life is at risk. If the parent were to beat up (torture) the person to gain knowledge, you'd assume the parent "likes" torturing people? I wouldn't.
I completely agree with this, and it's the crux of the argument that I've made against torture when having that debate with people.
Whether it works or not is a cop out. Yes, I believe that torture is, in general, vastly counterproductive. But I also believe that there might be occasional cases where it happens to "work" for extracting factually true information (I put "work" in scare-quotes because there are all sorts of practical and moral side effects even if it does "work"). No matter: it's still morally wrong.
Most Americans believe in the principle of "innocent until proven guilty." That alone should be enough to imply that torture is wrong, since it is almost exclusively perpetrated against the unconvicted (and even if convicted, there's the whole prohibition on "cruel and unusual punishment," which I'd bet most Americans would also claim belief in).
I guess there are many people who don't think it through that far. And I'd bet that there are many Americans who believe that those rights apply to other Americans, but not non-Americans, or enemy combatants, or whatever. Such people are, IMHO, cowardly assholes. Everyone deserves the same basic human rights.
If torture really doesn't work, it's an amazing argument against torture.
I get very suspicious when I see conjunctive arguments that neuter hard value judgments. It's extremely common to see them: "I think you doing X is objectionable AND it doesn't even work!" Example from the right:
Gun control is unconstitutional AND criminals will still get guns anyway!
In my experience, the second half of these arguments usually has nothing to do with the arguer's real motivations, it just helps him/her avoid cognitive dissonance from the trade offs.
I attack this by stating that "We got far more intelligence by NOT torturing people in WWII."
People want to talk. If you give them an environment where they can just talk, they can't help but tell you valuable things.
There are two APAs:
1. American Psychological Association - PhD/PsyD Psychologists - (torture scandal)
2. American Psychiatric Association - MD/DO Physicians - (unambiguously opposed to medical involvement in torture)
People get psychiatrists and psychologists confused all the time, and the distinction here is really, really important.
Bias: I'm a psychiatrist, and I am proud that our professional organization has been clear from the start that torture is unacceptable.
By no means am I suggesting anything illegal or dangerous. But it's appalling that James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen are allowed to participate in society.
If you are an engineer or executive at any company, you have a duty to check for accounts belonging to these people and turn them off. If they subscribe to your services, their money is no good. If they want to buy products, they are not for sale. No credit cards, no bank accounts, no cellular phones.
They don't belong in our society and anyone in a position to eject them ought to do so.
Is G. Bush Jr still alive? Seriously, dont do any harm to these people. They need to have a fair trial, which will fairly convict them of war crimes, followed by lawful solitary confinement for life and/or inmate carelessness and/or family bankruptcy for life, and I wish them a long, long, long life.
It may sound too innocent, but how is someone able to trust the information given by someone who has been driven crazy? If Suleiman forgot the name of his father due to the torture, he may as well forget crucial details of the terrorist plot he was supposed to be part of.
History will not judge us kindly.
In 2008 I left my job, girlfriend, friends, and family behind to do so. It's tough but it's possible.
(For example: 24, Almost Human, Batman...almost too many to list. It's funny to watch the second Rambo movie and ask yourself if there's any difference at all between the russians in afghanistan in the 80's and the US there in the 00's.)
as he is often brought up in discussions on interrogation techniques.