Monday, April 20, 2009

Torture update

The New York Times reports that the "C.I.A. used waterboarding 183 times in March 2003 against Khalid Shaikh Mohammed the self-described planner of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks."

For those with rusty math skills: That comes out to about once every four hours, if we assume the torturers rested on the Lord's day.
For those with rusty logic skills: This proves that torture doesn't work. If it did, wouldn't one trip to the waterboarding chamber have been enough?

John McCain, who tortured us all when he foisted Sarah Palin on the lower 49 states, told Foux News:

One is too much. Waterboarding is torture, period. I can ensure you that once enough physical pain is inflicted on someone, they will tell that interrogator whatever they think they want to hear. And most importantly, it serves as a great propaganda tool for those who recruit people to fight against us.
Good stuff, but he also complained that the anti-torture Obama administration was wrong to reveal that Mohammed had been deceived into thinking he was about to die of drowning on 183 separate occasions. But how can we have it both ways? If torture is wrong, immoral, unethical, useless, illegal, and bad for America, how can he possibly argue that its occurrences should also be kept secret?

As Andrew Sullivan said it: ...even by the Bush-Cheney standards of legality, the [Mohammed] waterboarders far exceeded what was allowed. They broke the law even by Bush's standards. And why, pray, is breaking the law in such a grave matter as a war crime no longer subject to prosecution or even investigation in the United States? The US is a banana republic if this stuff is allowed to go unpunished. A banana republic with a torture apparatus.

- Bush's Boneheaded Torture Policy
- Arguing torture in the manner of the bes medrash
- The Divine Right of Bush?
- Bush defends freedom by torturing innocent people in secret.

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