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Old 11-02-2005, 09:05 PM   #31
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Our country should never engage in physical torture, but "emotional" torture and "degrading" methods are perfectly fine by me. Sorry, I couldn't care less if they flush a Koran or any holy book down the toilet. Not torture.

I don't like the fact that most of the people are held at these secret facilities and aren't documented, but I guess that's the way it is, and it doesn't surprise me. It's definitely fishy that most of these people are eventually released and never charged with any kind of crime...I'm still holding out hope that in some vaguely sci-fi twist of events, the CIA is actually implanting little chips into these guys' heads, and once released they will now infiltrate cells, do our bidding, etc. Wouldn't that be cool. They should make a movie out of that, starring Ahhnold...
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:08 PM   #32
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Originally posted by VertigoGal
Our country should never engage in physical torture, but "emotional" torture and "degrading" methods are perfectly fine by me. Sorry, I couldn't care less if they flush a Koran or any holy book down the toilet. Not torture.

I don't like the fact that most of the people are held at these secret facilities and aren't documented, but I guess that's the way it is, and it doesn't surprise me. It's definitely fishy that most of these people are eventually released and never charged with any kind of crime...I'm still holding out hope that in some vaguely sci-fi twist of events, the CIA is actually implanting little chips into these guys' heads, and once released they will now infiltrate cells, do our bidding, etc. Wouldn't that be cool. They should make a movie out of that, starring Ahhnold...


i should look this up, but if memory serves, somewhere in the neighborhood of 45 detainees have died while in US custody as a result of interrogation techniques.

also, is doing things like wiping fake menstrual blood on the face of a prisoner appropriate "emotional" torture?
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:12 PM   #33
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Didn't work in Northern Ireland.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uses_of...United_Kingdom


"The Guildford Four and Birmingham Six claimed they were tortured by anti-terrorism police into confessing to IRA bombings. If they were, it appears not to have been authorised by the British government and the resulting convictions would be a good demonstration of the problems related to information extracted by torture."
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:18 PM   #34
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Originally posted by Irvine511




i should look this up, but if memory serves, somewhere in the neighborhood of 45 detainees have died while in US custody as a result of interrogation techniques.

also, is doing things like wiping fake menstrual blood on the face of a prisoner appropriate "emotional" torture?
I wasn't aware of that, I know those reports vary greatly depending who you're talking to (obviously). A source would be nice...

sorry, but what exactly constitutes "fake menstrual blood"? (at least it doesn't smell as bad as real menstrual blood. ) anyway, I don't think there's that much of a problem with it, if they really think it's suck an effective info-gathering technique. although it may qualify as physical torture if it got in their eyes or something. in any case I have to say it's probably preferable to bamboo shoots up the toenails.

by the way, sorry if I'm being crass. torture is definitely bad, I'm just feeling a little cynical tonight
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:29 PM   #35
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Originally posted by financeguy
Didn't work in Northern Ireland.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uses_of...United_Kingdom


"The Guildford Four and Birmingham Six claimed they were tortured by anti-terrorism police into confessing to IRA bombings. If they were, it appears not to have been authorised by the British government and the resulting convictions would be a good demonstration of the problems related to information extracted by torture."
I don't know if that's really a fair comparison in terms of how torture can backfire. I don't think the CIA expects most of the detainees to be in a position to turn around and take the US to court over it. Sort of lost me at "resulting convictions." Because here there would be no resulting convictions. It's just not how we roll if you haven't noticed.
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:35 PM   #36
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Originally posted by VertigoGal
I don't know if that's really a fair comparison in terms of how torture can backfire. I don't think the CIA expects most of the detainees to be in a position to turn around and take the US to court over it. Sort of lost me at "resulting convictions." Because here there would be no resulting convictions. It's just not how we roll if you haven't noticed.

The case referred to is the Irish government taking the UK government to court, not individuals taking the UK government to court. It is entirely possible for a government to take the US government to court if it has evidence its' nationals are being mistreated, regardless of any convictions. In fact I think the Bahrain government is in the process of it.

Also what is not made fully clear in the article is that it is now accepted by almost everyone, including the British authorities, that the Birm. 6 and Guildford 4 were innocent. Indeed they have won substantial monetary damages.

But the larger point I should have made was that 'soft' torture such as sensory deprivations, etc, practised by the UK authorities in the early 1970's in the context of Northern Ireland led to an increase in terrorist activity and recruitment for the IRA, rather than the reverse.
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Old 11-02-2005, 09:44 PM   #37
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Oh, okay. I didn't read that properly. I had no clue Bahrain was taking us to court, that's good to know.

Certainly the use of soft torture may lead to increased recruitment and that's something we need to assess. However if it was for whatever reason determined that the info gathered would be more important than the possible negative ramifications, I don't see any moral problem with emotional torture.

I mean, I do, but it's not bamboo shoots up the toenails, and I think that's really all we can ask of our government. I'm not kidding.

The greater problem does lie with the fact that it seems most of these people are indeed innocent or of very questionable involvement. Not good for our image, and it's obviously wrong to lock up innocent people. I don't see why Washington won't make some concessions as far as disclosing info about locations at least. Not doing so only gives the impression that these are some type of gulags (I'd like hope they aren't), and Washington could really use some image-boosting at the moment.
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Old 11-03-2005, 12:39 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal


Certainly the use of soft torture may lead to increased recruitment and that's something we need to assess. However if it was for whatever reason determined that the info gathered would be more important than the possible negative ramifications, I don't see any moral problem with emotional torture.

Honestly I'm surprised so many people who I'd consider to be more liberal are so tenatively supportive of this.
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Old 11-03-2005, 01:44 AM   #39
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I am shocked and sickened by anyone who would advocate torture.

We condemn it if it's against Christians in Africa or China, but if it's against a political prisoner (and one of a different faith) than it is ok. If it was against an American in Vietnam, it was bad, but if it's a suspected Islamic terrorist, then it is good. It was bad when Saddam tortured Shiites, and that's why we invaded, but it's ok when Americans torture Arabs.

Does no one else smell the hypocrisy? Or are we all blinded by the Stars and Stripes?

I do not want America to inherit the mantle of the Lubyanka or Vietcong. I would think any God fearing, self-respecting, patriotic American would condemn even the hint of such things going on in their name.

And if this is unpatriotic, maybe it is time I became Canadian.
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Old 11-03-2005, 07:18 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rono
Honestly I'm surprised so many people who I'd consider to be more liberal are so tenatively supportive of this.
well, if you'll allow me to quote my next sentence:

Quote:
I mean, I do, but it's not bamboo shoots up the toenails, and I think that's really all we can ask of our government. I'm not kidding.
Look, I don't advocate torture, I really don't. I wish it was never used. But I get the feeling it's almost guaranteed that the CIA/army are going to do some things that aren't exactly preferable. And since that's the case, I do feel like some things are worse than others. I'd rather they use soft torture, than create hard labor camps, or electrocute people, or whatever it is people use to physically torture people.

And in some of the least severe instances, such as the Koran down the toilet, I still don't see what is so wrong with that in the scheme of things.
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Old 11-03-2005, 09:56 AM   #41
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For those who argue that physical and/or psychological torture is permissible under some circumstances...

-- Who should decide the criteria for determining which detainees are appropriate candidates for torture?

-- Who should decide what the permissible techniques are?

-- Who should they (the above) be answerable to regarding the scope, duration and consequences of these practices?

-- If the use of torture in a particular situation should happen to be exposed, and evokes widespread international revulsion, should that affect the decision of how long to continue it?


From a purely cynical realpolitik standpoint, I can appreciate the point that Black Ops (by many countries) sometimes entails coercive techniques whether we like it or not--but moral considerations aside (God forbid), I am dubious whether that analogy can be meaningfully applied to such an (apparently) large-scale, and at best, semi-clandestine operation.
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Old 11-03-2005, 10:00 AM   #42
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There was an episode of Commander In Chief about this subject, it was great to at least see the fictional President say that torture of terrorism suspects or any other suspects will never be tolerated or allowed

It should never be tolerated or allowed under any circumstances, to do so is to betray every ideal that the US supposedly stands for
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Old 11-03-2005, 12:11 PM   #43
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Well, on NBC, President Bartlett ordered an assassination!










Coercive techniques have likely been used for decades. I guess the open documentation of said use makes us extremely uncomfortable.
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Old 11-03-2005, 12:21 PM   #44
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Coercive techniques have likely been used for decades. I guess the open documentation of said use makes us extremely uncomfortable.


coercive techniques?



[q]"I think our policies required abuse. There were freaking horrible things people were doing. I saw [detainees] who had feet smashed with hammers. One detainee told me he had been forced by Marines to sit on an exhaust pipe, and he had a softball-sized blister to prove it. The stuff I did was mainly torture lite: sleep deprivation, isolation, stress positions, hypothermia. We used dogs."

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9865301/site/newsweek/

[/q]
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Old 11-03-2005, 12:32 PM   #45
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coercive techniques?
Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
From a purely cynical realpolitik standpoint, I can appreciate the point that Black Ops (by many countries) sometimes entails coercive techniques whether we like it or not
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