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Author Topic: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)  (Read 753 times)

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Offline Thorn14Topic starter

Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« on: November 14, 2011, 06:11:19 PM »
Anyone who says water boarding is not torture should be water-boarded to see what its like.

Then lets see what they think of it.

Offline itsbeenfun2000

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2011, 09:15:23 PM »
i like that idea

Online Zeitgeist

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2011, 09:27:27 PM »
I'm going to regret this. I just know I am.

I presume the discussion of water boarding in this thread is as a result of the recent debate, and the question posed to the candidates?

To say I am 'for' water-boarding wouldn't be accurate. But I would say it needs to remain a tool in the toolbox. It should be on the very bottom of that toolbox however. Were I president I would authorize only the Joint Chiefs of Staff the ability to approve its use, and there must be unanimous agreement. And as president, the next morning I'm going to want to know why it was authorized.

But I'll tell you another thing, I sure as hell wouldn't pronounce to the world I wouldn't use water-boarding (or any other enhanced means). I mean, why the hell would you say that? Let those who would do harm at least wonder that we might. It's wholly naive in my opinion to say outloud you won't use this, or that method.

Offline Jude

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2011, 10:36:57 PM »
Your special treatment of waterboarding as a technique is a confession that there is something about it which sets it apart from other techniques.  That's basically admitting "hey, waterboarding is torture."  There's two problems with your argument from there on out:

1)  You're assuming that there is no benefit to saying you won't do something.

And of course there is, if you agree to rules of international conduct your potential enemies will as well in many cases.  Part of it is about setting an example or showing the world what your country stands for.  Many would claim that this is a matter of human rights.  Sure, this won't convince a terrorist to behave, but how many American soldiers can you name that were actually kidnapped and tortured by terrorists?  Spoiler:  it doesn't happen often enough to be taken into the equation and even terrorists are residents of foreign governments (meaning how we treat them has the potential to tweak someone off).  This is about more than terrorism.

2)  You're assuming there is a deterrent effect to waterboarding when it comes to terrorists and/or foreign governments.

Which isn't true.  The knowledge that we are mistreating them actually has the opposite effect:  it gives them a recruiting tool.  Remember the Abu Graib photo controversy?

EDIT:  Someone who is willing to perform a suicide attack isn't afraid of a little simulated drowning.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2011, 10:40:55 PM by Jude »

Online Zeitgeist

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2011, 10:54:15 PM »
I beg to differ. It is you who I believe is assuming quite a bit. Reading between the lines.

I never said water-boarding isn't torture. And yes, it is set apart from other techniques.

I think it is forever naive to believe that because we might say we won't use this method or that method, that other countries will presumably follow suit? You think China or Russia would? Come on.

Water boarding isn't a deterrent. It's one method among many that can, and should be used appropriately. The point of not pronouncing you would/wouldn't use this or that method is largely for intelligence purposes. It's flat out stupid in my opinion to lay out publicly your methods. I don't care if they are already public domain. Let the other guy wonder at least.

There are little to no facts on this so-called recruitment factor, only a smattering of anecdotal evidence. And really, if such things instill one to become a terrorist, well then it is likely they were already down that road anyhow.

On a side note, Obama is doing the right thing. Annihilating them where they stand, rather than bother with the fuss of wondering what to do with them if you capture them, i.e. the ramp up on drone attacks.

We aren't going to find common ground here.

EDIT:  Someone who is willing to perform a suicide attack isn't afraid of a little simulated drowning.

Oh, so now it's just a little simulated drowning? Which is is? Torture, or something 'little'. LOL
« Last Edit: November 14, 2011, 10:55:53 PM by Zeitgeist »

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Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2011, 11:04:44 PM »
I think the point is that someone willing to blow themselves up isn't going to quail at some other threat of death.

In itself, that's a fairly good reason not to bother with torture.  It's like mudwrestling with a pig - you both get dirty, but the pig enjoys it.

Online Zeitgeist

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2011, 11:08:25 PM »
I think the point is that someone willing to blow themselves up isn't going to quail at some other threat of death.

In itself, that's a fairly good reason not to bother with torture.  It's like mudwrestling with a pig - you both get dirty, but the pig enjoys it.

How does that saying go? There are some things worse than death...

Anyhow. I'll put my lot in with the 'Obama Doctrine'. Annihilate them where they live. Much less fussier.

Offline Missy

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2011, 11:41:59 PM »
Stephen Colbert just interviewed a guy who worked as one of our interogators who said he thought waterboarding and "enhanced interogation" was ineffective. He noted that most of them come from places where the local government will do much worse if they arrest them, plus he had better ideas on how interogation could be more effectively done.

Offline Noelle

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2011, 11:53:45 PM »
I never said water-boarding isn't torture. And yes, it is set apart from other techniques.

Then by all means, please go on to explain how this form of torture is special, but the rest are not and remain illegal within the US.

For the record, "the rest" include, but are not limited to the following (which are found in an army field manual):

Quote
Forcing the detainee to be naked, perform sexual acts, or pose in a sexual manner;
Hooding, that is, placing hoods or sacks over the head of a detainee; using duct tape over the eyes;
Applying beatings, electric shock, burns, or other forms of physical pain;
Using military working dogs;
Inducing hypothermia or heat injury;
Conducting mock executions;
Depriving the detainee of necessary food, water, or medical care.

You're saying that it's okay to simulate drowning, but it's not okay to simulate execution. It's okay to simulate drowning, but it's not okay to put a hood over someone's head. It's okay to simulate drowning, but forcing them to be naked - whoa, slow down, colonel!

I understand that you have not explicitly stated these things (and they are partially worded in jest - the last one, anyway :P), but that is the implication being made when you argue that waterboarding is somehow special and unique and fit to be used as compared to the things that are not okay and fit to be used.

Quote
I think it is forever naive to believe that because we might say we won't use this method or that method, that other countries will presumably follow suit? You think China or Russia would? Come on.

I believe the point is right here. Let's not act like Russia or China. Extremist Pakistanis or Afghanis or Iranians or what-have-you would strap a bomb to a child and send them out as human weapons, but we're hardly jumping on board to follow suit even though by all means, it would surprise the living hell out of the terrorists who wouldn't exactly see it coming from the good ol' US of A. What is naive here is to think that racing other countries to the bottom is going to end up well for us - from there it's more or less a contest to see how fast we can get our allies to drop us like a bad habit. We're already seen as bullies with the most powerful armed forces on the planet and it still hasn't deterred anyone - in fact, that's half the reason a lot of the Middle East hates us, is because we throw our muscle around and get up in other people's business when we don't like what's going on.

The train's already rolled out of the station of trying to get down to their level, and that train went straight to a place called Guantanamo. Last I checked, nobody seemed especially discouraged from messing with 'Muricuh after a lengthy stay in that hole.


Quote
Water boarding isn't a deterrent. It's one method among many that can, and should be used appropriately.

It also gets crappy information - when it does. We had to waterboard Khalid Sheikh Mohammed 183 times in one month. I'll say it again - 183 times in one month. This guy got waterboarded on average more times in a day than he got meals. This is incredibly inefficient, not to mention combined with the conditions the guy was already living in, probably causing him quite a bit of mental duress. What happens when you're under mental duress? You can't think straight. Human memory is incredibly fallible. It doesn't matter if you're a witness in court or if you're on a table getting water poured down your throat, your brain is almost working against you at times, filling in gaps in your memories with simulation rather than fact. I can't imagine getting any kind of clear, thoughtful, and intelligent account from a man who is getting waterboarded six times a day. Even putting aside the idea that it's especially inhumane, I'm curious to know how you can defend that as a legitimate means of gathering information from a purely neurological standpoint.


It's fine if there is no common ground to be had, but it's at least important to know what you're dismissing in spite of it all.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2011, 06:12:35 AM »


The train's already rolled out of the station of trying to get down to their level, and that train went straight to a place called Guantanamo. Last I checked, nobody seemed especially discouraged from messing with 'Muricuh after a lengthy stay in that hole.

How many people have been released from Guantanamo and gone back to fighting against us?

Online Zeitgeist

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2011, 07:50:55 AM »
I don't completely disagree with opponents of water-boarding or other harsh techniques. I suspect more subtle methods and sleight of hand yields more useful information. Often it is what people don't say that has more value, than what they do say.

Khalid has said, in court, that he was responsible for 9/11 A-Z, among a litany of other planned events, failed or otherwise.

The reasons behind this confession could be one of several.

1. Braggadocio
2. Let his enemies think they have the guy who planned all this, taking the heat off his cohorts
3. He really did mastermind these events

There may be others I'm not thinking of too.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khalid_Sheikh_Mohammed

I still wouldn't pronounce what I, as president, would do, or not do, to glean intelligence. In my opinion there is less upside than downside doing so. Anecdotal narratives aside.

Offline Caehlim

Re: Waterboarding/Torture (Was: Republican Candiates for 2012)
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2011, 11:12:03 AM »
I have no idea whether torture is a valid method for obtaining information. I'll have to wait until some brave psychologist convinces an ethics board to let them study that with proper scientific processes. In the meantime my guess is that it's a little effective, probably not as much as its promoters would claim but probably not as little as its detractors would claim. (Usually a safe assumption).

However, regardless of their utility I would have to argue that some actions are morally reprehensible and should be avoided. I personally think that we should ban all forms of torture.