Chamblee54

Thirteen Thoughts About Torture

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on April 24, 2009

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Two of the everyday reads here, Andrew Sullivan and Kikoshouse, are all over this torture business. Go to either site, and you will see much more than you want to know. PG is trying to sort it all out. Maybe a top ten list will do the trick. Publishing it in rainbow colors will make it seem a little less horrible.

1- BHO doesn’t seem to want to do anything. The sense here is that BHO is not morally opposed to torture, and may want to use some of these methods before long. Being a product of Chicago politics does not speak well for his moral compass.
2- The United States has never been that morally superior. We did terrible things to native Americans, and imported a dark skinned population from Africa to enslave. In our most recent wars, there have been civilian casualties galore. In World War II, hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed in air raids. In Vietnam the numbers were much higher, and we used a truly horrible concoction called napalm.

3- The School of the Americas is at Fort Benning. ( It has a different name now, and allegedly a more human focus). For many years, this school for Latin American authority figures taught methods of advanced interrogation.
4- While there were excesses on the battlefield, it does seem like the American military had some restraint about torturing prisoners of war. This frontier seems to have been breached during the Bush regime.

5- There is some controversy now about whether to prosecute Bush Administration officials…and possibly W himself…for war crimes. PG thinks this would be a very good move. It will put BHO and future regimes on notice that torture is not acceptable to citizens of the United States.
6- Two Wrongs do not make a right. While 911 was horrible, that does not give our forces the right to stoop to the level of those we fight. Christopher Buckley usually has a bit of sense, but he goes all out with rhetoric along these lines.

7- In the seventies and eighties, frustration over illegal drug use led to a “War on Drugs”. Many terrible laws were passed, many constitutional rights were destroyed, and the majority of Americans did not care. If a person was labeled a drug user, the bill of rights no longer applied to him. Today, substitute “Terrorist” for “Drug User”, and the story repeats itself. Many people do not care if rights are taken away from others, as long as a terrible label is applied to that other. It never seems to occur to these people that they might be next.
8- When you torture someone, he is going to tell you what you want to hear. It probably will not be useful information. It is being revealed that almost no information gotten from tortured prisoners was worthwhile. If the bomb is going off in an hour, you don’t want to go on a wild goose chase.
9- The Vice President seems to have been the person pushing for the use of torture. The Vice President should go to funerals and building dedications, and not make policy. He should not be in a position to degrade America in the manner that Mr. Cheney did.

10- There seems to be a pecking order in the value of human life. White native born Americans have the most value, followed, in some order or another, by Black Americans, foreign born people, Asians and Arabs It seems like the Arabs are almost considered sub human. This may be a function of Islam vs Jesus Worship, and years of incendiary propaganda by Israel. There seems to be an attitude that torturing Arabs is all right, because they aren’t as human as us.
11- It is said that a reason for the attacks on America…ala 911…was that “they hate our way of life”. In the wake of 911, we have lowered our standards, and resorted to tactics that would not have been used before. If the goal of Al Queda was to destroy our way of life, then, by inducing us to lower our standards about torture, then AL QUEDA HAS SUCCEEDED.

12- It seems likely that the Democrats in Congress knew about the torture. This is one reason why they are not eager to press for an investigation. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has a doozy of a quote:”I think it would be very unwise, from my perspective, to start having commissions, boards, tribunals, until we find out what the facts are. And I don’t know a better way of getting the facts than through the Intelligence Committee,”.
13- There has been a lot of talk about waterboarding. What other methods were used? Why is there such an emphasis on waterboarding?

The call for the prosecution of W is in the yellow section. Maybe PG won’t get labeled “Terrorist” after all. Jail to the chief. So there you have it. Thirteen lucky thoughts for a Friday. Two cents doesn’t buy what it used to.

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