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Doc Lightning
GOLD Member since May 2001

Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

Total posts: 13920
Posted:So with the Obama administration, one thing they are doing is releasing CIA memos that allowed certain interrogation methods including waterboarding, causing pain that left no physical harm, or inducing severe psychological trauma.

Many people feel that these methods are more properly defined as "torture." I am inclined to agree with them.

Obama has also said that he will not be prosecuting this. I am inclined to disagree with him.

The Attorney General's office issued guidelines to field officers that these methods were in fact, legal under international law. On the one hand, some feel that should take the responsibility off the officers because they were told by attorneys that they were behaving legally. On the other hand, others feel that they should have recognized these methods as torture, regardless of what the AG told them, and that they should be held responsible. I am not sure which side I agree with. Or if I fall somewhere in between. I'd need more information, I suppose.

How do you feel about these things? Does anyone here have personal experience with torture? I was voluntarily waterboarded. I lasted 93 seconds, 34 longer than the next guy. And I'm a competitive swimmer. It was AWFUL.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Mr Majestik
SILVER Member since Mar 2004

Mr Majestik

coming to a country near you
Location: home of the tiney toothy bear

Total posts: 4693
Posted:Originally Posted By: Mother_Natures_Son
Originally Posted By: Mr Majestik
i'll be taking your money from that bet now smile

Sorry, Majestik, I'm not going to support your victory on that one.

Originally Posted By: R0cketSh1p or we want them to think the same way we do (religion) etc..

The war was started by an aggressor so the point above still holds true.

Originally Posted By: mynciTechnically a war is NOT started by an aggressor as it is impossible for 1 side to start a war (even civil war). An aggressor initiates an "invasion/expansion" either of land or ideals, without opposition there is no war only "occupation". A war can only really be initiated by the defenders trying to STOP invasion / occupation. an agressor can declare war, but without resistance it's not really war is it.

exactly wars are FOUGHT( which was the term used) "for the people" because "the people" refuse to accept a condition imposed on them by the agressors.

the original statement written by ROcketsh1p only talked about why wars are started, which is much less important than why wars are fought.


"but have you considered there is more to life than your eyelids?"

jointly owned by Fire_Spinning_Angel and Blu_Valley

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railspinner


railspinner

journeyman
Location: canada

Total posts: 99
Posted:if you bother to read about duress confesions you will realize that information becomes completly insane after simple psycholgical power plays. I receall a case where foure people confessed to a rape after subjected to standanrd police mindgames. and after they were convicted a convict doing 15 years offered information that filled in all the missing gaps and made it plainly obvious the 4 people ratted each other out under duress. that's without any type of physical torture, that's just sleep deprivation and artful lieing.

Even a witness testiony is highly doubtable. I remeber my high school teacher got a drama stuent to dress up in regedy clothing and run into a room and shoot a cap gun a bunch at the class then run out, then immediatly afterwards he pretended to take statements to report to the police, and the range of information he got went from a guy shot a cap gun to he shot live rounds into the room and screamed for quebec liberation.

I Really thing pushing aside the moral issues, torture is dangerous because it produces contrived intelligence. do you Really want a airstrike based on sleep deprived (read: shiczophrenic) induced nonsensical pleas. You may think oh the military intelligence comunity would weigh it agaisnt hard evidence. but if you ever bothered to examine the absurd amount of poorly planed military actions, like for example the infamous clinton bombings of tylenol factorys. You would realize that the entire decision makeing tree is flawed and the last thing it needs is evidence produced by induced psychosis.


The less people know the more they believe

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Mr Majestik
SILVER Member since Mar 2004

Mr Majestik

coming to a country near you
Location: home of the tiney toothy bear

Total posts: 4693
Posted:Originally Posted By: railspinnerif you bother to read about duress confesions

much like the vid circulating the interwebs of a fastfood store manager being tricked on the phone by people pretending to be the police who convince him an employee is a thief and using slow introduction of ideas get him to strip search her. really dubious the way power can work.

Originally Posted By: railspinnerdo you Really want a airstrike based on sleep deprived (read: shiczophrenic) induced nonsensical pleas.

where did the schizophrenia reference come from?


"but have you considered there is more to life than your eyelids?"

jointly owned by Fire_Spinning_Angel and Blu_Valley

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Mynci
BRONZE Member since Apr 2005

Mynci

Macaque of all trades
Location: wombling free...

Total posts: 8737
Posted:to flip this on it's head and focus on Guantanamo for a second. the thing about it that scares me the most isn't the torture, it's the parallels to Nazi Germany. Here you have a group of set fundamentalist religious belief (Muslims) locked up with no trial by a nation of essentially fundamentalists of a different ideal (Christians)

Essentially asking people for answers isn't the best way to get them if the person being asked doesn't want to supply true answers.


A couple of balls short of a full cascade... or maybe a few cards short of a deck... we'll see how this all fans out.

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R0cketSh1p


yat daam - yee lek - saam gungfu


Total posts: 30
Posted:Or isnt able to supply those answers Mynci.. Alot of the people rounded up have very little to do with Taliban or who ever the enemy is this time, and wouldnt be able to supply answers even if they wanted to.

I'll bet you that 9/10 of the confessions that come out of Guantanamo are fake and confess just so that they will stop being tortured.


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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Originally Posted By: Doc Lightning
How do you feel about these things? Does anyone here have personal experience with torture?

Never been physically tortured, but would never like to come remotely into the situation. Would refuse to torture anyone - regardless of whether or not he swallowed the key to mankinds survival or not. Rather go in peace than survive troubled for the rest of my existence.

Letting anyone - who participated in the line of command, including the former President - go unprosecuted in this, IMHO, is questionable. If I remember correctly "the line of command" and even "facing personal threats" have never been legal excuses for... say guards in concentration camps or guards a the German-German border.

Torture is NOT in line with international laws - at least I wouldn't know of this, so please enlighten me.

The US is yet to join and sign international treaties as to where their personell can be produced in front of the Den Hague court - IMHO an impossible condition.

Obamas decision not to release the images taken from acts of torture is as wise as it is unwise to let perpetrators (say: US personnel and all those in line of command who approved it) go.

Doing so Obama is making the first step into the wrong direction - as reconciliation is not happening here for the victims - I strongly hope that it will be the last one. I'm not saying it's "wrong" or "bad" - I'm just saying that in my eyes nothing justifies kidnapping or torture or other such practices and that it should have dire consequences.

It's another quite dim chapter in US history...

just my 2cts worth


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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zyonchaos


journeyman
Location: Anglesey, Wales, UK soon to be...

Total posts: 77
Posted:Originally Posted By: Mr Majestik
what is that suppossed to mean? invasions are started by the agressors for those reasons yes, but wars are fought because people are not going to let the agressors walk over them. case in point ww2. it was fought by the allies to protect ALL people against the oppression by the germans, italians and japanese.

i'll be taking your money from that bet now smile

No WW2 was fought because the British felt that if Hitler was left to get on with it even more ie by invading Poland (we had already turned a blind eye to everything else he was doing), then his next step would be to start on us. The americans joined in a lot later after they had been attacked (Pearl Harbour).

Torture will be an inherant part of warfare, and it will not be 100% reliable as already stated, people will give up information any information just to escape further torture. But to lie that effectively under immense pressure, you have to be very good or have your torturer be very bad.

EDITED_BY: zyonchaos (1242942814)
EDIT_REASON: Kant spill


From Within Chaos Comes Order

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:well apart from the fact that Britain had a treaty with Poland and Hitler would have thought he'd get away with it. btw Stalin invaded Poland from the other side... no war was declared upon Russia by that time. Hitler had no real interest in starting on Britain, fortunately he indeed was suffering from the delusion that Britain would join him at some stage. The Americans wanted to join much earlier, only needed an excuse to sell it to their citizens (who were not happy to again get drawn into an "old world conflict").

In addition to my previous post: US judges (in post war Germany) and German judges (after the reunification) ruled that it would be mandatory for a soldier (or any human being) to refuse orders that are against humanity.

IMHO torture is against humanity

Originally Posted By: WikiOn December 10, 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Article 5 states, "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." Since that time a number of other international treaties have been adopted to prevent the use of torture. Two of these are the United Nations Convention Against Torture and for international conflicts the Geneva Conventions III and IV.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:How about someone water-boards Dick Cheney, and then we will see how much he likes it.

And how come Dick Cheney is so vocal all of a sudden?





If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Mr Majestik
SILVER Member since Mar 2004

Mr Majestik

coming to a country near you
Location: home of the tiney toothy bear

Total posts: 4693
Posted:there was a funny video clip on ninemsn news a couple days ago of a US radio host who was shrugging off waterboarding as not that bad actually trying it out... he lasted 6 seconds.

"but have you considered there is more to life than your eyelids?"

jointly owned by Fire_Spinning_Angel and Blu_Valley

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:how far would those - who regard torture as a rightful way of interrogation - go? I mean waterboarding is quite refreshing compared to missing limbs or fingers cut off without anaestetics.

How far would you support torture? Given that "people lost their fear of getting killed in/by a western civilized nation"? How about just having caught the wrong guy? And finally:

How about compensation for those who got wrongfully accused, kidnapped and violently interrogated by the US (or other governments)... when your spilling hot coffee over your own lap, you're legible for a million $ compensation... and when the government tortures (which is prohibited by the charter of universal human rights) you get shrugged off with a "sorry - national security issues"?

And by not persecuting those who ordered torture and those who followed those orders it seems there has little changed since... medevial times...

Surely we can do way better than that...

6secs... are there any "waterboarding" competitions? Interesting slogan for a shirt btw.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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gilim


gilim

newbie
Location: brisbane, australia

Total posts: 37
Posted:I saw that video majestic, and I think it is important to note for people who did not see it; he submitted to waterboarding because he believed it was not torture. He ended the segment convinced that it WAS torture. It should also be noted, that he found it to be torture in control settings where he was able to stop at any time. Imagine if someone had grabbed him in the night, threatened him with guns, THEN waterboarded him without any safe words. No control.

I think an important radio conversation should be added to the thread

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=104378628&ps=cprs
br>
It is an interview with two professional interrogators, one of whom worked at Abu Ghraib prison. They both reject it as a valid form of information gathering, and define it as torture.

Stone: Cheney has certain motivating factors. 1. He stands the chance of being prosecuted for his role in the use of torture. So he's being vocal to avoid prison. 2. He is writing his memoires at the moment. Making the tv circuit on any current topic is a traditional way to promote a new book.

Firetom: Cutting on limbs is not an effective way to torture. Waterboarding and related water techniques have been used as torture effectively for hundreds of years, look up 'water cure' on wikipedia. It has been used because its more effective than just threatening to cut someone up.

-Sam


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zyonchaos


journeyman
Location: Anglesey, Wales, UK soon to be...

Total posts: 77
Posted:Originally Posted By: gilimStone: Cheney has certain motivating factors. 1. He stands the chance of being prosecuted for his role in the use of torture. So he's being vocal to avoid prison. 2. He is writing his memoires at the moment. Making the tv circuit on any current topic is a traditional way to promote a new book.

Yes there is no such thing as cynicism it is merely realism born from experience lol
Originally Posted By: gilim
Firetom: Cutting on limbs is not an effective way to torture. Waterboarding and related water techniques have been used as torture effectively for hundreds of years, look up 'water cure' on wikipedia. It has been used because its more effective than just threatening to cut someone up.

Torture can be effective in garnering intelligence, but only if the person that administers the torture is skillful rather than sadistic, as I said earlier you either have to be a very good liar or a bad torturer to keep the same story going and believable over numerous torture sessions. As one session wouldnt be effective. Now regardless of your stance on torture, I personally am a hypocrite as I dont think we should use torture as part of a civilised society in this modern world, however I do believe it can be required at times. That is my personal opinion not what I expect everyone else to believe, I honestly think it is a necessary evil.
Please dont shout at me because of that I know a lot of people on these forums will not like that point of view and I respect that. I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion and when I want it ill give it to you lol, no everyone has an opinion and not everyone will agree with that opinion its a fact of life.
Torture unfortunately has saved a lot of lives, whether people want to admit it or not, a lot of intelligence about bomb plots and terrorist attacks have come from gathering intelligence from all sources torture included.


From Within Chaos Comes Order

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:Originally Posted By: zyonchaosTorture unfortunately has saved a lot of lives, whether people want to admit it or not, a lot of intelligence about bomb plots and terrorist attacks have come from gathering intelligence from all sources torture included.

No shouting whatsoever from my side at all. Only asking you to back up such claims. Personally I have not heard of a single life, being saved by means of torture.

quilim: where do you find me referring to "threatening someone"?


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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gilim


gilim

newbie
Location: brisbane, australia

Total posts: 37
Posted:Tom: I was referring to your statement "I mean waterboarding is quite refreshing compared to missing limbs or fingers cut off without anaestetics."

I am not suggesting that you are threatening anyone personally, or advocating it. Just that if you are looking at missing limbs and fingers as a coercive tool for gathering information, logically you are threatening to do it. Just jumping straight to the cutting without threats doesn't seem likely to result in information. Equally, if you make the threat, then you have to be able to back it up.

I think that the ex-interrogator talking in that link I posted makes an interesting point. FBI gets a 90% success rate using interrogation techniques that work through building rapport. That is effective to the point of not needing other techniques. You are not likely to be seeking significantly more than 90%, 100% will never be achieved.

So he questions the motivation of why torture/enhanced interrogation was introduced.

Torture led to information linking Al Qaeda to Saddam, suggesting that the US should invade Iraq. These actions, according to a National Intelligence Estimate from a few years ago, has made the US less safe at home and abroad. It has made recruitment to new radical organisations much easier.

Torture failed to provide accurate information, it helped lead to actions that made the US less safe. It strengthened their enemies.

That's a pretty all round failure.
-sam


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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne

Total posts: 2830
Posted:There is no way torture can be justified.

Originally Posted By: Fire Tom..I mean waterboarding is quite refreshing compared to missing limbs or fingers cut off without anaestetics.

Fire Tom, I think the whole idea of waterboarding is not to leave any obvious signs of torture.

Thanks gilim, do you have any evidence that Cheney is about to be prosecuted?


Originally Posted By: zyonchaosTorture unfortunately has saved a lot of lives, whether people want to admit it or not, a lot of intelligence about bomb plots and terrorist attacks have come from gathering intelligence from all sources torture included.

Im not convinced on the torture part of that statement. You often see statements like that in the press, but they just seem like a lot of spin.


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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hamamelis
BRONZE Member since Jan 2006

hamamelis

nut.
Location: Bouncing off the walls.

Total posts: 756
Posted:[quote=FireTom] Hitler had no real interest in starting on Britain, fortunately he indeed was suffering from the delusion that Britain would join him at some stage. /quote]

Actually, the British Channels Islands were invaded, and taken over- and a few months ago- I volunteer at an Amnesty International bookshop- someone brought in a load of maps their grandfather had swapped for cigarettes from a German POW, that were of England, in German, with quite an impressive amount of 'Strategic locations' marked out.. Pretty interesting..


THE MEEK WILL INHERIT THE EARTH!


If that's okay with you?

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gilim


gilim

newbie
Location: brisbane, australia

Total posts: 37
Posted:Stone: There has been no specific statements from Obama that he will prosecute anyone. However, his rhetoric has gone like this:

America is a nation of laws. America does not torture, it is against international and national laws. Enhanced Interrogation is torture. We will not prosecute service men acting under orders.

That leaves open prosecuting people who wrote the laws, people like John Yoo, Judge Bybee and Alberto Gonzales. The commanders on the ground who did not effectively manage chain of command to prevent excesses. The people in the white house who ordered it all to start with.

Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld would be in the firing line of that.

I am not saying that they have specifically said they are going after Cheney or anyone else yet. But, its important to remember that the Watergate scandal took two years from beginning of investigations to getting to the point of forcing Nixon to resign.

*shruggs* If I was Cheney, I would be doing what he is doing now. Trying to sway the discussion before it builds up momentum.

-sam


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zyonchaos


journeyman
Location: Anglesey, Wales, UK soon to be...

Total posts: 77
Posted:Originally Posted By: gilimI think that the ex-interrogator talking in that link I posted makes an interesting point. FBI gets a 90% success rate using interrogation techniques that work through building rapport. That is effective to the point of not needing other techniques. You are not likely to be seeking significantly more than 90%, 100% will never be achieved.

So he questions the motivation of why torture/enhanced interrogation was introduced.

Torture led to information linking Al Qaeda to Saddam, suggesting that the US should invade Iraq. These actions, according to a National Intelligence Estimate from a few years ago, has made the US less safe at home and abroad. It has made recruitment to new radical organisations much easier.

Torture failed to provide accurate information, it helped lead to actions that made the US less safe. It strengthened their enemies.

That's a pretty all round failure.
-sam

Yes the FBI may have a 90% success rate, but how often does it come down to a rapid need for information. I think both forms of information gathering should be used in extreme situations, bomb plots.
Torture did not lead to information about Saddam and Al Qaeda, that was just propaganda bull given out by the US government and the British government plus WMD crap as well. It was all a ploy for O.I.L. (Operation. Iraqi. Liberation.)

At the end of the day if we wanted to prove that Iraq had WMD's we could of just produced the receipts lol.
Dont delude yourself that it was the torture and the so called links between Saddam and Al Qaeda tha made the US less safe and more unpopular, anything that was done in the middle east would provoke that response.
Team America World Police yes it is a work of fiction (funny though), but that is how a lot of people view America and increasingly the UK aswell.

Tom, I cant back it up with solid proof mate (its classified you understand lol), I am going personally on informed opinion. Once again that bloody word pops up "OPINION" lol.


From Within Chaos Comes Order

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:It boils down to what Stone is referring to. "an interrogation technique that is not leaving marks - or being outright against humanity" meaning "physical deformation" is way off.. I mean WAY... off. barbaric.

gilim, I didn't think you would think I threatened anyone... it's only that most people would happily surrender all information, as soon miss their Pinky and someone going for their index (apart from the Joker maybe)...

Still torture leaves psychological "deformation"... which is why it is inhumane and against (international) law.

Now off... topic: Hamamelis hug thanks, I was not meaning that Hitler didn't mean to impose violence on the Pommies... Operation Sea Lion Strategically it would have been the best thing to do, easier than going for Moscow - lucky us he didn't smile


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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gilim


gilim

newbie
Location: brisbane, australia

Total posts: 37
Posted:relevant replies

zycon:
Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi provided information under torture that Iraq had provided Al Qaeda with training in chemical weapons attacks. This information was presented as fact by the Bush administration in the build up to the Iraq invasion.

Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi was providing information to the FBI originally based upon non-enhanced interrogation techniques. Based on the interrogator building a personal connection with him and offering things like bringing his family to America etc.

Enhanced interrogation did exactly what people who are against it said it would, it provided false information. It did not provide quick information, it did not provide accurate information, it did not get a master hardcase to crack Hollywood style.

The fantasy that torture will work when other things fail is a fantasy. You cannot torture someone for information without giving them hints about what you want to hear. Once they know what you want to hear, the easiest way to get out of the torture is to tell you lies.

Tom:
'all information' is the point. What is the difference between someone who doesn't know what you want them to tell you, and someone who is holding out?

If you have the truth to compare it to, then you don't need to torture. If you don't then you can very easily be deceived by your desire to find out specific answers. It has been shown that simply asking leading questions will alter a witness's testimony in court. How much worse is asking questions while torturing?

-sam

EDITED_BY: gilim (1243344801)


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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:asking questions while torturing is quite sick...

it requires the "interrogator" to be fully determined and convinced to do "the right thing" - which it is not.

every human being looks at another human being as into some kind of a mirror. we can only harm others if we feel completely disconnected ... and self centered. which is what the system is doing: disconnecting us from each other and make us believe that the entire world around us is only revolving ... around us.

at the same time, others become "like objects"...

however, as I feel this is only here in order to proove that it is possible at all, thus a valuable lesson to learn and to remember at all times.

there is a whole dimension within all this - one we've started to discuss in threads about topics such as: free will, Karma, etc... I feel from the rational POV there is only this:

- torture is illegal - no matter what the causes are
- torture is a crime against humanity
- torture is sanctioned by international law

I can only request the USofA to join, ratify and to give authority to the international Den Haag tribunal.

IMO it would be a vital signal to the world to bring those to justice, who abused their authority by issuing the orders and those who carried them out. More than that, it would set a signal within the USofA to (naturally) question authority and to diobay all orders that go against humanity - no matter who signs them.

Obama ratifies the torture carried out by protecting those involved. He sets the wrong signal, as in: it doesn't matter what you do, as long as your superior officer signed for it. We will not jeopardize your obedience at any cost - and if that "cost" is international reputation, so be it.


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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gilim


gilim

newbie
Location: brisbane, australia

Total posts: 37
Posted:More updates that seem not to be reaching people in the public....

http://blog.aclu.org/2009/02/11/ben-wizner-on-rachel-maddow/
br>
The core substance of this is that Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the guy who President Bush went on record as having provided evidence that prevented a terrorist attack on US soil, gave false information under torture.

This means that now Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah all provided false information under duress.

For those that still believe that actionable evidence was gained through the use of enhanced interrogation techniques, I think you will find that you came to that belief through to false presentation by officials that it worked on these three men.

At this point there should be a snopes entry on 'enhanced interrogation worked at all'

-sam


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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:last time I got tortured I told everything about what happened to the cookie jar to my girlfriend... it always thepends ;o)

the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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