B) WRT to the EIT program, however, aren't we fortunate, then, that much of it has been declassified so that we can, in fact, point to several incidences where it worked?
Ah. What I know are people who I respect with excellent records who were involved in gathering and operationalizing intelligence from the Gitmo detainee program, and they are pretty clear that it did.But what I know are some people who I respect and with excellent civil liberties records haven't been convinced by the CIA that the torture of those we know about has produced intelligence sufficient to justify its use.
In the meantime, the same Senate Democrats that urged this program on in 2002/2003 are now shocked - shocked to find gambling going on in here!, and seeking to score points by producing reports that even their fellow Senate Democrats admit is partisan hackery rather than any attempt to produce something that would be useful to good governance.
Which, again, is why we are fortunate that multiple leaders from both parties have come forth to state that yes, in fact, we did get reams of incredibly valuable information from this program. For a critical time period when we were first responding to the WoT and trying to figure out AQ's global laydown, the majority of our knowledge on how and where they function came from the detainee interrogation program.
you can play the circular logic game forever. If every piece of information that could possibly contradict is simply evidence of new deception, then all information is useless.What I suspect is the program is wider than we know, that many cases can't be revealed because they are classified or unknown to anyone but the spooks, and some of those may have produced the kind of intelligence that allows CIA leaders to justify its use. So it's deception on another level.
as for me, I am happy to value the rights of (for example) American citizens not to be deprived of their lives without due process over the "right" of a terrorist not to be made to stand half-naked in a cold room for 24 hours. This isn't a matter of whether or not rights are important - it's a matter of which rights are more important.But from the cases we know the evidence is VERY thin.
But the bigger issue is of course torture 'works' in that those subjected to it will talk and of course some of what they say surely will be useful at some point. It doesn't tell us if torture, all things considered, improves or degrades national security versus alternatives. But if "it works" is the key decision, let's get on with it and just admit that we don't mean a lot of what we say about human rights, and are willing to throw the ideals overboard when it suits us or might be beneficial.