View Poll Results: Do you think water boarding is torture?

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Thread: Do you think water boarding is torture?[W:453]

  1. #261
    Dungeon Master
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by FreedomFromAll View Post
    I really have no clue what situation you are talking about here. But I will equate it with this: The US by policy does not bargain with kidnappers. The idea is to not endanger future hostages. So to keep with the same ethic the policy used to be the same with torture. The idea is to lesson the possibility of Americans being tortured by foreign powers large or small. It is the standard that America sets that is important no offence but your wife becoming a widow is of no importance in the ethical of the issue of torture. It also makes one wonder how many Americans were tortured as the result of you being saved by us torturing someone? I hope that you are enjoying your life right now and I assume it was worth the reputation and the safety of military personnel since then.
    If being the "moral" ones in this debate means indifference to the deaths of American service members and loss suffered by their families then I'm fine with not being "moral".
    Last edited by X Factor; 08-05-12 at 05:54 AM.

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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieD View Post
    Hmmmm...If the information gleaned from waterboarding was reliable, I would then support it in certain well-delineated circumstances. No doubt about it.

    Do you believe in torturing animals? No.

    For medical research? Very VERY reluctantly, yes.

    (Oh, and medical research would not be one of those well-delineated circumstances.)
    Maggie, some of the information gleaned from waterboarding was reliable enough to lead to OBL, even Obama's adminstration had to VERY reluctantly admit that.

    The reason I ask that question is I don't want people to be able to hide behind saying, "well, it doesn't work anyway" (because it does sometimes and there are times when it's the only thing that will). Just as there are indeed moral questions and implications in supporting the limited use of some enhanced interrogation techniques and it absolutely shouldn't be taken lightly, there are also moral implications in being unwilling to consider the use of something relatively mild in order to gain information that might actually do us some significant good to know.

  3. #263
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I neither call you a liar or accept your word unverified. I would expect nothing different from you if our positions were reversed. If this is really the case, however, there should be verifiable information somewhere to show this in some case not necessarily connected to you.
    sure, I'm sure somewhere in the ether of the SIPRnet is wrap-up I put together of the VBIED factory. But talk to any vet who worked with the Iraqi Police for any length of time; most of them will tell you that the IP's 1. tortured and 2. usually had better intel than us.

    Point 1) no evidence American lives are saved. Sorry, but that is the case.
    from the enhanced interrogation process? that is the opposite of the case.

    ...Consider the Justice Department memo of May 30, 2005. It notes that "the CIA believes 'the intelligence acquired from these interrogations has been a key reason why al Qaeda has failed to launch a spectacular attack in the West since 11 September 2001.' . . . In particular, the CIA believes that it would have been unable to obtain critical information from numerous detainees, including [Khalid Sheik Mohammed] and Abu Zubaydah, without these enhanced techniques." The memo continues: "Before the CIA used enhanced techniques . . . KSM resisted giving any answers to questions about future attacks, simply noting, 'Soon you will find out.' " Once the techniques were applied, "interrogations have led to specific, actionable intelligence, as well as a general increase in the amount of intelligence regarding al Qaeda and its affiliates."

    Specifically, interrogation with enhanced techniques "led to the discovery of a KSM plot, the 'Second Wave,' 'to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into' a building in Los Angeles." KSM later acknowledged before a military commission at Guantanamo Bay that the target was the Library Tower, the tallest building on the West Coast. The memo explains that "information obtained from KSM also led to the capture of Riduan bin Isomuddin, better known as Hambali, and the discovery of the Guraba Cell, a 17-member Jemmah Islamiyah cell tasked with executing the 'Second Wave.' " In other words, without enhanced interrogations, there could be a hole in the ground in Los Angeles to match the one in New York....

    Critics claim that enhanced techniques do not produce good intelligence because people will say anything to get the techniques to stop. But the memos note that, "as Abu Zubaydah himself explained with respect to enhanced techniques, 'brothers who are captured and interrogated are permitted by Allah to provide information when they believe they have reached the limit of their ability to withhold it in the face of psychological and physical hardship." In other words, the terrorists are called by their faith to resist as far as they can -- and once they have done so, they are free to tell everything they know. This is because of their belief that "Islam will ultimately dominate the world and that this victory is inevitable." The job of the interrogator is to safely help the terrorist do his duty to Allah, so he then feels liberated to speak freely....
    and of course, it's also worth noting that:

    ...CIA Director Leon Panetta said during his confirmation hearings that even the Obama administration might use some of the enhanced techniques in a "ticking time bomb" scenario....
    Apparently, when the chips are down, even the Obama administration recognizes that enhanced interrogation will get you what you need to save lives.

    Point 2) Many people have died for their beliefs. It is a sign that you actually hold that belief. And if we can break the law to save lives, where is the line. What line will you not cross if you BELIEVE it MIGHT save lives?
    I can't tell you every line. I haven't been there. I have been to the line where I had the ability to kill (without getting caught) a detainee that I knew would eventually be released (the prison system over there was self-destructive to our efforts, we kept these jackoffs for 6 months, let them rest and refit, pick up on tips from others in the system, gave them three squares a day and free healthcare, and then released them with a pretty promise that they wouldn't be bad guys anymore), and who I believed would probably kill people on my side in the future. I didn't cross that, and I'm pretty sure that I'm glad that I did not do so... and I pray to God that there aren't any widows or orphans out there wishing that I had . No easy choices, and anyone who tells you that black and white is predominant in a counterinsurgency has never fought one.

    Once we start down this road, the line moves further and further away from morality, moving us closer to our enemies position. If the ends justify the means, all means are fair game.
    Depending on the ends. The ends always either justify or don't justify the means. I have to get my gunshot, dying friend to the hospital, the end justifies breaking speed limits and running red lights. I am late for work, the ends do not justify breaking speed limits and running red lights. Would you kill a guilty man to save an innocent from certain death? Would you kill 10 guilty men to save an innocent? Would you kill 1 guilty man and the innocent he is hiding behind in order to save 10 innocents? Would you kill a man who looks guilty but whom you don't know for sure is guilty in order to prevent him from possibly killing innocents? You have seconds to make these decisions, in many cases, and no one who isn't there and doesn't know has the necessary experience or the moral right to judge them. We place the responsibility for protecting the lives of the American people upon our civic servants, and as much as everyone accuses conservatives of hating them when it comes to the subject of unionization, it sure is interesting that we're the one defending them when the chips are down and they are trying to fulfill that heavy responsibility.
    Last edited by cpwill; 08-05-12 at 06:35 AM.

  4. #264
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by X Factor View Post
    Maggie, some of the information gleaned from waterboarding was reliable enough to lead to OBL, even Obama's adminstration had to VERY reluctantly admit that.

    The reason I ask that question is I don't want people to be able to hide behind saying, "well, it doesn't work anyway" (because it does sometimes and there are times when it's the only thing that will). Just as there are indeed moral questions and implications in supporting the limited use of some enhanced interrogation techniques and it absolutely shouldn't be taken lightly, there are also moral implications in being unwilling to consider the use of something relatively mild in order to gain information that might actually do us some significant good to know.
    Precisely. Is it a moral quandary, sure. But to do the see-no-evil monkey thing and pretend like there are only easy choices and making the choice that feels good will always give you the optimum result is irresponsible when discharging a duty as heavy and as serious as the protection of American lives.

  5. #265
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by FreedomFromAll View Post
    I really have no clue what situation you are talking about here. But I will equate it with this: The US by policy does not bargain with kidnappers. The idea is to not endanger future hostages. So to keep with the same ethic the policy used to be the same with torture. The idea is to lesson the possibility of Americans being tortured by foreign powers large or small
    hmm... except that this completely breaks down when we are facing enemies who aren't signatories to the Geneva Conventions and couldn't give a crap about them in the first place.

    If we were facing off against an actual nation state that was open to following those rules of conduct, absolutely. That's why the Geneva Conventions are only officially applicable to signatories - it's a mutual pact of not-too-abusive-aggression. But here you are attempting to bar the barn after the horse has escaped. Our enemies are going to torture, and they are going to torture whether or not we do.

    It is the standard that America sets that is important no offence but your wife becoming a widow is of no importance in the ethical of the issue of torture. It also makes one wonder how many Americans were tortured as the result of you being saved by us torturing someone?
    Precisely zero. Though we didn't torture anyone - the IP's did that, and didn't tell us about it until later because they knew we would be obligated to stop them.

    I hope that you are enjoying your life right now and I assume it was worth the reputation and the safety of military personnel since then.
    You don't have the slightest clue what you are talking about, and I would be pissed off, frankly, if that wasn't so patently, ridiculously obvious.
    Last edited by cpwill; 08-05-12 at 06:44 AM.

  6. #266
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Water-boarding is mild torture. It should (if it were legal) be used when an expert interrogator sees that the particular person he is questioning is a known war criminal and has the information and psychological weaknesses that would make the technique effective. This would mean the technique is used infrequently (if it were legal).

    I have never understood why known war criminals who were captured on the battlefield, out of uniform, killing civilians, not being part of a recognized hierarchy, not being a member of a signatory nation deserve Geneva protections.

    What is the point of all those definitions if the monsters get the same protections as those who are not war criminals?

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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Just withhold me from my cigarette's, and i'll sing like a canary.

  8. #268
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by kmiller1610 View Post
    Water-boarding is mild torture. It should (if it were legal) be used when an expert interrogator sees that the particular person he is questioning is a known war criminal and has the information and psychological weaknesses that would make the technique effective. This would mean the technique is used infrequently (if it were legal).

    I have never understood why known war criminals who were captured on the battlefield, out of uniform, killing civilians, not being part of a recognized hierarchy, not being a member of a signatory nation deserve Geneva protections.

    What is the point of all those definitions if the monsters get the same protections as those who are not war criminals?
    It should be self-evident that human beings should not be subjected to torture. Equivocation and elision notwithstanding.
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  9. #269
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by X Factor View Post
    Maggie, some of the information gleaned from waterboarding was reliable enough to lead to OBL, even Obama's adminstration had to VERY reluctantly admit that.

    The reason I ask that question is I don't want people to be able to hide behind saying, "well, it doesn't work anyway" (because it does sometimes and there are times when it's the only thing that will). Just as there are indeed moral questions and implications in supporting the limited use of some enhanced interrogation techniques and it absolutely shouldn't be taken lightly, there are also moral implications in being unwilling to consider the use of something relatively mild in order to gain information that might actually do us some significant good to know.
    I see your point, XFactor. But what if it was you? And what if you had no information to give them? What if you just didn't know the information your interrogators wanted? What then?

    Oh, I guess I could waiver on this. Waterboarding doesn't cause death. It's exceedingly uncomfortable and frightening, but it doesn't permanently injure someone. I just don't know . . . It's too easy to take the moral high ground, I suppose.

    We can't insult their religion...we can't humiliate them...we can't break their spirit...what, then, can we do?? Pretty please isn't going to work. It's not an easy question.

    And KPMiller makes a good point. These are not soldiers. They are spies. Perhaps that is the price these "soldiers" should have to pay (enhanced interrogation) for not being in uniform, hiding among civilians and using them as shields. I mean, really? Which is worse?
    Last edited by MaggieD; 08-05-12 at 10:16 AM.
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  10. #270
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    Re: Do you think water boarding is torture?

    Quote Originally Posted by Manc Skipper View Post
    It should be self-evident that human beings should not be subjected to torture. Equivocation and elision notwithstanding.
    Folks who have so violated the Geneva convention can be shot without trial, but we can't make them uncomfortable?

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