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Torture Legislation

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http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/29/washingt...p;ex=1159675200

 

I normally think this is the wrong place to bring politics but I feel that this is an incredibly important issue.

 

Torture is a crime and that is recognized in practically every industrialized country. I'm kind of at a loss on how to even understand this news.

 

Hypothermia, Hooding, Sleep Depravation, Stripping are allowed with this bill.

 

Habeus corpus is suspended. Even if the government makes a mistake, you can be held in prison for an indefinite period if you are not a U.S. citizen.

 

god bless america.

Edited by mete_shop

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Playing Devil Advocate here,

 

but it's not like they're trying to make cutting off fingers legal. And if they're not american citizens why should they be given the same consideration in terms of detention?

Actually, because they're trying to extend this to U.S. citizens who are foreign born too. And i know that I'm a sap, but I kinda like the fact that the U.S. has (had) higher moral standards than those who want to kill us by any means necessary.

 

Not to mention the fact that the U.S. isn't exactly blameless for 9/11. We have our own selfish reasons for keeping our bloody hands in the middle east...and for keeping the people there limited to nothing but fear and hopelessness.

 

It's a fucking disgrace.

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I don't feel any more comfortable then you are about allowing torture. But it's easy to think of situatios where the moral dilemma is acute, and those scenarios are not necessarily hallucinatory. Suppose some clever Fed latched on to Moussaoui BEFORE 9/11, not after, and had an understanding that the man knows something about what's going to happen. How far would YOU be willing to go in order to get that information from him? Isn't sleep deprivation more than morally justified under such circumstances? I mean, *sleep deprivation*, compared to the magnitude of the event you have a chance to stop?

 

I'm not saying that this is a common scenario, I'm not saying checks and balances are not in order, and I'm not oblivious to the dangers of the slippery slope. I'm just saying that there are situations where it may be morally right to harm a human being - one who's designs on YOU are not exactly pristine - in order to save lives of innocent people.

 

Taken out of context, torture is a crime, as is murder. But there are contexts where even killing a human being is, I'm sure, fine with you - what should a cup have done if he had had a clear shot on the kids at Columbine as they're spraying their buddies with bullets? It's a bit too easy thinking about those moral issues independently of the situation.

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Guest Sao_bento

Information obtained from torture is rarely credible.

 

Mostly true. The Geneva Convention protocol I - 1977 addressed physical torture, the CIA agreed to follow it because they had already recognized that psychological torture was much more effective - the MKUltra program was one of the first research programs into psychological torture - they thought LSD might be a kind of a truth serum or possibly a way to erase someone's memory.

 

[Anecdote]

I had a class on Vietnam in high-school. The teacher announced that he could make anyone say anything he wanted. After someone challenged him on it, he had them sit in a chair and put a plastic bag over their head. By holding the bag tight until the person began to panic, then removing it long enough for a single gasp, then re-tightening it, he was able to make a pretty tough dude say some really crazy shit.

 

[Raw Intel]

The military combines several techniques and information from multiple sources to formulate specific questions (most of the time), which minimizes the possible answers. The answer given is compared to other known details to determine the likelihood that the answer is true or false. There is a spectrum of intelligence from known to unknown. Most of the time, the best they can do is verify something they already know. As you start asking questions that lean towards the unknown part of the spectrum, the possibility that the info you get is false goes upwards. The answers go into a database where they are compared to answers of similar questions asked of other "detainees". The more people gave the same answer, the more value is attributed to that answer. This is not simply hooking up somebody's nuts to a battery and screaming "tell me what you know!"

 

Just like cops, the military interrogators get lazy and don't follow the procedure. They don't do their homework beforehand, and they get bored and over-enthusiastic with the techniques which results in lots of unverified and outright fake info.

 

It's nothing new and it's been done to both sides in every war ever fought. No rules will change the true nature of man.

edit: which is not to suggest that we, or anyone else, should incorporate it as a standard practice.

 

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

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I normally avoid these kind of posts on a motion graphics board, but what the hell...

 

"Suppose some clever Fed latched on to Moussaoui BEFORE 9/11, not after, and had an understanding that the man knows something about what's going to happen. How far would YOU be willing to go in order to get that information from him?"

 

This is just a stupid parroting of a media talkpoint. When you discuss it with these bogus hypotheticals, all you're doing is legitimizing the discussion. As if its just another reasonable option. This isn't a matter of weighing pros and cons, its a humanitarian issue. There are no good arguments for torture as an effective tool. Period.

 

Not even taking into account that the majority of "enemy combatants" we hold at places like Bagram and Guantanamo are not dangerous terrorists, but simply collateral damage from an overzealous information campaign. It took a lot of Americans (just over 50%) to enable what's going on right now, we pretty much deserve whatever is coming our way. And this time, you won't be able to say it's because they "hate our freedom".

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I can just see the nutjobs sitting in their caves and mosques, laughing themselves silly. After all, they mutilate, burn and booby-trap the bodies of the people that THEY capture. After they're done posting the video of it on the internet, they are free to sit back and watch TV reports of the USA bending over backwards not to offend them. I bet they find it hilarious!

 

Draw a cartoon or quote a guy from five hundred years ago depicting Muslims as violent and...guess what? They become violent! All the while saying that they're not, which of course many people lap up without a second thought. We can't attack these terrorists, even when a whole pack of high-value targets gather in one spot, anywhere near a mosque, cemetery, or other holy site. But they burn churches and shoot praying nuns in the back with impunity...again, over one sentence taken out of context. Then they get a free pass.

 

A Christian kids' camp is called brainwashing and child abuse, but parading little Palestinian kids around with machine guns and Hamas garb isn't. Teaching kids anything at all about Christianity in an American school suddenly became offensive, but you can indoctrinate all the hatred and glorification of martyrdom in a mosque or madrasah and be protected... by CAIR and ACLU bloodhounds, if you're in the USA.

 

The real motivation behind the left's disdain for Christianity is that it sets forth a right and wrong. Therefore, Christianity must be stopped at all costs, yet somehow there isn't a single liberal out there warning what a USA ruled by Sharia law would be like. The Hollywood left, queers, and anyone using drugs or alcohol would be some of the first groups to find themselves on the chopping block.

 

Of course there's the typical leftist cry that the whole thing was cooked up since 2000 by a bunch of neo-cons to get another Crusade going. The Crusades, by the way, were formed to push BACK a Muslim offensive into Europe. But new history books don't teach that. In any case, we're now in the 21st century, one where militant Islamists are out there broadcasting plans of war and world domination against the West. Why is it so ridiculous to believe that they mean it?

 

So, once again, everyone else is peeing themselves at the fact that someone might mistreat one of these characters. So what. Either we can get serious about this thing or we can let our own political correctness be our ultimate undoing.

 

Cf

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thanks mete shop,

 

we're not talking about fighting fire with fire here. we're talking about a barbaric technique that doesnt gaurantee acurate results. if i have an agreement with a "sky god" that i will keep pure to my faith no matter what, i will most likely not care about torture, if i dont care about blowing myself up to become a martyr.

 

what we are talking about is a lack of respect for habeas corpus and the geneva convention. we have obligations as human beings to not act in a sadistic manner in order to "prove a point / fight fire with fire" or try to pull information.

 

ever hear of waterboarding? well that shit is now LEGAL.

 

start getting scared about your civil liberties. wire tapping, torture, religious control.... sounds like a facist oppression approaching.

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...Teaching kids anything at all about Christianity in an American school suddenly became offensive...

 

fundamentally, this is EXACTLY what makes us better than them. too bad you fail to see that.

 

if only most american warhawk christians could see the irony in their rhetoric. deep down, a christian taliban is everything that they've ever wanted. maybe they're just jealous.

 

what really freaks me out is that usually this kind of arguement from right-ish wingers focuses on the lack of (and desire for the) suffering and punishment being wrought upon the enemy, rather than a rational means of dimishing potential threats to americans. isn't there something in the bible regarding vengence?

Edited by jaan

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Guest Sao_bento

man, the midwest scares me. I'm sticking to the edges.

 

anyway, not that I'm a big fan, but check out Oli Stones Reaction to Bush's lunacy.

Which is kind of like saying "Gary Busey isn't cool with this, man".

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I can just see the nutjobs sitting in their caves and mosques, laughing themselves silly. After all, they mutilate, burn and booby-trap the bodies of the people that THEY capture. After they're done posting the video of it on the internet, they are free to sit back and watch TV reports of the USA bending over backwards not to offend them. I bet they find it hilarious!

 

Draw a cartoon or quote a guy from five hundred years ago depicting Muslims as violent and...guess what? They become violent! All the while saying that they're not, which of course many people lap up without a second thought. We can't attack these terrorists, even when a whole pack of high-value targets gather in one spot, anywhere near a mosque, cemetery, or other holy site. But they burn churches and shoot praying nuns in the back with impunity...again, over one sentence taken out of context. Then they get a free pass.

 

A Christian kids' camp is called brainwashing and child abuse, but parading little Palestinian kids around with machine guns and Hamas garb isn't. Teaching kids anything at all about Christianity in an American school suddenly became offensive, but you can indoctrinate all the hatred and glorification of martyrdom in a mosque or madrasah and be protected... by CAIR and ACLU bloodhounds, if you're in the USA.

 

The real motivation behind the left's disdain for Christianity is that it sets forth a right and wrong. Therefore, Christianity must be stopped at all costs, yet somehow there isn't a single liberal out there warning what a USA ruled by Sharia law would be like. The Hollywood left, queers, and anyone using drugs or alcohol would be some of the first groups to find themselves on the chopping block.

 

Of course there's the typical leftist cry that the whole thing was cooked up since 2000 by a bunch of neo-cons to get another Crusade going. The Crusades, by the way, were formed to push BACK a Muslim offensive into Europe. But new history books don't teach that. In any case, we're now in the 21st century, one where militant Islamists are out there broadcasting plans of war and world domination against the West. Why is it so ridiculous to believe that they mean it?

 

So, once again, everyone else is peeing themselves at the fact that someone might mistreat one of these characters. So what. Either we can get serious about this thing or we can let our own political correctness be our ultimate undoing.

 

Did you actually read this before posting it?

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This is just a stupid parroting of a media talkpoint. When you discuss it with these bogus hypotheticals, all you're doing is legitimizing the discussion. As if its just another reasonable option. This isn't a matter of weighing pros and cons, its a humanitarian issue. There are no good arguments for torture as an effective tool. Period.

 

Thanks for the kind words.

 

Why are those hypotheticals bogus? You mean, it never happens that a person is captured who may have direct information on a crime that's about to be commited? I beg to differ. This has actully happened in England not so long ago, and it happens elsewhere pretty frequently.

 

If torture isn't an effective tool, I'm glad to make it totally illegal. But its sounds strange to me that the best way to get information out of a fanatic of any kind is to ask them politely for it, without making them the least bit uncomfortable. Is it at least OK to yell at them? Scare them? Keep them up for 2 hours past their bedtime?

 

Not even taking into account that the majority of "enemy combatants" we hold at places like Bagram and Guantanamo are not dangerous terrorists, but simply collateral damage from an overzealous information campaign.

That may well be true, I don't know one way or another. But what do you suggest be done with the minority who aren't just collateral? That's the question here, I believe, not the overzealous campaign.

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If torture isn't an effective tool, I'm glad to make it totally illegal.

 

Have we seen any reliable intel provided from torture? Nope. Try basing your discussions not around speculation, but on the understanding of how torture is actually being used in the world.

 

You can get started with some of these sources:

 

http://www.amnestyusa.org/stoptorture/about.html

 

http://www.astt.org/torture.html

 

http://www.cvt.org/main.php

 

Advocating torture as a means to an end is short-sighted and stupid. Not even understanding what that "end" may be is deadly. Especially when we're the ones (as part of a democratic republic) making decisions that will affect the lives of thousands, and as the snowball starts rolling, millions plus.

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Guest Sao_bento

Have we seen any reliable intel provided from torture? Nope.

I know this is a political/emotional issue, but like many generalized statements that claim and absolute, the above is not true.

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Some of the reactions here are pretty surrealistic.

 

Have you never heard of innocent people captured in a foreign country and sent in other country to be tortured and kept prisoner for years for no reason? like this guy in germany or the other guy from syria? collateral damages? how much is too much?

 

Normally in a so-called democratic country

 

-some people make the law

-and some different people apply the law

 

Now from what i've red your president can decide who is "an enemy of the country".

That seem very wise to me considering who is your president.

Edited by jan

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Have we seen any reliable intel provided from torture? Nope.

Who's "we"? You, I presume, haven't. I have. I'm not happy about it, but I have. And, btw, I'm talking about the milder forms of coercion, not the kind of "torture" that comes to mind when you think of WW II prisoner camps.

 

Advocating torture as a means to an end is short-sighted and stupid. .

As this is the second time I'm being branded "stupid" here, I think I quit. Next time, try to argue with the position, not the person.

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