Monday, May 11, 2009

tourture and hypocrisy

Over at Salon, Glenn Greenwald has a great piece on American hypocrisy regarding torture. In a recent New York Times obituary of an American fighter pilot who was captured by the Chinese military during the Korean war, he was described as being tortured by having to stay in a dark cell with no bed, substandard food, and subject to sleep deprivation.

If this sounds familiar, it is because it's the basic starter package at Guantanamo and other U.S. holding facilities. Only we have declared it not torture when we do it. This is a great example of one of the more pertinent arguments against us using torture (other than the fact that, you know, it's illegal, immoral, etc.): how are we now to condemn it when it's done to our soldiers? Track down any description of what passes for our "interrogation methods" and you'll see it's some pretty sick shit; well, when our soldiers get captured by Taliban operatives (or coming soon: Iranian forces!) and get tortured within an inch of their life with these same tactics, there will be no one to blame but Bush, Cheney and company who have repeatedly argued this stuff isn't torture and is just fine and dandy.

I'm sure that will be plenty of solace for American G.I.s as they're being waterboarded and electrocuted somewhere in the mountains of Pakistan...

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