Monday, March 16, 2009

Report Indicates CIA "Tortured" prisoners

The International Red Cross released a report today indicating that the CIA  allowed practices that amounted to "cruel, inhuman or degrading" treatment of al queda prisoners.


The secret report strongly implies that the United States violated international law prohibiting torture and mistreatment of prisoners.  ICRC officials were granted exclusive access to "high-value" detainees in Guantanamo Bay.  The prisoners gave detailed accounts of their "torture" which included sleep deprivation and being held naked while listening to constant music.

The CIA did not comment, but an official familiar with the report noted that the claims were not witnessed by Red Cross officials and were "unsubstantiated."  The claims came from terrorist, themselves.

The news article this comes from did not mention that no US prisoners were beheaded or permanently maimed while in US custody, as would happen had they been in the "custody" of our enemies in the war on terror.  Nor was their any mention of the fact that the US allows the ICRC access to our prisons and prisoners to investigate abuses, while many other nations do not.

I, for one, applaud the CIA and the previous administration for using whatever means necessary to keep us safe.  I doubt the current administration will be as successful in the war on terror, since they are allowing political considerations to hamper their ability to deal appropriately with terrorist groups and terrorist nations.  

Instead, the current administration wants to sit down for tea with those who want to kill us.

13 comments:

EatYourOkra March 16, 2009 at 12:34 PM  

Being held naked while listening to constant music may be extremely annoying and uncomfortable but far far from the category of cruel and inhuman.

stormin March 16, 2009 at 12:54 PM  

oh, boo-friggen-hoo!!! i wonder what kind of torture the victims of 9/11 had to endure?

Conservative Scalawag March 16, 2009 at 1:48 PM  

Huh, that is strange,no report of what the "religion of peace" did to our folks in uniform,and even non-combatants.

Things like: beheadings,mutilations,rape,whipping the bottom of feet with wire cables,acid,cutting torches,burning alive,starvation,electrical shock,and so on and so-forth.

I believe the worst we do is water boarding,which we also do to our Navy SEALS as well,or members of Yale's skull and bones fraternity.

Other than that, we just make the terrorist feel uncomfortable.

Yet,we are the bad guys.

Elissar March 16, 2009 at 3:01 PM  

Such hypocrisy. Because others torture, it's acceptable if we do it too? Please open your eyes. Bush is a war criminal and is just as bad as the terrorists he so enthusiastically "protected" us from.

Miss T.C. Shore March 16, 2009 at 4:29 PM  

"Just as bad as the terrorists..?" BS. You've drunk the liberal Kool aid.

Bush is a war criminal because he protected the US from attacks, but Obama can facilitate the murder of millions of babies, and he's "TheOne".

James Wolfer March 16, 2009 at 4:51 PM  

Elissar: I wouldn't say "just as bad." We didn't behead or maim or rape or kill our prisoners. But we DID torture them.

Handbasket: We DID torture them.
I get so frustrated with the previous administration for opening these doors to themselves and future administrations. Aside from the ethical debate on the torture itself, these reports that we did do the torture and the legal memos that the previous adminstration used to give themselves authority show just what boundaries the executive branch will cross. One of the biggest problems I have with these actions and legal memos is that the previous administration effectively removed checks and balances. You know why torture is illegal? Because Congress said so. But the Bush Admin decided that it doesn't matter. Just because it was a Republican Administration doesn't make it right.

What would it look like if the Obama administration did the same? If Congress told him he couldn't do something? And then he did it anyway? We'd roast him. But yet your post is letting the Bush Admin and the CIA off the hook for the same thing. Where are our checks and balances?

Conservative Scalawag:
Skull and Bones fraternity hazing is what you are talking about. Its also illegal.

The Navy Seals program is voluntary.

Yes, what extremist groups do to our soldiers and citizens is deplorable. But does that excuse us breaking our own laws and doing the same? I thought we were supposed to be better than them.

Handbasket:
"I, for one, applaud the CIA and the previous administration for using whatever means necessary to keep us safe."

If you see what they did to "keep us safe" including seeing every human being on this planet as being a potential suspect/enemy combatant (including US Citizens in the US) and thus able to be taken to Guantanamo or held here without charge forever, I doubt you would really applaud them. See the John Yoo Memos. Jose Padilla (US Citizen)

Benjamin Franklin said
"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both."

Miss T.C. Shore March 16, 2009 at 6:03 PM  

"if you see what they did ... I doubt you would really applaud them."

You are very wrong. The charges of "torture" are levied by admitted terrorists. Terrorists deserve no "rights". They are not a part of an army. They are not citizens who deserve constitutional rights. They are not covered by the Geneva convention. They will stop at nothing to kill us. They do not follow any "international law."

Saying we have to follow certain "rules" in dealing with terrorists is like playing a sporting event and requiring only one team to follow the rules.

Imagine two basketball teams: One follows all the NCAA basketball rules. The other can do literally anything they want and not get any fouls called. They can go out of bounds and retain possession, they can walk with the ball ... whatever.

That is what dealing with terrorists is like. We do follow certain policies and rules. They do not. I have no problem with torture being used to get information from them.

And, that's not giving up "liberty" to gain security. We are not giving up our liberties.

Unlike excessive taxation and oppressive fiscal policies, which is where we are heading with Obama. In a few years, we WILL be giving up liberties in order to pay off the debts we are racking up now.

James Wolfer March 16, 2009 at 7:58 PM  

You obviously haven't read the John Yoo memos. I have a summary over at my blog, a few entries back, if you would like to check that out. They did give the Executive Branch power to sidestep Congress.

With your basketball analogy, you're right. But us, the team that used to follow the rules, are now throwing fouls too. Instead of throwing the team out and prosecuting them for misconduct, we turned a basketball game into a no holds barred boxing match. Now imagine the coach is congress, and congress said "stop biting them back or we'll get fined too!" And they didn't listen.

No analogy is perfect, but the fact is, every human has rights. Even terrorists. Our founding fathers never said "all americans are created equal" or "all american citizens are created equal and endowed with certain inalienable rights." They said:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness..."

The terrorists have a right to be accused, tried, and if they are terrorists, convicted and executed (i.e. Timothy McVeigh). What we have in GTMO are ACCUSED terrorists. Give them a trial. Then execute them. That's fair and would be honoring the same rights we fight for.

Back to the legal memos of the last presidency: they gave the President authority even over US citizens to accuse of being an "enemy combatant" and lock up FOREVER. I didn't want Bush having that authority nor do I want Obama having that authority.

Where I do agree with you (and other bloggers) is that closing GTMO without a plan for where the prisoners are going to go or just releasing them is a HUGE mistake. Give them a trial. If they did it, then execute them. Its completely fair.

James Wolfer March 16, 2009 at 8:00 PM  

Also, the previous Administration has admitted to waterboarding, which Congress said was torture and therefore illegal. If the President doesn't have to listen to Congress, why don't we just have a four year term elected monarch instead?

Miss T.C. Shore March 16, 2009 at 10:44 PM  

"...Which the Congress said was torture..."

Who gives congress the authority to decide what is torture and what is not? If congress is the ultimate authority, why have a president? Just let the congress make all the decisions.

Miss T.C. Shore March 16, 2009 at 10:44 PM  

"...Which the Congress said was torture..."

Who gives congress the authority to decide what is torture and what is not? If congress is the ultimate authority, why have a president? Just let the congress make all the decisions.

James Wolfer March 16, 2009 at 11:00 PM  

They make the laws. He signs them.

James Wolfer March 16, 2009 at 11:12 PM  

Article I of the Constitution gives Congress the power to make laws. The founding fathers actually wanted the most power of the three branches of the government to lie with Congress, not the president.

Congress has the exclusive power to declare war, to raise and maintain the armed forces, and to make rules for the military. The President is supposed to make sure that the laws of Congress are carried out faithfully.

The Supreme Court is supposed to make sure that those laws fit in the Constitution.

All three branches are supposed to keep the other in check, and the Executive Branch is NEVER supposed to defy Congress.

A cursory search of Wikipedia shows these things that are taught in a basic social studies class in High School.

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