Friday, September 22, 2006

Torture Is Bad

Via No More Mister Nice Blog, a link to this essay by Joe Galloway on We've Sunk to Osama's Level. As the blog mentions, this was written before McCain, Graham and Warner completely caved - er, I mean, compromised.
Sleep deprivation was a favorite of the Soviet KGB. They knew that after three or four days their victim would be hallucinating, shivering and shaking, weakened to the point where he would admit anything just for the hope of half an hour of sleep.

I saw water-boarding long ago in Vietnam. A half-naked young man, suspected of being a local Viet Cong guerrilla, was handed over by his American captors to South Vietnamese troops.

Four of them held him down. An old, dirty rag was coiled around his face covering his nose and mouth. A fifth held a five-gallon tin of water slowly pouring it into the coiled rag.

The water took the place of air for that prisoner. His chest heaved violently as he sought the air and took in only water. I turned away before I could see whether he talked or drowned. An American captain shrugged; it was a Vietnamese thing.

...Those abominations existed in Vietnam, but they were not carried out by Americans. There was a line that was never to be crossed. It was a line between barbarity and civilization. It was a line between them and us.

He gets right to the point about exactly whose asses are really being covered by Bush's pro-torture efforts:
If all these illegalities, if all this immoral and un-American conduct, were not set right and somehow made legal in some hasty legislation, then it would not only be the agents who poured the water and beat the prisoners who someday might face war crimes charges, it could also be those who bent and broke the laws and the treaties.

Lastly, he boils it down perfectly.
We once stood for something good in this world. We once took the high moral ground in our struggle with the evil that exists. We once upheld the Geneva Conventions not only because we expected our enemies to apply them in their treatment of American prisoners but because they were the law, and they were right.


At 8:05 PM, Blogger Mike Grayson said...

Right on bro!


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