Thursday, October 26, 2006

No Brain, No Pain

(Warning--photo at end of post is disturbing.)

So dunking terrorists in water is a no-brainer for Cheney:
Cheney is asked if he agrees "dunking a terrorist in water" is okay to save lives. "I do agree," he says. "And I think the terrorist threat, for example, with respect to our ability to interrogate high value detainees like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, that's been a very important tool that we've had to be able to secure the nation.
Hennen follows up, asking "Would you agree a dunk in water is a no-brainer if it can save lives?" Cheney's answer: "It's a no-brainer for me, but for a while there, I was criticized as being the Vice President for torture."
Wearing cotton coat and pants, Xiao was sat down beside the cell vent in a very uncomfortable position, unable to stretch or lie down. Although the water dungeon area was very small, he still could not support his body against the wall. Then Fang and Zhen started to pour water onto the floor, soaking Xiao’s coat and pants with freezing-cold water. After Fang and Zhen repeatedly poured water into the dungeon, Xiao’s body was completely soaked. Ice-cold water and the chilly wind together covered his body like piercing knives.
"The prisoner is bound to an inclined board, feet raised and head slightly below the feet. Cellophane is wrapped over the prisoner's face and water is poured over him. Unavoidably, the gag reflex kicks in and a terrifying fear of drowning leads to almost instant pleas to bring the treatment to a halt…According to the sources, CIA officers who subjected themselves to the waterboarding technique lasted an average of 14 seconds before caving in. They said Al Qaeda's toughest prisoner, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, won the admiration of interrogators when he was able to last between two and two and a half minutes before begging to confess."
In Uruguay, North-American and Brazilian instructors were brought to deliver torture "lessons." Here torture included: "standing guard" (standing still), the "telephone," the "submarine," electric torture in all its forms, the "airplane"(hanging victims from their arms), the "rider" (forcing the naked victim to sit for hours on end on a metallic rod shoved between the legs), live burial, burns, psychiatric torture, and even aggressive dogs (Uruguay Nunca Más 1992). The tortures used in Paraguay were: the picana, the "bat" (hanging victims by their wrists), the "submarine," and the "foetus" (forcing victims to adopt a crouching position for hours).
"The prisoner died in a position known as "Palestinian hanging," the documents reviewed by The AP show...

One Army guard, Sgt. Jeffery Frost, said the prisoner's arms were stretched behind him in a way he had never before seen. Frost told investigators he was surprised al-Jamadi's arms "didn't pop out of their sockets," according to a summary of his interview.

Frost and other guards had been summoned to reposition al-Jamadi, who an interrogator said was not cooperating. As the guards released the shackles and lowered al-Jamadi, blood gushed from his mouth "as if a faucet had been turned on," according to the interview summary.
Detainees held by the United States in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere have been subjected to sleep and sensory deprivation, held in painful stress positions, forced to stand for long periods of time, interrogated while nude, and otherwise mistreated. According to The New York Times, the CIA submerged a detainee in water to simulate drowning. These techniques are clearly designed to inflict a degree of pain and humiliation to soften up prisoners for interrogation, without leaving visible scars. Such techniques are in violation of U.S. legal obligations under the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and the Geneva Conventions. And they are in many cases identical to techniques of torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment that have been used by repressive regimes around the world, and condemned by the United States.
“We don't torture. That's not what we're involved in," Cheney replied. "We live up to our obligations in international treaties that we're party to and so forth. But the fact is, you can have a fairly robust interrogation program without torture, and we need to be able to do that."
The Chinese, from whom we’ve borrowed other great “robust interrogation” ideas, must have been able to get plenty out of this man:


Can we look forward to the inclusion of The Death of A Hundred Cuts in our next interrogation program? Because, you know, easy moralism just doesn't cut it.

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