PDA

View Full Version : House passes ban on waterboarding


KILLER_CLOWN
12-13-2007, 03:44 PM
In a 222-199 vote, the House today passed the FY2008 Intelligence Authorization bill, which bans waterboarding and confines the CIA “to the interrogation tactics permitted by the Army Field Manual on Human Intelligence Collector Operations. Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s (D-NY) remarked, “[This] means no more torture, no more waterboarding, no more clever wordplay, no more evasive answers, no more dishonesty.”

Yesterday, 30 retired generals and admirals wrote to Congress and urged lawmakers to ban waterboarding.

http://thinkprogress.org/2007/12/13/house-passes-ban-on-waterboarding/

WOW 199 voted against!


<object width="425" height="355"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/KuEmUcNlzNg&rel=1"></param><param name="wmode" value="transparent"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/KuEmUcNlzNg&rel=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent" width="425" height="355"></embed></object>

kcfanXIII
12-13-2007, 03:47 PM
i'm sure W will veto it, as it does not provide enough time for the military to come up with alternatives.

edit: so the 199 that voted against it, would they have a problem if an iranian used this technique on one of their children?

penchief
12-13-2007, 04:19 PM
i'm sure W will veto it, as it does not provide enough time for the military to come up with alternatives.

edit: so the 199 that voted against it, would they have a problem if an iranian used this technique on one of their children?

The reason we vote against it is so that when an Iranian uses it on our children we can condemn it for what it is. Right is right, and wrong is wrong. What else are you thinking? I can tell that someone has been drinking the Kool-Aid.

Are you a hypocrite or just an unAmerican?

patteeu
12-13-2007, 04:53 PM
i'm sure W will veto it, as it does not provide enough time for the military to come up with alternatives.

edit: so the 199 that voted against it, would they have a problem if an iranian used this technique on one of their children?

First, even if this were a narrowly focused bill to ban waterboarding, this is a dumb question. Should we refuse to kill an Iraqi insurgent sniper or suicide bomber because we wouldn't want an Iranian to kill one of our children? Should we refuse to detain al Qaeda members when we find them simply because we wouldn't want an Iranian to detain one of our children?

Second, this is a huge appropriations bill that deals with all kinds of intelligence subjects. I'd be surprised to find that the ban on waterboarding is what motivated all or even most of the 199 to vote against it.

KILLER_CLOWN
12-13-2007, 05:01 PM
I can prove Torture doesn't work, will it get the results you wanted when you started, almost 100% of the time. Will it guarantee the answer you received was the truth? NO!

For instance I am interrogating Patteeu trying to find out if he is a green ducktailed martian. He refuses to answer because he thinks it's totally ludicrous, i then waterboard him with a promise that it will happen everyday for the rest of his natural life unless he agrees he is in fact a green ducktailed martian. At the risk of losing his life he agrees 100% that he is in fact a duck tailed martian. Ok so what does that prove?

A. he finally admitted the truth, he is a ducktailed martian.

B. he gave me the answer i wanted because death was not an alternative.

C. although he really enjoyed the torture, he liked me so much he would agree with anything i said.

JohnnyV13
12-13-2007, 05:59 PM
First, even if this were a narrowly focused bill to ban waterboarding, this is a dumb question. Should we refuse to kill an Iraqi insurgent sniper or suicide bomber because we wouldn't want an Iranian to kill one of our children? Should we refuse to detain al Qaeda members when we find them simply because we wouldn't want an Iranian to detain one of our children?

Second, this is a huge appropriations bill that deals with all kinds of intelligence subjects. I'd be surprised to find that the ban on waterboarding is what motivated all or even most of the 199 to vote against it.


For shame. How can you suggest that a peice of legislation has aspects that cannot be accurately conveyed by a single sentance sound bite?

Are you an anarchist or something?

BigMeatballDave
12-13-2007, 06:39 PM
You know, I am not in favor of torture. However, if some goons can get info to save American lives, I don't need to know how it was acquired...

patteeu
12-13-2007, 07:11 PM
I can prove Torture doesn't work, will it get the results you wanted when you started, almost 100% of the time. Will it guarantee the answer you received was the truth? NO!

For instance I am interrogating Patteeu trying to find out if he is a green ducktailed martian. He refuses to answer because he thinks it's totally ludicrous, i then waterboard him with a promise that it will happen everyday for the rest of his natural life unless he agrees he is in fact a green ducktailed martian. At the risk of losing his life he agrees 100% that he is in fact a duck tailed martian. Ok so what does that prove?

A. he finally admitted the truth, he is a ducktailed martian.

B. he gave me the answer i wanted because death was not an alternative.

C. although he really enjoyed the torture, he liked me so much he would agree with anything i said.

That only proves that you'd make a horrible interrogator. And I feel like I've been tortured just by reading that.

I can "prove" that waterboarding works. By extension, we can assume that torture would also work:

ROBERTS: So, this was performed on Abu Zubaydah to the best of your knowledge?

KIRIAKOU: Yes.

ROBERTS: How long did he last?

KIRIAKOU: It's my understanding he lasted 30 to 35 seconds, which was quite remarkable.

ROBERTS: So, he had been resisting all of this time, then within 30 to 35 seconds, he suddenly folded up and said I'll give you anything you want?

KIRIAKOU: The next day he told his interrogator that Allah had visited him in his cell during the night and told him to cooperate because it would make it easier on the other brothers who had been captured.

ROBERTS: Now, of course, the big argument with torture is that the suspect will tell you anything that you want just to stop the torture. Was that true in this case?

KIRIAKOU: No. We were concerned about that. That the information that he provided was vetted and he was corroborated, so we were able to point to specific cases where we were able to disrupt terrorist attacks based solely on the information that he provided. ROBERTS: So, how valuable was the information that the CIA gleaned from waterboarding?

KIRIAKOU: I have no doubt that the information gleaned from Abu Zubaydah in his early days stopped terrorist attacks and saved lives.

ROBERTS: Did it also lead you to other suspects?

KIRIAKOU: It did. It did, indeed. He talked a lot about al Qaeda's leadership structure and mentioned people who we really didn't have any familiarization with, told us, you know, who we should be thinking about, who we should be looking at, who was important within the organization. So, we were able to focus our investigations.

ROBERTS: And did this lead you to Khalid Shaikh Muhammad?

KIRIAKOU: Not really.

ROBERTS: Not directly?

KIRIAKOU: No, not directly to Khalid Shaikh Muhammad but Abu Zubaydah is the one who told us that Khalid Shaikh Muhammad was so important in the al Qaeda structure. And we didn't realize at that time just how important he was.

Full article... (http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0712/11/ltm.03.html)

You see, the trick to using a tool is making sure you use it for the right purpose. A hammer isn't all that useful for chopping down a large tree, but if you need to drive a nail, it's perfect.

You illustrated a purpose for which aggressive interrogation would not be very useful. It's true that if you are asking someone to confess to something in order to make the interrogation stop, they are likely to tell you what you want to hear whether it's true or not. But if you are asking for information that can be vetted in relatively short order, you're likely to get very reliable information.

Imagine an interrogator who is trying to find out the password to his subject's laptop which he has with him in the interrogation room. How much relief is the subject going to get by giving out false information when the interrogator demands to know the password? Not much, because the interrogator can immediately try the password and determine whether or not he's been told the truth. The key is being able to verify the information in relatively short order.

KILLER_CLOWN
12-13-2007, 07:35 PM
Imagine an interrogator who is trying to find out the password to his subject's laptop which he has with him in the interrogation room. How much relief is the subject going to get by giving out false information when the interrogator demands to know the password? Not much, because the interrogator can immediately try the password and determine whether or not he's been told the truth. The key is being able to verify the information in relatively short order.

that is easy, you simply waterboard several people asking if they can calloborate the original victim's story, under torture any answer you wish is possible. Therefore it defies logic.

Pitt Gorilla
12-13-2007, 07:59 PM
I can "prove" that waterboarding works. By extension, we can assume that torture would also work:I hope that's tongue-in-cheek, otherwise you have lost your mind.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 08:16 PM
that is easy, you simply waterboard several people asking if they can calloborate the original victim's story, under torture any answer you wish is possible. Therefore it defies logic.

I know that you're joking. :)

patteeu
12-13-2007, 08:17 PM
I hope that's tongue-in-cheek, otherwise you have lost your mind.

I have no idea what you're talking about. Don't be afraid to speak clearly.

Mr. Kotter
12-13-2007, 08:30 PM
:shrug:

KILLER_CLOWN
12-13-2007, 08:39 PM
I know that you're joking. :)

No i am speaking from a point of logic, not rhetoric.

Mr. Kotter
12-13-2007, 08:44 PM
I have no idea what you're talking about. Don't be afraid to speak clearly.

I'm beginning to seriously think that he is related to kcnut. I mean, any sort of specificity or clearly expressed thoughts from Gerry seem to be....well, "elusive," shall we say? :shrug:

He prefers to speak in ambiguities, innuendo, intimation, amd indirect and thinly veiled insults and demagoguery.

It's probably, why, next to Tacopenchief and ZachSimmons...he's my biggest stalker and detractor. I'm too direct, I think.

;)

patteeu
12-13-2007, 08:46 PM
No i am speaking from a point of logic, not rhetoric.

Whatever that is, it's not logic, friend.

You fell for the myth that what you call "torture" doesn't work. I assure you that it does and I described how it works. I even provided testimony from a "torturer" who testifies that it works and even gave examples of the types of success he's had with it. You refuse to believe it because it doesn't fit well in your worldview. I assure you that you aren't the only person who fell for the myth. There are a lot of pretty smart people who believe that one. All of you are wrong.

Ultra Peanut
12-13-2007, 08:57 PM
:shrug:Damn do-nothing Congress. http://i18.tinypic.com/6ka8bqt.gif

KILLER_CLOWN
12-13-2007, 09:00 PM
Whatever that is, it's not logic, friend.

You fell for the myth that what you call "torture" doesn't work. I assure you that it does and I described how it works. I even provided testimony from a "torturer" who testifies that it works and even gave examples of the types of success he's had with it. You refuse to believe it because it doesn't fit well in your worldview. I assure you that you aren't the only person who fell for the myth. There are a lot of pretty smart people who believe that one. All of you are wrong.

So you are saying you could torture someone? I think it takes a very sick sadistic person to do that in the 1st place, so i should take his word for it?

Mr. Kotter
12-13-2007, 09:05 PM
Damn do-nothing Congress. http://i18.tinypic.com/6ka8bqt.gif

Eh, it's a political stunt on the part of Dems, AFAIC.

If and when Hillary is Madaam President (God help us...)....I guarantee they won't be grandstanding like this.

Or else their grip on power will truly be short-lived. ;)

patteeu
12-13-2007, 09:20 PM
So you are saying you could torture someone?

:spock: Where'd you get that?

I think it takes a very sick sadistic person to do that in the 1st place, so i should take his word for it?

I don't think it takes a sadistic person, but it probably takes someone who isn't too squeamish. You can either take his word for it or you can continue to stick your fingers in your ears and close your eyes tight to preserve the fantasy that aggressive interrogation and torture don't work. This guy isn't talking about theory, he's reporting on what actually happened.

Pitt Gorilla
12-13-2007, 11:51 PM
I have no idea what you're talking about. Don't be afraid to speak clearly.What you provided was not a "proof" that could be used to generalize anything, especially that torture "works" in any general sense.

patteeu
12-14-2007, 07:17 AM
What you provided was not a "proof" that could be used to generalize anything, especially that torture "works" in any general sense.

I used quotes around the word proof because I realize that what it really is is evidence. It's possible that the guy giving the testimony is lying or that his story leaves out pertinent facts, but I doubt it. It's also possible that some people might be strong enough to withstand a particular harsh interrogation technique indefinitely, but again I doubt that that's very common.

But in light of the evidence that it does, I think that anyone who clings to the myth that harsh interrogation techniques (whether waterboarding or actual torture) don't work is a fool.

For the sake of argument, let's say that torture does work. Is there anything anyone could say or any evidence that anyone could provide to you that you would consider actual proof? I assume you are thinking of "proof" in a mathematical sense or in some kind of biological/physiological sense, which is kind of ridiculous to begin with.

Pitt Gorilla
12-14-2007, 01:26 PM
I used quotes around the word proof because I realize that what it really is is evidence. It's possible that the guy giving the testimony is lying or that his story leaves out pertinent facts, but I doubt it. It's also possible that some people might be strong enough to withstand a particular harsh interrogation technique indefinitely, but again I doubt that that's very common.

But in light of the evidence that it does, I think that anyone who clings to the myth that harsh interrogation techniques (whether waterboarding or actual torture) don't work is a fool.

For the sake of argument, let's say that torture does work. Is there anything anyone could say or any evidence that anyone could provide to you that you would consider actual proof? I assume you are thinking of "proof" in a mathematical sense or in some kind of biological/physiological sense, which is kind of ridiculous to begin with.You are correct, IMO, that what you cited is evidence and not proof. While you could never achieve a "mathematical" level of proof, I would certainly require an abundance of evidence that at least results in a strong tendency. I would certainly never consider a few disparate instances as indicative of much of anything.

patteeu
12-14-2007, 01:36 PM
You are correct, IMO, that what you cited is evidence and not proof. While you could never achieve a "mathematical" level of proof, I would certainly require an abundance of evidence that at least results in a strong tendency. I would certainly never consider a few disparate instances as indicative of much of anything.

Congratulations on setting the bar too high to ever be met given the nature of what we're discussing. You are now free to believe in the myth that aggressive interrogation techniques don't work as long as it continues to comfort you.

Using my hypothetical about an interrogator attempting to get a subject to divulge the password for his laptop, do you think aggressive interrogation would work on you? Would you give up the correct password knowing that if you refused to talk or if you gave an incorrect answer the interrogation would continue?

KILLER_CLOWN
12-14-2007, 01:57 PM
Congratulations on setting the bar too high to ever be met given the nature of what we're discussing. You are now free to believe in the myth that aggressive interrogation techniques don't work as long as it continues to comfort you.

Using my hypothetical about an interrogator attempting to get a subject to divulge the password for his laptop, do you think aggressive interrogation would work on you? Would you give up the correct password knowing that if you refused to talk or if you gave an incorrect answer the interrogation would continue?

aggressive interrogation ie TORTURE does not work based solely on principle and reasoning absolute! but hey have fun waterboarding someone and expecting Jesus to understand.

Pitt Gorilla
12-14-2007, 02:08 PM
Congratulations on setting the bar too high to ever be met given the nature of what we're discussing. You are now free to believe in the myth that aggressive interrogation techniques don't work as long as it continues to comfort you.

Using my hypothetical about an interrogator attempting to get a subject to divulge the password for his laptop, do you think aggressive interrogation would work on you? Would you give up the correct password knowing that if you refused to talk or if you gave an incorrect answer the interrogation would continue?I was merely talking about your use of the word proof, which is why I assumed it was more tongue-in-cheek. Your second sentence makes no sense at all. The same argument that I made for "proof" also applies to the techniques not working. Essentially, it's ridiculous to believe that there could be proof either way, as I doubt the evidence is conclusive in either direction. Honestly, it probably works on some people and probably doesn't on others. The big question is the percentage of time that it works. I would think that a quick metaanalysis could clear this up fairly easily, given access to sufficient data. Then, the question becomes what constitutes an acceptable percentage. That's for the experts to decide, IMO.

In your scenario, a good sandwich would probably work even better. Of course, my laptop isn't even password protected, so it's difficult to say. However, your scenario seemingly breaks down when there is no immediate, or even semi-immediate, manner for verifying the veracity of the coerced statement. Another potential pitfall would be the instances where the person honestly doesn't know an answer. Do we "aggressively interrogate" (or whatever PC term you want to use) a person until they make up something acceptable enough to satisfy our needs?

patteeu
12-14-2007, 02:31 PM
aggressive interrogation ie TORTURE does not work based solely on principle and reasoning absolute! but hey have fun waterboarding someone and expecting Jesus to understand.

What does "based soley on principle and reasoning absolute!" mean? And why the reference to Jesus?

KILLER_CLOWN
12-14-2007, 02:36 PM
What does "based soley on principle and reasoning absolute!" mean? And why the reference to Jesus?

Do you think the Lord advocates torture?

patteeu
12-14-2007, 02:44 PM
I was merely talking about your use of the word proof, which is why I assumed it was more tongue-in-cheek. Your second sentence makes no sense at all. The same argument that I made for "proof" also applies to the techniques not working. Essentially, it's ridiculous to believe that there could be proof either way, as I doubt the evidence is conclusive in either direction. Honestly, it probably works on some people and probably doesn't on others. The big question is the percentage of time that it works. I would think that a quick metaanalysis could clear this up fairly easily, given access to sufficient data. Then, the question becomes what constitutes an acceptable percentage. That's for the experts to decide, IMO.

That's almost fair, but I think you admit the truth in your next paragraph.

In your scenario, a good sandwich would probably work even better. Of course, my laptop isn't even password protected, so it's difficult to say. However, your scenario seemingly breaks down when there is no immediate, or even semi-immediate, manner for verifying the veracity of the coerced statement. Another potential pitfall would be the instances where the person honestly doesn't know an answer. Do we "aggressively interrogate" (or whatever PC term you want to use) a person until they make up something acceptable enough to satisfy our needs?

Your "good sandwich" dodge is irrelevant since, as I'm sure you know, the hypothetical is supposed to be about getting information from an extremely reluctant subject. I'm sure that even you could stave off hunger pangs if you had an important enough secret to keep. I don't know if you could hold out against more aggressive interrogation techniques though. Of course, the "good sandwich" type approach should probably be tried before progressing to harsher techniques and as I understand it, this is how our CIA interrogations work.

But despite attempting to avoid answering the question (gee, who would have expected that out of you), you effectively admit the truth when you say that my scenario breaks down when the hypothetical is modified significantly. Now you and I might not know and might not be able to agree exactly where it breaks down, but the fact that you suggest it would, implies that at some point close to these hypothetical facts, you think the interrogation techniques would, in fact, work. As I said earlier in the thread, as long as the tool is being used for the right job, it works.

As for your other "pitfall", that's true of the "good sandwich" technique of interrogation too. Nothing will get information out of someone who doesn't possess it. That "pitfall" doesn't invalidate my claim at all.

patteeu
12-14-2007, 02:46 PM
Do you think the Lord advocates torture?

Well, I would ask you what you mean by torture, but I think I can dispose of this line of questioning more simply by pointing out that I'm not a believer, I'm agnostic. But recently I was informed that I've been selected to speak for the Jewish people. ;)

KILLER_CLOWN
12-14-2007, 02:47 PM
Well, I would ask you what you mean by torture, but I think I can dispose of this line of questioning more simply by pointing out that I'm not a believer, I'm agnostic.

I apologise, I mistook that you were Christian. Now I understand how you can permit torture.

patteeu
12-14-2007, 03:06 PM
I apologise, I mistook that you were Christian. Now I understand how you can permit torture.

Hahaha. I'm against torture.

Pitt Gorilla
12-14-2007, 03:06 PM
That's almost fair, but I think you admit the truth in your next paragraph.



Your "good sandwich" dodge is irrelevant since, as I'm sure you know, the hypothetical is supposed to be about getting information from an extremely reluctant subject. I'm sure that even you could stave off hunger pangs if you had an important enough secret to keep. I don't know if you could hold out against more aggressive interrogation techniques though. Of course, the "good sandwich" type approach should probably be tried before progressing to harsher techniques and as I understand it, this is how our CIA interrogations work.

But despite attempting to avoid answering the question (gee, who would have expected that out of you), you effectively admit the truth when you say that my scenario breaks down when the hypothetical is modified significantly. Now you and I might not know and might not be able to agree exactly where it breaks down, but the fact that you suggest it would, implies that at some point close to these hypothetical facts, you think the interrogation techniques would, in fact, work. As I said earlier in the thread, as long as the tool is being used for the right job, it works.

As for your other "pitfall", that's true of the "good sandwich" technique of interrogation too. Nothing will get information out of someone who doesn't possess it. That "pitfall" doesn't invalidate my claim at all.Pat, I have no idea why you think so poorly of me, but I am honestly not trying to dodge anything. I answered the question as honestly as I could. Regarding important information, it's difficult for me to consider, as I would need some sort of realistic scenario. If someone was torturing me to find out where my family was so that they could harm them, the amount of torture wouldn't matter; I would never tell them. I suppose I could make something elaborate up, buying some time, but I'd never tell the truth. If they wanted my atm number (which I honestly don't know, but assuming I did), they could probably get it without much more than threatening myself or my family (no actual harm). So, you'll forgive me if I can't quite put myself in that situation. Regarding whether the techniques would work or not, I have no idea. As I previously stated, they probably would in some cases and probably wouldn't in others. If my wording somehow lead you to this ill-conceived "gotcha" moment, I certainly didn't mean to imply what you claim my words meant. You could claim that it works 53% of the time and I'd likely believe you because, once again, I have no idea what the numbers say.

BTW, what's with all the piss and vinegar today?

go bowe
12-14-2007, 03:51 PM
I used quotes around the word proof because I realize that what it really is is evidence. It's possible that the guy giving the testimony is lying or that his story leaves out pertinent facts, but I doubt it. It's also possible that some people might be strong enough to withstand a particular harsh interrogation technique indefinitely, but again I doubt that that's very common.

But in light of the evidence that it does, I think that anyone who clings to the myth that harsh interrogation techniques (whether waterboarding or actual torture) don't work is a fool.

For the sake of argument, let's say that torture does work. Is there anything anyone could say or any evidence that anyone could provide to you that you would consider actual proof? I assume you are thinking of "proof" in a mathematical sense or in some kind of biological/physiological sense, which is kind of ridiculous to begin with.a fool, you say?

traditional torture is generally unreliable according to some professional interrogators (http://snipurl.com/1vari)...

personally, i think that traditional torture may be even be counter productive...

otoh, there is no question that waterboarding does work (http://snipurl.com/1varr)...
6. Water Boarding: 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 water boarding technique lasted an average of 14 seconds before caving in. They said al Qaeda's toughest prisoner, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, won the admiration of interrogators when he was able to last between two and two-and-a-half minutes before begging to confess. wow, our guys go 14 seconds?

and that ugly sucker went two and a half minutes?

but it does teach us that even the most hardened terrorist can be forced to talk with the use of waterboarding...

two and a half minutes??

i wonder how long osama would last if we get a chance to water board him?

patteeu
12-14-2007, 08:11 PM
Pat, I have no idea why you think so poorly of me, but I am honestly not trying to dodge anything.

Look, I'm sure you're a decent guy and I have no doubt that we could get along in real life so please don't take our cyber-relationship personally. Having said that, my impression of your posting style is that you largely sit on the sidelines and snipe, often without clearly taking a position of your own that would be fodder for criticism. Maybe this is unfair, but that's my impression. FWIW, I'm sure I rub plenty of people the wrong way with my posting style.

I answered the question as honestly as I could. Regarding important information, it's difficult for me to consider, as I would need some sort of realistic scenario. If someone was torturing me to find out where my family was so that they could harm them, the amount of torture wouldn't matter; I would never tell them. I suppose I could make something elaborate up, buying some time, but I'd never tell the truth. If they wanted my atm number (which I honestly don't know, but assuming I did), they could probably get it without much more than threatening myself or my family (no actual harm). So, you'll forgive me if I can't quite put myself in that situation.

No offense, but I think you overestimate your ability to resist. If a person's family was safe behind a door with a combination lock next to the room in which they were being interrogated, I don't think there are many people who could refuse to give up the combination. It's an easy thing to say now, but when the going gets really tough with no end in sight and you're wishing you could just die to end it all but they won't let you, most people will break.

Regarding whether the techniques would work or not, I have no idea. As I previously stated, they probably would in some cases and probably wouldn't in others. If my wording somehow lead you to this ill-conceived "gotcha" moment, I certainly didn't mean to imply what you claim my words meant. You could claim that it works 53% of the time and I'd likely believe you because, once again, I have no idea what the numbers say.

An advertising campaign doesn't always achieve it's objectives, but we all know that advertising "works". A lot depends on the design of the campaign, the nature of the product being sold and how well the advertisers know their customers. It's an art form. It probably wouldn't be too effective to advertise parkas in a tropical climate, but if you recognize that your market is people in cold weather areas and advertise there you're going to be a lot more successful. But even in cold weather climates, advertising isn't going to close a sale with each and every person who is exposed to it. We still understand that it "works".

I don't see my response to your earlier post as a "gotcha" moment so much as I see it as an admission that you recognize the same truth that I do even if you don't recognize that the truth we both recognize means that aggressive interrogation "works". It doesn't work for all purposes or in every case, but when artfully used for the right purposes it can be very effective.

BTW, what's with all the piss and vinegar today?

This whole topic annoys me. I'm annoyed that we even know about waterboarding. Our country would have been better off if the fact that we used waterboarding remained secret both for PR reasons and for reasons of effectiveness. I'm annoyed that people repeatedly claim that torture doesn't work just because they've heard other people say it. I'm annoyed that many people use the word "torture" in such an expansive way that you end up losing any distinction between gouging people eyes out and exposing people to really loud music. And I'm annoyed when our own countrymen take a situation where our intelligence agency has used waterboarding on only 3 detainees of the highest value and use that as the basis to call our President the torturer-in-chief and to say we are no better than people who roast a young child and serve his cooked body to his parents as a warning.

patteeu
12-14-2007, 08:35 PM
a fool, you say?

traditional torture is generally unreliable according to some professional interrogators (http://snipurl.com/1vari)...

personally, i think that traditional torture may be even be counter productive...

I don't believe those experts. Or maybe I should say that I don't believe them to the extent that they are saying that torture *never* works or that it is *always* unreliable.

One key to harsh interrogation or torture, IMO, is to create extreme discomfort without allowing the target to find refuge in unconsciousness or death. For that reason, many of the most brutal kinds of physical torture are probably not really great techniques. Nor is mock execution (which carries with it the promise of death).

Once you have a technique that can create the type of discomfort you are looking for, then you need to use it in the right situations. If you are trying to get someone to confess, you're probably going to get a confession whether the person did it or not. That's not particularly useful. But if you are trying to get information that can be verified in relatively short order, like the computer password in the example in my other post, I think you'll have a pretty good batting average because the subject knows that giving you false information will lead right back to the extreme discomfort.

BTW, I'm not sure the ticking timebomb scenario is the best application for torture. It depends on how much time before the timebomb goes off. If the subject knows he only has to hold out for 30 minutes to allow the bomb to go off, he may be able to do it. If you have a week to get the critical information then my money is on the interrogators.

I think there are some good PR reasons for perpetuating the myth that torture doesn't work, but I still think it's a myth despite the article you linked.

otoh, there is no question that waterboarding does work (http://snipurl.com/1varr)...
wow, our guys go 14 seconds?

and that ugly sucker went two and a half minutes?

but it does teach us that even the most hardened terrorist can be forced to talk with the use of waterboarding...

two and a half minutes??

i wonder how long osama would last if we get a chance to water board him?

2 1/2 minutes sounds like an eternity. I read that Osama has a couple of bodyguards around him at all times with instructions to kill him rather than let him be captured. I don't know if it's true or not.

Kraut
12-15-2007, 05:44 PM
Even if this gets passed into law do we really think that our intelligence community won't outsource. Behind closed doors it will continue.

listopencil
12-15-2007, 06:41 PM
What, none of you have ever had to torture anyone? It works. Take my word for it.

go bowe
12-15-2007, 07:18 PM
* * *

If the subject knows he only has to hold out for 30 minutes to allow the bomb to go off, he may be able to do it. If you have a week to get the critical information then my money is on the interrogators.

* * *

2 1/2 minutes sounds like an eternity. I read that Osama has a couple of bodyguards around him at all times with instructions to kill him rather than let him be captured. I don't know if it's true or not.given what we have heard about the effectiveness of waterboarding, i don't think the mad bomber could hold out for 30 minutes if one of the masterminds of 9/11 who is a hardcore religious fanatic could only go less than 3 minutes...

and i wouldn't be surprised that osama has given orders to his bodygurards to kill him rather than allowing him to be captured...

that whole martyrdom gig, you know...

patteeu
12-15-2007, 10:57 PM
given what we have heard about the effectiveness of waterboarding, i don't think the mad bomber could hold out for 30 minutes if one of the masterminds of 9/11 who is a hardcore religious fanatic could only go less than 3 minutes...

and i wouldn't be surprised that osama has given orders to his bodygurards to kill him rather than allowing him to be captured...

that whole martyrdom gig, you know...

It depends on what kind of information you were trying to get out of him. If he could lead you astray with false information that would run out the 30 minute clock he wouldn't have to give you the real scoop until after it was too late.

MarcBulger
12-16-2007, 08:43 PM
Democrats "Save a terrorists, kill a baby" Pretty well sums it up.