Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The expert view on torture

Another good link for those wanting to see what the experts say about the usefulness of torture:

You know, even the most outlying point of view can usually find some backers. Even the creationists can trot out a handful of scientists who doubt evolution. So where are the experts (by this I mean professionally trained interrogators) who will maintain that torture works?

So far the folks supporting torture tend to be pundits (most of whom have never served in any military) sitting in their comfortable offices saying that a little sleep deprivation, forced standing or waterboarding never hurt anybody. After all, if you can pull an all-nighter, why would 50 days without sleep be a problem? Rumsfeld stood on his feet for a whole day sometimes at work, so what's the big deal being forced to stand for weeks? And jeesh, people go swimming in whole oceans all the time, so how bad can a bucket of water be?


  1. I've served in the military. Torture works. The news stories you read about "experts" claiming that it doesn't work are from only a small handful of people. The people who know torture works don't get news stories written about them.

  2. Tell you what. Find me an expert who says it works. So far, everyone who actually knows what they are talking about says it doesn't work. Even the torture advocates can't turn over enough rocks to find one, evidently, so they make unsubstantiated assertions, much as you just did.
    Serving in the military, per se, doesn't give anyone any special insight into whether torture works, just as it doesn't make you an expert in naval subamrine nuclear power plants, field artillery cannon gunnery or air strike tasking.
    On the other hand, any citizen, military or not, is entitled to express an opinion on whether or not torture comports with American honor and values. Even if it worked, torture is dishonorable and stains our country and our soldiers. They deserve better.
    As bad as the torture is for those being tortured, we are also creating a class of Americans who will be dealing with psychological problems for many years down the road because they were made INTO torturers. Will our government do right by them? Possibly not, because that would mean admitting crimes.