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Washington Post
Happening in the States
White House Approves?
The New Yorker
What Really Happened website
NY Times editorial
BBC report
ABC NEWS report
Village Voice
Amnesty International
MSN pictures might be strong for some
Slate article...what is torture?
links for personal views

ok thats enough, you can always do a search, I would like to see a real debate
"to discuss a question by considering opposed arguments" so I put up a couple of different perspectives, try to be informed, while emotional responses are expected, they should contain some real data, this doesnt have to be limited to just the US, I believe most countries dont tell their citizens 'everything' and if you look at the articles it doesnt have to be just relating to Iraq vs the US, or US vs Iraq, there are accusations of US on US torture etc.
I heard that it isnt very affective. If thats true then there is just no point in doing it.
if there is such a thing I believe humane torture should be used, like no sleep, constant light and sound...things like that, but for one human to "hurt" another to get information is just plain wrong.
if staying up for 5 days doesnt hurt youre not human frito.
all kinds of torture are wrong I think cause noone has the right to hurt someone mentally or physically. think of human rights. I think one right is not ne be hurt
Anything done and allowed to be done to prisoners in their own home countries (foreign or nationally) should be considered as allowable torture techniques, it all depends what individuals believe is "torture". Physical pain in exchange for obedience or answers isn't so common around the world because it goes against laws, but how much is secretely done away from the public eye is beyond my or your knowledge.

edit: I am against torture involving physical pain.
but why should torturing someones mind be ok if torturing his body isnt?
because human beings are animals, intelligent animals, but still animals. we're capable of doing great things, and just as capable of doing horrible things. what happens if you don't "torture the minds" of the horrible people that actually belong in prison? do you think a slap on the wrist will teach them a lesson? think they won't go out and keep doing what they're doing if there's no real punishment they suffer? those people are too far off from the path already, the only thing you can do is learn from them so future generations don't turn out like them, or possibly become victims.

some torture techniques are justified in and out of war, but as they call it "cruel and unusual punishment" is not.

an "escape from LA" scenario would be cool:Pjust lock them all away on a private island and surround the waters with bloodthirsty sharks!
are we talking about torture as a punishment o torture as a way to get information?
i'm talking about torture and its uses, i only answered your question with my own thoughts... or are you saying torturing to punish justifies it more than using similar techniques to get information instead?
I think that torture is never justified. doesnt matter what its use it or should be. and even the menace of torture isnt justified since that is "torture of mind".

Some time ago the following happened in germany: a guy kidnapped a boy to blackmail the boys parents. somehow the kidnaper was captured by the police but they didnt know where the boy was and there was the danger that the boy could choke in the cellar where he was imprisoned by the kidnaper. the police decided to tell the kidnaper that they would use torture if he didnt tell where the boy was. he told them where he was.
then there was a lawsuit about the acting of the police and the policeofficer who threatened had to leave the police because the judges said that the menace of torture is already torture. I agree on that.
A question I asked myself then was that what would happen if someone like a kidnaper for example is tortured to get information but doesnt tell anything. that would mean you violated human rights for nothing. (Im not saying that violating them for something is ok)

conclusion: torture to punish is not ok because you violate human rights and human dignity. doesnt matter what the person did you want to punish.
torture to get information is not ok because you violate human rights and human dignity. doesnt matter if you COULD get important information. remember: you only could get it..there is no 100% chance of getting it. so in my eyes torture is never ever justified but if you have a good reason to torture tell me:)
Ok sooo torture is defined as:
a. Infliction of severe physical pain as a means of punishment or coercion.
b. An instrument or a method for inflicting such pain.
2. Excruciating physical or mental pain; agony: the torture of waiting in suspense.
3. Something causing severe pain or anguish.

With this being said, there is no such thing as humane torture. Now if we will turn our heads to article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights it clearly states “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”

Despite any crime one might commit, we should all be seen as equal under the eyes of the law and no one should be mistreated or degraded in any way.

“The state of nature has a law of nature to govern it, which obliges every one: and reason, which is that law, teaches all mankind, who will but consult it, that being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions.”

This is a quote from John Locke in his Two Treaties on Government in the Second Treatise, which basically says… don’t hurt other people in any way…….

Frankly, I don’t know what else to say after spewing out facts. So to conclude, In my opinion torture is cruel and wrong. We’re all stuck in this world together so we might as well make the most of it…peacefully.
whether it's right or not i cannot say but as for its effectiveness i would like to think that there are better methods of coercion...that are less painful.

i don't know about other people, but the prospect of pain, dishonor, a loss of dignity, and probably death aren't very appealing to me. i wouldn't trust someone who would torture me.
me and FF had a big conversation about this the other day. in my opinon america already practices a form of torture i mean, isnt that what jail is? torture is used to teach someone a lesson or to get something out of someone, which could be used to make someone testify or not to commit crimes again. it may differ a little bit but jail is definately torture in my eyes
As the definition FF posted so long ago clearly demonstrates, being incarcerated as we know it is not tortuous. It is in many places around the world, though, since they still use corporal punishment on prisoners.

Originally I thought that torturing somebody for information wouldn't work because they'd still be able to lie, and they're very likely to tell the interrogator what they want to hear (namely, they confess to something they didn't do), which means the end result is no better than an educated guess. Well, as it turns out, I was wrong to think that. It does work, and extremely well: You just have to go farther than any of us would ever have thought.

Effective torture is not what you see in movies, or on TV (esp. on 24), it is a long-term method. You won't be coerced into answering with the threat or infliction of pain over a couple days or a week. Instead of coercion, the goal is a trusting toddler who will provide any information asked of them willingly, and that takes from months to years. Here's the package itinerary: During your stay you will be tortured multiple times every 24 hours, deprived of sleep, confined to small spaces or contorted positions, forbidden from speaking or making noises, deprived of sensation and movement; or in other words, kept in a perpetual state of duress and shock until enough brain damage has been caused to make you mentally regress to early childhood. That's right: Months of non-stop assault on your personality, your identity, and even your own goddamned sanity for the express purpose of breaking down your physical ability to resist.

Anybody who still feels that such a horrific act is justified under any circumstance needs to come clean as the proud sociopaths that they are.
I had no idea that this had happened, it makes me feel like a 'sheep'

You had no idea because if Bush had told you then the bad guys would know what we do to them.......what does that mean anyway? if they knew we would make them feel like they are going to die they could prepare themselfs so they wouldnt feel like they were going to die and not talk? Bush didnt want people to know because he knows he is breaking the law, and if he said he was breaking the law then everyone would know he was breaking the law, not that he would stop but you would know the truth then, I already knew but thats another story. The good thing is Bush made abortion illegal so that should make the church people happy even though everything else is messed up beyond belief, wait...he didnt do that either. :huh:
Re: Waterboarding, here is something you should really read.
As a method for gaining information, I suppose it depends what the information is... In blue's post earlier about the boys life hanging in the balance.. does someones "human" rights outweigh the life of someone else......?
I think most of the people claiming it to be wrong under any circumstances are simply fooling themselves into thinking they're "good" people because of it.. ie 'I don't think people should be hurt, therefore I'm a good person' ... Sure it does work to an extent, but you have to believe there are things far more valuable than "morals"..

I'm sure you've noticed I have certain words in quotation marks, that's because the words are very open to interpretation..
ie "human".. Any so-called human who (to go back to blues example) will kidnap a child and put their life in danger isn't human by my reckoning - therefore torture, or threats of torture, doesn't violate their human rights..
"good" is obviously one of those words that is open to interpretation, more often than not the word is warped or distorted to fit the individual and make them believe that word suits them.
"morals" again is pure interpretation, and leads to many questions.. is it "moral" NOT to torture someone if someone (or many people) will die if you don't?

I leave you all with that final question. I'll be interested to see how you answer.
' Wrote:I'm sure you've noticed I have certain words in quotation marks, that's because the words are very open to interpretation..
ie "human".. Any so-called human who (to go back to blues example) will kidnap a child and put their life in danger isn't human by my reckoning - therefore torture, or threats of torture, doesn't violate their human rights..

You're presuming guilt: All you would actually know is that somebody has been abducted, may still be alive, and this person is suspected of being the abductor. That's why it's wrong. But, even if you know they're guilty, what good does it do you if they lie, or don't know? The process is only as good as the reliability of the information it gathers, and you'll notice that a confession under duress isn't court admissible for the reason that people tend to know what's expected of them in such a situation, and if it's unpleasant enough, will admit to what they think will stop the duress.

Not to mention the subjective definition of "inhuman", but hey, as long as we get to torture gays and darkies because they're not human, who can argue? They must be child molesters and thieves/drug dealers, right? Those are people that should be mistreated, so it's ironclad.

Quote:"morals" again is pure interpretation, and leads to many questions.. is it "moral" NOT to torture someone if someone (or many people) will die if you don't?

Morality isn't that clear-cut. You can't say X people's lives are worth Y people being tortured for Z units of psychological harm. What about X-1? Y+2? Z²? What about the inhumanity of inflicting suffering on people, especially methodically? Shouldn't that mean all the professionals who are given legal immunity (or did you want to waive the right for 'normal' people to be protected from torture?) ought to be treated as inhuman, along with their employers? To answer the question, it is never moral to violate the rights of anyone, even if good comes of it. Such childish "ends justify means" folderol fits every crime and every injustice ever committed, unless you want to specify some statistical method for discerning disparity between effect and means, such that it may be compared to a standard. It's just a way to rationalize away the guilt, and these 'ticking time-bomb' scenarios are just desperate attempts to tack a deus ex machina onto an otherwise losing scenario.

Face it: If it's come down to a coercive questioning as a last resort, you've already lost. You require the cooperation of a single person and are completely at their mercy, which is why you have to convince them to help. If you have less than a month to find the bomb, you'll lose because you'll run out of time before getting the answer. If you have more time, what's the point? Since you can't tell if somebody has learned countermeasures (which is why polygraphs are useless), you can't tell who's a hardened veteran playing the part of a scared innocent and who's actually incapable of withholding--or for that matter, who's innocent. If the probability is good that they're guilty, how do you know they don't know it? They could easily concoct a fake story to reveal, piece by piece, over the course of weeks, and you'd be completely conned. How many wild goose chases will it take before you run out of money, or the bomb goes off? You have to pursue all of them, because each one might be true, and you're already saying that the person who might know something is going to be tortured, can't be a hypocrite now! What about when you come up empty handed? You won't know if you didn't look hard enough. What good is a system that can't even protect against that? How is it any different from what you'd get without torture? Hell, even if you have a 100% success rate, guess what? You'll just wind up capturing people who were set up to be caught and honestly believe the wild goose chase is real. Offense evolves along with defense, you know.

It seems that all proponents exist in cognitive dissonance, feeling things like waterboarding are just a little bit of water poured on the face--so it can't be that bad, and should be allowed--while simultaneously believing that harsh measures are the only effective means of getting people to talk. Which is it? It can't be The Comfy Chair and still capable of breaking a person. And if there actually is some magic method that gets results and isn't cruel, then the police should be allowed to use it on everybody for any reason a normal interrogation would be used. "Ma'am, we'd like to ask you a few questions, could you please strip to the buff and have a seat in that chair while we attach these clamps and electrodes?" "Sure thing, Officer! Hey, it kind of tickl--I'VE BEEN EMBEZZLING MONEY FROM THE COMPANY! YOU CAUGHT ME!"

All that said, the depressing truth of the matter is that public discourse is irrelevant, and even laws are irrelevant. Torture serves three purposes: First, it gathers information about the enemy, though no more effectively than a normal interrogation (it is, after all, a run-of-the-mill 'bad cop' questioning, just with the superfluity of methodical agony). Second, it inflicts lasting psychological trauma that will be perceived by those close to the victim if they're released, and inflicts fear upon them. Third, in conjunction with blanket arrests, no charges, indefinite detention, and other ignorance of rights--guaranteeing the torture of countless innocent people--with complete lack of punishment for supporters of the powers behind it, the message is clear: You do not cross us. That's the message the US is sending to the Muslim world: There's a new mob boss in town, and if you don't bend over, we'll cut your balls off. Why would a self-respecting despot diminish the power they have over people? You don't win the game of empire building by making concessions.

That's just at the administrative level, too. Military intelligence (that includes spy agencies) is paranoid to an almost delusional level, that's how you advance in your career (that and obedience to your empire). The fact that an enemy exists that can hide in plain sight--what they do with spies, ironically--drives them up the wall. Not knowing is something they aren't prepared to accept. That and spies are all profiled before getting their jobs, so you won't get nice people doing jobs that would bother a conscience.

Even if it was illegal, it would still happen. Black sites don't spring up overnight, and extraordinary rendition requires some level of diplomatic groundwork to be set, methodology requires research, and none of that spontaneously materialized because of the issuance of a couple memos.
' Wrote:if staying up for 5 days doesnt hurt youre not human frito.

Staying up 5 days in a row will only make you disoriented and dizzy and possibly holusinating. After a good nights sleep makes you sharp and alert again without mental damages.

Look it up. There's at least 2 scientific free-willingly attempts on this.
Well, I'm INVISIBLE AGAIN ... I might as well pay a visit to the LADIES ROOM ...
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lab rats kept awake 7 days died.
All vice stuff is vice bad or vice wrong, and given that torture is not vice torture, it is probably not vice anything (including vice painful, vice wrong, vice bad, etc..)...

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