Saturday, December 15, 2007

taser = torture without judge or jury

The use of the taser is a disgusting "innovation" of modern law enforcement.

A simple google search for "police taser child" which should have come up with a big fat honking NO RESULTS MATCHED YOUR QUERY instead revealed the following links:

6th Grader Tasered at Middle School
Second Child Shocked by Police Taser Gun
Police Taser Child (Again)
Now police are told they can use taser guns on children
Police Used Taser Gun to Subdue 6-Year-Old Student...
Police Taser Pregnant Woman in Ohio
Taser on Children OK, Police Say

What really sickens me is the abuse that goes hand in hand with such an easily accessible torture device. There is no judge or jury that sentenced the above individuals to be zapped with enough electricity to immobilize them. The officer behind the taser passed that verdict immediately and carried out the sentence personally. Police officers that are comfortable with torturing people need to have their consciences examined.

RCMP apologize to Tasered B.C. senior

Awwwww isn't that sweet. Gee sir, we're sorry we tasered you, TWICE!!!! We acknowledge that the first tasering took place while you were still seated IN YOUR CAR! And that after you recovered enough to get out of your car we zapped you again. Whooops. Sorry about that. But don't worry, sir, we've slapped the officer's wrist and will do it again if we deem it is necessary.

Richard wrote the following letter to the editor in response to the situation.

Dear Editor,

Worse than the tasering of a Kelowna , B.C. senior citizen is the RCMP’s public view of it.

The CBC reports an officer sought to ticket 68 yr old John Peters for double parking. Peters started to drive off, but thought better of it & stopped. No doubt Peters was verbally abusive, but he was still sitting in his car (!) when the officer tasered him. Such treatment would infuriate anybody! But it gets worse.

According to Superintendent Bill McKinnon, Peters got out of his car, and was “combative and resisting arrest”. (No wonder there!) Since Peters had already driven off a bit, surely the officer had told him to get out of his car. Yet the officer tasered Peters again! A 68 year old man, whom any fit officer could easily pin to the ground, had to be tasered? Peters could have died!

McKinnon said the officer "will likely receive a written reprimand on his record." Reprimand? No such officer should be a policeman! But like the tasering, it gets worse. McKinnon says the second tasering was justified!

In a responsible justice system the officer should be expelled from the Force, while McKinnon should be demoted so as to eliminate his administrative influence. It is ‘apologists’ like McKinnon who allow such officers on the streets.

Considering the recent tasering fiascos, the light sentences for violent crime and heavy sentences for victimless crime it is clear our justice system is in severe need of a genuine moral compass.

Richard

50 comments:

Poodles said...

I think on the use of tasers I agree that sometimes it is unnecessary, and an abuse of force. However, I had a good friend who was killed in the line of duty in Arizona, by a guy who turned the corner ahead of my friend, jumped out of his car and shot him in the head the minute he came around the corner. When you are dealing with mostly hardened gang members, repeat offenders, and people who generally don't give a shit about going back to jail, and wouldn't think twice about pulling a gun on anyone including a cop, I think it is better the cop taser them then shoot them.

One of my best friends (just saw him for dinner a few minutes ago) is a member of the gang task force. He has tasered more than one person. In every situation the offender was either reaching in a pocket, or putting their hands out of view. I would rather some piece of shit get tasered than my friend get killed in the line of duty.

Cops put their lives on the line every day, and there are some crappy ones who take way too much enjoyment in abusing their authority. However, if my loved one was breaking the law and acting dangerous around a cop I would rather my loved one get tasered instead of shot.

Fiery said...

My sincere condolences on the loss of your friend. What a horrid tragedy!

It isn't really cops + threatening adults that I am talking about. It is cop + annoying situation that results in taser fire that I am addressing.

I don't give a rat's wet butt if a cop tasers an "offender reaching in a pocket or putting their hands out of view" but the fact that these arsehairs with too much power and not enough moral scruples are tasering women, children, and senior citizens.

The police officer has the same fears as glob- that a big sweaty black man weighing 400+ pounds with a body temp. of 102*F is going to cause him bodily harm, THEN they can zap away.

But when the "perp" is a ten year old child there is no excuse to even unholster the goddamned thing. Tasering in that capacity is torture and morally corrupt and frankly I find it despicable.

Poodles said...

I agree that it would be wrong to taser a child, under normal circumstances. I think though, if that child had a gun (trust me I live in an area where the gangs recruit young) and was endangering or others then I would prefer the child get tasered instead of shot. The very young gang members are usually children because they aren't afraid or even aware of the consequences of the actions they are told to do. And they are used by gangs to do things because they are young and won't go to prison.

Richard said...

The original issue was concerning a senior citizen!! Keep it there and you can see how f'ing insane the misuse of legal force can be.

The epistemological principle is the proper grasp of context. Ultimately that is the problem of officers who abuse force, *aside* from those who simply make mistakes.

Reg Golb said...

"The police officer has the same fears as glob- that a big sweaty black man weighing 400+ pounds with a body temp. of 102*F is going to cause him bodily harm, THEN they can zap away."

I was afraid of being pinned against the wall and the big dude, not bodily harm.

It seems insane to take anything out of the hands of police that actually aids them in their work. Of course their are abusers, but death or getting shocked, which would you choose?

The police shouldn't have to wait for a judge or jury to carry out their duty, which is protecting us from those "EVIL" people, whether they are 12 or 102.

Poodles said...

I need a shower, Reg and I actually agree on this one.

Richard said...

I don't disagree with Poodles, and she has raised a good point.

As violence becomes more common place, that moment when anyone is "reaching in a pocket, or putting their hands out of view" is certainly very scary for a police officer. Even when merely over a parking offense, there is some chance that a gun may appear, but surely an officer has to allow people to get out their driver's license etc. I have no problem with him pointing the taser, but to use it before there is clear reason to do so is just wrong.

My complaint is with lack of judgment in that respect. *Twice* tasering an an eleven year old school kid fighting in a school playground, or *twice* tasering a senior citizen who actually did stop his car, is way way over the top.


I haven't any statistics, but I bet the illegal drug trade is the greatest cause of dangers officers face. Drugs and drug use should be properly legalized to the same extent as are *weapons* or alcohol. That they are not is an absurd and deadly irony. People primarily use weapons to injure or kill others. People using these drugs legally would only harm themselves. Officers would be a lot safer and so would the rest of us.

Poodles said...

Richard,
I completely agree, if drugs were legal many of the gang problems would disappear, or maybe be replaced with something else. But I definitely think it would help.

T&A said...

I'm not surprised by this.
A kid I grew up that was total punk and a bully is now a county sheriff's deputy! Sometimes there is a fine line between a criminal and police mind.
Hell in the past year in Chicago we've had a 240 lbs cop beat up a 95 lbs female bartender because she cut him off from more booze! Luckily it was all caught on tape and he got fired and charged with assault and battery!

Also keep in mind these things can be lethal.And better judgement must be used by those that carry these things. Using them on a child or a senior could prove fatal.

Richard said...

Thanks for that T&A! I am no fan of Amnesty International, but their report has some significant points. (I did not read the 15 pages of cases) These two points in the Introduction were pretty shocking (heh!):

"research by Amnesty International shows that most of those who have died have been unarmed men who did not appear to pose a threat of death or serious injury when they were electro-shocked - a pattern seen in taser use across the country."

"In some agencies the use of these electrical weapons is allowed if a person does not comply with an officer’s demands."

What should police do if they have a legal warrant to take a urine or blood sample, and the patient refuses? Isn't the refusal itself the same as refusing a breathalyzer test or resisting arrest? In those cases the suspect is charged with refusal or resistance as a new offense. Torture by taser is more the method of thugs and dictators. Such methods do not belong in our culture.

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

I see no problem with Tasers and with the appropriate use of force. And that is what we are talking about here the appropriate application of force.

I have seen(footage)a woman held by three officers each of whom individually out weighed her, tasered, repeatedly. If I had been there I would have been tempted to attack the officers - it was a) over the top b)seemed to be a way for the officer to vent his anger.

In some ways I see the taser as an easy out, your tired, you've been working with arseholes all day, do you spend an hour trying to talk an angry motorist down or do I just zapp him.

Different situations require different tools it seems that this is something certain officers are not comprehending.

Protium said...

I think Tasers are safe in the right hands. I'd say Pepper spray could cause more permanent damage.

I've had a few 20 - 50 kV shocks and although it spasms your muscles it doesn't really physicaly hurt if the current is kept low.

Oh Firey... your tagged

Richard said...

I am all for tasering Guantanamo prisoners if their is any liklihood of all that they have valuable inforamtion.

First, they are not American citizens and have zero rights here.

Second, and more importantly, they are enemies most if not all of whom jumped for joy when the twin towers went down. Their joy was not over buildings that collapsed, but their belief that the 50,000 people expected to be in the buildings were killed. They would be just as happy if you or I were killed in any similar manner.

Their chosen irrational and murderous beliefs make them animals-by-choice, dressed in human clothing.

Crazyman Bob said...

Richard,

How do you know that "most if not all of whom jumped for joy when the twin towers went down."?

How do you know what their chosen beliefs are?

How much have you really looked into 9-11?

And how good is the information gained by torture?

Richard said...

Four Questions, Four Answers

"How do you know that "most if not all of whom jumped for joy when the twin towers went down."?"

The circumstances of their capture were far from arbitrary -despite the 'spin' the media puts on it. "Most" were captured as their brothers-in-arms were defeated in local conflict. "Most" does not mean all.

****

"How do you know what their chosen beliefs are?"

~94% of the Iraqi population is Muslim. Of that number even populations of countries friendly to the US have anti-American sentiments ranging from 50+% to 80%. Consider:
In, 2006 the World Muslim Population was ~1,793,120,000.

Support for killing Westerners reaches 60% in some Muslim countries. Even if one adopts --a very low-- average of 15% of the world's Muslims that support killing Westerners, we still have (1.79 billion*0.15=) 268,968,000 Muslims who would happily see you dead. As of 2006, the entire population of America was 299,000,000. It is likely that far more Muslims want Americans killeda than there are Americans, fortunately they are so backwards they are not that big a threat.

Of course, support for killing Westerners among those fighting via terrorism or actual military engagement is obviously 100%, so the number of prisoners not having that motivating sentiment is likely to be zero.

The gravity of the above numbers can be better understood given the following. In 1939 only 13.7 million Germans (17%), out of 80 million, supported the Nazis, and look what came of that! The overall support against America among Muslims is many times higher.

The Guantanamo prisoners are there because most if not all were actively involved in fighting the Americans, and not just because they disagreed with foreign policy. They wish to eliminate the political and social principles upon which The Great Satan stands. They view you as worthy only of death, religiously, as an infidel!

What is truly disgusting is that a great deal of the anti-Americanism comes from America's leftists

"No Arab anti-American has produced anything like the conspiracy theories that American intellectuals such as Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, Scott Ritter, Seymour Hersh and Edward Said, to name a few, have put on the markets everywhere, including the Arab world.

"At any given time, one can find a horde of American activists visiting the region to urge the natives to hate America"

(I found this question from C-Bob to be stunningly ignorant, but have chosen to provide some details, because most people's knowledge is a result of a misleading media and a lot of anti-American blog sites that one ought to be able to see through.)

****

"How much have you really looked into 9-11?"

Yes, it was a conspiracy by GWB and the Israelis to foment an excuse for war. They sat around over coffee and said,

"How can we get Americans to support a war?" ... "Hmmmm. I know, let's get four passenger planes and some Saudi Wahabbis to fly into buildings and kill our own citizens. Say! the WTC will have about 50,000 people in it after 0900hrs... that would be Purrrffect!.

Right!

C-Bob, your smear tactics continue... psycho-epistemology issues?

****

"And how good is the information gained by torture?"

Obviously it is variable, but often can be and is checked out by Intelligence personnel. If torture saves one American life, great! Torture done right is one of those horrible necessities, like shooting a seriously injured horse. No decent person likes it, but those with an honest, context-holding mind know when it is a legitimate necessity. They also understand its difficulties. Bleeding hearts who wish to stop any and all torture contribute to the deaths of those on their side whom it would otherwise have saved.

Poodles said...

Richard,
I think the point that is being missed is that being the country that America is, we believe in human rights, just as I do as an atheist. If the prisoner is found to be guilty of a war crime and killing an American I say fine, you don't even need to torture them for information, torture them for shits and giggles for all I care. But, if we are capturing and torturing people just because they hate us, that is dangerous, and that goes against what America is. There have been people I have hated and wanted dead, this doesn't make me a criminal.

Most important is that by torturing people without cause it makes us just as bad as them, and will enable other societies to feel free to torture captured Americans, now or in the future.

Richard said...

Dear Poodles,

I don't think the point was "missed". I wrote,

"The Guantanamo prisoners are there because most if not all were actively involved in fighting the Americans, and not just because they disagreed with foreign policy." (bolding added).

I was specifically discussing enemy combatants, and I agree with you: "torture them for shits and giggles for all I care."

*******

Here's a can of worms to open for Fiery's blog. Poodles wrote, "being the country that America is, we believe in human rights."

I contest that America was *not* founded on human rights but on individual rights.

The two notions of "rights" are as opposite as black and white, night and day, or wrong and right.

"Human rights", particularly as laid out in the French "The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen" and the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, are the antithesis of the Rights upon which America was founded. Both contain contradictions that establish the violation of individual rights as constitutionally acceptable.

Crazyman Bob said...

Richard said "If torture saves one American life, great! Torture done right is one of those horrible necessities, like shooting a seriously injured horse. No decent person likes it, but those with an honest, context-holding mind know when it is a legitimate necessity."

So saving American lives justifies torture? Saving American lives can only be attained by evil actions? The end justifies the means?

I reject this license to immorality.

The end does not justify the means. The truth is the exact opposite: an immoral means invalidates the end.

Poodles said...

I didn't say that America was founded on human rights, it was founded on the backs of slaves and the blood of the Native Americans. But I think as a country we have set up an ideal to hold ourselves up to a higher standard. At least we used to until George dumbass took office. I would like for us to be respected as a nation again.

Richard said...

Crazyman Bob, only by dropping the entire context of my comment could anyone come up with such an abjectly puerile interpretation.

Fiery said...

Richard- "Torture done right is one of those horrible necessities, like shooting a seriously injured horse.
But shooting a horse is putting it out of its misery as a kindness to end its suffering.

If a person is being tortured for information the possiblities are
1- they know nothing useful
2- they know something useful and will die before revealing it
3- they know something useful and reveal it.

But how do you know which is which? How can you justify what you've done to the first on the chance that the individual is the third???????

No decent person likes it, but those with an honest, context-holding mind know when it is a legitimate necessity."

I'm really struggling to understand this. I don't know how to hold context when I read quotes from Ayn Rand like this...

The end does not justify the means. No one's rights can be secured by the violation of the rights of others.
~Ayn Rand in "The Cashing-In: The Student 'Rebellion,'" in Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, p. 256.

To abstain from condemning a torturer, is to become an accessory to the torture and murder of his victims.
The moral principle to adopt in this issue, is: "Judge, and be prepared to be judged."

~"How Does One Lead a Rational Life in an Irrational Society?" in
The Virtue of Selfishness, p. 72.

Taken from
the Ayn Rand Lexicon

Then I read an article like this
The Post 9/11 Saturation Of Our Culture In Torture particularly with statements like this, Under torture a person will say anything he thinks his captors want to hear, whether it is true or false, if he believes it will relieve his suffering. Torture never produces reliable results, it only creates false leads and implicates the wrong people. Furthermore, and this perhaps the most critical and bone chillingly dangerous point, torture is the MOST degrading, demoralizing, hideous thing one human being can do to another.

The article is loaded with links to follow up material and back up sources.

Johnny said...

Poodles wrote
If the prisoner is found to be guilty of a war crime and killing an American I say fine, you don't even need to torture them for information, torture them for shits and giggles for all I care.

Richard wrote
I was specifically discussing enemy combatants, and I agree with you: "torture them for shits and giggles for all I care."

Forgive my bleeding heart but in my book that alone makes you animals by choice- totally disgusting! You gonna torture the american citizens "for shits and giggles" that hate and commit crimes of violence against other americans?

First, they are not American citizens and have zero rights here.
They the special rights that american humans have as opposed to all other humans? Fucking arrogant! I just do not believe all the prisoners in guantanamo know anything at all, it amazes me that comming from the land of "rights" that you just lock up people like that, it would be better if you just outright murdered them rather than torture them by detaining indefinately. You are corrupted by fear.

Of course america is the greatest nation ever! No americans hate anyone else it's obviously all the enemy combatants fault! America is not an imperialist nation and of course it is all the medias fault, all that spin they put on everything cause we all know that what the government tells the people is straight down the line never a falsehood in it.

Tell me how do you tell the innocents that we have to torture them too just in case, well you know there might be a small likelihood that you know something. How do we decide that when we are "freeing" a people from their evil overlord that we unfortunately will have to also kill or maim that family over there oh and that little girl and that old man, for the glory of the greater good and also we need to protect ourselves because, although we haven't done anything wrong ever (we're the greatest nation on the Earth dontcha know? After all god is on our side and all our policies especially the foreign ones are shiny and happy and in no way self serving)some people hate us for no reason(I know know it's hard to believe isn't it?) and they have weapons, oh we're allowed to have weapons we're the protectors god chose us, weapons that they are going to use on us.

Richard said...

Poodles, my response was not suggesting you had said "founded", only that the notion of human rights was not the American view of rights, in the sense of the true American Constitution and Declaration.

To be respected as a nation, again, Americans must rediscover Individual Rights, must grasp that America was not founded on the backs of slaves and the blood of the Native Americans. Americans must rediscover its respect for reason and productivity, rather than feelings and welfare.

"One of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen [in America]these days is to go about repeating the very phrases [and idea] which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." --Charles Austin Beard

Poodles (Crazyman Bob, you are crazy) I am afraid you are echoing the popularized ideas of "American intellectuals such as Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, Scott Ritter, Seymour Hersh and Edward Said, to name a few", who were in a quote I placed a few comments above. They are very, very wrong, and do America a grave injustice.".

History moves in degrees. When brave new, and truly good, ideas are passionately initiated by good men, those men and their ideas must be trumpeted for the wonderful thing they are. They must not be denigrated because of the actions of men who have not yet grasped the ideas (many of whom still exist today). Those men are the dregs of history, and must never ever be viewed as a consequence of the new ideas that ultimately eliminates the influence of such men.

The Founders of America in particular, but also men such as Captain John Smith, stood for those new ideas. They built America the Good. Considering the context of their time they were extraordinary radicals against the very things the aforementioned academics and authors say founded America. The influence of these awful minds has spread into the history books you learned from. You have been lied to, by the irrational intellectuals of History.

How I wish Americans would re-discover what has made their nation possible, what made it great, and why the very ideas too many Americans now espouse are the very ideas that are destroying your great nation.

Earlier I recommended "The Pursuit of Reason: the life of Thomas Jefferson" and "Vindicating the Founders". There are many other great works accurately describing the real America, rather than the junk found in high school and university history texts.

I implore you to read them and discover why America is truly a nation to be loved, and why its present political scene is a tragic affront to America's founding principles and the true nature of Man.

Poodles said...

Perhaps,
We should have waterboarded this criminal.

Richard said...

Imagine the threat to all Americans posed by a woman overstaying a previous holiday period. She was obviously an enemy combatant, seeking to undermine the economy by trading useless Icelandic money for American goods. She should have the bottoms of her feet beaten with iron rods, ...and all her credit cards chopped up too! Erla was lucky to get out of America alive.

Of course, American vacationers doing such a thing in Indonesia or Lebanon would likely suffer an epidemic of death-by-falling-down-stairs.

The serious problem in any policing or military situation is the type of men anxious to demonstrate their power. Small kings with megalomania."

As understanding of individual rights and its proper intellectual foundation fades from a nations population, more and more of such megalomania will emerge, as will the concomitant violence, official or otherwise.

Richard said...

Yikes, lots of questions from Fiery:

"But how do you know which is which?"

Obviously conditions vary with respect to what is known about each military prisoner. There will be matters on which a prisoner would *have to be informed* to be where he was when captured. So there is, among rational men (which is the assumption here) a means by which who should be tortured for what can be ascertained.

"How can you justify what you've done to the first on the chance that the individual is the third?"

I think basically the above answers this question. However, there is a broader principle... each of the three types of prisoner you describe as being up for torture, is someone on the battle field who would be shot, knifed, garroted, mined etc without hesitation. They are the enemy who are out to kill you. They are in no way citizens, and they have zero rights.

The context of the quotations from Ayn Rand pertain to citizens within America (or a nation that properly recognizes individual rights), it is not dealing with enemy combatants.

As for torture being horrible and degrading, and producing unreliable information... well of course. That in no way changes the value of its application in a situation where the right information will save American lives. I am not speaking of the willy-nilly torture scenes one sees in movies. I am speaking of a rationally determined, knowledgeable effort by military personnel who are working at something specific. Torture can and does produce valid information, when done properly, in concert with known information, that validates what it produces.

Richard said...

Whoa, I've got Johnny's ire directed at me. Whew.

When speaking of torturing someone for giggles, I rather agree with you Johnny, it debases the torturer to do so for no better purpose. If the victim's life is dispensable, then better to kill and move on. The only way could do such a thing as torture for so-called "giggles" would not be for fun, but for intense revenge. E.g. Saddam's death was just too easy a way out for him. Please not that this discussion is not about captured foot soldiers who know squat about anything, or who have been pressed into service for the enemy.

"They the special rights that american humans have as opposed to all other humans? Fucking arrogant!"

Americans *recognize* (theoretically) individual rights. Rights are a function of morality applied to society. If a man does not recognize another's rights within a society that does, he is entitled to a trial etc, because the rest of society agrees to that for all involved. When such a society is being attacked, it is clearly not being attacked by people who recognize individual rights on a society wide basis. They are in the act of eliminating individual rights on a grand scale. They do not have access to, and do not deserve, a trial based on individual rights. They have already shown their rejection of such rights quite thoroughly.

"I just do not believe all the prisoners in guantanamo know anything at all, it amazes me that comming from the land of "rights" that you just lock up people like that, it would be better if you just outright murdered them rather than torture them by detaining indefinately."

Well of course not. And who says they are *all* being tortured? Most of them are better off where they are, than if they were returned to Iraq or Iran or whereever. However, the Guantanamo prisoners are there as captured enemy combatants. There is no way they should be released, even though the War on Terror is now a ridiculous farce of imposing democracy on people who have no grasp of what it is. POWs on both sides in any war are kept indefinitely. That is just not an issue, it's common sense (easier to understand than the W on T, that's for sure.)

Finally, Johnny, I am a Canadian. I know full well that American foreign policy is an abominable mix of right and wrong. Those wrongs are not to be applied broadly to every American, or even to America as a nation. Doing so is a form of bigotry... treating all members of a group according to the faults of some lesser portion of that group.

If one looks at the big picture of what America is founded upon, we can see what America as a nation should do. However, the ideals have been undermined by numb-skulls. The proper things to attack are the numbs-skulls apart from America, and to demand that America return to its founding values (one of which rejects international exploits such as nation-building!)

I think the rest of your latter paragraphs are details of issues answered above. As I mentioned to Poodles about America being built on the backs of Natives and Blacks, the errors of men should not be used to discard a bona fide working principle. It would be throwing out the baby with the bathwater. This error is being made all over America itself.

The solution is education of those people, to return America to proper principles. However, there is a lot of resistance from Leftists, and Religionists whose real offering is far more evil than the present muddled application of American and un-American principles. Indeed, their influence is the major cause of the negative things about America being discussed here. Yet, sadly, the solution being widely suggested is for greater application of wrong ideas, rather than a return to the proper American ideas.

Fiery said...

Wow. You didn't read the page I linked to at all. Or follow up with any of the background info. they provided.

I should have let it lie and not mentioned it to you I suppose.

What a vague word... enemy combatant. Especially in light of the Patriot Act which lets the government declare WHOEVER THEY WANT to be an enemy combatant. NO rights. NO trial by jury. NO evidence required. Just a label "enemy combatant" and you're off to prison where you can be tortured for information you do not have. Doesn't sound like the kind of America I want to live in.

Poodles said...

Fiery
Agreed! I am worried about who they might at sometime in the future label "enemy combatant" Jews? Catholics? Atheists? It is a horrible slippery slope.

Fiery said...

EXACTLY! It's very easy to say, "yes torture THEM, not me" but what keeps "me" from becoming a "them"? Not very damn much. Not these days.

Better to torture no one, then to end up on the wrong side of the whip.

Poodles said...

Wait, are we talking about torture or Whips??? :P

Fiery said...

LOL :D Nooooo no Poodles, not those whips. I'm talking about the 200 lashes for being a rape victim whip. The beat them until they tell us what we want to hear whip. Not Richard's Christmas whip from earlier.

Sorry for the confusion. ;)

Kinky atheists and their S&M fetishes, I didn't get the memo on that one. DAMMIT!

Poodles said...

Part of the atheist creed, at least according to some fundies. We must all be perverts.

Richard said...

Well it seems people here think I have a lot to respond to.

First Fiery.

I read your quotation from the web page you linked to, and responded accordingly. Since you have complained that I did not read that web page, I have now done so. It changes nothing I have said, not one iota.

I note that that web page, and others it links to, which I did checked, are as Leftist as the Neo-Cons are Rightist. Both are un-American in the original sense of American. Neither are reputable sources, and in one case they actually reference Al Jazeera as the source of facts they do not question. One might as well reference the American Pedophilia Association for facts showing that pedophiles are unjustly discriminated against in the judicial system.

In particular I contest some of the 'information' those pages provide. E.g., no 70 year old woman can be ridden "like a donkey", unless she has been pumping iron in her old age, to a degree that gives her a strength comparable to that of an ordinarily fit 35 year old male. Nonetheless, I have no doubt there has been lots of torture done by American soldiers, and most of it (if not all) was probably illegitimate and not done as I laid out. It clearly was not anything which I supported in my above comment.

Given the nature of the US administration, of the Neo-cons and the Leftists, and of the abysmal intellectual, philosophical and moral state of Western Culture, their views on torture are far below the standards I suggest. However, in that same respect they are still skyscrapers above the enemies they are fighting.

I think "enemy combatant" is a very accurate term, but if the US administration is stretching it beyond all reason, then that is not an issue of the concept, it is another 'feature' of the corrupt nature of the administration. That corruption is something I identified as being at odds with the true premises of America.

Another stretched term, used extensively in the article, is "rendition". It is used in several different ways, so I could not even begin to guess what it meant. The Left has a talent for resenting those who use their techniques back at them... they pick up on it instantly and go ballistic over it. Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet "from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”:
“The lady doth protest too much, methinks.
" The point being that those who are guilty see their relationship to the crime and seek to distance themselves by protesting even more loudly than normal. Such is the voice of the Left these days, as the Right picks up methods the left has been using for decades.

Fiery ended saying, "Doesn't sound like the kind of America I want to live in." Is that not what I was saying all along? Maybe Fiery did not read my comment very carefully. I was very definitely not praising anything about the administration. Overall, I was speaking in terms of rational behavior when dealing with true enemy combatants. I ended with the point that (in different words) rationality has to be brought back to America, and I was careful to distinguish today's America from the values America was built upon and should stand for.

America can only stand for those values if the electorate holds them too. Sadly, they are losing them faster with every decade.

Richard said...

I have read quite a bit about the British handling of POWs in WW2. The British rarely used torture, from what I was able to understand, and in the few instances that they did they checked and rechecked the information they obtained. Many of the Germans they captured came to appreciate the British because they were treated with decency and some respect. Often they volunteered information.

This is not the case with the Muslim fighters. They are belligerent liars. The Qu'ran actually encourages lying to infidels as a legitimate and moral behavior. This is pressed into their minds at an early age, so they are quite able to describe themselves as farmers and housewives when interrogated. Indeed, the Muslims in America do this quite handily. They can say they are opposed to terrorism, knowing full well that the previous week tens of thousands of US dollars were transferred to overseas bank accounts to fund terrorism.

Muslims are actually surprisingly explicit about this, and about their intentions of destroying Western Culture. Yet our administration simply cannot believe it, and pretend otherwise.

The influx of Muslims into Europe is NOT a matter of Muslims looking for a safer more prosperous life. Many are encouraged to come for the economic advantages AND to add to their numbers until the Muslims can swing the nation (that is their new home) towards Sharia Law and an eventual Muslim state (a caliphate). That is, if there is any 'conspiracies' out there, the most definite one is that of the Muslims. The US administration and the that of other Western Nations, are as nothing by comparison... bumbling dupes who cannot even take the Muslims' at their word for their intentions to destroy Western culture.

Lord Leto said...

First, people who are experts in interrogation of the enemy pretty much agree that torture doesn't work. Those being tortured will say anything they think their interrogators want to hear, just so the torture will stop.

Secondly, the information, even if true, which is rare, in virtually every case is outdated by the time the torture is finished. Certainly no enemy would continue with plans known to someone who was captured.

But even more importantly we lose our moral high ground if we torture prisoners.

Lord Leto said...

It is a shocking sign of the times that we are having a debate about the appropriateness of torture. Some would say that it's a sign of our democracy's moral decline; others, of the desperate times that have driven us to desperate measures. Either way, those of us who do not want the free world to lose its soul to terrorism must stand up and be counted.

It is said, rightly, that torture degrades both its victims and its perpetrators.

First, lets dispense with the word games. The various legal opinions the Bush administration turned out on what has broadly become known as the “torture topic” were concerned with one thing: making sure that the Bush administration's treatment of detainees could not be taken as a violation of the Geneva Convention.

The convention exists to prevent mistreatment of prisoners of war.

To be specific, Article III subclause 3(c) prohibits "outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment."

The Convention is aimed chiefly at protecting captured soldiers—either foreign or insurgent. In general, "soldier" is defined by Article IV as people wearing uniforms and openly carrying arms. However, the question of whether or not operatives of Al Qaeda, the Taliban or other terrorist groups qualify is moot because the Supreme Court decided in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that Common Article III applies to them.

The vagueness of the phrase "outrages on personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment" is the real strength of the Convention, not its flaw. Why? Because those who hold prisoners captured on battlefields everywhere will have to think long and hard about what activities might violate that provision and lead them later to be charged with war crimes. It encourages military and other jailers to err on the side of caution when it comes to their treatment of prisoners.

Common Article III doesn’t just protect the "dignity" of prisoners. It also prohibits "violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture."

It is unacceptable to think that there's any kind of comparison between the behavior of the United States of America and the action of Islamic extremists who kill innocent women and children to achieve an objective. By vigorously adhering to and defending the provisions of Common Article III, the United States would make it clear, as a civilized nation, that any such comparison is now, and will always be, false.

Crazyman Bob said...

Ayn Rand on Torture

Ayn Rand never thoroughly addressed the question of government managed torture. This failure should come as no surprise. Ayn Rand did not waste her time writing commonplaces, and in the U.S. – in her saner era – denouncing torture would have been a bromide. It would have been like your mother lecturing you never to rob a bank – your not robbing banks could be taken for granted.

Still, there are hints here and there in her writing, and more than hints.

In the article “Brief Comments” in The Objectivist of February 1969 she states a premise and then concludes:

“... thus endorsing the moral premises of thugs who regard torture as a legitimate method of inquiry.”

As is clear from the context, she uses the conclusion to disprove the premise: ‘A’ thus ‘B’, therefore ‘A’ is false. For this to be valid argument we must believe that ‘B’ is false, that torture is not a legitimate method of inquiry. She takes the iniquity of torture for granted, like any decent person.

Further supporting Ayn Rand having a dim view of torture is that “thugs” is not an endearing epithet.

Though the burden of her article is tangential to my purpose, I’ll quote the meat of it because it illustrates in passing her contempt for governments which engage in torture.

First some background. In January 1968 North Korea attacked the USS Pueblo, a small and only lightly armed spy ship, in international waters. The Pueblo was no match for the Koreans’ torpedo boats and MIG fighters. The Seventh Fleet failed to come to the Pueblo’s defense, the commander quickly surrendered to save the crew, and the Koreans took all the survivors (which was all but one of the crew) prisoner. The Koreans severely beat commander and crew over the course of eleven months and forced them to confess, in writing and on film (though they made it look ridiculous), that they had invaded North Korean waters, that conditions in the U.S. were oppressive, and that the Koreans were treating them well. Eventually the U.S. government itself issued an official statement along similar lines, and retracted it after the men were consequently released.

There followed a military Court of Inquiry and a Congressional investigation of the incident. At the time of Ayn Rand’s article Commander Bucher was facing court-martial.

Were the men right to “confess?” After their release the New York Times published a letter saying that here was a “moral dilemma.” Ayn Rand disagreed, and wrote a letter of her own, which she published in “Brief Comments.” (And sent to the NYT – which never published it.) She said that Commander Bucher was a hero and should be given the Congressional Medal of Honor, and that the U.S. government is trying to make him the scapegoat:

“... on the grounds of an immoral and irrational military code. That code ignores the difference between a voluntary statement and a forced statement, thus endorsing the moral premise of thugs who regard torture as a legitimate method of inquiry.

“We recognize the difference in our criminal law – see the Supreme Court decisions which invalidate the confessions of criminals, if obtained by pressure. Yet we do not grant the same considerations to the protectors of our country when they are in the hands of savage killers.

“When we ascribe validity to the ‘confessions’ of men imprisoned by communist governments ... – when we do it in spite of the fact that the unspeakable atrocities practiced by such government are a matter of record – we endorse and invite the atrocities.

She elaborates, then suggests the following to put an end to such extorted “confessions”:

“Let the U.S. government publicly order our armed forces to say, sign, admit or confess anything demanded of them when they are seized by an enemy ... . (This would not apply to divulging actual military secrets, but only to lying about political-ideological issues.) Let the government declare to the world that we will not accept as true, valid or meaningful any statement extorted by force, i.e., any statement made by an American prisoner in a foreign country – and that all such statements are repudiated in advance, in his name, by his government.

“This would re-establish the moral meaning of freedom and of truth. It would put an end to the martyrdom of innocent victims, to the kind of ordeal Commander Bucher and his men had to endure.

“In principle, this was the policy adopted by our government to obtain their release. Let this become our official policy, to be practiced by individual prisoners – as a proper expression of contempt for the social systems ruled, not by reason, but by brute force.”

I would call the above more than a hint. Now for a hint. In 1946 Ayn Rand began writing “Textbook of Americanism,” a series of articles for The Vigil published by the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals (of Beverly Hills, California, founded in 1944 with Walt Disney as vice president). She completed about a third of the planned series. The following is from the section “Does the Motive Change the Nature of a Dictatorship?” Because of her extensive quotation I leave off outside quote-marks:

A great many people believe that a dictatorship is terrible if it’s “for a bad motive,” but quite all right and even desirable if it’s “for a good motive.” Those leaning toward Communism (they usually consider themselves “humanitarians”) claim that concentration camps and torture chambers are evil when used “selfishly,” “for the sake of one race,” as Hitler did, but quite noble when used “unselfishly,” “for the sake of the masses,” as Stalin does. Those leaning toward Fascism (they usually consider themselves hard-boiled “realists”) claim that whips and slave-drivers are impractical when used “inefficiently,” as in Russia, but quite practical when used “efficiently,” as in Germany.

Let’s pause right here. She is not saying torture chambers are good when used “selfishly.” And though she doesn’t explicitly say it, the reader can easily infer that torture chambers are just as bad when used “selfishly” as “unselfishly.”

This notion is further supported by the fact that in her discussion on force – meaning force against someone not in one’s control – earlier in the essay, she does explicitly say that force can be used for good or evil. In the above, regarding torture, she does not.

After a parenthetical remark she continues:

When you argue about what is a “good” or a “bad” dictatorship, you have accepted and endorsed the principle of dictatorship. ... From then on, it’s only a question of who will run the Gestapo. You will never be able to reach an agreement with your fellow Collectivists on what is a “good” cause for brutality and what is a “bad” one. Your particular pet definition may not be theirs. You might claim that it is good to slaughter men only for the sake of the poor; somebody else might claim that it is good to slaughter men only for the sake of the rich; you might claim that it is immoral to slaughter anyone except members of a certain class; somebody else might claim that it is immoral to slaughter anyone except members of a certain race. All you will agree on is the slaughter. And that is all you will achieve.
...
The issue is not: for what purpose is it proper to enslave men? The issue is: is it proper to enslave men or not?

There is an unspeakable moral corruption in saying that a dictatorship can be justified by “a good motive” or “an unselfish motive.” All the brutal and criminal tendencies which mankind – through centuries of slow climbing out of savagery – has learned to recognize as evil and impractical, have now taken refuge under a “social” cover. Many men now believe that it is evil to rob, murder, and torture for one’s own sake, but virtuous to do so for the sake of others. You may not indulge in brutality for your own gain, they say, but go right ahead if it’s for the gain of others.

Again, she is not saying torture is right if done for one’s own sake. Indeed her choice of words – “brutality” – suggests state torture is wrong in itself. Like dictatorship, it cannot be justified by “a good motive.” The issue is not: for what purpose is it proper to torture men? The issue is: is it proper to torture men or not?

Perhaps the most revolting statement one can ever hear is: “Sure, Stalin has butchered millions, but it’s justifiable, since it’s for the benefit of the masses.” Collectivism is the last stand of savagery in men’s minds.

And we can easily infer that savagery by anyone is as bad as savagery by Stalin. Though she does not explicitly say that state torture itself is wrong, she – I would say – took that for granted.

Yaron Brook, the director of the “Ayn Rand” Institute, and Leonard Peikoff who appointed him, both have advocated U.S. torture. Doubtless on questioning they would say the torture has strings attached, but it really doesn’t matter once we have gone down that road. To paraphrase Ayn Rand, when you argue about what is “good” or “bad” torture, you have accepted and endorsed the principle of torture. Per above, and simply from her evident intelligence, I think were she alive today Ayn Rand would be aghast at what our government is doing, and have a few choice words to say about the nincompoops at ARI.

Richard said...

Welcome to our group Lord Leto (may you be spat upon ;-)

To the extent that the American administrations (note the plural) are fundamentally un-American, and have been for nearly a century, is proportional to the extent that they violate individual rights. The Bush Administration is attempting to have its cake and eat it too. The obvious message in their actions is, "we can do irrational torture etc. but we are still within the Geneva rules". That is sheer nonsense.

LL ended, "By vigorously adhering to and defending the provisions of Common Article III, the United States would make it clear, as a civilized nation, that any such comparison is now, and will always be, false.

That is a legitimate point, but it is not one against appropriate use of torture, such as I support (which I will not repeat here).

The more significant point your comments stand upon is one with which I disagree. That is the Geneva Convention itself.

War is about *killing* people, and killing them all over the place. It means people will be wounded to a degree that is, for them, absolute torture. How can you have rules about your moral treatment of those who are seeking to kill you, by any means? Justice requires that you treat them for what they are. If they are just a 'grunt' who is happier to be a prisoner than to be on the battle ground, then keep him reasonably comfortable until it's all over.

It is an absurd contradiction to think that you have the higher moral ground if you refuse to torture a man trying to kill you and your family, when he knows something you need to know to save them. He is a killer, he has abandoned any possible basis for recognizing the rights of others, and in so doing has given up his own rights. He cannot have his cake and eat it too, and you would be a fool to treat him as having such rights --of letting him have his cake. (I am emphatically not simply discussing a criminal within a nation that recognizes individual rights.)

The Geneva Convention and the so called Rules of War hamstring Rights-respecting nations, who seek to defend themselves against nations (and now groups) that do not respect Rights. Such 'rules' are brutal in their irrationalaty. The worst aspect of them is that they presumes both sides in a war are moral equals. That view has become increasingly popularized by the re-writers of history (who now get their views into history texts). These re-writers largely have an axe to grind against capitalism and individual rights.

Often both sides in a war are in the wrong, but this was not the case with WW2, and nor is it the case with the War against Islamofascism (no matter how poorly the Bush administration has been conducting it.)

The Islamofascists are not simply opposing American presence in the Middle East. They are opposed to the very ideas upon which America is founded, never mind its modern weaknesses --which have not arisen out of that founding.

There is zero moral ground or reason in treating a killer respectfully if it means non-killers will die.

The problem that most people have with torture (as shown on this blog) is that there are people who will engage in torture without proper reason. That is not a reason to reject all use of torture.

Richard said...

As a coincidence of timing C-Bob's comment posted a few minutes before I posted mine, and I did not see it until now. The lengthy material he quotes from Ayn Rand is perfectly true, but it seems he has over-extended its intent in the context of this thread.

First, I find the bolded portion of this statement by C-Bob impossible to believe:
"earlier in the essay, she does explicitly say that force can be used for good or evil." Is that a typo C-Bob?

C-Bob then interprets Rand this way:
"Again, she is not saying torture is right if done for one’s own sake. Indeed her choice of words – “brutality” – suggests state torture is wrong in itself

But her context is clearly speaking of political torture (perhaps similar to the present American administration's approach, to the extent that it is the same as that of the N. Koreans or the Islamofascists)

I completely and absolutely disagree with C-Bob's concluding mis-generalization concerning the use of torture:
"I think were she alive today Ayn Rand would be aghast at what our government is doing, and have a few choice words to say about the nincompoops at ARI."

That treats principle as blind rule; to do or die but not to reason why. It is no different from the man who, as a sworn pacifist, takes no action when a murderer enters his home, kills his wife and children, while he cries and begs for peace. It treats Ayn Rand's carefully laid out context as applicable to any and all situations where torture may occur, without regard for the circumstances that absolutely differ from that context. It treats her argument as a Commandment: "Thou shalt not torture".

This is using Rand's argument in the manner of Religious Intrinsicism. If the Bible says says "Thous shalt not commit murder", then one doesn't, regardless of circumstance. This exemplifies one of the many problems with The Ten Commandments. They come without contextual reasoning. The believers seek, unreasoningly, to be good by obeying God, but end up applying God's rules where they should not be applied, with tragic consequences.

As I wrote above,
"It is an absurd contradiction to think that you have the higher moral ground if you refuse to torture a man trying to kill you and your family, when he knows something you need to know to save them. He is a killer, he has abandoned any possible basis for recognizing the rights of others, and in so doing has given up his own rights. He cannot have his cake and eat it too, and you would be a fool to treat him as having such rights --of letting him have his cake."

If that "family" is/are fellow citizens of a nation that recognizes individual rights, the animal that seeks to kill them and who has information by which they could be saved, truly is a candidate for torture. Failure to do so by blind adherence to rules applied out of context is anti-life.

Fiery said...

Lord Leto said...
First, people who are experts in interrogation of the enemy pretty much agree that torture doesn't work. Those being tortured will say anything they think their interrogators want to hear, just so the torture will stop.

Once again, source material would be nice. What makes this idea so appealing is its commonsensical nature. It is what I would do. Say anything to make it stop.

Secondly, the information, even if true, which is rare, in virtually every case is outdated by the time the torture is finished. Certainly no enemy would continue with plans known to someone who was captured.

The logic of this is self-evident. If your man who knows the plan is captured, wouldn’t they assume he’s been compromised? Pretty damn na├»ve to just continue on as planned.

But even more importantly we lose our moral high ground if we torture prisoners.
Bing bing bada ding ding diiiiiing!!!!!!

And thank you Lord Leto for that fascinating read on the Geneva Convention and its ramifications! Well done!

Fiery said...

Cman Bob thank you for that fabulous Ayn Rand quote. I do not have access … that I know of…. to her more obscure writings. She is refreshing to read in this torture morass.

Fiery said...

Richard said, I think "enemy combatant" is a very accurate term, but if the US administration is stretching it beyond all reason, then that is not an issue of the concept, it is another 'feature' of the corrupt nature of the administration. That corruption is something I identified as being at odds with the true premises of America.

But that’s really it, isn’t it? The whole point is what is ACTUALLY happening now, not what you or I or Crazyman Bob THINKS should be happening.

What IS happening, is that people are being held and tortured. Because America is not functioning at optimum (within its true premises), we do not KNOW that those people are enemy combatants. (We are TOLD that they are. Do you trust the media? Do you trust the government?) We do not KNOW that they have information that will save American lives. (We are TOLD that they do. Yet where are the news stories saying, “Beaten for three days with rubber houses, Hazeem reveals vital information that saves 300,000 American civilians. I don’t know about you, but I have yet to see a “saved by torture” tally.)

Richard said... ”Muslim fighters are belligerent liars. The Qu'ran actually encourages lying to infidels as a legitimate and moral behavior. This is pressed into their minds at an early age, so they are quite able to describe themselves as farmers and housewives when interrogated. Indeed, the Muslims in America do this quite handily. They can say they are opposed to terrorism, knowing full well that the previous week tens of thousands of US dollars were transferred to overseas bank accounts to fund terrorism.”

*sigh* It would be nice if you sourced your information. I don’t think I can just google “Muslim liars” and come up with their smoldering pants policy. Don’t mistake me, I’m quite sure that what you say is true, but I am simply taking your word for it.

Richard said...
Welcome to our group Lord Leto (may you be spat upon ;-)
???? Is this a Dune reference? If so I’m not familiar with that particular greeting. Plus, it seems a rather cheeky way to greet the ruler of the known universe who has appeared on my blog on the odd occasion for quite some time now. If a blog entering its 9th month can said to have “quite some time”.

That is a legitimate point, but it is not one against appropriate use of torture, such as I support (which I will not repeat here).
The question really is… Is America, as it exists RIGHT NOW, capable of appropriate torture? The answer to that is a resounding “nope”!

Richard said...

That treats principle as blind rule; to do or die but not to reason why.
What is really strange here, is that this discussion is almost coming around to a “what works in theory but doesn’t work in practice” sort of talk. Mostly because it seems that “in principle” the US has the moral authority to torture, but in practice, the war on terror is an abysmal failure, an exercise in lunacy with no clear defined goals to achieve. What exactly will victory look like??? How will we know when we achieve it? Or is there more behind this war then spreading democracy (I thought we were a Republic)? Who owns Halliburton????

Repeatedly, you have made mention of situations where an individual has caught another individual in the immediate act of harming his family and has immediate opportunity to gain information from him. How long have these enemy combatants been detained? How long can ANY information they hold even be considered viable? What information are they looking for that has such a long shelf-life??????

Reg Golb said...

"The question really is… Is America, as it exists RIGHT NOW, capable of appropriate torture? The answer to that is a resounding “nope”!"

The real answer is a resounding "we don't know" we don't have any idea what has possibly been prevented by our aggressive information gathering.


"but in practice, the war on terror is an abysmal failure"

how do YOU define abysmal failure?

Until there is another 911, I would vehemently disagree.

Richard said...

Yes, being spat upon is a Dune reference. It is a high complement.

Dune is a desert planet where the people wear "still suits" that purify all liquids the body gives up --moisture in their breath, sweat, lost saliva when speaking, and urine. On that World, sparing a few drops of water by spitting is only done in very special circumstances.

Richard said...

Obviously using torture when the information obtained is obsolete is mindless viciousness. Any information that is obtained must be verified. False information should lead to more significant consequences for the prisoner. These points have been said more than enough. I don't see how repeating them changes anything.

Richard said...

fiery wrote, "The whole point is what is ACTUALLY happening now, not what you or I or Crazyman Bob THINKS should be happening.


What should be happening sets the standard for judging what IS happening.
1) To simply decry what is happening, and then say it is "American" is a collectivisation of all America as a nation that supports torture.
2)It lumps America in with opposite political systems of the basis of a non-essential --torture.

1) is simply not true. 2) disregards the essential principles and true moral hight ground that America's founding and guiding documents entail.

Yet these two arguments have been made both implicitly and explicitly in the forgoing comments. I have tried to point this out using the "throw out the baby with the bathwater" argument. Sadly, anti-Americanism is so widespread in America's own culture that the distinction that most matters here gets zero attention from Americans! THIS administration accepts torture, it is American.

Richard said...

"...We do not KNOW that they have information that will save American lives. (We are TOLD that they do. Yet where are the news stories saying, “Beaten for three days with rubber houses, Hazeem reveals vital information that saves 300,000 American civilians. I don’t know about you, but I have yet to see a “saved by torture” tally.)

Please keep in mind that the American media is so anti-American, that it would talk endlessly about the ghastly use of rubber houses ;-) and mutter under its breath how it saved "some" Americans might have been saved.

Then some academic would come up with a rationalization that they would have been saved anyway. This is precisely what the media is doing right now in its failure to report the growing number of communities in Iraq that have rebuilt, are trading in business with little concern of terrorist threat, and who are thrilled at the presence of American soldiers. The journalists seek out the opposite news wherever they can find it. No news is good news.

Check out Able Kane's blog, and not just one or two posts. He is a military photo journalist, and is actually there and involved! He is not sitting in a Baghdad Hotel begging for tidbits from anyone who will give them something sensational.

Check out Iraq the Model. This one involves a lot of reading. It is by to Baghdad brothers who are dentists. They report on national and local politics, sectarian conflict, and changes on the streets of the city. Right after the Americans penetrated Baghdad, and they got back online, the posts were remarkable. The rapid and important improvements they witnessed often boggled their minds.

Explore Michael Yon's front line reporting from Iraq. You will see what American soldiers are facing. It's not academic, it is real. Giving these animals that they are fighting "human dignity" if it threatens one of the great young men Yon photographs and videos, is a despicable thing. (I know ,privately, that Fiery in no way condones such nonsense. My point is that it must be more clearly and loudly articulated in opposition to those who do.)

Richard said...

Fiery just didn't Google. "Sigh" :-p, so I did.

This is a blogger discussing the very issue of Muslim lying, as encouraged by the Qu'ran. There are others, but this one is clearer. Note that Muslim leaders are open about it being their duty to lie to the American Congress.

I have known of this matter with the Qu'ran for more than a fifteen years. In particular I learned of it directly from young Muslims who were my high school students. It has been reinforced in my mind from many sources.

Richard said...

Haven't Fiery's last two paragraphs been thoroughly answered already? No one on this blog is defending misuse of torture. The issue is that some are rejecting rational use of torture, and some are directly or indirectly calling it "American".

America should not be defined by the wrong doings of some of its people, military or even by one or two Ad;ministrations. Just because a school of fish has a killer whale in its midst, does not mean we start calling the school a "pod", even if the whale has been there for years.