November 19, 2005

CIA Torture Techniques

I have mixed emotions about using torture as a means to acquire information. I am not convinced about the effectiveness of it and I am not convinced that it should not be an option. I am saddened that we have to have any sort of discussion about it.

Here is a brief rundown of some of the techniques that the CIA is allegedly using.


"
WASHINGTON, (AFP) - CIA agents have revealed details of six interrogation tactics approved by top brass for use at secret CIA jails in Asia and Eastern Europe, ABC News reported. The techniques have lead to questionable confessions and the death of one man since March 2002, the network said, after interviewing current and former CIA officials.

Former CIA officer Bob Baer told ABC the techniques amounted to "bad interrogation. I mean, you can get anyone to confess to anything if the torture's bad enough."

CIA sources speaking on condition of anonymity described six techniques:
"Attention Grab, Attention Slap, Belly Slap, Long Time Standing, Cold Cell, Water Boarding."

The six "Enhanced Interrogation Techniques," as sources called them, were used on a dozen top Al-Qaeda targets incarcerated in isolation at secret locations on military bases in regions from Asia to Eastern Europe, ABC said.

In "Belly Slap," interrogators deliver "a hard open-handed slap to the stomach" intended to cause pain but not internal injury. In "Long Time Standing," prisoners are forced to stand handcuffed and shackled for more than 40 hours.

In "The Cold Cell" a prisoner is made to stand naked in a cell kept near 10 degrees C (50 degrees F) and is continually doused with cold water.

Water Boarding brings results within seconds, the sources said. A prisoner is tied onto a board with his feet higher than his head, and his face is wrapped in cellophane. When water is poured over him, he begins to gag and begs to confess, sources told ABC."

5 comments:

Tanisha said...

Damn.. Wow

Well what can you do? they cut our heads off.

This is a sticky situation and it is scarey. I think all of it is wrong..

What a mess humans have made of the world in the name of G-d

Thanks for the update Jack and btw I confused you with Akaky by acceident.. oopps!!

Jack's Shack said...

Hi Tanisha,

I really am torn by this. Part of me says that we should be able to do whatever we want to protect ourselves and part of me says how much of our humanity do we lose in the process.

Ezzie said...

One of the toughest dilemmas of our time. I don't know if you read my blog when I wrote about this a long time ago... Recently I talked about a clear situation I recall from when I was in Israel when they tortured a would-be suicide bomber on the street (they normally would never in public) - but they caught another suicide bomber on the other side of Jerusalem because of it.

Nevertheless, I am of the belief that the option should always be available - and sparingly, if ever, used.

soccerdad said...

Anything that causes physical pain is torture, no matter how temporary the pain may be. Anything that causes a prisoner to believe they are being killed (waterboarding) is torture, no matter how unreal it may actually be.

If you read McCain's piece in this week's Newsweek, you'll realize just how pointless torture is. He tells the story of going through horrendous torture at the hands of his captors because they wanted to know the names of his crewmates. He finally gave in ... and gave them the names of members of the Green Bay Packers.

Torture may work in some cases, but it is just as likely to produce wrong information as the captives, trying to stay true to their own ideals, try to give something to satisfy the torturer.

It's wrong, wrong, wrong and doesn't produce anything other than what the captive things the torturer wants to hear.

Jack's Shack said...

Ezzie,

That is a good example of why it should be an option, but Soccer Dad does use another good example of how it can fail.

McCain's story was powerful.