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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by IJ Reilly, Feb 13, 2006.
Well... I read on azcentral that the investigation team didn't even visit Gitmo. All findings are based on 3rd party information. So... if we don't force them to eat, should we let them die of starvation?
and if you'd read the quoted article, you'd see that though the team was offered a tour, they would be denied access to the prisoners.
why does this response not surprise me? you conveniently ignore all the surrounding facts about why the prisoners are on a hunger strike.
so what's your actual argument? that the report is wrong because the team didn't directly observe the abuse, or that the abuse is justified?
My arguement is that it isn't abuse to force feed them. I consider the alternative to be worse. Otherwise... Fine... let em starve. We'd have clamoring about the US starving detainees that way. I'm sorry, but if you are a POW, you don't get normal rights. You get a set of reduced rights. Your clothing, food, schedule is mandated by your captor. I'm not advocating torture, but being reasonable.
If you want to investigate the facility... umm... actually go. Too bad that you don't get to interview people. You still can do a better investigation in person.
Isn't that the claim that Torture Inc. is making, that they are not POWs? POWs would receive better treatment and be guaranteed the right to a fair and speedy trial. That is exactly what they are protesting through hunger strikes. BTW, we don't know if they are even classifiable as enemy combatants because Torture Inc. has refused to release any information about the majority of those being held. Many of those being held don't even know what the charges are. The longer this continues without charges being brought against those being held, the more liable those in charge are going to be for human rights violations. I wouldn't be surprised if when this is over Bush and his operatives are denied access to countries where rights are given more than lip service.
That's kind of the point isn't it. By declaring a "war on terror" just about anyone can be classed as a POW (sorry, "enemy combatant"), and have been. Goodbye rights, even those annoying Geneva Convention ones apparently.
Just like if you wanted to investigate the White House, you'd get the real story by taking the tour right?
except that these inmates are not getting the POW rights, if it is a war.
To drag things slightly off-topic...
Is the use of torture really that abhorrent? I say this in the light of our general willingness to wage war in the first place, and the natural concessions we make to such a course of action.
There has to be a certain moral equivalence does there not? While almost all of us are against torture - most of us have much less a problem with "collateral damage". Does "collateral damage" not imply the torture of innocent men, woman and children?
Whenever we drop bombs we do so with the knowledge that some number of children will be maimed, orphaned and killed by them. So, if we are willing to act in a way that guarantees the misery and death of a considerable amount of innocent children, why are we reluctant to spare the rod with suspected terrorists?
What is the difference between pursuing a course of action where we run the risk of inadvertently subjecting some innocent men to torture, and pursuing one in which we will kill a far greater number of innocent men, women and children?
Should not the possible misapplication of torture be less troubling to us than collateral damage? After all, there are no infants held at Guantanemo Bay.
To have a coherently ethical position, if we are willing to drop bombs, we should be willing to torture a certain class of criminal suspects and military prisoners. If we are unwilling to torture, we should also be unwilling to wage modern war.
As to the unreliability of confessions given under torture, again the chance that our interests are advanced in any particular instance of torture need only equal the chance of such occasioned bt the dropping of a single bomb.
What is the chance that the dropping of bomb # 117 on Kandahar (for example) would effect the demise of Al Qaeda? Pretty slim, I would imagine.
How about the torture of a known Al Qaeda member in custody?
Bare in mind that torture, as reprehensible as it is, does not often kill, nor even leave permanent damage. The collateral-damaged are, by definition, maimed or killed.
Given what many of us believe about the exigencies of the war on terrorism, the practice of torture, in certain circumstances, seems not only permissable but necessary.
None of this, mind you, makes torture that much more acceptable in ethical terms - but neither should many realities of warfare. The fact that many of us can comfortably abstract the killing of many via distance, but not the idea of individual torture seems to show the degree which we have been bewitched by our euphemisms. There seems to be a dissasociation between what is most shocking and what is most harmful.
What say you all?
That would be my coherently ethical position.
Before you torture them, you'd better be pretty damned sure you've got the right people.
Again, or still?
I just don't see how this is going to help anybody. We're supposed to be the good guys and this is not how the good guys act. Sure, there's always collateral damage in a war, but this is just wrong. This is like the difference between stepping on an ant hill and going out of your way to light ants on fire, to use an incredibly inappropriate analogy.