4/30/2009

Smartest Man Ever Makes a Mistake?*

"I was struck by an article that I was reading the other day talking about the fact that the British during World War II, when London was being bombed to smithereens, had 200 or so detainees. And Churchill said, 'We don't torture,' when the entire British -- all of the British people were being subjected to unimaginable risk and threat."
President Barack Obama
April, 2009

"The London Cage was used partly as a torture centre, inside which large numbers of German officers and soldiers were subjected to systematic ill-treatment. In total 3,573 men passed through the Cage, and more than 1,000 were persuaded to give statements about war crimes. The brutality did not end with the war, moreover: a number of German civilians joined the servicemen who were interrogated there up to 1948."
The Guardian
November, 2005

*sarcasm alert

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very good, DP, excellent fact checking.

One could also try to argure that the US is a paragon of civilized behaviour by quoting C. Rice saying the US doesn't torture. Of course, she was lying through her teeth.

Doesn't change the fact the waterboarding is torture and that torture is illegal.

The Daily Pander said...

Whether or not waterboarding is torture is an opinion, not a fact. Those holding such an opinion may have an extraordinarily strong case, but it's still just an opinion.

Johnny Keynes said...

As a former member of the military, I can tell you that the things that are being described as torture are simply not that bad. The things I experienced in Marine Corps Boot Camp and Infantry School were much more uncomfortable. We have taken our belief in the humane treatment of individuals so far as to say that nobody should be subject to any discomfort whatsoever at any time for any reason.

Count me as one who would rather sacrifice a little "moral high ground" in order to prevent another 9/11 type attack as long as the "enhanced techniques" were conducted safely (as were the situations described in the CIA memos) and on a very limited basis. There is a difference between the torture of a captured PFC just for the sake of torture, and making someone uncomfortable in order to save thousands of lives. I hope we never have to learn that lesson the hard way.