Monday, November 14, 2011

"Tortue or Not Torture?": That Is (and Has Been) the Question

As I watched Saturday's debate, I was completely unsurprised that the majority of those on the stage are totally for torture (in their speak, "enhanced interrogation").  I knew already that Ron Paul was against the torture committed in our name, but I admit to being quite surprised that Jon Huntsman agreed with Paul. Meanwhile, Romney will likely change his position, when his current position proves inconvenient.

Of course, President Obama made it clear that he considered waterboarding torture (though I think this post from Glenn Greenwald on other troubling aspects of the Bush Administration's foreign policy ideas continued under the current administration is well worth a read).  And though I am glad to hear John McCain reiterate his position that waterboarding is torture, I wish he'd been more forceful in stating his position during the Bush administration.

Considering these differences of opinion, I think there needs to be a real investigation into the ways that the Bush administration conducted the "war on terror," particularly with regard to detainees, and there should be a specific request to determine if the actions of the Bush administration, even with its legal memoranda on the subject, violated the Geneva Conventions.  Clearly, there needs to be some sort of clarification, because there is no consensus on the subject.  Sadly, I know that nothing like that will ever happen.  It's probable that this will be resolved only by future historians, long after the deaths of the principals in question.  That's a real shame.

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