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March 10, 2005

Torture Works

A re-post of one expert's opinions on torture. And when I say he's an "expert," I mean he's a professional torturer.

I'll stop reposting this the minute people stop claiming that torture doesn't work.

If you haven't read this, it's compelling, revealing, and, yeah, a little chilling. It comes from The Atlantic Monthly, so there shouldn't be too much doubt about the sourcing and such.

You may still object to torture, arguing that it is simply too immoral to be countenanced.

But as they say, you can have your own opinions, but not your own facts. And the fact is that torture works. It worked 3000 years ago and it still works today.

I am always annoyed by people who wish to make difficult judgment calls artificially easy by simply declaring that one possible option "can't work anyway" or is "ineffective" or "unnecessary" or the like. They say the same thing about racial profiling-- they claim there's not even a utilitarian case to be made for it, as there is no utility to it whatsoever.

We are confronted with a difficult choice. We have a technique which is proven to get results (or at least better results than just shooting the shit with a dedicated religious fanatic trained to resist interrogations) and yet is arguably immoral.

We can argue about that choice, but let's not be childish and pretend that we don't even need to consider that choice because "torture doesn't work."

It does. Deal with it.

Second Verse Same As the First Update: A similar argument made here, noting that Kausfiles, too, is a bit skeptical of the claims that "torture doesn't work."

If it doesn't work, why does the CIA seem to want to try it? Are they simply sadistic?

And as I said:

Of course torture works. Not always, and not necessarily quickly, but take a look at the films of our brave captured Vietnam pilots being coerced into reading anti-American screeds for North Vietnam's propaganda uses.

These were brave and strong men, some of the most disciplined in the world. And they broke. They didn't want to say those horrible things, but there does come a point at which the human spirit fails.

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posted by Ace at 03:24 PM

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