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Bush the Torturer, the Tyrant, the Disgrace: A Response to Bush's March 8 Veto of the Anti-Torture Bill

Torture's Cheerleaders

"We don't do torture"

Vice President Dick Cheney has confirmed that U.S. interrogators subjected captured senior al-Qaida suspects to a controversial interrogation technique called "water-boarding," which creates a sensation of drowning,” McClatchy reports. “Cheney indicated that the Bush administration doesn't regard water-boarding as torture and allows the CIA to use it. "It's a no-brainer for me," Cheney said at one point in an interview. Cheney's comments, in a White House interview on Tuesday with a conservative radio talk show host, appeared to reflect the Bush administration's view that the president has the constitutional power to do whatever he deems necessary to fight terrorism.” […]The radio interview Tuesday was the first time that a senior Bush administration official has confirmed that U.S. interrogators used water-boarding against important al-Qaida suspects, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged chief architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Mohammad was captured in Pakistan on March 1, 2003, and turned over to the CIA. […] In the interview on Tuesday, Scott Hennen of WDAY Radio in Fargo, N.D., told Cheney that listeners had asked him to "let the vice president know that if it takes dunking a terrorist in water, we're all for it, if it saves American lives.” Curiously, radio host Hennen uses his blog to bash the “MSM” for claiming that Cheney admitted to using waterboarding. Ina post called “Cheney, Media Bias and Pro-Terrorist Hate Mail,” He writes: “These so called news stories all suggest that he is endorsing tourture or water boarding. […] Read or listen to the interview here and see if you can find the word "water-boarding".  You won’t.” Read or listen to the interview and see if you can detect signs of intelligence, too. You won’t. Except from his email-writing listeners: I'm sure that since you think water-boarding doesn't violate the "cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment" bit of the Military Commissions Act then you'd volunteer to have it done to you, right?  Then you'd know what you're talking about, right?  I think that would be great radio... let a trained interrogator give you "a dunk in water" and see what
it's actually like... then let your listeners know that it's no big deal, since now that it's common knowledge that we're doing it to the enemy, they'll certainly be willing to violate the geneva convention and do it to our boys.”  Actually, ABC News reported on just such a stunt by CIA “volunteers” last year: “According to the sources, CIA officers who subjected themselves to the water boarding technique lasted an average of 14 seconds before caving in. They said al Qaeda's toughest prisoner, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, won the admiration of interrogators when he was able to last between two and two-and-a-half minutes before begging to confess. "The person believes they are being killed, and as such, it really amounts to a mock execution, which is illegal under international law," said John Sifton of Human Rights Watch.”

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