A reader writes:
One note that has been missed in the analysis of all of this: Crawford's report talked about how Qahtani's torture took place over a nearly two month period. Presumably the intelligence officials were not able to get whatever information they thought he had in a short time frame. Doesn't this seriously undermine the "ticking time bomb" defence of torture?
If it took two months to break this man, how urgent was the information that he had? Also, isn't it at least conceivable that in that two month period the intelligence officials could have gotten the information from him by methodically developing a relationship, a level of rapport, that would have ultimately lead Qahtani to realize that at America's core is a decent society full of decent individuals, committed to treating the rest of the world with some core level of decency?
The ticking time bomb scenario has not happened in the US or anywhere else in human history. It was a rhetorical device to cover for Bush and Cheney's desire to use torture as a routine weapon in the war on terror. It's a talking point in a propaganda campaign, not a good faith argument for any actual current situations.
A simple question: now that the chief Gitmo prosecutor has said that Qahtani was tortured, will the New York Times, the AP, Newsweek and the Washington Post stop using words and euphemisms that are not true? Or do we have to endure more linguistic cowardice from the MSM?
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