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Torturing The Rule Of Law


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Torturing the Rule of Law by Ron Paul


While Congress is sidetracked by who said what to whom and when, our nation finds itself at a crossroads on the issue of torture. We are at a point where we must decide if torture is something that is now going to be considered justifiable and reasonable under certain circumstances, or is America better than that?


“Enhanced interrogation” as some prefer to call it, has been used throughout history, usually by despotic governments, to cruelly punish or to extract politically useful statements from prisoners. Governments that do these things invariably bring shame on themselves.


In addition, information obtained under duress is incredibly unreliable, which is why it is not admissible in a court of law. Legally valid information is freely given by someone of sound mind and body. Someone in excruciating pain, or brought close to death by some horrific procedure is not in any state of mind to give reliable information, and certainly no actions should be taken solely based upon it.


For these reasons, it is illegal in the United States and illegal under Geneva Conventions. Simulated drowning, or water boarding, was not considered an exception to these laws when it was used by the Japanese against US soldiers in World War II. In fact, we hanged Japanese officers for war crimes in 1945 for water boarding. Its status as torture has already been decided by our own courts under this precedent. To look the other way now, when Americans do it, is the very definition of hypocrisy.


Matthew Alexander, author of How to Break a Terrorist used non-torture methods of interrogation in Iraq with much success. In fact, one cooperative jihadist told him, "I thought you would torture me, and when you didn't, I decided that everything I was told about Americans was wrong. That's why I decided to cooperate." Alexander also found that in Iraq “the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Our policy of torture was directly and swiftly recruiting fighters for al-Qaeda in Iraq.” Alexander’s experiences unequivocally demonstrate that losing our humanity is not beneficial or necessary in fighting terror.


The current administration has reversed its position on releasing evidence of torture by the previous administration and we must ask why. A great and moral nation would have the courage to face the truth so it could abide by the rule of law. To look the other way necessarily implicates all of us and would of course further radicalize people against our troops on the ground. Instead, we have the chance to limit culpability for torture to those who were truly responsible for these crimes against humanity.


Not everyone who was given illegal orders obeyed them. Many FBI agents understood that an illegal order must be disobeyed and they did so. The others must be held accountable, so that all of us are not targeted for blowback for the complicity of some.


The government’s own actions and operations in torturing people, and in acting on illegally obtained and unreliable information to kill and capture, are the most radicalizing forces at work today, not any religion, nor the fact that we are rich and free. The fact that our government engages in evil behavior under the auspices of the American people is what poses the greatest threat to the American people, and it must not be allowed to stand.



May 26, 2009


Dr. Ron Paul is a Republican member of Congress from Texas.


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Copyright ? 2007 LewRockwell.com

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Go Ron!


Ron Paul is the one Republican I would vote for at this point. He's the most high profile religious person I respect in the country right now. He has a very clear view of the idea of 'separation of church and state' and doesn't let his personal religious views cloud his judgment.


Prosecution of these crimes should not be optional. It needs to be done. It may be wishful thinking, but political agendas should not be relevant in this sort of criminal case.


We hung people for this, and those who did it, facilitated it, and enacted it, should be strung up just like they were. It should not be up for debate.


America needs the respect it would give us more than ever before. Even with the current crisis that our nation is dealing with, this should be dealt with and not ignored. Political issues be damned. It would do the nation a great deal of good, and I believe it may help stabilize the economy just based on the respect it would gain us throughout the world.


We need to string these guys up. Every last one of them.


Wishful thinking maybe, but these guys shouldn't be held above the law. They need to be held accountable for their actions, and it shouldn't be up to politics to decide how the law is enforced. That's why our legal system is a separate branch.


I'm hopeful President Obama will stand aside and let the Attorney General do his job the way it should be done. We shouldn't allow Congress to sit on it's hands and ignore it.


Maybe it will happen, maybe not. We can be sure it will take years if it does. Still, I hope we step up and live up to the law the way we should. These acts have done more harm to this country and it's reputation than anything that's happened in the last eight years. Including 9/11 and the War.


It's put more American lives at risk than any act of terrorism and has bolstered and strengthened our enemies.


Prosecute these assholes.

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Guest QuidEstCaritas?

Darth, I agree. They should be hung; those independent contractors with CIA that tortured those people and are continuing to do so at places like Bagram should absolutely be swinging by the end of the rope just like the Japanese Officers where. It utterly disgusts me that Obama is kissing the ass of the troops like he is, instead these CIA motherfuckers should be swinging for this shit. Ugh.

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