President Obama opens door to prosecution regarding torture of terrorists

Discussion in 'World Events' started by StrawDog, Apr 22, 2009.

  1. StrawDog disseminated primatemaia Valued Senior Member

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    (http://www.nydailynews.com/news/pol...secution_regarding_torture_of_terrorists.html)

    This explains why Cheney has been so verbal and defensive lately.

    Right is right, wrong is wrong. The point of the legal system is to enforce this. If the Rule of LAW does not prevail, should the US be dumped into the Banana Republic bin?
     
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  3. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    First, the enemy has no rules and tortures, mutilates, hacks peoples heads off and on and on so where's their justice?:shrug:

    Secondly if your family was going to be attacked and killed wouldn't you do whatever you could to find out who was going to kill them? Or am I to believe you'd just let the prisoner sit back and laugh at your families demise. There also could be bombs planted to go off killing hundreds of innocent people and by torturing a prisoner you can save their lives. Is that worth it to you? :shrug:

    Why is it that the fucking MEDIA only brings up what Americans did wrong but never says how many lives were saved by this torturing methold , why the fuck is that?

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  5. StrawDog disseminated primatemaia Valued Senior Member

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    Apart from the 1 million lives LOST in Iraq due to faulty logic, how many lives did you say were saved?
     
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  7. jps Valued Senior Member

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    Isn't the fact that they do these things and we (ostensibly) don't the reason that we're the good guys and they're the bad guys?

    Who could say what one would do if faced with someone who was laughing about the imminent demise of one's family? Fear and rage can make people do crazy things, but I don't think we should look to what we would do under their influence as a model for our legal system. These sorts of hypotheticals can go both ways, and for that reason are not very useful in forming policy.

    For example, wouldn't you want someone to stop you from torturing a prisoner to save your family, if doing so would push the prisoner's family over the edge, and they'd commit a terrorist act that would kill thousands?

    The government has been understandably reluctant to release information about the use of these techniques. We've yet to see any evidence of them saving any lives.
     
  8. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    cosmic if you want the moral high ground you have to act like it. No one has EVER proved the ticking bomb senario and its been debated time and again here, real life is not 24.

    I agree with him, i am in 2 minds about investigating and procuting the lower downs, the trials in germany proved that "i was following orders" is not a valid excuse and if FBI agents could walk in there and be outraged enough to speak to the media about it and try to get it shut down, why isnt it the same for the CIA agents?

    However the higher ups, the bush's, Cheney's, Rumsfeld's and those who delibratly tried to walk around the prohabition in giving the so called legal advice should NOT be free from procution under any cirumstances.
     
  9. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

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    More to the point, the "ticking bomb" scenario breaks down very quickly when you think it through. The premise is that we already know for certain that there is a bomb about to go off, and that the person who we have captured knows where it is. But that begs the question: if you know that much already, wouldn't you have any number of other more reliable, non-barbaric ways of figuring out where the bomb is? So even in this (astronomically unlikely) scenario, you wouldn't need to torture.

    Likewise, the regulatory answer to such a scenario is simple: you keep torture illegal, and expect that anyone who finds himself in an actual "ticking bomb" scenario will break the law, in order to find the bomb. You then give him a pardon after the fact, once everyone has seen that this particular instance of torture was justified by extreme circumstances (supposing you can even get a jury to convict him in the first place). This avoids the very serious issue with actually permitting torture, which is that it then becomes institutionalized and employed without anything close to the justification presented by the "ticking bomb" scenario. Worse still, this can actually harm intelligence gathering in myraid ways, so you end up torturing innocent people and knowing even less than you would have for it.
     
  10. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    your right, Say i knew where a bomb was and it was set to go off in say 30min (to give a valid time) so you torture me, im MORE likly to go "fuck the lot of you" and send you into the danger zone looking in the wrong spot or somewhere compleatly different than i am to actually tell you where it is. After all its going to stop in half an hour anyway
     
  11. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    I'm very glad to see President Obama assigning accountability exactly where it belongs, with the architects rather than the builders/

    I'm curious, though. "We were only following orders" - has that actually worked as a defense?
     
  12. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

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    Well, it didn't work at Nuremburg.
     
  13. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    pre the nazi trials at the end of WW2 it was always assumed (though there was little international law anyway), during those trials it was alowed as a defence but the judges werent automatically expected to accept it, it was just an option. Since then there has been an expectation that its NOT a defence, people are surposed to judge the legality of there orders for themselves, the potentual issue in this case was that they were surplied with psuedo legal advice as to the legality of there orders which makes it harder for them as a lay person to judge the legality themselves (especially as its not like they can walk into a lawyers office and ask themselves without breaching secracy provisions).

    as to wether it HAS worked as a defence i dont know, i dont follow millatry and intelligence trials so i cant say.
     
  14. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    Nuremberg was in many ways not conducted legally. So its not a good precedent for any kind of military or war crimes trial.

    I was thinking of other, similar trials/
     
  15. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

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    And yet, it's the best we have. International law is a bitch like that.

    Such as?
     
  16. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    Sam i cant say which way this will go but try looking up the trials for the former yucoslavia (bonsia et al) and seeing wether they surported the use of "im just following orders"

    I agree with you about nuremberg, the "laws" were put in place retrospectivly and without any legislative proccess (ie they were formulated out of thin air by the procuters) and there were lots of other issues with the formation. However they are still used as a precedent and i cant really see why they shouldnt be, there formation was years ago and any solder\leader who doesnt know the rules they set in place is an idiot.

    The ICC may also have some infomation of the type your looking for
     
  17. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    Since the US is not a signatory to the ICC I doubt it is following any international law

    I don't know. I haven't followed any war crimes trials myself.
     
  18. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    S.A.M. there are international laws which dont directly related to the ICC or the IJC. Those are just the normal bodies which adjudicate but even without signiturers to those courts countries can still be bound

    For instance the international convention on the use of torture and the geneva convention both still binding.
     
  19. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    Laws are pretty useless unless they are enforced.
     
  20. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    as far as i know signing these sorts of treaties requires a contry to change its OWN laws to match which is where the enforcement comes in. For instance australia is in the proccess of signing the optional protocal to the treaty on torture, the reason its not a simple case of putting pen to paper is that before its done the commonwealth has to negotiate with the states as to how to frame the new offence, should it be extrateritoral and how will it be inforced if it is, should it be a state or commonwealth offence and are there any judical issues with regard to where it would be tried (not to mention what penelty that offence would carry)
     
  21. pjdude1219 The biscuit has risen Valued Senior Member

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    how about we almost drown you 6 times a day for a month to get info out of you.
     
  22. Mrs.Lucysnow Valued Senior Member

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    Even your own FBI specialists say that torture is the worst way to gain valid information. Innocent people will say anything to get out of the pain, they will sign anything admit to anything even if its false, yet the most hardened terrorist is willing to die for their cause. There are other methods of finding information and torture isn't the best of them.
     
  23. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

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    I've always beem intrigued by the "ticking time bomb" scenario, since I first encountered it in an ethics class in college.

    I always wondered though, what would people's reactions / answers be if you added one more caveat? Namely, if it was a given (somehow you knew) that if, and only if, you tortured this hypothetical person to the brink of hell, and beyond, that you would definitely find the bomb in time to save millions?

    Meaning you eliminate the possibility of false information, encroaching time limits, etc. This would seem to distill the quandry to its essence and stop people from squirming out the side doors, if you will.

    In these conditions, would you torture him / her? Rip out fingernails, burn flesh with a blowtorch, etc.? Flay their children alive? Remember, it's a given that you will find the bomb and save the world if you do.

    This really brings the question to a head - is it ever moral to torture / kill someone to save many others? Would you, personally, do it?

    Your thoughts?
     

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