One different view on torture

From peter kay a venture capitalist. Thanks for your input. Ill add my own comments after yours.

“You’ve been watching too much CNN and MSNBC and reading too much NY Times.

Get a grip on “torture”. Get some context on “Torture” used in previous wars and then show us how we compare to those wars.

Compare our “torture” with every other nation’s torture (including our current enemy who enjoys televising beheadings) and show us where we are on the list.

Finally, get a real grip on “due process” in wartime. Find out how much due process is owed to enemy combatants who do not follow the Geneva convention.

Put some context in your posts that’s a little better than WTF!!!.
You’re a sharp entreprneur but a crappy political observer.

Comparing your President to Stalin & Hitler? WTF!!!! Context, please.”

First, peter is right that these are my own off the cuff observations. However, I disagree with his assertion that we should put this torture in the context of other acts past and present.

That implies a) that some torture is ok and b) that it can be justified if either your enemy does it or its more mild than past forms.

America has always held itself to a higher moral platform as it should. We didn’t justify torturing nazis or japanese pow’s even though they were killing our troops. Same was true in vietnam.

I will ask you peter, please tell us when you think torture is justified and what form is acceptable?

Remember one thing, govts are institutions, not people. When we let our institutions act immorally the consequences usually go way beyond the first rationalized act.
Sent wirelessly via BlackBerry from T-Mobile.

6 thoughts on “One different view on torture

  1. Mark Pincus Blog: One different view on torture

    Link: Mark Pincus Blog: One different view on torture. I agree. Unfortunately, we’re at war. Their allowed to torture and murder our troops, but cry when we hint at doing the same. Its ok for them to blow up innnocents,

  2. Mark, I couldn’t possibly agree with you more. I just don’t know what Peter Kay means by “get some context on torture.” I’m honestly giggling at that comment. As crazy as it sounds, I’m sure that torture always has and always will occur. Sad, stupid, but true. However, for the Vice President of the United States to be standing up in his fat tuxedo stating that we need the right to torture is just awful and completely self-defeating. How can we possibly speak to the world about a better way, an “American” way and then defend our acts because they’re not “as bad” as the terrorists. Man, I just completely disagree with Peter.
    Regardless of whether i agree with you, congrats on stirring the pot! regardless of how people feel about this, it simply needs to be discussed and faught over. nice job making that happen.

  3. Peter’s right.
    1) Foreign terrorists are not entitled to rights delineated in the U.S. Constitution.
    2) Geneva, and any other International Convention, was not set up to deal with today’s warfare. In other words, an enemy that has no country to hold accountable. I have not seen Al Qaeda sign any international treaty, nor should we be held to one in such a war.
    3) There are situations where torture may be the only possible solution. For example, if a 9/11 could have been prevented by leaning on a captured terrorist it should have been done. Or do you not feel that 3,000 lives are worth that?
    4) Comparing Bush, who has helped to eliminate two of the most repressive regimes in modern history, enabling free elections with respect for rule of law- with Hitler and Stalin is pathetic. You lose all credibility with such comparisons.

  4. Peter’s right.
    1) Foreign terrorists are not entitled to rights delineated in the U.S. Constitution.
    2) Geneva, and any other International Convention, was not set up to deal with today’s warfare. In other words, an enemy that has no country to hold accountable. I have not seen Al Qaeda sign any international treaty, nor should we be held to one in such a war.
    3) There are situations where torture may be the only possible solution. For example, if a 9/11 could have been prevented by leaning on a captured terrorist it should have been done. Or do you not feel that 3,000 lives are worth that?
    4) Comparing Bush, who has helped to eliminate two of the most repressive regimes in modern history, enabling free elections with respect for rule of law- with Hitler and Stalin is pathetic. You lose all credibility with such comparisons.

  5. The intent behind the Geneva Convention has as much to do w/humane treatment of prisoners as it did w/”do on to others, as you would have them do on to you”. Having said that, regardless of how the enemy behaves is no excuse for barbarism on our side. It’s intriguing to see when the moral high ground is espoused and when it’s abandoned by those in our gov’t and by those who support them in this behavior.
    It’s equally bizzare to see the reactions by our current administration when torture is televised in other nations and they call for compliance w/the Geneva Convention on this matter, but then call prisoners on our end enemy combatants as a way to do away w/those rights. Sorry, but hypocrisy looms high in our country and I’d say that it’s reaching a truly unAmerican pitch.
    Fortunately, it looks like the gig is up, and all the deception is finally catching up and coming to roost w/the leaders of the most embarassing and depressing period in our nations’ history.

  6. When I’m saying “give us context” on torture, I’m asking to get specific.
    What is considered torture? My 6 yr old considers withholding ice cream to be torture. I consider listening to some type of music to be torture.
    I also consider electrocution to be torture. But I don’t consider sleep deprivation, barking dogs, or verbal harassment to be torture.
    From what limited coverage I’ve seen, Gitmo doesn’t torture either. I do agree that the stupid things going on at AbuG were illegal and those that broke the law are being convicted/punished.
    So, Mark, perhaps you can give us some definitions of torture and then I can agree or dis-agree with you.

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