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17 January 2008 @ 10:03 pm
Dear Editor: No torture  
I wonder if any readers were surprised by the revelation in a recent Star Tribune article that Intelligence Chief Mike McConnell considers waterboarding to be torture. Rational people know, immediately and without lengthy reflection, what does and does not constitute torture. Isn't the real issue whether it is somehow admissible to suspend ethical and moral values by allowing those considered to be a potential threat to our national security to be tortured?

I am writing to express my opposition to the use of torture, and to encourage Senators Coleman and Klobuchar to support legislation that would prohibit waterboarding, mock executions, induced hypothermia, and other brutal interrogation techniques, i.e., torture.

Torture is morally wrong and flatly unjustifiable, regardless of the deeds, imagined or real, committed by those upon whom it is used. In response to this truth, our nation must act in accordance with its values by rejecting the use of torture.

Senators Coleman and Klobuchar have the opportunity to be leaders in ending the use of torture by supporting Section 327 of H.R. 2082, the Intelligence Authorization Act, which passed the House of Representatives in December. Section 327 would ban the CIA, its contractors, and all other agencies of the intelligence community from engaging in interrogation techniques that are prohibited by the Army Field Manual on Interrogations.  In effect, Section 327 would prevent the use of waterboarding and other forms of torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading interrogation techniques.

Unfortunately, some Senators oppose Section 327, and they may obstruct the passage of H.R. 2082 or attempt to remove Section 327 from H.R. 2082.  I call on Senators Coleman and Klobuchar to be leaders in the fight against torture and to vote against any attempt to prevent this important anti-torture provision from becoming law.

(Letter submitted to the Star Tribune this evening)
Current Mood: awakeawake
ziacalgal on January 18th, 2008 05:08 am (UTC)
torture here & there
Very well said!
pbramante on January 19th, 2008 02:25 am (UTC)
Re: torture here & there
Carolyn, is this you? No reply from the Star Tribune, BTW, but I'm glad I submitted the letter anyway.
ziacalgal on January 19th, 2008 03:01 am (UTC)
Re: torture here & there
HAI! (that's Japanese) I liked that you said "Rational people know..." but actually, as I look at a second time, in the second sentence don't you mean "allowable" rather than "admissible"? anyway, I'm glad you took the time to do it -- sometimes papers keep letters several days before printing them.
smws on January 20th, 2008 03:28 am (UTC)
Thank you for acting on your conscience. It's hard sometimes, and easy to defer. Good job.