Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Torture Question

Yesterday, Bush said the program, which has sparked criticism over interrogation methods, was to ´better protect´ Americans.

See the PBS program HERE.

The torture issue is back in the news over the last few days. Once again, the mendacity of our government leadership is at issue.

Its simple really. True disciples of Christ cannot endorse or sign off on torture and/or deception (AKA as lying).

Not long ago I saw an interview with a former CIA interrogator from the Vietnam era. He said that back then enemy combatants would go out of their way to surrender to the US because they pretty much knew that they would be treated well. He went on to say that what is going on today is not only a disgrace, but it gets our soldiers killed because when opposing combatants assume they will be torutred they will fight to the death. He added that information derived from torure is generally worthless. - S.S.

Torture Still In Force in US

WASHINGTON, Oct 5--Former US attorney general Alberto Gonzales issued a secret document in 2005 authorizing use of painful interrogation techniques, a new report says.

The New York Times, citing unnamed officials, said the legal Justice Department document was circulated in 2005 -- when Congress adopted a law banning cruel inhumane and degrading treatment.

At the same time, the Justice Department publicly had declared torture "abhorrent" and the Bush administration seemed to back away from claiming authority for such practices.

The legal document, approved by Gonzales, remains in effect, despite efforts by Congress and the courts to limit interrogation practices used by the government in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Gonzales resigned last month under withering criticism from congressional Democrats.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino did not deny the existence of the document, but did not offer details.

However, White House Homeland Security Adviser Fran Townsend later said the program involved a team of fewer than 100 highly trained interrogators.

"We start with the least harsh measures first," Townsend told CNN television. "It stops ... if someone becomes cooperative."

She said the White House was "baffled" by suggestions that if the US government didn't use harsh interrogation tactics, Al-Qaeda would treat captured Americans better.

And she suggested the harsh interrogation techniques had support and understanding of the American public.

The authorizations came after the withdrawal of an earlier, secret Justice document, issued in 2002, that had allowed certain aggressive interrogation practices so long as they stopped short of producing pain equivalent to experiencing organ failure or death.

But that controversial document was withdrawn in June 2004.

In a statement Thursday, the Center for Constitutional Rights urged attorney general nominee Michael Mukasey to end the policy if elected.

"Torture is illegal, immoral, and it doesn't work. Detainee torture policies that produce faulty intelligence and exaggerated confessions result in innocent men being locked up," the CCR said.

Now.... here is what the Bible says about dealing with enemies and conflict (pay special attention to the bold verses):

Romans 12
1I APPEAL to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.

2Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].

3For by the grace (unmerited favor of God) given to me I warn everyone among you not to estimate and think of himself more highly than he ought [not to have an exaggerated opinion of his own importance], but to rate his ability with sober judgment, each according to the degree of faith apportioned by God to him.

4For as in one physical body we have many parts (organs, members) and all of these parts do not have the same function or use,

5So we, numerous as we are, are one body in Christ (the Messiah) and individually we are parts one of another [mutually dependent on one another].

6Having gifts (faculties, talents, qualities) that differ according to the grace given us, let us use them: [He whose gift is] prophecy, [let him prophesy] according to the proportion of his faith;

7[He whose gift is] practical service, let him give himself to serving; he who teaches, to his teaching;

8He who exhorts (encourages), to his exhortation; he who contributes, let him do it in simplicity and liberality; he who gives aid and superintends, with zeal and singleness of mind; he who does acts of mercy, with genuine cheerfulness and joyful eagerness.

9[Let your] love be sincere (a real thing); hate what is evil [loathe all ungodliness, turn in horror from wickedness], but hold fast to that which is good.

10Love one another with brotherly affection [as members of one family], giving precedence and showing honor to one another.

11Never lag in zeal and in earnest endeavor; be aglow and burning with the Spirit, serving the Lord.

12Rejoice and exult in hope; be steadfast and patient in suffering and tribulation; be constant in prayer.

13Contribute to the needs of God's people [sharing in the necessities of the saints]; pursue the practice of hospitality.

14Bless those who persecute you [who are cruel in their attitude toward you]; bless and do not curse them.

15Rejoice with those who rejoice [sharing others' joy], and weep with those who weep [sharing others' grief].

16Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty (snobbish, high-minded, exclusive), but readily adjust yourself to [people, things] and give yourselves to humble tasks. Never overestimate yourself or be wise in your own conceits.(A)

17Repay no one evil for evil, but take thought for what is honest and proper and noble [aiming to be above reproach] in the sight of everyone.(B)

18If possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

19Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave the way open for [God's] wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is Mine, I will repay (requite), says the Lord.(C)

20But if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head.(D)

21Do not let yourself be overcome by evil, but overcome (master) evil with good.

Cross references:

1. Romans 12:16 : Prov 3:7
2. Romans 12:17 : Prov 20:22
3. Romans 12:19 : Deut 32:35
4. Romans 12:20 : Prov 25:21,22

1 comment:

Scott Starr said...

Bush denies CIA torture claims

Posted 6 hours 11 minutes ago

US President George W Bush has denied that his administration has tortured terrorists and suspects.

He has also defended the work of CIA interrogators.

Insisting that Washington has broken no laws, Mr Bush says questioning is conducted by highly trained professionals who have obtained viable intelligence.

"When we find somebody who may have information regarding a potential attack on America, you bet we're going to detain them, you bet we're going to question them," he said.

"Because the American people expect us to find out information by actionable intelligence so we can help them, help protect them, that's our job."


The problem is that much evidence points to the fact that torture IS and has been used.

remember Abu Gharaib?