National security has always been a top priority for any country. With the recent developments in terrorist tactics, interrogation has become an important subject and a source of reliable information to counter any threats. …
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This information is even used to guard against enemy tactics and propose counter measures for our own forces. The interrogation depends mainly on torture techniques. Which are against the human rights and this violation is made in the name of national security. There is a thin line between torturing and national security priorities. Both are important and it is crucial to remain in limits while interrogating any suspects, whether terrorists or local criminals. The issue came into spotlight with the release of torture pictures and videos of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp (Leigh et al. 1). Prisoners were kept in a miserable condition and suicide attempts were a routine. The detention facility was accused of extreme torturing and interrogation. There have been deaths in the prison and released detainees gave in detail account of torturing activities carried out by the US. These activities were clearly a human rights violation and more importantly violated the Geneva Convention for the interrogation and captivity of prisoners of war. The paper will look into the matter and discuss the use of torture during interrogation. The Geneva Convention has set aside rules and principles for conduct with prisoners or war. Their captivity and the use of torture have all been explained in detail in the convention. The convention article rules against torture in interrogation by stating that no physical or mental torture can be used for interrogation of prisoners. Prisoners must also be given rights to medical facility, hygiene, food, clothing and quarters (Tomasevski 8). They must also be allowed for their religious practices and appropriate physical activity must also be planned. In simple, the laws lay basis for basic human rights. Torturing during interrogation is not allowed and simply a violation of the convention and basic human rights. To violate these standards is simply a violation against humanity. The US administrations have taken stance to legalize torturing techniques and narrowly defined the parameters of interrogation. Legislation could not be passed even though with ninety to nine approval rates by senate, after being vetoed by President Bush at the time (Sullivan 1). Terrorists are considered as monsters and mass murderers and are not worthy of humane treatment. The debate was highlighted in 2005 by McCain. He presented exceptional scenarios like ticking time bomb and slow fuse cases (Krauthammer 2). The urgency of these exceptional cases required torture. In simple even his policy required use of torture. Torturing is against the very fundamentals of US and is the opposite of freedom. Prisoners are tortured and interrogated on the basis of National Security priorities. The logic that torturing is necessary to extract information is used as a stance against the issue. Though, torturing is a quick way to extract information, but it is something against humanity and also the Geneva Convention. There can be no basis as to torture a human being. It is to take into consideration that most prisoners do not possess valuable or critical information and are tortured without any solid base. This further complicates the issue and raises question of using torture techniques. Many of the prisoners are tortured to the breaking point where they develop psychological or physical disorders. This fact can be taken into account by the figures at Guantanamo Bay. Similarly, at Abu Ghraib Prison almost ninety percent of prisoners were not guilty and released after interrogation and torture (Sullivan 2). They did not possess any critical information. Terrorists are not termed as prisoners of war as per the US stance, but torture in any form on a human being is a violation of basic human rights and simply a crime against humanity.
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Despite its priority in international human rights convention, empirical evidence suggests that the elimination of torture is far from complete (Nagan and Atkins 2001, p. 87). For instance a global survey conducted by Amnesty International (2000) reflects that at least 7% of countries practice torture despite ascension to the Torture Convention.
Victims of torture may be told that no one remembers them or cares, and that if they survive, no one will believe them. The psychological aspects of torture may range from the seeming inevitability of a fixed routine (e.g., the dread of interrogation and physical torture at set times each day) to an inability to anticipate what will happen next.
But it is also a logic that has been used to justify spying without a warrant, mass detentions, incarceration without trial, and abusive interrogation. In each case, we are told, some safeguards and rights that were formerly regarded as civil liberties have to be given up in the interests of security.
The subjects of interrogation techniques are mostly the witnesses, victims or suspects. There are numerous interrogation techniques, which include deception, waterboarding, torture, and Reid technique among others. In the United States, the US personnel have used numerous interrogation techniques, some of which have been approved by the US government.
Law enforcement agencies commonly use torture during interrogation of suspects and criminals so as to obtain particular information from them. The debate on whether to use torture during interrogation is complex as it touches on morality and human rights.
Correspondingly, it’s increasingly becoming a focus of the public debate. Being considered of crucial importance to both the very existence of liberal states and societies and regard for liberal values, the torture issue has divided the academia, the judiciary and the public opinion as well.
The various debates regarding this issue includes whether torture is justifiable during emergencies and also whether it is considered legal in states where there is ongoing terrorist attacks. The debates have divided the decision makers into two groups - one who support it especially in the case of terrorist attacks and the other group who are against it and who point out to the depravities and injustice.
The common sense approach, my point of view, reasons “if it were done to me would I think its torture.” If the answer is yes then there is no further debate because if it is torture for one its torture for
Proponents of torture argue for its importance because of its use in exceptional circumstances that resort to legal torture (Arar 1).
However, anti-torture arguments have their basis on the inhuman nature of torture. According to these people, torture is unethical and
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