"The United States knows quite a bit about waterboarding. The U.S. government -- whether acting alone before domestic courts, commissions and courts-martial or as part of the world community -- has not only condemned the use of water torture but has severely punished those who applied it.So we fought the big war to defeat Fascism only to get a morally challenged President who drank his way through college?
After World War II, we convicted several Japanese soldiers for waterboarding American and Allied prisoners of war. At the trial of his captors, then-Lt. Chase J. Nielsen, one of the 1942 Army Air Forces officers who flew in the Doolittle Raid and was captured by the Japanese, testified: "I was given several types of torture. . . . I was given what they call the water cure." He was asked what he felt when the Japanese soldiers poured the water. "Well, I felt more or less like I was drowning," he replied, "just gasping between life and death.""
BTW, some have suggested that Bushco can't call torture illegal because it would result in prosecutions throughout the CIA and even the military. But Jack Balkin says that is wrong, and Scott Horton agrees:
"The initial draft makes clear that the White House sought impunity for crimes arising as a result of the use of three techniques that the Bush Administration (and, from the remarkable wording of one of Bush's press conferences, Bush himself) authorized and which constitute grave breaches under Common Article 3: waterboarding, long-time standing (or as it was called by its NKVD inventors, in Russian: stoika) and hypothermia or cold cell. The use of these techniques is a criminal act. The purported authorization of these techniques is a criminal act. The larger effort to employ them constitutes a joint criminal enterprise. "
Balkin nails it:
"The real reason why Judge Mukasey cannot say that waterboarding is illegal is that Administration officials have repeatedly insisted that they do not torture, and that they have acted both legally and honorably. If Judge Mukasey said that waterboarding is illegal, it would require the Bush Administration to admit that it repeatedly lied to the American people and brought shame and dishonor on the United States of America. If Judge Mukasey were to say waterboarding is illegal and not just 'a dunk in the water' in Vice President Cheney's terminology, he would have announced that, as incoming Attorney General, he is entering an Administration of liars and torturers."George W. Bush's Administration of Liars and Torturers (brought to you by James Dobson and Focus on the Family). Now, there is a t-shirt! It would be comical if it weren't so damn serious. The next time you hear a conservative rant about opposing evil or fascism or islamofascism--just remember that they have aided and abetted the transformation of our judicial system into one that endorses the torture of others.