Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Al Qaeda gets the plague-40 dead

We always knew Al Qaeda was a plague. Now they appear to have the plague. Reportedly forty operatives in Algeria are dead and Al Qaeda has abandoned a training camp in the mountains of Tizi Ouzou province in eastern Algeria. According the the Washington Times, this is no accident. They are reporting an experiment with unconventional weapons went awry. Many will claim this is proof there is a God. We should all consider what it means for the future of the war on terrorism. The next major attack on American soil may be a biological or other unconventional attack. Will President Obama do everything in his power to prevent this? He won't use waterboarding even if it would save thousands of American lives. His administration will consider it torture. Waterboarding does not cause physical injury or death if properly executed. Hopefully, he can sweet talk the information from the terrorist operatives in time to prevent the next attack.
Black Death 'kills al-Qaeda operatives in Algeria'
The Black Death has reportedly killed at least 40 al-Qaeda operatives in North Africa.

Last Updated: 3:33PM GMT 19 Jan 2009

The disease, which struck Europe in the Middle Ages killing more than 25 million people, has swept through a training camp for insurgents in Algeria.

The arrival of the plague was discovered when security forces found the body of a dead terrorist by a roadside, the Sun reports.

The victim belonged to the large al-Qaeda network AQLIM (al-Qaeda in the Land of the Islamic Maghreb).Excerpted from telegraph.co.uk


Stephen White said...

Every Administration besides the Bush Administration describes waterboarding as torture and America has prosecuted Japanese for war crimes for using waterboarding. But you keep on believing your "24" episodes, becaue you know life is JUST LIKE Tee Vee.

Jill Peterson said...

torture doesn't work. interrogation experts say that normal interrogation works and torture doesn't. judges won't allow the testimony in court (including military judges). intelligence officials say it sends them on wild goose chases. military people say that it puts our soldiers in great danger of being tortured. fbi director robert muller says he's unaware of any terrorist plots being disrupted with intelligence from torture.

Uncle Walt said...

Your post assumes soemthing that experience shows us is not true.

Using torture to extract information does not work. Using torture will not help to prevent the next major attack. It won't save thousands of lives.

President Bush publicly claimed that torturing Khalid Sheik Mohammed led to information that saved lives. Like much of what that man and his administration has said, that turns out not to be true.

Torture is a crime under international law. Its a crime under American law. Waterboarding is torture. As a nation of laws how can we even contemplate breaking our own laws to do something that isn't effective. Its both insane and immoral.

The most effective interrogators don't use threats or torture, they establish rapport, they humanize and sympathize, they work with their subjects. yes, they sweet talk the information out of their subjects.

Thats not being weak, thats being effective.

We will not defeat international terrorism by becoming terrorists ourselves.

Bluegrass Pundit said...

"Jill Peterson said...

torture doesn't work."

Those who say this are being disingenuous for political reasons. It is true the information you get may be false. That is true for any other information gathering method. Once you get information you have to try to verify it. Would you say spying does not work because some spies are double agents and feed false information? Torture has been used for thousands of years because it does work. I am not advocating chopping off anyone appendages. However, if we can use methods that cause no physical damage to get new avenues of information, we should pursue them. If we failed to prevent a major attack because we wanted to be politically correct, that would be unforgivable.

Bluegrass Pundit said...

"But you keep on believing your "24" episodes, becaue you know life is JUST LIKE Tee Vee."

I don't understand this reference because I have never seen an episode of "24." Obviously, you can not say the same. Who is getting their opinion from TV now?

Dromedary Hump said...

Red neck said: "Water boarding does not cause physical injury or death"

I dont know from where you get your definition of torture. Certainly not from the dictionary:

1 a: anguish of body or mind : agony b: something that causes agony or pain
2: the infliction of intense pain (as from burning, crushing, or wounding) to punish, coerce, or afford sadistic pleasure.

In Vietnam I watched as captured VC had field phone wires attached to their testicles, and the hand crank turned to generate electrical charge through their body. No burns, no death... very little information of value was forthcoming. At the time, being personally invested in the war, I felt to remorse or guilt over what I witnesses. I am ashamed to say that now.

If you doubt that is torture, because there is no physicalinjury or death, perhaps you'd like to try it and determine for your self if it qualified as torture.

Similarly, having your air suppy inturrupted to the point of experiencing the onset of suffucation with no known period of relief or expectation of it stopping by your sadistic captors, while it leaves no physical marks nor causes imminent death, is torture.

I would be more than happy to demonstrate it on you...for scientific purposes only, not out of malice.


Bluegrass Pundit said...

" DromedaryHump said...

Red neck said: "Water boarding does not cause physical injury or death"

I don't know from where you get your definition of torture. Certainly not from the dictionary:"

I never said that waterboarding could not be considered torture by some definitions. It certainly causes mental anguish. So by your definition-1 a: anguish of body or mind-waterboarding would be considered torture. I do not accept that definition. When I think of torture, I think of things like of bamboo under the fingernails or severe electrical shock. I will not quibble over the definition. I do not care if waterboarding is considered by some as torture. It is better to live with that label than the knowledge that we failed to make every reasonable effort if tens of thousands of Americans are killed in a terrorist attack. Many claim that other methods like gaining their trust work better. That could be true, but they take months if not years. If we catch a terrorist smuggling a nuclear device into the USA, do we have months to find out if it is the only one? We need information immediately. Waterboarding provides information in a few minutes or less.

Dromedary Hump said...

red said: "If we catch a terrorist smuggling a nuclear device into the USA, do we have months to find out if it is the only one? "

Heheh..yes. The old "ticking time bomb" scenario. This is what another commentor referred to when the referenced the tv show "24".

"OMG..we have only 1 hour before that nuclear devise kills millions, lets torture this guy so we can find and disarm it"

Interestingly, you will have a difficult time demonstrating that this scenario has ever existed. It hasn't. The agency would have advertised such a success.

It certainly didnt exist with the "alleged only" three people who were waterboarded in Gitmo. No, its a hypthotical invention. Infact, I have used the argument myself as a justification for torture in an extreme circumstance.
I would support its use even now should such a bizarre circumsatnce present. One might be forgiven to apply torture to save millions.

But the fact is its a fallacious argument, since that scenario has never occured. Its an extreme case not a norm. Thus, your invoking it is an attempt to GENERALLY GRANT ACROSS THE BOARD JUSTIFICATION for waterboarding / torture where no actual sceanrio for extreme use of interogation exists.

The ticking time bomb scenario wasnt the reason the reason the Inquision, or the Salem witch trials used torture. Nor was it why we tortured VC in Nam, or why the VC used it on Amer. POWs, or the Japanese used it either.
It was used to degrade, envoke fear,& pain, to squeeze tactical info from people who usually had none to offer so would make it up too stop the torture.

"Ticking time bomb" wasn't why the CIA used it in Gitmo either. Thus, your justification is fallacious.

Don't surrender your humanity, the high ground of ethical behavior that America has held dear for a false hypothetical.


Interested Bystander said...


How would you know that no information of value was given by people that were water boarded?

How do you know that the information didn't save people's lives?

People such as you just amaze me.

I have heard that the tactic was effective. Do you have a link that says it wasn't?

I suppose if someone kidnapped your family, and the authorities caught one of the kidnappers, you'd want them to wine and dine them, maybe take them to a movie and drinks afterwards, and then ask them nicely if they'd like to tell them where your family was. Oh don't forget the please.

And if the kidnapper didn't want to give the information, then you thank them and send them back to their cell.

Sounds like a ridiculous tactic to me.

I wouldn't care if the plot that was foiled was for an attack that was planned for a year from now.

Water boarding is not a desired tactic to get information, I would give you that, but it is effective in some instances.

If the professionals decide that this is the tactic needed, then it should be on the table.

Unknown said...

"interrogation experts say that normal interrogation works and torture doesn't."

If the "interrogation experts" knew this, they would use it. Mental anguish is not torture, if it were Rosie O would be on death row.

Unknown said...

substitute wouldn't for would

Editor said...

plague in al qaeda? i thought they were a plague

Anonymous said...

I hope more than 40 died. I also hope they find the rest of that stuff, before Al-Qaeda can release it upon innocent people.

As for torture. Our own forces used it agaisnt the Naziz(declassified documents) and it worked. They also used it against the Japanese. It worked. Our troops had there base tunnels down to a T. Our enemies used it against us too in the war. It worked too. Yes it stops working at a point. The info has to be verified with other people and means. Of course our experts say it does not work! They don't want to get nailed to a cross. Torture has been a tool that has been used since the beginning of time. In my own outfit all of us "tortured" we told them everything we knew too! Some guys held out longer than others. And we got worse than waterboarding. Even the pilots that got shot down in Namtold how they talked under torture. But it was not held against them. Wake up and read history. How major battles were won and lost because just one man spilled the bean under torture. Jesus! Thanks for the info on the disease Rednck!

Dromedary Hump said...

First..calm yourself. I didnt say I would oppose torture for the hypothetical ticking time bomb scenario, I said it is a poor justifcation for the free and sanctioned use of torture on suspects in general.

The good old "what if your family was kidnapped..." scenario is silly. As the victim of a crime, my personal feelings do not supercede the laws of society, thus have no bearing on what I'd like to do/have done to the suspects.

The implication of your statement is that we should endorse torture for all criminals , dometic and foreign, who are SUSPECTED of having commited a felony, or SUSPECTEDof having information that can lead to the prevention of a felony, or a felon's apprehension. Or maybe youre only proposing that for bearded guys with towels on their heads?

Thus, you endorse amending the US constitution's prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment, and any and all rights of suspects to be free from physical intimidation and assumed to be innocent. Nice.
Your position would be hailed by the Inquisition, totalitarian third world countries, Muslim extremists, Pol Pot, Stalin and Hitler. Kudos to you for the company you keep and those you would emulate.

Interested Bystander asks: "How would you know that no information of value was given by people that were water boarded?"

The burden of proof as to waterboarding having actiually saved any lives falls on those who make the positive assertion. Thus, show me.

My position is simple: if it had benefited us/ saved lives, then those who endorsed it as a valid and valuable technique would have presented evidence of it's effectiveness in saving lives, preventing attacks, to bolster their position and shut the opposition up.

They havn't, because they can't. There is no value to them in keeping a revelation like that secrete. Think about it..

Finally, do your own google search on the effectiveness of torture in extracting "accurate and actionable" information. Access the studies by angencies and military analysists and psychologists. You'll find they are in virtual agreement that it is inneffective... regardless of what you learned on "24" from agent Bower.

Best regards,

Dromedary Hump said...

Gary said: "How major battles were won and lost because just one man spilled the bean under torture. Jesus!"

First, Thanks for your service to the country.

Next... tell us, please, exactly how many battles WERE won and lost as a result of torture? I'd like to see the data. Maybe a link to a credible source. Or is that hyperbole based on assumption?

So, lets take your premise the next step. Based on your position:

In WWII, we tortured POWs better and more frequently than the Japanese and Germans tortured OUR POWS, thus we won more battles resulting in our winning the war. (?)

In Nam, the North Vietnames and VC tortured better and more often than we did, so THEY won more battles, and thus won the war. (?)

If the answer is that those statements are erroneous suppositions, not based on fact, are unsupportable by evidence, is a gross mis-representation of reality, then why proffer that torture is an effective and justifiable technique that wins battles and thus makes one victorious in war?

Perhaps you can prove otherwise, you have access to evidence and not simple supposition. I'd love to see it.