Via Donklephant, this gem–
BAGHDAD — An unnamed woman, her face shielded behind a curtain and her voice masked, gave a harrowing account today of torture and sexual abuse at the hands of Saddam Hussein’s security forces during the trial of the former Iraqi leader.
“They forced me to take off my clothes,” said the woman, referred to only as Witness A by the court. “They kept my legs up. They handcuffed me and started beating me with cables. It wasn’t just one guard, it was many guards.”
And here’s what Saddam’s attorneys said to respond to the victim’s story:
Defense attorneys also attempted to score political points against the U.S., the trial’s principle international backer.
“I agree that things in Abu Ghraib were, until recently, bad, but did they use dogs on you? Did they take photographs?” asked one defense attorney, attempting to raise the issue of U.S. prisoner abuse at the prison.
“No,” she replied.
First, it should be noted that this defense will be rejected, as the misdeeds of Americans are hardly relevant when discussing the past atrocities of Saddam Hussein. In a murder trial, it makes little difference if the defense brings up the fact that OTHER people murder.
Second, it should be pointed out that like Saddam, the soldiers who did this did face their day in court. I still think that this administration managed to blame all of this on a few low-level soldiers, rather than taking responsibility for why this really happened, but Lyddie England is in jail- as Saddam should be (if he is not executed).
However, this stings. Notwithstanding the firm belief by some that John McCain is a charlatan and a fool, this is precisely why his torture amendment (and it looks increasingly like McCain will win) should be passed and implemented.
Read Donklephant’s entire take, which would seem to suggest that according to WH standards, this woman who testified against Saddam wasn’t really tortured. She just experienced some ‘harsh’ interrogation techniques.
*** Update ***
So we might as well admit that by foreswearing the use of torture, we will probably be at a disadvantage in obtaining key information and perhaps endanger American lives here at home. (And, ironically, those who now allege that we are too rough will no doubt decry “faulty intelligence” and “incompetence” should there be another terrorist attack on an American city.) Our restraint will not ensure any better treatment for our own captured soldiers. Nor will our allies or the United Nations appreciate American forbearance. The terrorists themselves will probably treat our magnanimity with disdain, as if we were weak rather than good.
But all that is precisely the risk we must take in supporting the McCain amendment — because it is a public reaffirmation of our country’s ideals. The United States can win this global war without employing torture. That we will not resort to what comes so naturally to Islamic terrorists also defines the nobility of our cause, reminding us that we need not and will not become anything like our enemies.
The reason ‘they’ torture- they are evil and do not care about human life or humanity in general. The same reason we are fighting them, in other words.