News Flash: Taliban Waterboards Captured U.S. Soldiers–Claims “Not Torture”
According to reports out of Kabul, the Taliban announced that they have waterboarded three U.S. soldiers taken prisoner. The Taliban commander asserted that waterboarding is not torture and does not violate the Geneva Convention or U.S. law. He assured everyone that a medical officer monitored all waterboarding sessions to insure that no permanent damage was done to the soldiers. In addition, he said they were careful to follow the directions on waterboarding in a SERE training manual they found posted on the internet.
In support of his assertion that waterboarding is not torture, the Taliban commander cited legal analysis produced by the Office of Legal Counsel of the U.S. Department of Justice. He pointed out that the authors of this legal analysis are a respected federal judge on the second highest court in America and a professor at a top American law school. The Taliban commander also referred to the careful legal analysis of a Distinguished Professor of Law who concluded that waterboarding is not torture because U.S. trainers did it to their own troops “hundreds and hundreds of times.”
This “news flash” by Brian Tamanaha on the Balkinization blog is obviously fake, but is nonetheless brilliant.
A commenter on that site makes the added point that that Cheney’s argument “torture was acceptable because it was effective” could also be used by the other side to justify terrorist attacks, since they too are “effective”.