Most of Those Tortured Were Innocent → Washingtons Blog
Most of Those Tortured Were Innocent - Washingtons Blog

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Most of Those Tortured Were Innocent

One of the main excuses used to justify torture is that the people being tortured were bloodthirsty terrorists, who would do far worse to us if we didn't stop them.

Is that true?

Judge for yourself:

  • The number two man at the State Department under Colin Powell, Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, says that many of those being held at Guantanamo Bay were innocent, and that top Bush administration officials knew that they were innocent. Moreover, he said:
    "This philosophy held that it did not matter if a detainee were innocent. Indeed, because he lived in Afghanistan and was captured on or near the battle area, he must know something of importance (this general philosophy, in an even cruder form, prevailed in Iraq as well, helping to produce the nightmare at Abu Ghraib). All that was necessary was to extract everything possible from him and others like him, assemble it all in a computer program, and then look for cross-connections and serendipitous incidentals--in short, to have sufficient information about a village, a region, or a group of individuals, that dots could be connected and terrorists or their plots could be identified.

    Thus, as many people as possible had to be kept in detention for as long as possible to allow this philosophy of intelligence gathering to work. The detainees' innocence was inconsequential. After all, they were ignorant peasants for the most part and mostly Muslim to boot."

    (see this and this). Indeed, Wilkerson signed a declaration under penalty of perjury stating that Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld covered up the fact that hundreds of innocent men were sent to Guantanamo because they feared that releasing them would harm the push for the war in Iraq and the broader war on terror.

Postscript: One commentator wrote:

Well, there you go. If most were innocent, that means some were guilty. That totally justifies the torture, right?


  1. This is the link for the investigation of the 800th Military Police Brigade : the Taguba Report. Special note should be made that custody of prisoners was taken AWAY from professional interrogators who knew how to get prisoners to reveal useful information.
    That tells you right there that anything said about the treatment of prisoners had anything to do with 'extracting information' is an outright lie.

  2. I was sure that many were innocent when we started releasing them after torturing them. Look at the cases in Germany, England, and Italy. All claim to have been tortured and yet we released them. We gave cash to people in Pakistan and Afghanistan to turn in suspected terrorists and then we tortured them to find out if they were terrorists.

  3. George wrote: "One of the main excuses used to justify torture is that the people being tortured were bloodthirsty terrorists, who would do far worse to us if we didn't stop them."

    Do you have a few links that would persuade RedTeam fanatics? I need ammo.

  4. The whole point of torturing these people was to incite fear in the populace. Of course the horror stories were going to make it back home to the people in Iraq and Afghanistan. It had nothing to do with "interrogations" it was wan-ton torture to control the people. There never was a threat to the US by the people of Iraq or Afghanistan. 9/11 was a Reichstag on the American people to garner public support of conquest on behalf of Israel and furthering the Americna empire. Torture has always been used as a means of conrtrol by the invaders to suppress would be freedom fighters. We will get the same treatment when they come for us.

  5. Maybe torture is a tool of the Global Elite to turn the world against the US, once our economy completely colapses, the rest of the world will be justified in attacking the US. Maybe torture is a tool of the Global Banking System to finance war against the US by instilling hatred in the rest of the world. Maybe they are ALL innocent and only guilty in working for the CIA in the first place.

  6. You're implying facts that are not in evidence.

    You've posted a bunch of articles stating that many of the people detained were innocent. But we also know that only a tiny percentage were tortured by anyone's definition.

    It is entirely possible, even likely, that the innocent were not tortured.

  7. and your point being?

    torture has nothing to do with 'guilt' or 'innocence' it has only to do with instilling terror and apprehension in the minds of those citizens who might reject it or feel it's 'wrong' and must be 'ended', that's what it's about.

    it never has and never will have anything to do with 'innocence' or 'guilt', it's strictly a terror tool aimed at the masses to cow them down and make them fearful of their government. this government. this illegitimate, amoral, murdering, torturing government. that one!

  8. oh spare me the 'how'd you know they were innocent' bullshit line.

    without a fucking trial, how the fuck did anyone ascertain their guilt, dickweed? eh?

    what a right wing fuckwad shill for torture!

  9. What do you mean most of those tortured are innocent? All of them are innocent of the crimes of which they have been accused. Seing that the so-called war on terror is the biggest fraud in the annals of modern civilization, every act against these people perpetrated by the proponents of this fraud is the height of immorality, injustice and inhumanity. The 911 tragedy was nothing but state sponsored terror--a false-flag operation conspired within the intelligence community of the US. The real terrorists are those who have become the most vocal in their denunciation of terror.

  10. Guilty or innocent does not matter. The only thing that matters is that torture is illegal Internationally and Nationally, no qualifications, no circumstances, no bending the laws, no excuses. Break the law do the time from those who ordered it to those who executed it.

  11. Absolutely. And for those doofi (plural of doofus) who insist "only a few people" were tortured, to me that is like some guy saying, "Hey, I work in an elementary school with 1,200 kids---and I only molested three of them!"

  12. Oh I'm sorry I thought that being detained in prison for 5,6,7,8,years without the possibility of freedom or even a trial to show you are guilty of nothing could be construed as torturous.
    When you get picked up in 2002 for being near the war zone ( which is a great portion of the country) and never released because you look like a possible terrorist, when you get out you may not have the best things to say about the "best country in the world".
    You may even be angry and cynical.Who knows. It's possible you'll be pissed. Entirely possible.

  13. The fact is it is illegal and immoral, here in the United States and most other nations with decency.
    We need to expose this for what it is - a damn crime against humanity.

  14. The torture of these unfortunates is actually something of an improvement on America's past treatment of prisoners. After all in Vietnam our troops took many a Vietcong for a ride in a helicopter followed by his very abrupt descent to the ground. US troops from the Civil War onwards have been notorious for their disinclination to take prisoners.

    "Aggressive war is the supreme international crime. For from it come all the others."

    Justice Robert H. Jackson, chief US prosecutor at Nurembery.

  15. This philosophy held that it did not matter if a detainee were innocent. - nothing more need be said.

  16. Often overlooked in attempts to justify torture is that even if all the victims were terrorists (doubtful), and even if torture produced actionable intelligence (doubtful), the ability to try and convict them for criminal actions is thwarted in any legitimate judicial venue if the case against them is based on evidence obtained as a rsult of torture.

  17. Why torture is bad:
    -It's illegal
    -It's immoral
    -It's unreliable (for intelligence)
    -It's infuriating (for the enemy)
    I think that sums it up, basically.

  18. I remember a few years ago that the Brazilian woman who is now my wife said that Brazilian police learned torture techniques from Americans. I insisted that torture is illegal in the States and that she must be mistaken. However, illegal or not, it appears that torture is more widespread among Americans than I had thought.


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