Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Another Question Answered: Torture, Once Again, Did Not Work

You all know by now that bin Laden was located at least in part by his use of a courier. In all the bragging since bin Laden's assassination, some security hawks have claimed that "harsh interrogation techniques" (let's call it what it was: torture) led Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to reveal the name of the courier.

As with all such claims to date, this one is bogus. Since I'm going to quote AP from ABC News, you'll have to depend on Mother Google to find the quote; I don't need the harassment:

Mohammed did not discuss al-Kuwaiti while being subjected to the simulated drowning technique known as waterboarding, former officials said. He acknowledged knowing him many months later under standard interrogation, they said, leaving it once again up for debate as to whether the harsh technique was a valuable tool or an unnecessarily violent tactic.

Bolds mine. Only a news wire wholly owned by the tough guys on the right would say that it leaves matters "up for debate"; clearly, torture didn't work, and standard interrogation did. Suck on that, nut-cases!

(H/T jamie of IntoxiNation.)


  1. I was over at my Mother's and heard two cretins, Republicant Congresscritter Peter King of Long Island [not NYC as he keeps trying to imply] and should-be-former attorney Alan Dershowitz attempting to claim that torture was effective.

    KSM produced all of the solid, actionable intel during interviews with an FBI agent before they starting torturing him. After the torture started he clammed up.

    "al-Kuwaiti", the Kuwaiti, as a nom de guerre or alias is worthless, like most of the names that the media reports. Come on, how useful would a alias of "Tex" be to find someone in Oklahoma.

    They assume that one of the couriers was "al-Kuwaiti", but there are a lot of Kuwaitis in the Middle East.

    This was a standard "walk and talk" operation. You develop sources, bribe people, gather bits and pieces, and put it all together.

    Their warrant=less wiretapping was of zero use because bin Laden hadn't used a phone since that moron Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama announced we were tracking him through his satellite phone, and he had no presence on the 'Net.

    You get the best information by listening, not simply asking questions. You have conversations, not interrogations.

    That was what worked in World War II and the Cold War. It will always work if you know what you are doing.

    I would note that the people who were the advocates of torture had no experience in intelligence work or police work.

  2. "I would note that the people who were the advocates of torture had no experience in intelligence work or police work." - Bryan

    Bryan, even before you said that, I knew that those people had no intelligence...

    The problem is that there are two kinds of conservatives. One kind actually believes the world works in accordance with the ideology they spout, people's motivations are simple and everyone is vulnerable to use of a bigger hammer if a smaller hammer doesn't work. The other kind doesn't believe that, but they have to pretend they do to stay in power.

    I do not know which of those two flavors will bring our nation to grief faster. The only comfort I take is that it is likely that they will doom themselves as they doom us all.



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