September 27, 2006

Are we any safer with the use of torture?

When the news about the wire-tapping of American citizens came out, I was outraged until the incident in England. My daughter was on one of the flights. Then, I became a little more circumspect, and I said,"Okay, maybe with the wiretaps."

Edwidge Danticat has published an article on torture in the Washington Post, “Does it Work?” where she describes her experiences working on a documentary about torture survivors in exile from Haiti. For anyone who has any doubts about the use of torture to get information from "suspects," read her article—especially the part: “This is why we have this proverb, one repentant torturer told me, 'bay kou bliye pote mak sonje.' The one who strikes the blow might easily forget, but the one who wears the scars must remember."

Thanks, Maud.


Stephen A. Bess said...

This is something that the average American cannot fathom. I have to read this.

side story:

I had the pleasure of meeting Edwidge Danticat a few years ago. I knew her name before I knew her face. I went to a symposium about Haiti at Galaudet University. She was one of the main speakers along with Sonia Sanchez and Danny Glover. I saw her before the program started and I asked my friend who she was. She told me and I was like, huh??? :)
I thought that she was a beautiful woman.

Geoffrey Philp said...

Dear Stephen,
I've thought about this for some time now. I know the world can sometimes be ugly, nasty, and dangerous. I have no illusions about what we as humans can do to each other.

But when America, the light of democracy (I am not being cynical.I would not want to live under a Moslem nor Christian theocracy) starts talking about torture, what hope is there for everyone else?


Stephen A. Bess said...

I agree. I think that America has never been able to openly express what they can and will do. The truth is that torture is (secretly) part of American history. The fear and threat of terror on this soil is causing America to expose it's hand. This is why G.W. is making statements, like "Dead or Alive," and "Torture." This is why Bill Clinton stated that his administration tried to "kill" Osama Bin Laden. This is the true nature of our government.

FSJL said...

death of the republic

the dream was born with flaws but hope awoke
slavery inequality injustice all were there
now torture's been made sacred at a stroke

the framers were corrupt yet honest folk
they sought to build a system that was fair
the dream was born with flaws but hope awoke

the president's nose is no longer filled with coke
he looks upon the world with a long stare
now torture's been made sacred at a stroke

upon our shoulders we have laid the yoke
the monster at the core is now laid bare
the dream was born with flaws but hope awoke

the fires of hatred faded now we stoke
to terror we have turned out of dumb fear
now torture's been made sacred at a stroke

once we spoke freely now we barely croak
our rulers now for justice do not care
the dream was born with flaws but hope awoke
now torture's been made sacred at a stroke