Christopher Hitchens Admits Waterboarding is Torture

You have to hand it to him: journalist Christopher Hitchens, who previously discounted that waterboarding was indeed torture, admits in the August issue of Vanity Fair that it is, indeed, torture. In the article, called "Believe Me, It's Torture," Hitchens gives a recount of being voluntarily waterboarded last year in North Carolina. You can watch the video—complete with weird, Enigma-esque soundtrack—and witness the self-described "wheezing, paunchy scribbler" undergo the water torture. Afterwards, Hitchens says:

Everything completely goes on you when you're breathing water. You can't think about anything else. It would be bad enough if you did have something, suppose they wanted to know where a relative of yours was, or a lover, you'd feel, ‘well, I'm going to betray them now, 'cause this has to come to an end, I can't take this anymore.’ But what if you didn't have anything? What if they'd got the wrong guy? Then you'd really be in danger of losing your mind very quickly.

What if they'd got the wrong guy, indeed.

Hitchens isn't the first person to volunteer to be waterboarded. You'll recall that Daniel Levin, the former acting assistant attorney general to John Ashcroft, was also voluntarily waterboarded in 2004 while he was attempting to rework the Justice Department's legal position on torture. He also concluded that it is indeed torture but was forced out of the DOJ when Alberto Gonzales became attorney general, before he could complete a second memo that would have limited the military's use of torture.

On Monday, the government announced charges against Abd Al-Rahim Hussain Mohammed Al-Nashiri, whom the CIA has admitted to waterboarding. Al-Nashiri says:

From the time I was arrested five years ago, they have been torturing me. It happened during interviews. One time they tortured me one way, and another time they tortured me in a different way. I just said those things to make the people happy. They were very happy when I told them those things.

Additionally, the Miami Herald reports:

In response to a reporter's question, [Hartmann] said it would be up to a U.S. military judge — at trial — to decide whether to accept evidence obtained through waterboarding.

''That's the beauty of the system,"' he said.

There you have it, ladies and gents: the "beauty" of the untested, deeply flawed military commission system is that you can make up the rules as you go along (and possibly use evidence obtained through torture)!

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Bryan

Hitchens claims about waterboarding must be discounted. Why? Because he only made the statements after being tortured, obviously. Since torture only results in bad information, waterboarding could not be torture.
:)

Edwinter

As a graduate of Navy's SERE school and one that waterboarded twice during my imprisonment, I think Hitchens has proven himself a weenie (for lack of a better word) waterboarding is not fun but it doesn't hurt and is noninvasive.
It is uncomfortable and for an fat and out of shape drunk it probably is more water than you would want to try an consume in one sitting. Outside of that it works on fear...of drowning...WOW!
How awful!
I think the left in this country needs to grow a pair and step up.

MAKAAINA

What a load of Shibai.

Why are we arguing whether or not water boarding is torture.

In my United States we would never even consider using it if there was the smallest question, and we certainly would not use it while the question was being debated.

The using and debate on torture is a mark of two things:

1. The American Politicians are willing to tolerate or do anything to show their constituents that they are doing all in there power to keep them safe.

2. The Leaders and politicians are willing to participate or tolerate any inhumane act to stay in power.

In the first case the politicians could not use torture if the public had not become so cowardly and afraid. Our founding fathers wrote the Declaration of Independence under threat of Death. I am almost glad that they cannot be here now to see how spineless their countrymen have become allowing torture of other humans to supposedly get "reliable" intel just to keep them safe.

In the second case look at the House of Representatives and how they so easily said the Fourth Amendment can be disregarded in the FISA bill. They are willing to ignore illegal electronic searches and engage in wire tapping so that the public will not say they are soft on terror and vote them out of office. They should be voted out of offic

Arizona Sunset

Waterboarding-

1492- The Spanish Inquisition/Vatican/ was using waterboarding for five years to convert Jews to
Christianity. They were true experts in torture.

They kept meticulous records in all of their torture methods just as the Nazis did. These Vatican records are probably kept to this day in their basements. Probably filed under the letter, "W".... Along with these records are kept holy implements of the 2nd Temple of Jerusalem which the Vatican raped from this Temple and they refuse to turn over these Temple implements to their rightful owners, the Jewish people of Israel.

You might want to expose this to the younger generation of people for their information....

Arizona Sunset

Waterboarding-

1492- The Spanish Inquisition/Vatican/ was using waterboarding for five years to convert Jews to
Christianity. They were experts in torture.

They kept meticulous records in all of their torture methods just as the Nazis did. These Vatican records are probably kept in their basements. Probably look under the letter, "W".... Along with these records are kept holy implements of the 2nd Temple of Jerusalem which the Vatican raped from this Temple and they refuse to turn over these Temple implements to their rightful owners, the Jewish people of Israel.

You might want to expose this to the younger generation of people....

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