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A Former Marine on Torture

Gabe Rottman,
Legislative Counsel,
ACLU Washington Legislative Office
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May 10, 2007

From a reader, in response to this post.

As a former Marine Officer, I understand some of where the troops are coming from. While I abhor the idea of torturing someone, if my friend was about to die if I didn’t do it, I’ll admit I might be inclined to do it in the heat of the moment (and have nightmares about it later).HOWEVER… I’d be doing it with the full knowledge that it was wrong and I’d likely be made to answer for it later. I could still hope for a Presidential Pardon if I felt my reasons were defensible. This is as it should be.The President already has the right to pardon anyone he sees fit, but giving the government a blanket authority to torture at will is making it far too easy and it allows the President to give a “free pass” to everyone without ever having to explain his reasons for doing so.