There is no justification for torture

Editor, Reference is made to Junior Sabena Mutabazi's article, "The war on terror must not obliterate our moral values" (The New Times, December 18).

Editor,

Reference is made to Junior Sabena Mutabazi’s article, “The war on terror must not obliterate our moral values” (The New Times, December 18).

Excellent article! Torture is illegal under the Geneva Conventions, the U.N. Convention against Torture, the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. Army Field Manual. And redefining it in the name of ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’, as the Bush lawyers have tried to do, does not make torture legal.

Torture destroys the human soul, and it is not mere mental anguish or enhanced interrogation.

Experts such as Alfred McCoy, from the UW-Madison, and Carol Wickersham, from Beloit College, as well as the centres for the victims of torture like the one in Minneapolis, all say that the effects are deep and permanent and that psychological torture is even more harmful than physical torture.

Torture is not effective and the testimony of those who have been tortured is that they confess to anything to stop the pain.

Fortunately, our choice is not between practicing torture and becoming victims of terrorism. Torture is a response of fear and despair. We can choose instead to respond with courage and hope, choose to act humanely and obey the rule of law.

Martin S. K.

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