Thursday, April 23, 2009

How to Force Confession by Torture

How to Force Confession by Torture
By Jerome Grossman

After a closed-door trial, American journalist Roxana Saberi was found guilty in an Iranian court on charges of espionage. An Iranian-American, Saberi had been living in Iran and working as a reporter although the Iranian government claimed it had withdrawn her press credentials. She was sentenced to eight years in prison.

The harsh sentence handed down to this native of North Dakota has generated a global outcry. President Obama and other national leaders as well as a plethora of media outlets have called for the release of this lovely young woman, once a finalist in the Miss American contest.

The Iranian government has not released any evidence against Saberi. Clearly, she has become a pawn in Iran's relations with the United States. In the political maneuvering, Iran may wish to accuse the U. S. and Israel of planning an attack. A confession of a plot by this lovely American would fit the strategy of Iran. And it might even be true, but still no excuse for torture. The United Nations Convention Against Torture is absolute in its prohibition of torture: “No exceptional circumstances whatever, whether a state of war or threat of war, internal political instability, or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.”

How to force the confession? Simply follow the tortures used by the C.I.A. as described by the experts on the International Committee of the Red Cross from their 43 page report on the treatment of fourteen "high-value" detainees in C.I.A. custody, published February 2007 on for more gory detail.

• Suffocation by water
• Prolonged stress in standing position
• Beatings by use of a collar
• Prolonged beating, kicking, slapping
• Confinement in a box severely restricting movement
• Prolonged nudity
• Sleep deprivation
• Exposure to cold temperature
• Prolonged Shackling
• Threats of ill-treatment to family
• Deprivation/restricted provision of solid food

Questions: If Roxana Saberi confesses, will the world believe it was not forced? Do the confessions forced by the C.I.A. on the grounds of national security set a precedent and valid excuse for using the same methods on Saberi and perhaps other Americans? How reliable and credible would Saberi’s tortured answers be? Enough for the Iranians to be sure of the confessed information? And how would the use of torture diminish the reputation of the government of Iran as it has diminished the U.S. government?

1 comment:

jmsjoin said...

Justice Department Lawyers she be outed and held accountable. None are above the rule of law even Darth Cheney, burn him! Actually we know who the enablers were that wrote the now infamous torture tapes. They were written by former injustice Department Lawyers John Yoo and Jay Bybee.

They enabled Bush and Cheney to Torture and they were not alone. The White House told Ashcroft to justify ways to torture and Rummy the Dummy approved 15 questionable techniques used by the military in Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, and Afghanistan.

That the military was torturing I find very disturbing, sorry! The Washington Independent » Using Law to Justify Torture
No wonder Darth Cheney is so anal retentive. We should be able to go after Bush too.

Obama now Hillary has asked for a speedy release of Roxana Saberi who is an Iranian American filming her native country of Iran. She is a sickly Iranian American journalist whose father is concerned she will not survive a prison stay or a proposed hunger strike.

She has conveniently and timely accused of spying for the US. and sentenced to 8 years in prison. First she was accused of buying wine then acting improper for a woman and lastly behind closed doors accused of spying and sentenced to 8 years in Prison for spying. The timing!

She is simply being used as a trump card, a human life to be used when dealing with Obama. I don't like it!


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