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16. Mar 2007

Torturtilståelser - til eftertanke

Den terrormistænkte Khalid Sheihk Mohammed tilstår efter mange års fangenskab både det ene og det andet.

Om afhøringerne af Khalid Mohammed citerer Bistroisten dette fra Ron Suskinds bog The One Percent Doctrine:
In the first few weeks of intense interrogative pressure, the most effective method is sleeplessness. After a few days of no sleep, a person will say almost anything for relief. KSM [Khalid Sheikh Mohammed], half delirious, described several plots that were in the talking stages, including the potential hijacking of other airliners in an attack on Los Angeles in 2002. There were other plots he mentionedthat had never passed the stage of talk. And, at one point, he said, "There’s a man in London named al-Hindi." That was it. All parts of the intelligence community and every U.S. ally in the intelligence war, starting with Britain, were alerted about someone "named al-Hindi". Not much had been given in that one sentence. No one picked up any leads.

But, as days of stony silence passed, with interrogators sending thin daily reports to Langley, the pressure built. Many days, Bush would ask Tenet, "What are we getting from KSM?" in the morning briefing. Tenet would have no answer. Not much of anything. Then, the next day, the same question.

This is how, time and again, boundaries are stretched. The President, or Vice President, repeatedly expresses a desire, or need, to a senior official. It’s clear that neither elected official wants to know too much about the hows. They just want it done, accomplished, to do something - as the President often said to top aides - "you didn’t think you were capable of."

With such prodding, the United States would slip into the darkest of ethical abysses.

KSM’s two children, a seven-year-old boy and a nine-year old girl, were also in U.S. custody, picked up when the Karachi safe house had been raided the previous September. From Langley, a message was passed to the interrogators at a secret detention center in Thailand, where KSM was being held: do whatever's necessary.

According to several former CIA officials, interrogators told KSM his children would be hurt if he didn’t cooperate. The response, said one CIA manager with knowledge of the incident: "He basically said, so, fine, they'll join Allah in a better place."
Hvor meget skal man lægge i tilståelser fremtvunget med sådanne midler - om man må spørge?