Banning Torture

FEBRUARY 13TH, 2008 | TomHarkin

Yesterday, the Senate passed the Intelligence Authorization Act, which bans the use of torture by the United States government. Under the Act, specific practices that the Bush Administration has employed, including waterboarding, electric shocks, beatings, use of dogs, forcing prisoners to stand naked, and induced hypothermia, will be explicitly prohibited. It was a close vote, but Democrats prevailed in our effort to regain our moral authority around the world.

The President has, throughout his entire administration, damaged our credibility around the world by sanctioning the use of torture. We lost our moral balance when this president lowered our standards on this critical issue. The world expects more from us and we should meet and exceed those expectations.

Going back to ratification of the Geneva Convention over fifty years ago, Congress has repeatedly stated that torture is a violation of the nation’s highest values and is simply not permitted. The Bush Administration has simply refused to acknowledge that the practices it has employed are illegal.

The Senate’s vote made it very clear that abuse and torture of detainees is a crime that will not be tolerated. Not only is torture against our nation’s values, it is simply ineffective, as our military has repeatedly emphasized. Notable military officials and veterans have deplored these tactics, including General David Petraeus. But this reckless president and his Attorney General, Michael Mukasey, continue to tarnish America’s integrity by sanctioning torture.

As we continue to look toward the future, we can not afford to sit back and wait for a new president to restore our moral standing around the world.

I am proud of what the Senate did to ban torture.

Thanks for your continued support,

Tom | digg this | stumble it! | share on facebook

On February 26th, 2008 at 05:26 PM, kenneth dale wrote:

i need to apolgise in advance for not being more knolidgable about the use of the internet to express my views or ask questions. i’m retired so i have a lot of time to watch tv,mostly c the senate is debating the irac war again.and it seems to me the focus that every one,pro or con dances around the real reason we got into this in the first place,whitch was for this adminastratin to inituate a policy that will dominate the oil production and control in a 3 or 4 country area over thair.i know oil is important to the U.S. but is it worth us selling out our principals and ideals we hold dear, when we should be finding alternate sorces any how. maybe if someone could inform me on how to ask questions to my senator,i could stop taking up space on the comment page. [email protected] thank you

On February 27th, 2008 at 08:07 AM, Ryan Alexander wrote:


Thank you for your comment. Please send your question to [email protected] and I will make sure to pass your question along.


On March 6th, 2008 at 03:48 PM, sam sixpac wrote:

Golly senator harkin, why don’t we just put these terrorists up at the Marriott in des moines and treat them like old,rich uncles and they will tell us all the stuff they are going to do to kill us. i understand they go after the senators very early. if this don’t work maybe you have a good idee about how to get them to talk. i will appreciate hearing your thoughts on this. sam sixpac

On March 16th, 2008 at 01:30 PM, ken dale wrote:

golly sam, why don’t we just and burn holes oin them,orcut little chuncks of meat off of thair bones.that way we can be down to thair level and win more friends and influince more people the world over the way they do.and besides the way this adminastration does busness you might be inflicting pain on an inocent person just to fucilate the process of illimation.and i really don’t want my country to degrade to that point.

On April 6th, 2008 at 12:12 PM, Paul wrote:

Golly Ken, maybe you should go and negotiate with them if you think sam’s logic is so off based. Get a clue- they would cut your head off for being American. You cannot change that.

Liberalism is the real torture. The dems have degraded the country far more than waterboarding some poor terrorists.

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