China

Red China Sends Secret Police to Cuba, With U.S. Blessing

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Commenter Fluffy alerts us to this ABC News story:

U.S. military personnel at Guantanamo Bay allegedly softened up detainees at the request of Chinese intelligence officials who had come to the island facility to interrogate the men ? or they allowed the Chinese to dole out the treatment themselves, according to claims in a new government report.

Buried in a Department of Justice report released Tuesday are new allegations about a 2002 arrangement between the United States and China, which allowed Chinese intelligence to visit Guantanamo and interrogate Chinese Uighurs held there.

Whole thing here.

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  1. I didn’t think I could be shocked by stories like this anymore.

    Guess I was wrong.

    This is appalling.

  2. Maybe the Chinese secret police were just there to give pointers to our secret-police-in-training?

    You should give them the benefit of the the doubt, you know.

  3. Perhaps the guys running the military tribunals could bring in some “ChiComs” to give them pointers on how to run kangaroo courts.

  4. Actually, given the fact that Bush is in charge, maybe one reason the kangaroo courts aren’t working so well is because Bush asked Australia for advice on how to run them instead of asking China.

    [/cymbaltinkles]

  5. Fluffy, stop what you’re doing and step away from the comedy. Puns are dangerous and should only be handled by experts.

  6. You see? THIS is why we need pun control!

  7. You see? THIS is why we need pun control!

    It’s for the unfunny nerdy children!

  8. Boy, the dirty ChiComs and their human rights viola- oh, wait.

  9. What hath America wrought?

  10. The real problem with Chinese interrogation is, two hours later, you have to soften up the prisoner all over again.

  11. I should have seen this coming when Bush described Russia’s war against Chechnya and Beijing’s suppression of the Uighers as part of the “Global War on Terror.”

  12. Hey, FDR invited the NKVD to help…oh, nevermind.

  13. Abdul, please see my warning to Fluffy above. We can’t have amateurs just firing off puns left and right. Leave it to the experts.

  14. I wonder if any Chinese secret police torturers were on-site the day that the Pentagon’s pet Network Military Advisors took their Potemkin Village tour of Guantanamo as part of their illegal covert propaganda campaign.

  15. If you’re at all concerned about the cost of our never ending war on terror, this is a good thing. We’ve outsourced our torture and human rights violations to China, and that has to be cheaper.

  16. If puns are outlawed…

  17. joe:

    War on Terror, or War on Anything That Opposes The State?
    Bush is a sorry excuse for a Republican..

  18. Abdul, please see my warning to Fluffy above. We can’t have amateurs just firing off puns left and right. Leave it to the experts.

    Strictly speaking, it wasn’t a pun. It was a mild ethnic joke. But that merely illustrates the danger of jokes that look like puns. They can be mistaken for real puns, with deadly consequences.

  19. The Guantanamo defenders are notably absent from this thread.

    I think the mere presence of Chinese personnel opens up a huge raft of questions with regard to previous administration dodges about what goes on at Guantanamo.

    We now have to look at every statement that ever said [paraphrased]: “US personnel have not engaged in torture at Guantanamo” with a jaundiced eye. How should we parse those denials now? Did US personnel merely ask for their Chinese colleagues to do the real heavy lifting type of torture? “The Red Cross has reviewed all US operations at Guantanamo.” How should we parse that kind of statement? Are there non-US operations at Guantanamo? Were there also Russian personnel looking for Chechens? Were there Egyptian personnel there to help torture Muslim Brotherhood members? Did we bring over Kurdish operatives? Questions, questions.

  20. Abdul, very true, but I will still have to charge you with unauthorized discharge of a pun and reckless endangerment.

  21. This strikes me as a really bad idea. Both the Chinese and whatever nimrod gave them the green light are equally deserving of condemnation.

  22. Questions, questions.

    Mere irrelevant details, Fluffy. Our hands are clean, because of outsourcing. That frees up US personnel to do the important work, like covering up the presence of Chicom goons, obstructing investigations, and lying about all of it. Those are good, high-paying jobs we want to keep in the US, right?

  23. Bush is a sorry excuse for a Republican..

    Let’s take that a little farther.
    Bush is a sorry excuse for a Republican human being.
    Bush is a sorry excuse for a Republican Christian.
    Bush is a sorry excuse for a Republican an American.

    Hmmm, it all works.

  24. Historically, the Chinese have had by far the most advanced torture techniques in the world. Torture in ancient Japan was referred to as Chinese questioning. The inclustion of Chinese interrogators should eliminate the question of whether these people are being toruted.

  25. Define torture.

  26. If waking up a person repeatedly at nite is torture, my kids are in the pudding real deep.

  27. Brotherben is a douchebag who does not realize that sleep deprivation is one of the most effective tortures around.

    Again, the entire semantic debate around these techniques is absurd, because either such techniques are effective, or they are not. If they aren’t effective, there’s no reason to use them. If they are effective, then they are self-evidently torture, because if they’re bad enough that guys who grew up sleeping on the floor in shacks during the Afghani winter can’t resist them, they’re obviously torture.

    And no, brotherben, being kept up for days at a time is not the same as someone disturbing your sleep for a few moments at night by horsing around.

  28. Historically, the Chinese have had by far the most advanced torture techniques in the world.

    Yeah, they also had paper and the compass before we did too — but we surpassed them in those areas, and we’ll catch up to them in torture too. Give us time.

  29. If they aren’t effective, there’s no reason to use them. If they are effective, then they are self-evidently torture, because if they’re bad enough that guys who grew up sleeping on the floor in shacks during the Afghani winter can’t resist them, they’re obviously torture.

    I’m on your side, but arguing that ANY interrogation technique that works is torture is going a bit too far.

  30. fluffer, so by your statement, it can be assumed that if a detainee gives information to his captors during civil discourse, then said discourse is self evidently torture?

  31. Being the douchebag that I am, I am unable to ascertain the legality of the U.S.’s treatment of detainees. I do think, however, that any information gleaned through psychological or physical pressures is,at best, questionable.

  32. If these practices were as trivial as their defenders pretend, said defenders wouldn’t feel the need to describe them inaccurately.

  33. And no, brotherben, being kept up for days at a time is not the same as someone disturbing your sleep for a few moments at night by horsing around.

    Filling a diaper, on the other hand…

    fluffer, so by your statement, it can be assumed that if a detainee gives information to his captors during civil discourse, then said discourse is self evidently torture?

    If it’s done without benefit of legal counsel it’s unconstitutional.

    “They aren’t citizens?” “They aren’t on U.S. soil?” Bull. Read the Declaration of Independence.

  34. Sorry, Fluffy. I’ll agree with you that sleep deprivation is highly unpleasant, but it ain’t torture. I agree with brotherben about the definitional fuzziness. I’ve read articles that seriously claimed having female GIs take their tops off (leaving bra on) and rubbing up against muslim detainees or pretending to smear menstrual blood on muslims is torture because it violates their religious taboos. That is so obviously horseshit as to be laughable. There’s a fairly obvious bright line on things like electric shock, broken bones, and blowtorches. But there’s a huge grey area with regard to more coercive techniques like waterboarding. Until we get a clear definition of torture, it’s hard to argue one way or the other.

    Part of it also the general squickiness of the subject. People look at waterboarding and say “OMG! That’s horrible!” Well, yes, but it is torture and therefore legally actionable? If so, why is it torture? The reasons for articulating any coercive behavior as torture are usually ill-defined beyond the general feeling of “that’s bad.”

    Personally, I lean towards the blood, scars and permanent physical damage theory. If what we’re doing doesn’t involve immediate or permanent physical damage, it’s probably not torture.

  35. If it’s done without benefit of legal counsel it’s unconstitutional.

    He asked whether it was torture, not whether it was Constitutional.

  36. Speaking of religious taboos. The local news nite b4 last reported the story of the U.S. soldier shooting a koran for target practice. The story was read that “an american military sniper used a Korean for target practice. The Korean was found with numerous bullet holes. The Korean also had graffiti inside.”

    It was several minutes b4 a correction was made.

  37. If what we’re doing doesn’t involve immediate or permanent physical damage, it’s probably not torture.

    That would mean the application of electric shocks was not torture.

    I’ve read articles that seriously claimed having female GIs take their tops off (leaving bra on) and rubbing up against muslim detainees or pretending to smear menstrual blood on muslims is torture because it violates their religious taboos. That is so obviously horseshit as to be laughable.

    I agree.

    fluffer, so by your statement, it can be assumed that if a detainee gives information to his captors during civil discourse, then said discourse is self evidently torture?

    Fine. If some people are going to be so specific that it trends into the deliberately obtuse, I’ll say the obvious: any method that involves the physical manipulation, abuse or coercion of the subject is torture, and is self-evidently torture if it works.

    So talking to the subject is not torture. At one time I would have thought that threatening the subject with violence, holding a fake execution, threatening their family, etc. was torture, but I have backed away from that now and consider those to be only run of the mill extortion.

    But beating the subject, denying him food or water, sleep deprivation, etc. are all torture whether they result in “organ damage” or not.

  38. That would mean the application of electric shocks was not torture.

    Electricity causes both immediate and permanent physical damage.

  39. Article 1 of the The United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment:

    1. Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.

    2. This article is without prejudice to any international instrument or national legislation which does or may contain provisions of wider application.

  40. I guess we’re just going to have to disagree on the sleep deprivation thing, Fluffy. I seem to agree with you on the rest of it, but I don’t see how sleep deprivation is torture.

    I’ll further clarify my position that if the technique in question has a non-negligible risk of injury or death, then we probably shouldn’t be doing it. I don’t trust people in general to pull off everything perfectly every time. I guess by this standard waterboarding is out, but I don’t know the risks.

  41. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.

    That sentence right there is a loophole big enough to drive a train through.

  42. An american military sniper used a Koran for target practice. The Koran was found with numerous bullet holes.

    Typical MSM-lite reporting. We want to know the size of the Koran and the range of the shooting, dammit! If this guy’s consistently perforating a 4×6 target from 500 yards, I want to know!

  43. Everyone who disagrees with me is a major douchebag, if not a quife.

  44. People have died from sleep deprivation.

    It can cause heart attacks and strokes after a few days.

  45. I think I’ve told this story here before, but on a 12-hour flight from Detroit to Tokyo, I was sitting in coach, reading Newsweek or something like that when I ran across an article that mentioned that the angle of reclined coach seating was exactly the same angle used by Soviet torture experts to ensure that their subjects did not sleep.

  46. People have died from sleep deprivation.

    It can cause heart attacks and strokes after a few days.

    You got a cite for that, joe? I can’t find anything that links death and stroke to sleep deprivation. Psychosis and hallucination, yes, but not death.

  47. It’s absurd to think that what the US gov’t does could constitute torture. If it were torture, there’d be no reason to conduct most of these interrogations in Cuba, Afghanistan, or former KGB sites Eastern Europe. Nor would there be any need to involve Chinese, Syrian, or Uzbek agents in interrogations.

    Duh!

  48. T, there is the South Korean who died after playing video games for 50 hours straight.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/4137782.stm

    It was one of those massive multiplayer games for losers – maybe his brain commited suicide.

  49. thoreau,

    Just because we have laws prohibiting torture doesn’t mean our outsourced foreign vendors are subject to those laws. It’s exactly like moving the manufacturing to China to avoid those pesky EPA regulations. Surely you wouldn’t prosecute Americans for the actions of foreigners, would you? You some kind of trans-national socialist or something?

  50. R C Dean

    reread my 12:06 post

  51. I did, BB. I didn’t see any of the info that I want – caliber, range, size of group.

    I’m not some kind of gun geek who wants to know temp, humidity, and wind speed and direction. Just the basics.

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