American Torture: From the Cold War to Abu Ghraib and Beyond
by Michael Otterman (9780745326702)

American Torture: From the Cold War to Abu Ghraib and Beyond
Michael Otterman
Release Date: 20 March 2007
Format: Paperback / softback
Pages: 285
Category: Political Science
ISBN: 9780745326702
ISBN-10: 0745326706

George W. Bush calls them an "alternative set of procedures": forcing victims to stand for forty hours; depriving them of sleep for weeks on end; and strapping prisoners to inclined boards, then flooding their mouths with water. These techniques are torture, and they are legal in the United States.

Michael Otterman reveals the long history of U.S. torture. He shows how these procedures became standard practice in today's war on terror. Initially, the CIA based their techniques on the tactics of their enemies, the Nazis, Soviets, and Chinese. Billions of dollars were spent studying, refining, then teaching these techniques to interrogators charged with keeping communism at bay. They produced procedure manuals that were used in Vietnam, Latin America, and elsewhere. As the Cold War ended, these tortures---engineered to leave deep psychological wounds but few physical scars---were legalized using the very laws that were designed to eradicate their use. After 9/11, they were revived again for use on enemy combatants detained in America's vast gulag of prisoners across the globe---from secret CIA black sites in Thailand to the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Michael Otterman shows that these interrogation methods violate more than international law and fundamental human rights. They radicalize enemies, undermine credibility, and yield unreliable intelligence. They do not make us more safe. They make us less safe.

AUD $41.95

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