The Cheney Method
As I read the outrageous statements of Dick Cheney supporting waterboarding which is just another form of torture according to international law, and then I read the further outrageous statements supporting waterboarding by that Israeli agent, Senator Joe Lieberman, I am reminded of a story told to me by my uncle long ago when he returned from Stalag 17 after being held as a prisoner for 30 months during World War II.
My uncle told me of the atrocities suffered by many of the POW's, of the escape that was featured in the movie, "The Great Escape", etc. The one most vivid recollection I have is of what he told me had happened when the Americans arrived and freed the POW's. He said that the German officers were lined up and machine gunned to death. In his mind, this was the appropriate punishment for the horrible treatment they had inflicted upon the prisoners.
After World War II the U.S. participated in the executions of Japanese officers for WATERBOARDING torture of British and U.S. soldiers during the war. It IS torture, clearly, by U.S. and international law and there is a precedent for capital punishment of the perpetrators.
In America, Major Edwin Glenn was court-martialed and sentenced to ten years hard labor in 1901 for waterboarding a prisoner in the Philippines during the Spanish-American War. The US officially outlawed the practice after World War II, because it had been used against Allied troops by the Gestapo and the Japanese Kempeitai. In fact, eight Kempeitai officers were executed for waterboarding British prisoners, and Japanese officer Yukio Asano was convicted by an Allied court of war crimes in 1947 for, among other things, water boarding John Henry Burton, a US civilian.
John McCain said: "There should be little doubt from American history that we consider that as torture otherwise we wouldn't have tried and convicted Japanese for doing that same thing to Americans" .
Should Dick Cheney and George Bush be tried for approving this torture technique? Absolutely. And, if convicted, they should receive an equal amount of American justice that the Japanese received after WW2. In order to remain a free nation, we can only be truly free by setting an example for the rest of the world that we are a nation of laws and principles.
It is time to charge Cheney (who also supervised an assassination squad) and Bush with war crimes and to see the evidence presented in a public forum, not unlike the Nuremberg trials.