What Is Torture?

Slate has an interactive primer on American interrogation. It concludes:

It is not true, as many in the Arab world believe, that the United States has embarked on a reckless campaign of torture and abuse of its Arab prisoners of war. But what has happened—a slow slide from coherent, consistent standards for interrogation and treatment of prisoners to a sometimes ad-hoc, occasionally brutal search for information at all costs—should warrant public outcry. That it has not suggests either that this shift doesn’t interest us because it affects outsiders, or that we no longer consider torture or near-torture to be beyond the bounds of civil conduct.

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