Government And Torture Essay

2518 words - 11 pages

Kenny Anderson
Political Science
Prof. Hawn
10 October 2012
Government and Torture
Means of torture have been used around the world for a number of years. At one point in time it had been terminated in the United States; however, after the events of September 11, 2001, it has come back as an acceptable way to acquire information from terrorists.
Torture is, according to the United Nation Convention Against Torture in 1984: “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 ...view middle of the document...

In both international warfare, and internal warfare, causing pain to attain information or a confession, even merely to intimidate the victim is banned. Many of the rules affirmed for a case during these conditions are also applied to wartime. These rules are for public officials and organizations, not private individuals. This all turns to an issue when the private individuals are torturing, but not getting reprimanded the same. A lot of organizations, such as Amnesty International USA, have been trying to correct this for many years. Another inconsistency is the difference between both ill treatment and torture. Throughout wartime, the prisoners of war, civilians, and peaceable personnel are required to be treated well. However internationally, between the two there are no legal differences. If you treat a person poorly or torture them, the perpetrator is punished as if it is the same issue. Nevertheless, the incongruity between the two when it occurs in individual countries is left up to that particular country's laws.
United States policy on torture has continually evolved over the years to conform more closely to the policy established by the United Nations. In 1998, in junction with the Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act, the United States adopted the United States Policy with Respect to the Involuntary Return of Persons in Danger of Subjection to Torture. This means that the United States can no longer send people back to their respective country if there is a threat of torture. Four years earlier in 1994, the United States consented to the United Nations' stipulations stated in the Convention Against Torture. Part of this said that a person cannot be sent somewhere if there is a possibility of them being tortured. Before these policies were ratified, prisoners could be threatened with deportation home, where their fellow citizens would abuse them. This is a form of psychological abuse because the victim is forced to choose abuse or even death in his or her own country or to give the persecutor satisfaction with the wanted answer. After the September 11th attacks, the United States began the War On Terror, which started with potential terrorists being taken into custody and interrogated. They were held at Guantanamo Bay. Beginning in 2002, there have been eleven children, a person under the age of eighteen, on this United States Naval Base in the Oriente Province of Cuba. On several occasions, the interrogations were taken too an extreme. The persecutors took advantage of the methods that had been approved. These cases breeched protocol and created a negative name for this detention camp that was initially established to help stop terrorism. The United States has and is continuing to investigate each case, in order to properly rebuke the issues. Since 1994, the United States has been gradually reconstructing is torture policy. The result is creating equality to all, just like our forefathers always intended.
The international...

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