Republican: Sodomy is not torture [VIDEO]

At a debate on Wednesday Republican Chris Shays calmly stood up and said (video, right):


"Now I've seen what happened in Abu Ghraib, and Abu Ghraib was not torture... It was outrageous, outrageous involvement of National Guard troops from (Maryland) who were involved in a sex ring and they took pictures of soldiers who were naked... And they did other things that were just outrageous. But it wasn't torture."
The irony is that this was in response to the question of what American can do to restore our "moral image" in the world.

Granted, whether Shays calls this torture, or whether he goes the Limbaugh route and characterizes it as one big sex-related frat prank, is not going to shift the debate over America's moral image today, tomorrow, or anytime soon.

But refusing to label Abu Ghraib torture is part of a mechanism that not only soils our moral image, but ensures that it remains soiled for years to come.

He refuses to label Abu Ghraib torture because he just voted in favor of "reinterpreting" the Geneva Conventions (and to retroactively shield the administration from war crimes). In other words, calling it torture would necessarily put the Abu Ghraib behaviors beyond the realm of this new interpretation he favors. Of course, refusing to call it torture, and thus placing it outside acceptable practices allowed by international law, also means that these weapons remain in the arsenal of those who wish to harm our soldiers.

So here, below, is how Shays answered the question over our moral image in the world. He said that everything below should not be outlawed and explicitly removed from behaviors deemed acceptable...

The Taguba report characterizes the behavior of Americans at Abu Ghraib as: "sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses."

Those abuses include:
Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; allowing a military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured after being slammed against the wall in his cell; sodomizing a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick, and using military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee.
The Red Cross not only indicated that detainee treatment appeared to be systemic, but also that what they witnessed was "tantamount to torture." And that's just what they were permitted to witness.

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.