The United States' Use of Harsh Interrogation Practices
MARINE CORPS COMMAND AND STAFF COLL QUANTICO VA
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Since 911, American policy has been ambiguous regarding standards for gathering military intelligence in the context of interrogation techniques. American policy makers and the general public have disputed the use of aggressive interrogation methods for military intelligence. Public concern has heightened awareness of abuse by U.S. personnel at Abu Ghraib Prison and Guantanamo Bay and has led many to question the legality of such interrogations. The legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government have debated whether interrogation practices comply with U.S. statutes and treaties such as the U.N. Convention Against Torture CAT and the 1949 Geneva Conventions. Despite these statutes, each intelligence agency and Department of Defense DoD organization seems to employ different standards for conducting interrogations. Given the lack of a uniform policy, adversaries of the United States have challenged and attacked these methods. Al Qaeda has focused on the inconsistencies in U.S. detainee handling procedures to launch an effective information operations IO campaign. Terrorist groups disseminate propaganda that the United States sanctions cruel and unusual methods of torture against prisoners of war. The negative IO message coupled with domestic debate over the treatment of war prisoners have caused Americas moral integrity to be questioned on the world stage. An interagency standard for interrogation tactics, techniques, and procedures must be established to ensure consistent compliance and to restore the image of the United States in front of the world.
- Government and Political Science
- Sociology and Law
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Military Intelligence