CVT Statement on Cheney's Waterboarding Double Standard
Center for Victims of Torture Responds to Dick Cheney’s Waterboarding Double Standard that Places American Troops at Risk
St. Paul, MN – During this morning’s interview with former Vice President Dick Cheney, TODAY show host Matt Lauer posed a question about whether it would be okay for the Iranian government to waterboard an American citizen suspected of being a spy. Vice President Cheney replied, “We probably would object to it on the ground that we have obligations to our citizens and we do everything we can to protect our citizens.”
Yes. We do need to protect our citizens against torture and cruelty. Yet, waterboarding and other forms of torture championed by Vice President Cheney as U.S. counterterrorism measures endanger Americans, especially our brave troops, and actually undermine national security.
Military experts agree that torture and cruelty place service members at great risk of being subjected to similar inhuman treatment at the hands of our enemies if they are captured. Torture and cruelty also jeopardize the cooperation of our allies, which is vital to our ability to combat global terrorism.
We owe it to our military, our citizens abroad and to U.S. national security to renounce the pro-torture views of Vice President Cheney and other torture proponents.
We must continue to do all we can to make sure the U.S. adheres to the “Golden Rule” of interrogation policy – “We will not authorize or use any methods of interrogation that we would not find acceptable if used against Americans, be they civilians or soldiers” – endorsed by a bipartisan coalition of senior leaders from the military, national security, intelligence and foreign policy sectors.
CVT is a nonprofit based in St. Paul with an office in Washington D.C. and projects in Africa and the Middle East. Visit www.CVT.org.
brobideau [at] cvt [dot] org
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