November 21, 2016

McCain promises action if Trump uses torture

NY Magazine-- Senator John McCain, a torture survivor from his five years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, told a security conference on Saturday that the U.S. will not resume the practice of torturing prisoners for information, despite President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign promises to do so.

Answering a question at the Halifax International Security Forum about what powers Congress has to prevent a president from allowing waterboarding, McCain got agitated and noted that waterboarding and other forms of torture now violate both the Geneva Convention and U.S. law:
If [any agency of government] started waterboarding, I swear to you, there’s a whole bunch of us that would have them in court in a New York minute. And there’s no judge in America that wouldn’t say they’re in violation of the law because it’s specifically, in law, now prohibited. So I don’t give a damn what the president of the United States wants to do, or anybody else wants to do, we will not waterboard, we will not torture, we will not torture people … it doesn’t work, my friends, it doesn’t work.
The audience broke into applause when McCain got to the “we will not torture” part, and he later added, “My God, what does it say about America if we’re going to inflict torture on people,” before declaring that the practice invalidates America’s moral superiority in the world, at which point the crowd applauded again.

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