Is waterboarding torture, as the UN Convention Against Torture asserts?
Or is it not torture, but just punishable by death? (Sen. John McCain pointed out during his presidential campaign that the US hanged several Japanese men after they were convicted of waterboarding American soldiers during World War II).
Or is it legal, as former President George W. Bush averred in an interview Monday, “because the lawyer said it was?”
Bush made the comment to NBC’s Matt Lauer during an interview about his new book, “Decision Points.”
Waterboarding is legal, Bush said, “because the lawyer said it was. He said it did not fall within the Anti-Torture Act. I’m not a lawyer, but you gotta trust the judgment of people around you and I do.”
Lauer pushed for more of an explanation after Bush’s defense.
“Critics say that you got the Justice Department to give you the legal guidance and the legal memos that you wanted,” Lauer remarked. “Tom Kean, who was a former Republican co-chair of the 9/11 commission, said they got legal opinions they wanted from their own people.”
“He obviously doesn’t know,” Bush responded. “I hope Mr. Kean reads the book. That’s why I’ve written the book. He can, they can draw whatever conclusion they want. But I will tell you this. Using those techniques saved lives. My job is to protect America and I did.”
The British government considers waterboarding to be a form of torture and the former chair of the Commons intelligence and security committee doubts Bush’s claim that the practice saved any lives in the United Kingdom, the Guardian reports.
Also during in the interview, Bush explained that his mother had a miscarriage when he was a teenager and showed him the fetus. (Click for Related story: Bush: Mom gave me permission to talk about seeing her fetus in a jar)
“She says to her teenage kid, ‘Here’s a fetus,'” Bush told Lauer. “There’s no question that it affected me.”
“I never expected to see the remains of the fetus, which she had saved in a jar to bring to the hospital,” Bush wrote in his new memoir. “There was a human life, a little brother or sister.”
Bush’s mother, Barbara, gave him special permission to recount the story in his book, according to the New York Post.
The lawyer quip was first caught by the politics site Talking Points Memo.
Has anything changed since Burning Man’s sex assault and labor issues were exposed?
The last weekend in August marks the start of Burning Man, a week-long, festival in the Nevada desert consisting of freewheeling performance art, fanciful costumes, and a lot of drugs. The anarchic party with more than 50,000 attendees constitutes a pilgrimage for many attendees, lured by the promise of leaving the “default world” behind in exchange for a transformative or even spiritual experience.
Truckers are facing a ‘bloodbath’ in their industry — and it’s turning many in the pro-Trump group against him: report
Truckers are numerous, conservative, and hurting. And despite their widespread support for Donald Trump’s candidacy in 2016, a new report from Business Insider suggests the pain in the industry might be turning these workers away from the president.
The political trends in trucking are not insignificant. According to the American Trucking Associations, there were an estimated 3.5 million truck drivers in 2018. RTS Financial has found that there are 7.4 million jobs total “tied to the trucking industry.” And Business Insider reported that nearly 90 percent of truckers are registered voters, higher than the general population.
WATCH: Trump’s collusion with Russia is now a topic for impeachment — along with obstruction and racism
President Donald Trump's interactions with Russia are now a topic of the impeachment investigation.
"There was an important development in support for impeachment proceedings in the House of Representatives today," MSNBC anchor Lawrence O'Donnell reported Tuesday. "Important both in who the new support comes from and what that support is based on."
"Congresswoman Lauren Underwood of Illinois is one of the freshmen Democrats who flipped a Republican district last year in winning her election. She brings the total number of House Democrats supporting impeachment now to 126 -- a majority of the Democrats' 235 members of the House," he explained.