Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Jury's Out

Today's interview with Alan Dershowitz is pretty bizarre. Dershowitz wants to give the President (yes HIM!) the sole authority to order torture when it will clearly save lives, even though he begins the interview saying, "I don'’t think torture is ever acceptable."” The interview is a hodgepodge of assertions and contradictions, however his basic premise is that there are cases where torture can save many innocent lives--and this power to torture should be vested in the occupant of the White House. (He offers no evidence to prove that torture has ever saved innocent lives--but does spend quite a bit of time relating the hearsay of Israeli secret service agents who've told him about torture that has "worked.")
Oddly, there is a lot to agree with in the interview: Dershowitz asserts several times that the US is practicing torture, ending the piece by saying , "We doing it and denying it." Dershowitz also decries the disgusting, widespread nature US torture.
Inskeep does a fair job of asking some probing questions of Dershowitzargumentent, and the report ends with a trailer for tomorrow's continuation of the series in which a doctor being interviewed describes Dershowitz as being "dead wrong." We'll see if NPR does as the series progresses--they jury is still out.

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