Prisoner Interrogations in the War on Terror

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The US Supreme Court says that the Geneva Conventions apply to suspects in the war on terror.  Common Article 3 prohibits "outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment."  In a dispute with Republican Senators, including John McCain, President Bush says that's too "vague" to protect CIA interrogators from being sued for abusing prisoners in the war on terror, and says he'll call off the interrogations unless Congress writes "clarity" into the law. In the meantime, the Army's top uniformed lawyer, Major General Scott Black, has written to the dissenting Senators that redefining the Conventions "is unnecessary and could be seen as a weakening of our treaty obligations." What does the President mean by "alternative interrogation techniques?" How are they different from torture? Is the US being tough enough to protect American safety?




Warren Olney