Thursday, September 01, 2005

There's a very good article about torture in the June issue of The Atlantic. You need a subscription to read the article, but numerous blogs summarize the contents. Basically, it cites the example of Marine Major Sherwood F. Moran, who was one of the most successful interregators of Japanese prisoners of war during WWII, by being nice to his prisoners and treating them with respect. Rather than treating them as combatants, he recognized they were no longer a threat in their present condition, and instead befriended them, and encouraged them to tell their story. Military Professor James Corum summarizes the lesson to be learned from Moran's example as "know their language, know their culture, and treat the captured enemy as a human being." If only Moran's example of "enlightened hard-boiled-ness" was taught to the grunts currently manning our "enemy combatant detention centers."

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