No one should have a licence to torture people

I find Michelle Stirling-Anosh’s Sept. 1 article in the Red Deer Advocate to be strongly objectionable.

I find Michelle Stirling-Anosh’s Sept. 1 article in the Red Deer Advocate to be strongly objectionable.

She feels that the policies of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney authorizing torture of suspected terrorists, including water boarding are completely justified. In other words, the end justifies the means.

The experience that she had in Israel of being attacked by suicide bombers was undoubtedly very frightening, but it does not create the right to become inhumane oneself. Cruelty begets cruelty and does not solve problems but merely creates more and makes monsters of those who practise it.

I am old enough to have lived under the heel of Hitler in Nazi Austria, to have survived the blitz on southern England (including the bombing involving pilotless planes and projectiles released by Hitler on England).

While in service in the British Army, I saw the devastation of Europe from Nazi German occupation after the end of the Second World War. I am well familiar with the suffering caused to Jews and others by the Nazi regime. I feel I am well qualified to discuss this issue and respond to Stirling-Anosh’s article.

If we wish to live in a democracy and respect the rule of law, we must also respect the method by which a civilized society should enforce its rule. Cruelty and torture is not included.

If we employ disgusting methods to enforce our rule, we only lower ourselves to the level of those we despise.

The methods supported by Bush and Cheney are the same as those used with greater expertise by the German Gestapo and for which the Nazi leaders were hanged at Nuremberg and elsewhere in Europe after the war.

Cruelty not only lowers the respect for those who employ it, but history has shown that not only does it not solve the problems it is supposed to, but raises justifiable opposition to those who employ it.

Herbert Fielding

Red Deer

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