News Columns & Blogs

Torturing harmed us

Former Vice President Dick Cheney said on "Fox News Sunday" that the attorney general's decision to investigate prisoner abuse by the CIA "offends the hell out of me."But many Americans, including Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., are offended that the United States, at Cheney's urging, violated U.S. and international law prohibiting torture and set aside its own values and moral leadership. Though McCain doesn't support a CIA probe, he said Sunday on CBS' "Face the Nation" that "torturing harmed us." McCain said that the interrogations were "in violation of the Geneva Conventions and the convention against torture that we ratified under President Reagan," and that the interrogations "helped al-Qaida recruit" and harmed our ability to work with our allies. "The damage that it did to America's image in the world is something we're still on the way to repairing," McCain said. And as for the effectiveness of the tactics, McCain noted that, according to the FBI and others, the information gained by torture "could have been gained through other methods."