Mitt Romney stated that as president he would not rule out waterboarding terrorists, prompting ‘UN special rapporteur’ Ben Emmerson to threaten the United States with more attacks.
[typography font="Ubuntu Condensed" size="22" size_format="px"]Romney win would be first ‘democratic mandate for torture:’ UN rapporteur[/typography]
The possibility that Mitt Romney will be elected president of the United States next month has raised the “alarming” prospect of an unprecedented public endorsement of torture, a prominent international expert said Friday.
Speaking out on the issue for the first time, Ben Emmerson, UN special rapporteur on counter-terrorism and human rights, took fierce aim at the Republican candidate’s refusal to condemn waterboarding.
“There is no doubt that the Romney administration would be able to claim — in the event of a Romney presidency — a democratic mandate for torture,” Emmerson told The Canadian Press.
“That would put Romney as the first world leader in history to be able to claim a democratic mandate for torture.”
Emmerson said he planned to raise his concerns in an address to the UN General Assembly later this month.
In the security panic that followed the 9/11 terrorist attacks, former U.S. president George W. Bush endorsed “enhanced interrogation” techniques, including waterboarding. The practice involves almost drowning a suspect to soften them up and get them to reveal information.
During a debate in 2007, Romney said he opposed torture in any form, but ducked the question of whether he viewed waterboarding as torture. He also said he wanted other terrorists to face the same kind of treatment as Mohammed did.
Last month, when asked directly if he believed waterboarding to be torture, he responded, “I don’t.”
Emmerson, who was in Toronto to attend a symposium on the negative impacts post-9/11 security measures have had on human rights, said Obama had begun to realign U.S. policy with international law and the universal abhorrence of torture.
Romney’s approach was now threatening to undermine that progress, he said.
Terrorists have also used the abuses to justify attacks on Americans around the world.
As such, while Bush, Romney and others have defended enhanced interrogations as critical to U.S. national security, Emmerson was adamant that going back to any form of torturing suspects would be dangerously counterproductive.
“The re-introduction of torture under a Romney administration would significantly increase the threat levels to (Americans) at home and abroad,” Emmerson said.
[typography font="Ubuntu Condensed" size="24" size_format="px" color="darkred"]“Such a policy, if adopted, would expose the American people to risks the Obama administration is not currently exposing them to.”[/typography]
In addition, much of the world is moving away from accepting or using intelligence that may be tainted by torture, U.S. intelligence-gathering efforts could be threatened if Romney had his way, he said.
1) Terrorists do not need excuses to hate or kill us.
2) YOU are a terrorist for trying to sway Romney voters into turning to obama to keep them safe. As if he could.
3) The U.N. is a bastard agency, a shill for leftists the world over and should be dismantled. Bunch of cheese eating surrender monkeys.
4) Threats of terrorism from assholes should be against the law.
5) Those who have endorsed obama for president: U.N., Putin, Chavez, Castro… etc…
Who is Ben Emmerson, bless his heart for trying to help? He’s an “international lawyer”, of course.
Ben Emmerson (United Kingdom), the new Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, took up his functions on 1 August 2011. As a practicing barrister in London, he has more than 25 years of experience in domestic and international human rights law, international humanitarian law and international criminal law. Mr. Emmerson has litigated extensively in domestic courts, the European Court of Human Rights, the International Court of Justice, and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, including on domestic and international terrorism cases. He was Special Adviser to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court and Special Adviser to the Appeals Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (the Khmer Rouge tribunal). Ben Emmerson has published and lectured widely on international law, particularly international human rights and humanitarian law, and is the editor and co-author of a number of practitioners’ manuals on criminal and human rights law.