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Local Author Pens Book On The History Of Torture

By John Ostapkovich

Philadelphia (CBS) – A New Jersey scholar who set out to investigate waterboarding instead turned to its not-so-distant relatives.

Although Robert Pallitto, political science professor at Seton Hall University, has no doubt that waterboarding is torture, he says the arguments that it’s not, or so what if it is, echo through our history.

Here’s an example from his book “Torture and State Violence in the Untied States.”

“While the Spanish-American War was going on, there was some pretty clear evidence that Filipino insurgents where being tortured by U.S. forces, and when you look at what President Theodore Roosevelt said in response, he sort of justified and condemned at the same time and the words sound disturbingly similar to what President Bush said 100 years later.”

Professor Pallitto says New Jersey allowed branding of criminals with a letter for their offense (like a T for a thief) for decades after the Bill or Rights banned “cruel and unusual punishment.”

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  • ffrank

    “What goes around comes around” means you reap what you sow, not that everything we do has been done before. (The phrase for that is “there’s nothing new under the sun.”)

    And BTW, don’t forget that many other experts on the subject of torture believe waterboarding is NOT torture (and not just those in the Bush administration). After all, we perform waterboarding on our own military personnel to train them how to withstand real torture. Does that mean we torture our own troops? Get real.

  • Spartacus

    I’ll have to check this out. Always looking for exciting new ways to play.

  • Ruth Loughlin

    Goes to show you it is nothing new.. Reminds me of the saying, what goes around comes around, and everything old is new again……

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