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Interrogation Methods: Does the End Justify the Means

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Interrogation Methods: Does the End Justify the Means?


There are many methods of intelligence collection and even after the terrorist acts of 911, many feel that some of these collection methods infringe on the human rights. From satellites hearing in on phone conversations to photographing living areas, unbeknownst to the public the Intelligence Community has done it all. But after reports surfaced on the alleged types of interrogation techniques used at Guantanamo, there was no way to deny the use of interrogation as an intelligence collection method. Are the methods being used truly contributing to obtain information to help fight terrorism? The main question that ponders is, even if the success of this war against terror, just like other wars in the past, lies greatly on the intelligence collected, does the end justify the means?

Interrogation methods: Does the end justify the means?

The government has been using interrogation as a method of collecting human intelligence (HUMINT) for years. The rules of engagement in the use of interrogation have changed since throughout the years. Recent events, like the CIA memorandum, dated December 30, 2004, which listed their interrogation techniques, have lead 65% of the general public, in accordance to research done by Belden Russonello & Stewart Research and Communications, to disapprove of the government's actions taken in the name of fighting terrorism. As upsetting as the details of this CIA's torture techniques may seem to the general public, we must consider that America has not been attacked by terrorists since September 2001. (Mullin, 2009)

In order to evaluate whether the information collected during interrogations have contributed to the success of Nation's security or not we must look at the history of the use of this method of intelligence collection and how it has affected the outcome of historical events or the prevention of attacks against the United States. In addition, it must be taken into consideration what the general public sees as unusual and cruel punishment when referring to interrogations and what the government defines as unusual and cruel punishment. In order to achieve this distinction research on the general public's opinion will be made and interviews with military personnel who work at Guantanamo regarding their experience and opinions as well. Interviews with personnel who have completed Combat Survival Training, in which military members are trained to survive interrogations if caught as POWs, will be performed in order to understand how the interrogation methods really affect the person being interrogated and if they seemed effective.

In order to define whether the end justifies the



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