Former Head of Department of Homeland Security: Waterboarding is torture

In an interview with the Associate Press, Tom Ridge, the first Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security, asserts that waterboarding is indeed torture:

“There’s just no doubt in my mind — under any set of rules — waterboarding is torture,” Tom Ridge said Friday in an interview. Ridge had offered the same opinion earlier in the day to members of the American Bar Association at a homeland security conference.

“One of America’s greatest strengths is the soft power of our value system and how we treat prisoners of war, and we don’t torture,” Ridge said in the interview. Ridge was secretary of the Homeland Security Department between 2003 and 2005. “And I believe, unlike others in the administration, that waterboarding was, is — and will always be — torture. That’s a simple statement.”

(Hat Tip: Dispatches from the Culture Wars)

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