I know, I know.... bad pun, but this is an interesting Op-Ed by Lindsey Graham on his amendments to the the ode of conduct in relation to torture by the US. It is worth the full read regardless of your feelings on the issue.
Rules for Our War
By Lindsey Graham
Tuesday, December 6, 2005; Page A29
In my view, the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, were an act of war, not a mere crime. Our terrorist enemies don't represent a sovereign nation, wear a uniform, follow the rules of armed conflict or show any regard for humanity. The key difference between them and us is that we care about these things.
Even during a time of war, we have chosen to be a nation of laws, with a different, higher set of values than the terrorists. We should always remember that we are Americans, possessing values superior to those of our enemy, and that there is a proper balance between the protection of our troops and the humane treatment of detainees. This value system is our national strength, not a weakness.
I support President Bush's statement that all detainees should be treated humanely, and I agree with Sen. John McCain that his detainee treatment amendment is about us, not them. With these concepts in mind, the Senate recently acted in a bipartisan fashion in two critical areas of detainee policy.
First, by a vote of 90 to 9 we passed the McCain amendment, which would require all Defense Department interrogation techniques to be standardized and contained within the Army Field Manual. As a military lawyer, I know our original policies concerning interrogation were confusing and contradictory. Unfortunately, our troops have suffered in trying to implement these flawed policies.
By standardizing procedures in one document, our troops will know what's in and out of bounds. To attempt to recapture the moral high ground, we also reaffirm our long-held position that federal agencies will not engage in techniques that violate standards against torture or inhumane treatment of detainees under the laws of armed conflict.
Any efforts to create exemptions to the McCain amendment will, in my opinion, do far more harm than good, as they may set precedents that could jeopardize our troops in future conflicts. We will win this war by showcasing the differences between the United States and the enemy.
I believe we can have sound interrogation techniques and aggressive detention and prosecution policies for enemy combatants without eroding the values for which we are fighting.