Don’t believe the CIA’s ticking time bomb excuse when it says it had to torture.
Most of them go something like this: There’s a nuclear bomb hidden somewhere in New York City. If it’s detonated, millions will die! And you, a heroic public servant — an honorable career employee of the CIA, perhaps — have captured the evil terrorist mastermind who planted the bomb! Nice work!
He was standing right over the bomb, sneering his sinister, self-satisfied sneer, but you caught him red-handed. Now you’ve got him subdued and cuffed. Better still, it’s not too late. The evil terrorist mastermind knows the code to disarm the nuclear bomb. If you can just get that crucial information from him in the next 60 minutes, you can disable the nuke and save the lives of millions — including your own family!
Tick, tick, tick.
So, you ask him nicely: “Evil Terrorist Mastermind, kindly tell me how to disable this nuclear bomb so I can save the lives of millions.” It doesn’t work. The evil terrorist mastermind cackles his terrible cackle and says, “Never! Never will I reveal the code needed to disarm this bomb! We will all die here together!”
You try again. You appeal to his humanity. To his fear of death. You promise immunity. You offer him money. You beg. You threaten him with pain and humiliation. Nothing works. He just keeps on cackling his terrible cackle and sneering his sinister sneer.
Finally, you do what you have to do. You take out your gun, your electric drill, and your portable waterboarding kit. You fire a shot in the air. You buzz the drill next to his ear, and you waterboard him until he’s gasping and choking.
“Tell me! Tell me how to disarm the bomb, and your agony will end!” you order.
He clamps his mouth shut. “Never!”
Seizing his lunchbox, you quickly puree his hummus and pasta wrap in your portable blender, and feed it to him rectally using your portable rectal feeding apparatus. It’s a terrible thing you’re doing, and you know it, but you have no choice! You must save New York! You must save your family!
And finally, the evil terrorist mastermind cracks. Finally. Gone is his sinister sneer, replaced by a look of terror and shame. “Stop! Stop!” he sobs, “Please, I beg you, stop! I’ll tell you how to disarm the bomb! Just enter the letters C-I-A into the bomb’s control panel!”
Tick, tick. There are only seconds left! Tick, tick.