Here he is on CNN:
Donald Trump suggested Tuesday that Belgian authorities could have thwarted Tuesday's terrorist attack in Brussels by torturing Salah Abdeslam, the suspected terrorist who was captured days earlier.At least he used the right word. None of that "enhanced interrogation" euphemism favored by the previous administration (and their enablers in the media and elsewhere).
Trump argued in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer that Abdeslam, a suspect in last year's terrorist attacks in Paris who fled to Belgium, knew of the plot that ISIS-linked terrorists carried out Tuesday and would have talked "a lot faster with the torture."
"If he would've talked you might not have had the blow up -- all these people dead and all these people wounded because he probably knew about it," Trump said. "We have to be smart. I mean it's hard to believe. We can't waterboard -- listen, nothing's nice about it, but it's your minimal form of torture."
But here's the thing. What Trump is advocating is simply against international law. We've written about this before but let's take a look at the Convention Against Torture again:
Part 1, Article 1, Section 1:
For the purposes of this Convention, the term "torture" means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity.Part 1, Article 2, Section 2:
No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.Part 1, Article 4, Section 1:
Each State Party shall ensure that all acts of torture are offences under its criminal law. The same shall apply to an attempt to commit torture and to an act by any person which constitutes complicity or participation in torture.Part 1, Article 15:
Each State Party shall ensure that any statement which is established to have been made as a result of torture shall not be invoked as evidence in any proceedings, except against a person accused of torture as evidence that the statement was made.So even if they did torture Salah Abdeslam and gained the information necessary to stop the most recent bombings (which, considering the general ineffectiveness of torture, is unlikely) they wouldn't have been able to use that information as evidence in any criminal proceedings.
And not only does Trump think that the US should break this law, but considering that Salah Abdeslam was arrested by Belgian authorities in Belgian territory and is currently in their custody, he thinks they should be breaking their own laws as well. (Belgium signed the treaty in February, 1985 and ratified it in June, 1999).
This is Donald Trump. This is the front runner for the GOP nomination for the Office of President of The United States, land of the free, home of the brave.
And this is what another Republican had to say about the ratification of the treaty that Trump wants to shred:
Ratification of the Convention by the United States will clearly express United States opposition to torture, an abhorrent practice unfortunately prevalent in the world today.That was Ronald Reagan. He's the lib'rul moonbat that signed the treaty in the first place.