How could anyone think that chinese water torture was unfit to become american water torture, eh?
Yes, it's that funny. Blame for torture now goes to failure to understand the lessons of history, thus being condemned to repeat it.
According to several former top officials involved in the discussions seven years ago, they did not know that the military training program, called SERE, for Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape, had been created decades earlier to give American pilots and soldiers a sample of the torture methods used by Communists in the Korean War, methods that had wrung false confessions from Americans.
Even George J. Tenet, the C.I.A. director who insisted that the agency had thoroughly researched its proposal and pressed it on other officials, did not examine the history of the most shocking method, the near-drowning technique known as waterboarding.
The top officials he briefed did not learn that waterboarding had been prosecuted by the United States in war-crimes trials after World War II and was a well-documented favorite of despotic governments since the Spanish Inquisition; one waterboard used under Pol Pot was even on display at the genocide museum in Cambodia.
The top officials, not having studied that particular part of history, you know, the "we don't do shitty things to others" part, couldn't see that, well, drowning someone might, well, you know, be regarded as -- well, chinese water torture. No mirror neurons. Slept through that class in college?
Cyclic existence? Samsara as usual? We're sorry, nobody told us that pulling the wings off butterflies was wrong? What about putting lit firecrackers in toads? No one could have foreseen . . .