Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., plans to give President Donald Trump a tough time if his administration decides to restart enhanced interrogation methods on terror suspects and enemy combatants.
McCain, who was a victim of torture himself during the Vietnam War, told the New York Times on Wednesday the president was going to have to find another way.
From Western Journalism
“The president can sign whatever executive orders he likes. But the law is the law. We are not bringing back torture in the United States of America,” McCain said in a statement.
Last year, the Arizona senator repeatedly dogged Trump on the issue of torture, telling an audience at the annual Halifax International Security Forum, “I don’t give a damn what the president of the United States wants to do,” McCain said. “We will not waterboard.”
On the campaign trail, Trump promised to bring back enhanced interrogation techniques and use them as a cornerstone of his administration’s counter-terrorism strategy.
At the time, Trump believed America’s ban on waterboarding made the country look “weak” in the eyes of ISIS.
“We have to play the game the way they’re playing the game. You’re not going to win if we’re soft and … they have no rules,” Trump said in an interview last March.
He added, “Did somebody tell ISIS, ‘Look, we’re going to treat your guys well. Will you please do us a favor and treat our guys well?’ They don’t do that. We are playing by rules, but they have no rules. It’s very hard to win when that’s the case.”
Fortunately for McCain, Trump’s newly sworn-in national security chiefs assured that torture was off the table.
“During both our personal conversations and his confirmation hearing, CIA Director Mike Pompeo repeatedly committed to me that he will comply with the law that applies the Army Field Manual’s interrogation requirements to all U.S. agencies, including the CIA,” McCain said.
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