Pentagon officials avoid questions about Donald Trump’s support for torture
Do you believe in “Torture to receive information?”
Donald Trump does.
How about “Torturing family members?”
The Pentagon’s top two leaders testifying on Capitol Hill on Thursday dodged politically loaded questions about torture and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s unapologetic support for waterboarding and systematically targeting suspected terrorists’ family members.
As Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford were speaking before the House Appropriations Committee about the Pentagon’s latest budget request, Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn., put the two on the spot about Trump’s recent vow to reinstate the use of waterboarding and other interrogation techniques that might be considered torture.
The lawmaker also asked about Trump’s call for targeting family members of suspected terrorists.
At a Feb. 17 campaign stop in South Carolina, Trump emphasized his intention to reinstate waterboarding and techniques that are “so much worse” and “much stronger.”
“Don’t tell me it doesn’t work — torture works,” Trump said. “OK, folks? Torture — you know, half these guys [say]: ‘Torture doesn’t work.’ Believe me, it works. OK?”
In December, Trump told Fox News that “we’re fighting a very politically correct war. And the other thing is with the terrorists, you have to take out their families,” he said.
Trump recently wrote an op-ed in USA Today vowing to do “whatever it takes” to protect the American people.