April 19, 2009
Soiling America’s Diaper

In August of 2006 testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, a Justice Department lawyer named Steven G. Bradbury confessed his confusion over certain obscure terms used in the Geneva Conventions:

Although many of the provisions of Common Article 3 prohibit actions that are universally condemned, such as “murder,” “mutilation,” “torture,” and the “taking of hostages,” it is undeniable that some of the terms in Common Article 3 are inherently vague. For example, Common Article 3 prohibits “outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment,” a phrase that is susceptible of uncertain and unpredictable application.

Bradbury was being too modest, however. More than a year before, he had already settled on at least one thing that does not constitute humiliation. Here it is, from a memo in May of 2005 to John A. Rizzo, a lawyer for the Central Intelligence Agency:

If the detainee is clothed, he wears an adult diaper under his pants. Detainees subject to sleep deprivation who are also subject to nudity as a separate interrogation technique will at times be nude and wearing a diaper.

If the detainee is wearing a diaper, it is checked regularly and changed as necessary. The use of the diaper is for sanitary and health purposes of the detainee; it is not used for the purpose of humiliating the detainee, and it is not considered to be an interrogation technique. The detainee’s skin condition is monitored, and diapers are changed as needed so that the detainee does not remain in a soiled diaper.…

This makes the matter plain. Forcing a prisoner to defecate in diapers while his jailers watch is not done with intent to humiliate, but simply to keep the man clean and healthy.

Bradbury does not address the possibility of collateral humiliation because for him intent is the main thing at issue. I find this argument convincing, and plan to use it if I am ever charged with murder for shooting Mr. Bradbury through the heart while intending merely to perforate his bowels.


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Posted by Jerome Doolittle at April 19, 2009 05:28 PM
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I'm not so violent. I'd just like to throw soiled diapers at him. Lots of soiled diapers. For a couple of days.

Posted by: Joyful Alternative on April 19, 2009 7:03 PM

I'm even less violent. I think he should just have a diet of lots of soiled diapers. For two weeks.

Posted by: John Gall on April 19, 2009 10:21 PM

He's an outstanding representative of the legal community based on my experience. Anytime you get involved in our judicial system this is what you have to deal with sans accountability and any expression of contempt will land you in jail.

Posted by: knowdoubt on April 20, 2009 6:48 AM
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