If He’s Not a Torturer, Why Is He Wearing a Mask?

Photo used under a Creative Commons license by flickr user <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/21842149@N05/">nobt</a>

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HuffPo has a Playboy writer voluntarily trying to endure 15 seconds of waterboarding. He makes maybe 5 or 6. In the prelim, he asks the heavily masked ‘technician’ (who appears to be military but displays no rank and insignia. For you civilians: That’s HUGE) if waterboarding is torture. Nope, it’s “invoking an existing fear.” Which fear? “Drownding” (sic). Torture would be “invoking blood, physical pain.” OK, so how how does waterboarding work? “You’re going to want to breathe, but you won’t be able to breathe.” When the guinea pig tries to summon his yoga training, his torturer says confidently, “That won’t help you here.”

Nah. It’s not torture.

So what’s up with hiding his face?

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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