Friday, May 29, 2009

A Perspective on Torture

Thoughts from Medal of Honor winner, Col Bud Day USAF (Ret.) about his time
as a prisoner in North Vietnam.

Extracted from forwarded Message Subject: Fox News Channel Salutes Medal of Honor; quoting Col Day: "I didn't expect to be reminded of my treatment some 36 years ago, on this holiday weekend, but our politicians find it worthy to ignore what some have actually 'been there' have tried to recount to them."

Case in point in Col. Day's letter to a friend, below.

'Dear Kelly:

Thanks for the "heads up" on the Medal of Honor spots. Some of my
friends have seen it already and mentioned it. I sent a copy of my book to Fox
News in D.C., so that Sean Hannity would be able to talk about what
torture really is. He has no one on his side to talk about torture -- someone who has actually been tortured. He is free to quote from the many illustrations that I provided in my book Duty, Honor, Country.

I got shot down over North Vietnam in 1967 -- a squadron commander.

After I returned in 1973, I published 2 books that dealt a lot with
"real torture" in Hanoi. Our make-believe president is branding our
country as a bunch of torturers when he has no idea what torture is.

For example -- as for me, I was put through put through a mock execution because I would not respond...pistol whipped on the head...same event.

Couple of days later...hung by my feet all day.

I escaped and got recaptured a couple of weeks later. I got shot in the hand when recaptured.

Shot was OK...what happened after was not.

They marched me to Vinh... put me in the rope trick... almost pulled my arms out of the sockets. Beat me on the head with a little wooden rod until my eyes were swelled shut, and my unshot, unbroken hand a pulp.

Next day they hung me by the arms... rebroke my right wrist... wiped out the nerves in my arms that control the hands... rolled my fingers up into a ball.

Only left the slightest movement of my left forefinger. So I started answering with some incredible lies.

They sent me to Hanoi strapped to a barrel of gas in the back of a truck. In Hanoi... on my knees.. rope trick again. Beaten by a big fool.

Then into leg irons on a bed in Heartbreak Hotel.

Much kneeling... holding hands up at Zoo.

Really bad beating for refusing to condemn Lyndon Johnson.

Several more kneeling events. I could see my knee bone thru kneeling holes worn through the skin.

There was an escape from the annex to the Zoo. I was the Senior Officer of a large building, and because of escape... they started a mass torture of all commanders.

I think it was July 7, 1969... they started beating me with a car fan belt. In first 2 days I took over 300 strokes... then stopped counting because I never thought I would live through it.

They continued day-nite torture to get me to confess to a non-existent part in the escape. This went on for at least 3 days. On my knees... fan belting... cut open my scrotum with fan belt stroke... opened up both knee holes again.

My fanny looked like hamburger... I could not lie on my back.

They tortured me into admitting that I was in on the escape... and that my 2 room-mates knew about it.

The next day I denied the lie.

They commenced torturing me again with 3- 6- or 9 strokes of the fan belt every day from about July 11 or 12th... to 14 October 1969. I continued to refuse to lie about my roommates again.

Now, the point of this is that our make-believe president has declared to the world that we (the U.S.) are a bunch of torturers. Thus, it will be OK to torture us next time when they catch us... because that is what the U.S. does.

Our make-believe president is a know nothing fool who thinks that pouring a little water on some one's face, or hanging a pair of woman's underpants over an Arab's head is TORTURE.

He is a meat head.

I just talked to MOH holder Leo Thorsness who was also in my squad in jail... as was john McCain... and we agreed that McCain does not speak for the POW group when he claims that Al Gharib was torture... or that water boarding is torture.

Our president and those fools around him who keep bad mouthing our great country are a disgrace to the United States. Please pass this info on to Sean Hannity. He is free to use it to point out the stupidity of the claims that water boarding... which has no after effect... is torture. If it got the Arab to cough up the story about how he planned the attack on the twin towers in NYC... hurrah for the guy who poured the water."

From Medal of Honor winner,

Col Bud Day USAF (Ret.)


chessie said...

Thanks for reprinting that letter Pappy... It's...inspiring...heart wrenching, so much to experience with this letter.
I'll pass this blog on.

Pappy said...

I've had coffee with that fella a few times here in Vegas.
He was the guest speaker at the DAV Christmas dinner last year, we sat together for dinner. Quite the guy to chat with.