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Karl Rove explains why CIA waterboarding wasn't torture

Karl Rove explains why CIA waterboarding wasn't torture

Karl Rove says waterboarding can be considered torture — but not in the way the CIA used it.

Critics have pointed out that the U.S. prosecuted and hanged Japanese soldiers who waterboarded American troops in World War II; Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) made that point Sunday on Face the Nation. But the longtime adviser to George W. Bush insisted that while the Japanese form of waterboarding was indeed torture, CIA interrogators made a slight tweak that rendered the procedure legal and humane.

"Unlike World War II where the Japanese attempted to drown people by basically pouring water in their mouths, here the feet were elevated so there was little or no chance of any fluid getting into the lungs," Rove said on Fox News Sunday.

There were "very careful standards set in place so that these would help break the resistance of the detainee without placing their life in danger," he added. --Jon Terbush