Some argue that torture “helped” save American lives. It is appropriate, therefore, to askwhether it helped cost American lives – and civilian lives – too. Aside from the deeply troubling moral and legal issues contained in the Senate report, the perception that America tortured detainees as a matter of official policy had real consequences in combat.
Christopher D. Kolenda is a Senior Military Fellow at King’s College London and President and CEO of Kolenda Strategic Leadership which helps Not-for-Profit organizations maximize their impact in conflict zones. He commanded Paratroopers in combat and served as Senior Advisor to three Commanders of International Forces (ISAF) over four tours in Afghanistan. See his two books on applied combat leadership: Leadership: The Warrior’s Art and The Counterinsurgency Challenge.