Is the WHINSEC(US Army School of the Americas) ethical?
Debate Rounds (3)
In order to give some background, WHINSEC, or the School of the Americas (SOA) as it was originally known, was founded in 1946. It became highly significant in 1961 when it was used to teach "anti-communist counterinsurgency training." At the time, this was a highly stretchable definition that resulted in unethical political regimes. One concrete example is the 1973 coup in Chile in which the democratically elected President Allende was overthrown by brutal dictator Augusto Pinochet. Pinochet and most of his men were trained by SOA, and turned a stable bastion of democracy into a dictatorial regime in a single year. One may protest that these men made their own choices and were not representative of U.S. policy, but unfortunately the US supported the coup and even set up the conditions for it. In the name of "anti-communism," these men were trained by SOA/WHINSEC for this express purpose: to destroy the legitimately elected government of Chile. That sounds pretty unethical to me. And unfortunately, while this is the most famous example of this training's intended use, it is far from an isolated incident. 
My opponents argument seems to come in distinct subsections. Firstly, he claims that "it is simply not the case" that WHINSEC teaches its students "terrorist tactics." Secondly, he claims that the 10+ countries that have utilized WHINSEC needed it to combat guerrilla warfare. Thirdly, he states that these countries needed and have utilized WHINSEC to combat drug cartels.
It is fairly safe to say that WHINSEC used tactics that at the very least would qualify as unethical and at worst, as my opponent denies, as "terrorist." According to manuals the CIA was forced to release, interrogation methods used include "reactions to fear or pain" and "hypnosis or narcotics." Not exactly ethical. Additionally, immediately after being arrested, prisoners "should be segregated immediately" because "isolation, both physical and psychological, must be maintained from the moment of apprehension." That's right: no rights at all for the prisoners; they are completely isolated, have no standard legal protections, have no right to trial by jury, etc. The entirety of the interrogation process is essentially psychological torture; the main idea is to deprive the inmates (who have had no trial) of any human interaction. This is unethical. 
Secondly, by suppressing "guerrilla activity," protestors of any kind to the government of one of these countries have been silenced, sometimes by murder. 6 Jesuit priests were brutally murdered by graduates in 1989 because they were engaged in "subversive activities," just following the "counterinsurgency" training they received from SOA/WHINSEC. Often, in many dictatorships, any protests were silenced in the name of "anti-communism counterinsurgency," the approved purpose of this depraved organization. It is disingenuous to suggest that suppressing guerrillas is necessarily a good thing. 
Finally, the war on drugs is itself unethical. Trying to impose a 21st century version of prohibition on underdeveloped countries is a ridiculous proposition that has destroyed many governments in battles with the child of prohibition: organized crime. Trying to regulate what individuals put in their own bodies is obviously unethical; it's an individual choice. Universal legalization of drugs would lead to healthy Latin American economies that would not be dominated by criminals.
1- Gill, Lesley. The School of the Americas: Military Training and Political Violence in the Americas. Durham: Duke UP, 2004. Print.
3- M"ller, Andreas, Arno Tausch, Paul Michael. Zulehner, and Henry Wickens. Global Capitalism, Liberation Theology, and the Social Sciences: An Analysis of the Contradictions of Modernity at the Turn of the Millennium. Huntington, NY: Nova Science, 2000. Print.
Another user of debate.org is sengeuri how says he works at the WHINSEC. He states that the WHINSEC is just a Captain's Career course for our South American Allies. I believe this is just the case and that the WHINSEC is falsely accused of training its students to torture or use terrorist techniques. So that is why this school is ethical. It is simply a way to increase and strengthen or ties with Latin American countries.
However, 1/7 men in DINA, the notorious Chilean agency that committed human rights violations, were trained by SOA. In fact, up to 1991 a ceremonial sword and a note from Pinochet were held on display in SOA. There were at lest 30 graduates of SOA in Chile alone that we're accused of human rights violations.
Secondly, the cited cases by my opponent are the most minor. A complete list can be found here: http://www.soaw.org...
Finally, the point of the unethical methods used in training, which I cited earlier, has not been answered. I would like my opponent to answer the cold, hard evidence that SOA trained it's graduates in unethical interrogation methods such as psychological torture and the use of hypnosis and narcotics.
Thanks for the debate. Good luck to pro!
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