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Living the Policy Process$
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Philip B. Heymann

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195335385

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195335385.001.0001

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The Dependence of Policy Outcomes on Processes of Choice

The Dependence of Policy Outcomes on Processes of Choice

(p.283) 14 The Dependence of Policy Outcomes on Processes of Choice
Living the Policy Process

Philip B. Heymann

Oxford University Press

The case of defining torture in the “War on Terror”, the political processes chosen, and the people chosen to carry them out, produces results that nobody wants while targeting outcomes that only a fraction of the citizens would find morally acceptable. In the case of “Defining Torture”, the decision maker may choose such a “blinded” process for political reasons. President George Bush did conclude that the provisions of Common Article 3 did not apply to either Al Qaeda or the Taliban and that, further, the Taliban detainees were “unlawful combatants” and, like the Al Qaeda captives, did not qualify as prisoners of wars (POWs) under the Third Geneva Convention.

Keywords:   Defining Torture, War on Terror, political process, policy outcome, Al Qaeda, Taliban

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