Torture, Broken Down

So much of what passes for online journalism -- this site included -- is really just old-fashioned newspaper or magazine reporting, ported from the page to the screen. And the few lame attempts by the mainstream press to break out of those formats usually leave readers panting for the old stand-bys.050519_PrisonerAbuse_014.jpgSlate's "interactive primer on American interrogation," however, is different. By breaking a large, messy, complex issue into digestible online bites, Phil Carter and friends succeed in educating readers on the torture debate better than any TV show or magazine article or blog post I've seen so far.Every major player in the American interrogation scandals is profiled. All the legal justifications for torture are called out. Each of the big techniques for getting a suspect to talk is outlined. But despite the motherlode of information, Slate's feature isn't in the slightest bit overwhelming.If you've largely tuned out the torture issue since those awful Abu Ghraib pictures surfaced last year, it's time to click here.

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