It is not a false dilemma from a legal standpoint. A basic principle of law is that which is not prohibited is allowed. It's a binary state: either legal or illegal. The law prohibits torture, but not other interrogation techniques. Therefore, interrogation techniques are allowable and acceptable under the law until they reach the legal threshold defining torture. Both manslaughter and murder are prohibited by law. Where is the corresponding legal prohibition regarding "pain or suffering" that doesn't rise to the level of torture ("severe pain or suffering")? Kimball Kinnison EDIT: And, your response completely ignores my point, in that even if you have a lesser charge than torture, you still are not giving usable criteria to determine when you have reached the threshold to violate that lesser charge. To use the murder/manslaughter example, there are also lesser forms of killing that are not considered a crime - such as justifiable homicide (self defense), or unavoidable accidents (such as a person running in front of a bus that could not possible stop, even when adhering to all traffic rules).