Tag Archive: U.S


Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe torture can be justified to extract information from suspected terrorists, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll, a level of support similar to that seen in countries like Nigeria where militant attacks are common.

The poll reflects a U.S. public on edge after the massacre of 14 people in San Bernardino in December and large-scale attacks in Europe in recent months, including a bombing claimed by the militant group Islamic State last week that killed at least 32 people in Belgium.

Donald Trump, the front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, has forcefully injected the issue of whether terrorism suspects should be tortured into the election campaign.

Trump has said he would seek to roll back President Barack Obama’s ban on waterboarding – an interrogation technique that simulates drowning that human rights groups contend is illegal under the Geneva Conventions. Trump has also vowed to “bring back a hell of a lot worse” if elected.

Trump’s stance has drawn broad criticism from human rights organizations, world bodies, and political rivals. But the poll findings suggest that many Americans are aligned with Trump on the issue, although the survey did not ask respondents to define what they consider torture.

“The public right now is coping with a host of negative emotions,” said Elizabeth Zechmeister, a Vanderbilt University professor who has studied the link between terrorist threats and public opinion. “Fear, anger, general anxiety: (Trump) gives a certain credibility to these feelings,” she said.

The March 22-28 online poll asked respondents if torture can be justified “against suspected terrorists to obtain information about terrorism.” About 25 percent said it is “often” justified while another 38 percent it is “sometimes” justified. Only 15 percent said torture should never be used.

 

Source: Exclusive – Most Americans support torture against terror suspects: Reuters/Ipsos poll | Reuters

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TEL AVIV, March 29 (Reuters) – Already a pioneer in high-tech and cutting-edge agriculture, Israel is starting to attract American companies looking to bring medical marijuana know-how to a booming market back home.

Since 2014, U.S. firms have invested about $50 million in licensing Israeli medical marijuana patents, cannabis agro-tech startups and firms developing delivery devices such as inhalers, said Saul Kaye, CEO of iCAN, a private cannabis research hub.

“I expect it to grow to $100 million in the coming year,” Kaye said at iCAN’s CannaTech conference in Tel Aviv this month, one of the largest gatherings of medical marijuana experts.

Scientists say strict rules, some set by the Drug Enforcement Administration, limit cannabis studies in the United States, where the legal marijuana market is valued at $5.7 billion and expected to grow to $23 billion by 2020.

“In the United States it’s easier to study heroin than marijuana,” said U.S. psychiatrist Suzanne Sisley, who has researched the effects of cannabis as a treatment for American military veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

“With marijuana you have to go through added layers of government red tape. It highlights the way marijuana research is being shackled by politics,” said Sisley, Director of Medicinal Plant Research at Heliospectra.

While scientific exploration may be restricted, 23 U.S. states now permit medical cannabis, and recreational use is allowed in four states and Washington D.C. This is despite the fact that at the federal level, marijuana is still classified as a dangerous narcotic with no medicinal value.

In Israel, marijuana is an illegal drug and only 23,000 people have Health Ministry permits to purchase medical cannabis from nine licensed suppliers, creating a market of $15 million to $20 million at most.

Source: U.S. firms target investment in Israeli cannabis R&D | Daily Mail Online

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