What I didn't do, however, is really address how "torture" is defined. The definition of torture is the subject of a great post and discussion (in the comments) at the Belgravia Dispatch.
Don't skip the comments. There are some aspects to the discussion that I hadn't given any thought to. Here's one excerpt:
Fundamentally, this is a military and intelligence system that until three years and four months ago dealt with prisoners of any kind only occasionally, was then asked to extract intelligence from terror suspects picked up in Afghanistan, and later was tasked with managing vast numbers of detainees in Iraq.I think it's a valid point that you have to go back 30 years to find a situation where the US was capturing and interrogating prisoners in large numbers. That things haven't gone smoothly or that mistakes have been made is hardly a surprise.