President-elect Donald Trump has backed off of one of the most controversial pledges of his campaign today, his promise to bring back torture of detainees, saying following a talk with retired Gen. James Mattis that he was told torture doesn't work as well as building a rapport with prisoners.
During the primaries, Trump emphasized his belief that the US needed to bring back waterboarding and "worse" tactics to better compete with ISIS' own brutality. At the time, he dismissed arguments torture didn't work on the grounds that the people being tortured "deserve it." He also called the US ban on torture a "sign of weakness."
Though it did not figure prominently in the general election campaign, Trump was still seen to be favoring torture as part of his war plan, to the extent that Human Rights Watch was expressing concern about Trump's intentions after the election.