Republican frontrunner Donald Trump has called for the return of waterboarding, a near-drowning interrogation technique widely denounced as torture, saying it was "peanuts" compared to what Islamic State is doing.
It was the latest in a series of inflammatory Trump responses to the threat of terrorism in the wake of the Paris attacks that appear to have bolstered his poll numbers.
A new Washington Post/ABC News national poll showed Trump leading the Republican presidential field with 32 percent, a 10-point lead over his nearest rival, Ben Carson.
Trump, who ignited controversy earlier this week by calling for a registry of all Muslims in the United States, stepped up the hard-line rhetoric in an interview with ABC News in which he advocated the use of simulated drownings, known as waterboarding, in interrogations of terrorism suspects.
"I would bring it back. I think waterboarding is peanuts compared to what they'd do to us, what they're doing to us, what they did to James Foley when they chopped off his head.
"That's a whole different level and I would absolutely bring back interrogation and strong interrogation," he said.
Waterboarding, which was used by the CIA in interrogations of at least three 9/11 suspects, was banned by President Barack Obama shortly after assuming office in 2009.