Yeah, it's torture, though a relatively mild torture. I've been through it. And to be honest, I'd rather take being whipped to Waterboarding. But there are much worse techniques out there and being used by others against us.
I hate how everyone frames the opponents to calling this torture as all republicans... Quite frankly McCain stands out as a pretty vocal Republican that opposed waterboarding. Of course he did have both his shoulder blades broken and witness first hand VC torture techniques.
"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." Thomas Jefferson