Torture! Torture! Torture!
For over seven years the American Left has had more fun than the law allows flinging the above accusation at the Bush admininstration's enhanced interrogation techniques. Now the Obama admininstration has released various "torture" memos and the Left's desire to punish Bush for protecting America has been enflamed. Obama, ever the consummate leader, waffled on the punishment issue. First he claimed no interest in prosecuting Bush officials then, under pressure from his far-left base, Obama said prosecutions weren't off the table and then, after polls showed most Americans opposed any prosecutions of Bush officials, Dear Leader returned to his original position. It remains to be seen if this will be Obama's final stand on this emotional issue. But I'm not really concerned about that. What concerns and appalls me is what the zealous desire for prosecutions reveals about the Left.
As I've watched and listened to the "torture" controversy on tv I've become more convinced than ever that progressives simply oppose the defense of this country. That's the only thing that explains their militant commitment to punishing the people who successfully protected us from terrorism for seven years.
I've listened to the liberals' side of the story. I've heard their assertions that Bush's policies made America less safe by ruining our image abroad and providing a recruitment tool to the terrorists. I've heard their claims that Bush violated the Constitution and that, as a nation of laws, America must bring the Bush-era perpetrators of "torture" to justice. I've listened to this stuff and I can't believe it's asserted by what are supposed to be intelligent people. Here's my rebuttal.
Yes, America is a nation of laws and a nation that DOES NOT TORTURE. What was done to the enemy combatants at Gitmo wasn't torture. If the lefties would get off the Kool-Aid they'd know from the "torture" memos themselves that the United States went to great lengths to ensure the detainees suffered no lasting physical or emotional damage from the interrogation techniques. That's not what you do when you're really torturing people. When you torture your aim is to inflict horrendous pain and suffering on the prisoner to make him talk. You're not trying to simply make him uncomfortable.
The Gitmo interrogators certainly wanted the detainees to be more than just uncomfortable. They wanted the enemy to feel pain, but not horrendous pain. The interrogators used relatively mild techniques such as sleep deprivation and the now notorious waterboarding. They didn't pull out detainees' finger nails, electric shock their genitals, burn them, feed them to lions, inject gasoline into their veins, or gang rape their wives and daughters in front of them. Our disciplined interrogators did none of those things but you wouldn't know that from the cacophony of condemnation heaped on them by progressives. Which leads me to my next point.
I'm actually frightened of the strident anger progressives have over the "torture" that occurred at Gitmo. A grand total of three Gitmo detainees were waterboarded and the Left is apoplectic about it. Yet I don't remember them getting this worked up over the beheading of Daniel Pearl. I don't remember them getting this incensed over the beheading of Nicholas Berg. Even 9/11 didn't produce the amount of outrage among liberals that the waterboarding of those three Muslim fanatics has. This tells me that leftists just don't value American lives. In their paradigm it's worse for an American to "torture" a terrorist than it is for a terrorist to actually murder an American. I truly believe that view is what's really driving progressives' obsession with Gitmo and their malevolent desire to prosecute the patriots who protected us. Liberals just don't believe that America is entitled to defend herself. They don't believe that America has a moral right to be right. That's what's really going on here.
And the Left's assertion that the enhanced interrogation techniques at Gitmo ruined America's image and gave the terrorists a recruitment tool is just ludicrous. Ill will toward America existed long before Gitmo opened and it will continue long after Gitmo is closed. America has been called the Great Satan--about as low as you can go on the popularity totem pole--by Iran for decades. Millions of non-Iranian Muslims heartily share that sentiment. Muslim terrorists have been attacking America and American interests at least since Sirhan Sirhan assasinated RFK in 1968, decades BEFORE the Bush presidency. And they were able to recruit followers to their cause without the benefit of "torture" at Gitmo. Maybe the only recruitment tool Islamofascists need is Islam itself.
I'm sickened by liberals' obssession with prosecuting Bush administration officials. This isn't about justice or principle; it's about weakening America from within. As stated above, the Left believes America has no moral right to self-defense. Undermining our ability and willingness to fight is simply part of that belief. The objectives of our enemies are irrevelent; for progressives the only real enemy is America, and she must be stopped. And that's what their manufactured outrage over "torture" is really about. They're trying to handicap America with a false morality. The American people don't want politicized prosecutions and show trials. They want to be protected from those who would kill us. I'm one of those people. The progressives can work to tear down our defenses; they can cling to their delusion that Bush is the enemy, but I know who the real enemy is and I'd love to be waterboarding.