Monday, February 14, 2005

Not a Big Deal

...only the wholesale betrayal of American values. The New York Daily News reports that military JAGs repeatedly objected to Guantanamo Bay "interrogation procedures" (IE, torture), but were overruled by senior Pentagon officials who "didn't think [it] was a big deal" (link: Balkinization). The Lawyers specifically drew a distinction between "battlefield interrogation methods, where slapping around a prisoner might be justifiable if it immediately saved lives," and the situation in Guantanamo, where the detainees were nowhere near a combat scene and months removed from their capture.

We cannot let this issue drop. The only thing more despicable than this being an issue in the United States is that it doesn't appear that anybody cares. So long as torture isn't on the front page and staring us in the face, Americans prefer to just pretend it isn't happening. But if we aren't willing to throw down the gauntlet at torture, where exactly is the line we "won't cross"?

A little while ago, the Legal Fiction blog wrote that it would support a primary challenge against Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman (D) due to his vote for pro-torture Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Lieberman has done more than virtually any other elected Democrat to try and make the party more formidable on national security. However, when he decides to condone torture as a matter of American policy, it is very hard to argue that he has the moral character to continue to represent us in the halls of congress.


N.S.T said...

Wait, lemme get this straight. Joe Lieberman's a morally bankrupt soul, unfit to represent the democratic party on Capitol Hill? That would be...the same Joe Lieberman who A) Never slept with anyone(bubba, I'm thinking of you here) B) Never EVER faced any allegations of fundraising improprieties or any of the other cliched activities fit for "smoke filled rooms" C) Is a deeply religious man who fights against putting overly violent and sexual videogames in the hand sof young children. The same guy, huh? I'll skip the part where you're implying that the entire Republican party is immoral, because, well, I already know you think that. Give Ol jomentum a break, wouldya? He's the best thing that ever happened to your party whether anyone cares to admit it or not,

jack said...

If Joe Lieberman has never slept with anyone before he's got an awful lot of explaining to do. I.e. Where did his children come from?

But the real problem with your post which indicates a problem in the right in general. Two of the three points you gave aren't even ethical issues. And to suggest that fundraising improprieties is more heinous than supporting institutionalized torture just reveals the skewed value system behind most conservative ideologies. Nick, you know better than this.

That said, in terms of whats best for the party I'm not sure what the Democrats need right now are primary challenges of the Democratic leadership. Then again, I don't really care about the Democratic party.

Eben Flood said...

I'm not sure the problem is that nobody cares. The problem is isolated to a few incidences at Gitmo and in Iraq; incidences that are being handled and/or prosecuted. It's a public reaction similar to what goes on with trials here in the U.S. Unless it's a celebrity or has to do with children it's not going to make headlines.

N.S.T said...

1) Jack, you knew what I meant with my comments about Lieberman's sex life: he's faithful to his wife. You say institutionalized torture as if it is a regular, onging occurence. It simply is not.
2)YOU know better than to make my personal views the sole represenattion of right wing ideology.
3) I think someone needs to snap the DNC back into reality, to point out to them that they cannot continue to marginalize themselves by drifting further to the left. As the election of Howard Dean as party chiamrna shows us, they really don't get it. My point was that the Martin Frosts, the Joe Liebermans of the world, the conservative democrats, are the ones who stand a chance of winning the most voters for the party.

jack said...

1)The comment about Lieberman's sex life was obviously a joke. But the point is: Joe can stick it where ever he wants, no one gets hurt. His views on torture are something else entirely.

2)I'm not... the point is your view IS a relatively common view on the right.

3) First, what does this have to do with anything? Second, other than Lieberman Dean was the most conservative canidate for the nomination. He was the only bright spot in the party in the last 4 years. He isn't only the best choice, hes the only choice.