I often wonder if either politicians or the media "get it". The current news cycle seems to be little more than whether or not we should torture. Chris Matthews almost drools at the thought of really getting the bad guys. It's frightening.
There are always the "What if you knew the bad guys had information about an imminent attack. Would you torture them to get the details?" questions. Gene Robinson is the only one I've heard question, to Lynn Cheney no less, just how anyone would have that information in the first place.
There has been little discussion regarding just what actually comprises torture other than water boarding. Then the discussion turns even more political. Has Obama waffled on the release of "enhanced interrogation" photos? What ever became of the promise of transparency in this administration?
As M*A*S*H's Colonel Potter would say, "Horse pucky"! Obama's military commanders strongly urged him to reconsider his inclination to release the photos. Wisely, he listened. Reconsidering and changing ones mind is not waffling! It's showing good judgement when a wise argument has been made.
Why anyone would want to see what we've actually done or contracted to have done is beyond me. That isn't the point. It's the perception the rest of the world will have. More importantly the perception the Islamic world will have. It needs no help to make it more negative!
Forget the argument as to whether or not torture actually works. I'm sure there are times it does and times it does not. The point the military commanders are trying to make is that our enemies can and will give worse than they get. To put our service men and women at greater risk than they already are would be irresponsibly reckless.
Photos speak volumes and are fair game to be interpreted in any manner the observer wishes, be it accurate or not. Those so anxious to have them released would do well to remember not only the Islamic rage that accompanied the Abu Ghraib fiasco but also the emotions that are stirred, even today, of the Holocaust atrocities. The Jewish community will never let it go. Why should the Islamic community be any more generous with what they see as a total humiliation of their religious beliefs.
Jon Stewart summed it up one night when he explained he understood the rage and shared the same blood lust, but the point he made is one we should all consider. This country is better than he is.
I will never understand a culture that is so fanatical that it will stone to death it's own people. And worse. Or behead captives like Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl and so many others.
I do understand that flame of hatred is no ember. It is burning strong and flares out of control frequently. Why should we add fuel to it by releasing photos which would be proof positive that there was a day our country was not better than the sum of it's peoples' rage?