Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Torture Guidelines Debated By Senators

Certain Senators have decided that America needs guidelines on alleged torture of terrorists and unlawful combatants. Rightly the Administration opposes these attempts to give the enemy constitutional protections.
Leading the charge for coddling killers is Senator McCain of Arizona and Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. "McCain's amendment would ban the use of 'cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment' against anyone in U.S. custody and require all U.S. troops to follow procedures in the Army Field Manual when they detain and interrogate suspects. Graham's amendment would define 'enemy combatant' and put into law procedures for prosecuting detainees at Guantanamo Bay." Apparently these two don't understand we are at war. Spending time making guidelines is wasteful as there are already interrogation rules in effect. However, it seems that Senator McCain, who was tortured himself, now believes that anything can be construed as torture and he opposes it. His proposal would seem to ban things such as panties on a head or insulting jokes. Things that anyone else would see as not reaching the status of torture. Of these two proposals, Senator Graham's is the more dangerous. We already have definitions of enemy combatant. We have a definition of an unlawful combatant. The world community that these people seem to worship has already defined these terms. It seems the current push is to redefine these terms to the detriment of the GWOT. Let's state for the record again and for the benefit of those who don't understand. All conventions on war give absolutely no protections to those people such as the detainees in Guantanamo Bay. They are subject to immediate execution, they have no right to a trial, although our clemency will give them one. They certainly have no protections of our Constitution, a constitution they would destroy with a victory over us.
McCain also said, "'Confusion about the rules results in abuses in the field. We need a clear consistent standard.'" Correct. Interrogate, execute, imprison for life, or release. Lather, rinse, repeat as necessary.
Of course if Senators McCain and Graham are unsuccessful in shackling the prosecution of the war, the sinister side of the aisle is ready to jump in. "As they did before, Democrats also plan to continue to push their own proposal that would establish an independent commission to investigate allegations of prisoner abuse. The Pentagon already has done several of its own investigations and argues that another would be redundant. But Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, the top Democrat on the Armed Services Committee, said those reviews weren't thorough enough. 'This is a rich target for a true investigation,' he said Wednesday. He accused the White House of issuing a 'false threat' to veto the bill over detainee amendments." No, actually President Bush and Secretary Rumsfeld are the real targets for them. Levin is probably correct however that the veto threat is false.
Piling on this so-called bandwagon is "list of retired generals and admirals...." It would be interesting to know how many of these officers are considered "perfumed princes" and Clinton promoted soldiers sympathetic to the other side as long as President Bush is injured. These officers wonder if clear guidance is why the alleged torture of enemy combatants and unlawful combatants took place. Also in the picture is the so-called Human Rights Watch, who apparently doesn't know what the terms mean. They have accused the Army's 82nd Airborne Division with torturing prisoners from 2002 to 2003. Their proof? "Army Capt. Ian Fishback of the 82nd Airborne was one of the soldiers who claimed that he had heard about widespread prisoner abuse while serving in Iraq." Heard about. Not participated in, not observed, not listening to. Hearsay evidence is what they have to accuse the soldiers. This "evidence" wouldn't hold up in a court, yet it's damning against the administration just because it's George Bush in the White House.
The military has investigated claims of torture and has punished those who have been proven to have abused prisoners. We do not need to continually rehash the same charges again and again. This only emboldens those who wish to defeat us, whether here or abroad.
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