Saturday, May 8, 2004

Truly, the shocking revelations of the horrors of Abu Ghraib have posed a dire threat to America's fight for stability in Iraq and its greater war against terror. If left unchecked, this growing cancer threatens to consume every good thing America has worked for in the region - and the United States must quickly act against such an eventuality by suppressing any remnants of conscience lingering in our military.

As Tim Graham and Joe Lieberman have pointed out, the abuses committed by Americans in Abu Ghraib are mild compared to those committed by Saddam Hussein or Osama bin Laden. When one compares American atrocities to Iraqi or terrorist atrocities one quickly recognizes that American atrocities hold the moral high ground. Indeed, when stripped of all conscience, the callous and depraved American torturer is still morally far superior to the conscience-stripped, callous and depraved Al Qaeda terrorist. Hence one concludes that even sans moral compass, America is still a beacon of light within the Mideast.

Were the atrocities committed in Abu Ghraib horrifying? Indeed. But more horrifying still would be a military unable or unequipped to deal with the Forces of Terror. Americans have seen the torture and the raping, certainly, but they haven't seen the intelligence gleaned from said torture and raping - and the lives saved, pipelines constructed, and schools built because of that intelligence. Can the West really afford to have an Iraqi insurgent's pride in his unexposed genitalia - his unexposed, terrorist genitalia - come between US troops and a shipment of arms bound for a Baathist cell? Can American children sleep safely if a prisoner's unelectrocuted testicles - unelectrocuted Islamist testicles - prevent him from confessing the location of a suicide bomber, or his participation in late night Black Sabbaths to summon Beelzebub amongst a coven of witches?

America will still hold the moral high ground if it continues a policy of torture in Iraq. In fact, it would only surrender such a high ground if it ended that policy - much less take the self-destructive steps that such left-wing war opponents as Tacitus and The Economist have proposed. War, after all, is hell, and there is no room for such extravagences as conscience or humanity or moral high ground in hell.
posted by the Medium Lobster at 9:57 PM




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