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Pelosi: Utterly Contemptible -Krauthammer

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[url]http://www.realclearpolitics.com/printpage/?url=http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/05/01/torture_no_except_96283.html[/url]

-snip

[quote]WASHINGTON -- Torture is an impermissible evil. Except under two circumstances. The first is the ticking time bomb. An innocent's life is at stake. The bad guy you have captured possesses information that could save this life. He refuses to divulge. In such a case, the choice is easy. Even John McCain, the most admirable and estimable torture opponent, says openly that in such circumstances, "You do what you have to do." And then take the responsibility.

Some people, however, believe you never torture. Ever. They are akin to conscientious objectors who will never fight in any war under any circumstances, and for whom we correctly show respect by exempting from war duty. But we would never make one of them Centcom commander. Private principles are fine, but you don't entrust such a person with the military decisions upon which hinges the safety of the nation. It is similarly imprudent to have a person who would abjure torture in all circumstances making national security decisions upon which depends the protection of 300 million countrymen.

The second exception to the no-torture rule is the extraction of information from a high-value enemy in possession of high-value information likely to save lives. This case lacks the black-and-white clarity of the ticking time bomb scenario. We know less about the length of the fuse or the nature of the next attack. But we do know the danger is great. We know we must act but have no idea where or how -- and we can't know that until we have information. Catch-22.[/quote]

...

[quote]Judging by Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress who were informed at the time, the answer seems to be yes. In December 2007, after a Washington Post report that she had knowledge of these procedures and did not object, she admitted that she'd been "briefed on interrogation techniques the administration was considering using in the future."

Today Pelosi protests "we were not -- I repeat -- were not told that waterboarding or any other of these other enhanced interrogation methods were used." She imagines that this distinction between past and present, Clintonian in its parsing, is exonerating.

On the contrary. It is self-indicting. If you are told about torture that has already occurred, you might justify silence on the grounds that what's done is done and you are simply being used in a post-facto exercise to cover the CIA's rear end. The time to protest torture, if you really are as outraged as you now pretend to be, is when the CIA tells you what it is planning to do "in the future."

But Pelosi did nothing. No protest. No move to cut off funding. No letter to the president or the CIA chief or anyone else saying "Don't do it."

On the contrary, notes Porter Goss, then chairman of the House intelligence committee: The members briefed on these techniques did not just refrain from objecting, "on a bipartisan basis, we asked if the CIA needed more support from Congress to carry out its mission against al-Qaeda."

More support, mind you. Which makes the current spectacle of self-righteous condemnation not just cowardly but hollow. It is one thing to have disagreed at the time and said so. It is utterly contemptible, however, to have been silent then and to rise now "on a bright, sunny, safe day in April 2009" (the words are Blair's) to excoriate those who kept us safe these harrowing last eight years.
[/quote]

Last time Pelosi was on with Jon Stewart...it was a Obama lovefest and push for her new book. Yet...she's never really hammered on this...is she.

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She's a liberal from San Fransisco, get over yourself

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Dems put her in line after Biden to take over the presidency...that doesn't concern you that she's a lying b***h?

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No, she's a politician. Anyone you have voted for has "lied" just as much. And I never even voted for her.

Anyways I'd rather have her third in line than Cheney 8th in line. When he lies, Americans die.


[url]http://amfix.blogs.cnn.com/2009/04/30/bush-era-memos-vindicate-abu-ghraib-soldiers/[/url]

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[quote name='g5jamz']Dems put her in line after Biden to take over the presidency...that doesn't concern you that she's a lying b***h?[/quote]

That only matters if the "she" is a conservative.

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[QUOTE=g5jamz;2024754Last time Pelosi was on with Jon Stewart...it was a Obama lovefest and push for her new book. Yet...she's never really hammered on this...is she.[/QUOTE]

you're complaining about the level of interview on a satirical news show that airs on comedy central after South Park

think about that

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[quote name='cookinwithgas']No, she's a politician. Anyone you have voted for has "lied" just as much. And I never even voted for her.

Anyways I'd rather have her third in line than Cheney 8th in line. When he lies, Americans die.


[url]http://amfix.blogs.cnn.com/2009/04/30/bush-era-memos-vindicate-abu-ghraib-soldiers/[/url][/quote]

I'd rather have you in line than Pelosi.

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And up go the walls between departments again...when the CIA feels like it's losing support from Congress what do you think happens?

There have been quite a few closed door meetings in the past week(s) with no republicans present, but Leon Panetta in on and letters written reassuring CIA officials. Here...read up on it...

[url]http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=31689[/url]

After which THIS letter was issued out to the CIA...

[url]http://www.humanevents.com/downloads-pdfs/Letter%20to%20CIA%20Workforce.pdf[/url]

a suckup letter?...lol...people are smarter than that

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[quote name='Fiz']you're complaining about the level of interview on a satirical news show that airs on comedy central after South Park

think about that[/quote]

Wait...we were told weeks ago that Jon Stewart was doing the work real journalists weren't doing during the bailout fiasco/CNBC/etc. Now he's a stooge?

Make up ya'lls minds liberals...

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[quote name='g5jamz']Wait...we were told weeks ago that Jon Stewart was doing the work real journalists weren't doing during the bailout fiasco/CNBC/etc. Now he's a stooge?

Make up ya'lls minds liberals...[/quote]

who told you that?

and every politician that goes on the daily show gets a softball interview. get off the cross

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[quote name='Fiz']who told you that?

and every politician that goes on the daily show gets a softball interview. get off the cross[/quote]

LOL...you are truly an Obama-bowler.

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Paleo conservatives and their "smoking gun/mushroom cloud/ticking time bomb" arguments amuse me.

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At least there aren't memos coming out about how to politicize national security interests...right Mr. Rockefeller?

You all want the walls back up between departments...Pelosi and the gang are here to show you how.

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According to Stewart, Harry S. Truman is guilty of war crimes. We should have set the first A Bomb 15 miles off the coast to warn them before actually dropping one on them and killing 100,000 people.

Nevermind that Japan only surrendered after the second bomb.

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Japan's surrender had very little to do with annihilating two of their last three cities with bombs they didn't understand and much more to do with the red army having just wiped out their remaining troops in manchuria and coming in to throw a rape party

nuking japan had very little to do with insuring victory (as evidenced by our near eradication of the rest of the country using traditional methods) and much more to do with showing the Russians what we could do.

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Revisionist history.

Fiz was there.

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You could argue Hiroshima was somewhat for the Japanese, but Nagasaki was totally for the Russians (and Chinese).

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Come on, man. Not you too?

Pearl Harbor was like 9/11. Only the whole country wanted revenge, not just half of us.

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[quote name='g5jamz']Revisionist history.

Fiz was there.[/quote]

even the joint Naval-Army investigation into the events immediately after came to the conclusion that the bombs had little impact beyond losing two non military cities.

i mean it's not like anyone knew what they were. if the intention was just intimidation and breaking their will, detonating it in clear view of the most densely populated civilian region in front of people that would survive to talk about it makes a lot more sense.

of course truman was a lunatic and lamay was a war criminal (as admitted by robert macnamara) so what do you expect.

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Last I checked the whole country didn't make the decision to drop the bombs.

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Riiiight. Fighting island to island against people that would fight to the death...either by us...or by their own sword. Yeah. Bombs had NO impact. Think about that. The only way to completely destroy your enemy is to make the PEOPLE realize we did a very stupid thing and we have to change and not ever do anything that stupid ever again.

WTF am I having to explain myself to you and your endless supply of revisionist historical BS which was more than likely written by some liberal pussy like yourself.

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hey look someone obliterated that krauthammer article
[quote]Krauthammer's Asterisks
Charles Krauthammer, in his Washington Post opinion column this morning, tries to find loopholes for impermissible evil.

"Torture is an impermissible evil. Except under two circumstances," he writes.

"The first is the ticking time bomb. An innocent's life is at stake. The bad guy you have captured possesses information that could save this life. He refuses to divulge. In such a case, the choice is easy."

Actually, no. The ticking time bomb scenario only exists in two places: On TV and in the dark fantasies of power-crazed and morally deficient authoritarians. In real life, things are never that certain. And trained interrogators say that even in the most extreme circumstances, traditional methods are the most effective.

Krauthammer continues: "Some people, however, believe you never torture. Ever. They are akin to conscientious objectors who will never fight in any war under any circumstances, and for whom we correctly show respect by exempting them from war duty. But we would never make one of them Centcom commander."

Actually, no. They are normal people who share the post-World War II international consensus that "recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world." Indeed, the idea of putting someone without a healthy respect for human rights at Centcom is abhorrent -- unless of course you believe that human rights don't matter.

Krauthamer: "The second exception to the no-torture rule is the extraction of information from a high-value enemy in possession of high-value information likely to save lives. This case lacks the black-and-white clarity of the ticking time bomb scenario. We know less about the length of the fuse or the nature of the next attack. But we do know the danger is great."

This of course is a blatant post-facto attempt at rationalizing the (inevitable) misdiagnosis of the ticking time bomb scenario. Now all of a sudden the standards are lower. Krauthammer is advocating fishing expeditions -- with a waterboard.

"Under those circumstances, you do what you have to do."

Krauthammer's core argument then is that the ends justify the means. He quotes two former CIA officials, both deeply invested in covering their asses, who unsurprisingly insist that torture worked. But none of the claims they or others in the complicit chain of command have made held up under even modest public scrutiny.

And he mocks the idea put forth by President Obama on Wednesday -- and supported by people who actually have experience in interrogation, rather than in watching TV and fantasizing about being Jack Bauer -- that traditional interrogation techniques are extremely effective.

For instance, he writes: "KSM, the mastermind of 9/11 who knew more about more plots than anyone else, did not seem very inclined to respond to polite inquiries about future plans. The man who boasted of personally beheading Daniel Pearl with a butcher knife answered questions about plots with 'soon you will know' -- meaning, when you count the bodies in the morgue and find horribly disfigured burn victims in hospitals, you will know then what we are planning now."

But as Scott Shane recently pointed out in the New York Times, with more than a little understatement: "Mr. Mohammed, captured on March 1, 2003, was waterboarded 183 times that month. That striking number, which would average out to six waterboardings a day, suggests that interrogators did not try a traditional, rapport-building approach for long before escalating to their most extreme tool."

And almost nobody who knows anything about the Pearl case (see, for instance, Lawrence Wright and Peter Bergen) actually thinks KSM -- who confessed to the killing after being tortured -- had anything to do with it. Torture after all is really only good at one thing: eliciting false confessions. That we got plenty of from KSM.

But his "soon you will know" boast was all bluster -- sort of like Saddam Hussein's claim to have nuclear capability. ("Responding to bluster with war crimes" -- there's a great motto for an administration.) Nothing KSM said came close to thwarting any imminent attack. One hundred and eighty three waterboarding sessions later, the "bodies in the morgue" and the "horribly disfigured burn victims" were still only a fantasy of the torturers -- and certain opinion columnists.

Krauthammer: "The other problem is one of timing. The good cop routine can take weeks or months or years. We didn't have that luxury in the aftermath of 9/11 when waterboarding, for example, was in use."

But his compacting of the timeline is shameless revisionism. Top officials of the Bush administration -- and yes, I'm looking at you, Mr. Cheney -- panicked. And they continued to panic after any excuse for panic was long over. Waterboarding was conducted over a period of several months, long after 9/11 -- from August 2002 at least through March 2003. Other torture tactics were widely employed in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo over a period of years. Legal memos defending various forms of torture were being commissioned by the White House until virtually the end of the Bush administration.

And in his final defense, Krauthammer argues that the lack of objections at the time from Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress who were briefed on interrogation policies is proof that "at the time the information was important enough, the danger great enough and our blindness about the enemy's plans severe enough to justify an exception to the moral injunction against torture."

Precisely what members of Congress were told and how they responded should absolutely be a part of any thorough official investigation into the abuses of the Bush years. The enablers must be exposed as surely as the complicit. And members of Congress who knew what was happening and remained silent must be held to public account for their moral cowardice.

But their failure to speak out does not change the fundamental moral equation.

If the United States is to live up to its core values, if it is to once again be a beacon of human rights to the world and a champion of human dignity, then when it comes to torture -- to impermissible evil, as Krauthammer himself puts it -- there can be no asterisks.
[/quote]

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[quote name='g5jamz']Riiiight. Fighting island to island against people that would fight to the death...either by us...or by their own sword. Yeah. Bombs had NO impact. Think about that. The only way to completely destroy your enemy is to make the PEOPLE realize we did a very stupid thing and we have to change and not ever do anything that stupid ever again.

WTF am I having to explain myself to you and your endless supply of revisionist historical BS which was more than likely written by some liberal pussy like yourself.[/quote]

Exactly.

We had two bombs. We told the Japanese to surrender or we would hit them with the first. They said "Yeah, right." So we hit them. They didn't think we could possibly have two weapons with such destruction so they refused to surrender. So we had to use the second one. At that point their will was broken.

But that makes too much common sense to register in the liberal mind, I suppose.

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Again, Hiroshima was for the Japanese, but Nagasaki sure as shit wasn't.

We didn't even give the Japanese a chance to surrender after Hiroshima.

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