An important piece. Not so much for the ‘no, duh’ conclusion, but more for the impeccable credentials of the author.
The comments are interesting, too:
I, like so many of us, am still reeling from the shock of 9/11. The more I have learned about our enemies since that awful day, the more my heart has hardened against them. The more my heart has hardened, the less room is left for any form of compassion or compromise.
I see us as being weakened by our very own high-minded ethical standards. I continually try to see the enemy for who they are and stop trying to rationalize away their hatred or empathize with their positions. I want to see us toughen up as a nation and face these obvious threats clearly, without multiculturalist obfuscations.
I bristle at any suggestion of our moral failings by the highly-vocal, activist antiwar left. I feel that they are purposely undermining the moral foundations of their own country in a time of war for their own selfish political agenda.
This was my mindset coming into this article. I had come to terms with the whole “torture” debate by accepting its efficacy. To the often-asked question: “If there was a nuclear attack planned against a major US city, would you subject a captured terrorist to torture to reveal where it was planned to take place?” the answer was pretty obvious to me: Of course. Give him the full treatment.
The argument that if we use torture, then our enemies might use it against us seemed ludicrous. I could hardly visualize the beheaders of Nick Berg stopping for a moment to first consult their copy of the Geneva Conventions Rules.
However, because of your obvious experience and credentials, I followed your argument to the very end. And, thankfully, because I followed it to the end, my rock-solid certainity was shaken. I hadn’t considered what FUTURE governments might do with this precedent. I even began to question the efficacy of the whole idea.
In short, I’ve started to have some serious doubts about my previous convictions. I have to think about it some more. You may very well be right, after all. And I might be wrong.
Those who would rather see LA hit by a nuclear weapon and send Jack Bauer to prison for trying to get information to stop it have made their moral choice and if they are not in LA at the time the bomb goes off will have to live with their feelings of moral superiority.
24, the foundation of American policy.
That was an excellent read but some of the comments are frightening. I don’t see how you can argue with guys who study and practice(in training) torture for a living.
That was a very powerful piece. Thanks for posting it.
Mayor Quimby, you’re well-known, sir, for your lenient stance on crime. But suppose for a second that your house was ransacked by thugs, your family tied up in the basement with socks in their mouths, you try to open the door but there’s too much blood on the knob…
My question is about the tax plan, sir.