I just watched the Bill Whittle video that Kim linked to last night. If you haven’t seen this rebuttal to John Stewart’s assertion that President Truman was a war criminal please take the time to view it because it is an excellent piece of work. To his credit, Stewart admitted after his show that he had stuck his foot in his mouth:
The other night we had on Cliff May. He was on, we were discussing torture, back and forth, very spirited discussion, very enjoyable. And I may have mentioned during the discussion we were having that Harry Truman was a war criminal. And right after saying it, I thought to myself that was dumb. And it was dumb. Stupid in fact. So I shouldn’t have said that, and I did. So I say right now, no, I don’t believe that to be the case. The atomic bomb, a very complicated decision in the context of a horrific war, and I walk that back because it was in my estimation a stupid thing to say. (emphasis mine)
Well, that’s a start. But Stewart’s limited modified mea culpa brings to mind the lack of any pretense of honesty on the Left. I don’t think I’ve witnessed such a mindless, self destructive, witless campaign against US national security interests and public safety since the 1970’s. As the comment threads on this blog have demonstrated there is no common ground on the matter of enhanced interrogation (or whatever else you want to call it). On one side is the position for using any means within the law to obtain information that might protect the American people from harm. On the other side there appears to be a singular goal of imprisoning Bush administration officials for violating the human rights of individuals suspected of terrorist activities against the US.
It has to be asked if the Obama administration is serious about (and up to) the task of protecting American lives. Given the craven political calculus behind its decisions to release OLC “torture memos”, hint at prosecution of Bush administration officials, criticize previous foreign policy on trips abroad and waffle on military tribunals it’s easy to see that this administration can not clearly formulate or execute a national security policy. The entire debate about detainees and waterboarding surely has our enemies howling in laughter (as they plan to exploit our weaknesses). It is inconceivable that any person with a basic knowledge of how this country has conducted warfare and defended itself for centuries could seriously argue that the national discussion about “torture” and OLC memos is benefiting our security.
In light of the Stewart comment about Truman it’s interesting to wonder what Curtis Lemay would have made of that comment. Commenter Mac Lorry has noted that if waterboarding is considered torture then what do we make of stealthily launching Predator missiles into homes occupied by not just suspected terrorists but also innocent women and children? General Lemay surely considered that type of question when he fire bombed hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians while destroying the enemy’s industrial infrastructure that was situated among their homes. Does President Obama, and the Left that supports him, have the gravitas to weigh these types of situations? I’m beginning to think not.