Yesterday, in response to this post (responding to this post which really is the best response I have seen- one that goes beyond simply calling Sullivan a pussy and a liberal and an Amerikka hating traitor), the following was stated about yours truly:
I agree that Henke is beyond persuasion on this issue, but I don’t think he’s unreasonable, he just disagrees. Sullivan is not only beyond persuasion but unwilling to engage in the process of reasoning. And Cole, who is usually a sensible enough guy, seems intent on adopting the classic lefty tactic of substituting mountains of outrage for an effort at persuasion and argument.
For those interested, I wasn’t adding mountains of outrage- adding outrage should not be necessary, since it is so clear that certain quarters have learned approximately NOTHING from the fallout created by this administration’s choices regarding detainee policy/treatment. What I was adding was condescending mockery, which I hope would work where reason and logic have failed miserably. I was wrong.
At any rate, if they thought I was adding outrage, wait till they get a load of this excellent rant at the Belgravia Dispatch:
Yep, another depressingly poor decision by the White House, in a long string of them, when it comes to detainee policy. I can assure you the further sullying of our reputation in the international community because of Geneva Convention carve-outs in the Manual will greatly outweigh any supposed intelligence gains we will be able to secure because we’ll be able to ‘humiliate’ or ‘degrade’ better. But, blogospheric eminences protest, we are dealing with an Arab male honor code/system here. If we can’t humiliate Mohamed and Ahmed and gang, we won’t be able to extract any good intelligence, and next thing you know, my Colorado condo is going to be blown to smithereens because some weenie intellectual, America-hating, anti-panty-hose-on-head-during-interrogation-cowardly-defeatist wanted to be soft with the terrorists.
Really? But the pre-existing Army Field Manual, which has served us well for decades, allows for tactics such as “Fear Up Harsh”, “Pride and Ego Up,” and “Futility”–all of which would allow for a US interrogator to call an Iraqi insurgent a girlie-man, or such, for not having the balls to have really planted an IED, to use a hypo making the rounds. The point is that our pre-existing doctrine is wholly up to the task of extracting actionable intelligence.***
This is America. A reasonable person test. A do unto others as you would have others do unto you. And if in doubt, don’t do it. Or ask a lawyer. These are the kind of clean, bright lines needed near emotion fraught battle-zones where young men and women entrusted with our national security must gather intelligence amidst the exigencies of wartime. This makes pragmatic sense. This preserves our leading (if rapidly diminishing) role as avatar of international human rights, so critical, as who else will step up and do so on the international stage? Not the farcical UN Rights Commissions, that, in positively Orwellian fashion, fete Syrians or Libyans or such, and not the Indians or Italians or Romanians or Russians either. No, only we have the credibility, but we are squandering it. And for what? So we can “humiliate”? When we can already use “Pride and Ego Up” and “Fear Up Harsh” and other tried and true tactics? Instead we are in a brave new world of paradigm shifts, where the Geneva Conventions are quaint, and Rumstud manfully avers that he stands 8 hours a day, in the margins of a note documenting interrogation tactics at Gitmo.
That will leave a mark.