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A damned fine read

There's something incredibly annoying and humiliating about spending months and countless pieces writing about concepts and ideas and observations, fumbling around for some essential truths, and then out of the blue finding someone has taken all of them, and more, and tied them all together in one magnificent package.

Bill Whittle has done exactly that.

This one piece is precisely the one I wish I had written. The one I wish I could have written. He explains what I fumbled around, ties together all that I wish I could have thought of, and concludes exactly the way I wish I could have. And so much BETTER.

Damn.


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Comments (15)

I read that essay yesterday... (Below threshold)
Laura:

I read that essay yesterday, took a while, but it is well worth the time it takes to read it. As for wishing you could have written that essay, I think you do a fine job right now.

An excellent essay. Thank ... (Below threshold)
Tom Kubiak:

An excellent essay. Thank you for linking to it. It really hit home for this old war horse. Thank you, Tom Kubiak, Colonel, USAF (Retired)
PS: I did share it with a liberal University of Washington Professor who ranted at a Marine recruiter at Garfield High School in Seattle. No respone from her.

Save your time. "I... (Below threshold)
frameone:

Save your time.

"It is not because they are opposing us. It is – to put it as bluntly as possible – because they are cheating – cheating in a way that none of the above ever did."

"Remarkable, isn’t it? These people, who pride themselves on nuance, see no difference between a naked human pyramid of ten prisoners lasting two minutes and piles of corpses six million deep."

"And yet our elites – bored, pampered and without a glimmer of perspective – search the inside of our walls by night, looking for cracks to enlarge."

"How many men would Pharaoh send to die to obtain another box of Oreo cookies for his sons?"

Shorter Whittle: They don't fight fair so as long as we don't commit mass murder, a little torture and abuse is fine. Liberals are power mad selfish cowards who don't understand that America is the greatest country in the history of the world while we are the bright, clean righteous warriors defenders of toilet paper and junk food.

Tell me you haven't heard all that before. Sheesh.

Shorter New York Times investigation into torture and abuse of prisoners by US servicemen in Afghanistan published today:

"Several hours passed before an emergency room doctor finally saw Mr. Dilawar. By then he was dead, his body beginning to stiffen. It would be many months before Army investigators learned a final horrific detail: Most of the interrogators had believed Mr. Dilawar was an innocent man who simply drove his taxi past the American base at the wrong time."

When you're done with Whittle's self-importan flatulence try reading this al the way through.

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/20/international/asia/20abuse.html?ei=5094&en=6cca0512a38427c3&hp=&ex=1116648000&partner=homepage&pagewanted=print

Yeah, it can sometimes be d... (Below threshold)

Yeah, it can sometimes be demoralizing to read Bill.

As for you frameone, I think you're missing the point. Its not that Bill denies that those sorts of things go on, he's just pointing out that there's a difference between occasional incidents and _policy_.

The nytimes exists to make money not to perform a public good. Remember that, because they are just as prone to lying, as say, Enron.

Jay Tea: Thank you for post... (Below threshold)
fatman:

Jay Tea: Thank you for posting that. Apologies for what follows.

Frameone: Go fuck yourself.

Sorry I can't be more eloquent than that, but I'm just not feeling it today. And if even I was, you're not worth it.

Nobody's perfect, Jay... (Below threshold)

Nobody's perfect, Jay


Cindy

"Its not that Bill denies t... (Below threshold)
frameone:

"Its not that Bill denies that those sorts of things go on, he's just pointing out that there's a difference between occasional incidents and _policy_."

And yet we know for a fact that officials high in the Bush administration, Rumsfeld and Gonzalez, in particular, were indeed discussing techniques of torture as policy. I'm stunned at the swiftness that Whittle and others are willing let individual soldiers take the full blame in these cases without any suggestion that more be done to investigate those higher up.

Ultimately, I don't know why Jay Tea is so hard on himself. Brevity is a virtue. Jay regularly takes one paragraph to say what Whittle can't say in twelve.

Sorry Frameone.But... (Below threshold)
coulter is a hottie:

Sorry Frameone.

But I wholeheartedly agree with fatman!

Where's your concern over the 3000 plus civilians who died in 9/11?

Where's your concern over the American sons and daughters who are dying protecting your freedoms here at home?

Pull your head out of your ass and then fuck yourself!

Wow Coulter. I didn't know... (Below threshold)
whocares:

Wow Coulter. I didn't know there were still people who believed that Iraq was responsible for 9/11. Thank you for your ignorance. Have a great day.

Coulter has never stated th... (Below threshold)
penny:

Coulter has never stated that Iraq was responsible for 9/11. Thanks for sharing your ignorance.

"Where's your concern over ... (Below threshold)
frameone:

"Where's your concern over the 3000 plus civilians who died in 9/11?

Where's your concern over the American sons and daughters who are dying protecting your freedoms here at home?"

I'm sorry but are you suggesting that 9-11 gives America the right to torture and abuse prisoners and detainees? If so then the terrorists won. How on earth we supposed to be a beacon of freedom for the world if Americans start thinking its okay to torture people? There's no freakin excuse for it. Period. And I'd like to remind you that this administration went in to Iraq without any plan for what was going to happen after we got to Baghdad. I've seen people post comments here suggesting that the plan all along was to play some vast rope a dope game with the terrorists, luring them into Iraq to be killed at our leaisure. If that was the plan it freaking sucks! Tell me, why is it a great and noble thing to use our soldiers as bait?

People, people. Do... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

People, people.

Don't keep taking the troll bait.

Obviously, I have not made ... (Below threshold)
Coulter is a hottie:

Obviously, I have not made myself clear.

After reading Bill Whittle’s essay “Sanctuary” on http://www.ejectejecteject.com/ I was a little emotionally charged.

I am questioning frameone’s concern for a prisoner who died in the custody of US serviceman. v.s. the concern for the 3000 plus victims of 9/11 and their families plus the concern over the American sons and daughters who are dying protecting our freedoms here at home?

Where do I imply that it is ok to torture prisoners? I do not. What I do agree with is what Bill Whittle states below:

“ Is humiliation the same as torture? It is not -- that's why the words are spelled differently. To get to the heart of the difference, assume you were a prisoner at Abu Graib, and your interrogator started to remove your fingers one by one with bolt cutters. How long would it take you to beg to be posed with women’s panties on your head? Yeah, I thought so.

This is not to excuse in any way the shameful behavior committed there by a few individuals who clearly are not fit to wear the uniform of the United States. They have disgraced us all and done incalculable damage. But if producing humiliation and fear is now to be defined as “torture,” what international human rights organization will be appointed to help the surviving readers of The New York Times?”

Frameone questions:
“I'm sorry but are you suggesting that 9-11 gives America the right to torture and abuse prisoners and detainees?”
No. I am stating not suggesting that my loyalties lie with the concern and compassion for the victims from America first. I feel the U.S. is trying to minimize civilian casualties. But in war we know there will be collateral damage. Do you not feel this way?

Frameone questions:
“Tell me, why is it a great and noble thing to use our soldiers as bait?” I disagree that the military strategy you are suggesting is reality, meaning that our soldiers are being used as “bait” to lure terrorists to Iraq for us to kill at our leisure. I suggest you ask our military in Iraq and see if they view it as a cake walk over there. Would you prefer that we have are own Fallujah here in the U.S. rather that in Iraq?

For Penny and Whocares:

In my sentence “Where's your concern over the 3000 plus civilians who died in 9/11?” Again, I am questioning frameone’s concern over the death of a prisoner in US custody vs. the concern for the 3000 plus victims of 9/11 and their families plus the concern over the American sons and daughters who are dying protecting your freedoms here at home?

My loyalties lie with the latter. I feel he (frameone) is more concerned with the death of a prisoner vs the victims of 9/11 plus the soldiers fighting and dying for us here at home. I am a little surprised that the sentence: “Where's your concern over the 3000 plus civilians who died in 9/11?” is equated that Iraq was responsible for 9/11. This sentence doesn’t say that at all, nor did I state or imply that Ann Coulter stated Iraq was responsible for 9/11. I can assure you I am not implying she (Ann Coulter) made such a declaration. If that was the case, that would be easily verifiable given her web site and her books.

There are people who commen... (Below threshold)
frameone:

There are people who comment here who say, how dare you accuse US soldiers of torture, how dare you call what US soldiers do to their prisoners torture. And then they turn right around and argue that it's okay to torture. No one here seems to have a problem with the idea of torture, abuse and inhumane treatment of prisoners. And then you turn around and say that to suggest that my opposition to torture is some how a denial of the innocent lives who died on 9-11.

Do you want to know what I'm concerned with? Do you know where my loyalties lie? My loyalties lie with the ideals and values that this country is supposed to represent. A million fucking Americans could be killed tomorrow, every fucking American could be killed tomorrow and it wouldn't matter one whit, if our ideals survived in the heart of just one person. It's what we stand for that's important.

I believe that this country does stand as a beacon to other countries and that the ideals enshrined in our Constitution can be the salvation of mankind. But if these ideals are to mean anything we must apply them to all mankind not just ourselves alone. We have to recognize that these are the rights of all men, and that no man, no matter what they've done, what crime they've committed, can or should be denied recognition of their basic humanity. If we do this, we lose our own humanity. We hand it over to someone else to decide our rights and so our fate.

Sadly, this administration and many people here do not seem to feel the same way. They have granted to themselves the right to decide who is human and who isn't. They believe only some men are worthy of basic human rights, they believe some men are unworthy of basic human dignity. I beleive that they have chosen the coward's way, they have chosen the way of the weak. Our ideals demand courage, daring, strength and above all humility which is why we have, so often, fallen short.

Today we are falling short:

"With most of the legal action pending, the story of abuses at Bagram remains incomplete. But documents and interviews reveal a striking disparity between the findings of Army investigators and what military officials said in the aftermath of the deaths.

Military spokesmen maintained that both men had died of natural causes, even after military coroners had ruled the deaths homicides. Two months after those autopsies, the American commander in Afghanistan, then-Lt. Gen. Daniel K. McNeill, said he had no indication that abuse by soldiers had contributed to the two deaths. The methods used at Bagram, he said, were "in accordance with what is generally accepted as interrogation techniques."

To say that the innocent victims of 9-11 died so that we can we do this is to spit on their memories and the ideals of this country.

No, frameone. It's you who ... (Below threshold)
fatman:

No, frameone. It's you who spits on the memory of the victims of these butchers, and not just the ones from 9-11. Every sailor who died aboard the USS Cole, every victim--most of them NOT Americans--who died in the 1998 embassy bombings, every victim of the first WTC bombing in 1993 and every Marine who died in that barracks in Beirut in 1983 is wiping your spit off their faces.

The United States Army is prosecuting and punishing those responsible for the Abu Graib abuses; I have no doubt the same treatment awaits any other soldier who abused or humiliated any other prisoners, as well as anyone who actually tortured or killed them. Just because you and the New York Times say that torture and murder are routinely used as interrogation tools by the U.S. military doen't make it so.

As for your comments about Bill Whittle's "self-important flatulen(sic)" and his inability to say (paraphrasing) "in twelve paragraphs what Jay Tea can say in one", do I detect a little envy there? Did you read "Sanctuary 1&2" and realize that if you posted ten times a day on this site for the next year, it wouldn't have half the effect that one essay by Bill Whittle did? Now I freely admit that I'm not one-tenth the writer Mr. Whittle is either, but that doesn't inspire jealousy or anger in me; rather it inspires respect and admiration. You, on the other hand, seem to be seriously jealous of him.

And that's pitiful.




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