Even if you are an intelligent man, reading Andrew Sullivan can make you stupid. It happened to President Obama this week. At his 100-day press conference, President Obama invoked Churchill rejecting the use of torture for interrogation in the days of the Blitz during World War II. Obama instructed the assembled multitude:
I was struck by an article that I was reading the other day talking about the fact that the British during World War II, when London was being bombed to smithereens, had 200 or so detainees. And Churchill said, ‘We don’t torture,’ when the entire British–all of the British people–were being subjected to unimaginable risk and threat….the reason was that Churchill understood — you start taking shortcuts, over time, that corrodes what’s best in a people. It corrodes the character of a country.
Now if you’ve ever read much Churchill or any competent history of World War II, you would have a pretty good idea that one thing Churchill never said in the course of long-life is: “We don’t torture.” As it happens, Churchill scholar Richard Langworth has now attested to the absence of the words from Churchill’s vast corpus.
Head on over to Power Line and read all of Scott’s post.