Sunday, May 17, 2009
What Obama (and Bush) don't want you to see
The Sydney Morning Herald has some of the photos that Obama is working so hard to try to keep you from seeing.
There's one line of this debate that keeps shocking me. We are constantly told that releasing these photos would hurt America's standing in the world. Or that releasing these photos might put American troops in danger of being tortured themselves if captured.
But, its not 'releasing the photos' that has these effects. These effects were instead caused when the torture was authorized and committed. Yes, this hurts America's standing in the world. And it means US military personnel might be tortured some day. But that's the result of the acts of torture themselves.
Releasing the photos could be the first step towards redemption. They tell any alcoholic that the first step towards a better life is admitting that they are an alcoholic. The first step towards ending torture by Americans is admitting that we are torturers. The second step would be bringing those responsible to justice, from Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Gates on down, as a clear signal that we as Americans do not condone torture.
PS ... a few days later, we have VP Biden making the same ridiculous argument with regard to Guantanamo's prison camp. Now, he's saying the decision to close Guantanamo is 'opening Pandora's Box.'
No Mr. Vice President. It was the decision to OPEN Guantanamo that opened Pandora's Box. Trying to close it is just trying to clean up the mess and contain the damage.