Tuesday, March 11, 2008

If Waterboarding Saves Lives, Do It

Except for when I attack defenseless 2x4's by running into them with my teeth, I'm generally not a violent person. But I'm missing whatever it is that provokes a negative reaction to torture of terrorists.

If a man strapped with explosives was walking up Saddle Creek Road and headed for Mama's Pizza on a suicidal quest to blow up all the families inside, I would say shoot him dead on the spot. (These things actually happen in Israel. There are people in this world who wish they were happening in America.)

If authorities have a terrorist prisoner with information that could prevent terrorist activity, I want them to get the information. In the example above, the best way to stop the threat is to kill the terrorist immediately. In the case of the prisoner, killing him will not stop the threat. The information must be forced out of him without killing him. If scaring him into thinking he is drowning gets the job done, do it.

He's lucky to be alive at all -- never mind getting three squares, a Koran, and a prayer rug on my dime. In my view he is in the same position as the bomb-laden terrorist headed for Mama's. He has declared war on me and my wife and my children and my society and my soldiers who are keeping me safe and free, and he refuses to accept any boundaries in prosecuting his war. Scare him. Hurt him. Trick him. Do whatever is necessary to stop such terrorism.

Do you remember, in the wake of 9/11, there were predictions that the United States would be hit again with major terrorist attacks? Maybe we've just been lucky, but I think it has more to do with national security operatives doing whatever is necessary to stop evil people from doing evil things.

It reminds me of the hullabaloo over the domestic surveillance program. Liberal friends said that was it, President Bush had finally gone too far. It was called "spying on Americans" by Bush critics.

Yes, it is spying, but it's eavesdropping on conversations between Americans and foreigners suspected of terrorism. The populist conservative majority just yawned and went on with daily life, secure in the knowledge that only people mixing with terrorists need feel threatened by the tactics at issue.

Torture for the sake of torture is grotesque and unjustifiable. Torture to stop lethal threats to Americans at home and abroad is different. The commander-in-chief's duty is to protect his citizens from such threats, not worry about whether a method of acquiring information is too traumatic for a terrorist.

1 comment:

OmaSteak said...

I agree with you 100% on this subject. I'd also like to see terrorists immediately executed after interrogations are completed. No Gitmo for years, no military tribunals, just a quick meeting with a firing squad. As for the furor raised by the left wing over wire tapping electronic communications between people in the US and certain foreign countries, if you look into who is being most vocal about it you'll find it's CAIR and the Michigan branch of the ACLU, both of which have significant ties to radical Islamic groups in the middle east.