Friday, October 27, 2006

Dick Cheney Goes Off The Boards

One of the most annoying characteristics of the bumbling Bushies is how they never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. When Dick Cheney made the mistake of an oblique reference to waterboarding terrorists ("dunk in the water"), Team Bush reacted in typical fashion--implausible denial.

Vice Presidents shouldn't be making comments about any interrogation techniques America might use on captured, high-value terrorists, but once he let it slip, why the denial? Why not come out and say what most Americans want you to say, namely that the temporary discomfort of waterboarding is nothing compared to the deaths that have ALREADY been prevented by using the technique on Khalid Sheik Mohammad (among others).

I'd love for Sen. McCain to explain to me why this technique--which we use on some of our own soldiers as part of their training--should not be used on an Osama or a KSM when we've captured them. I'd love for him to say that, when push comes to shove (or in McCain's coercive-interrogation-free world, when "finger poking" comes to "belly slapping"), that he'd rather see the next WTC fall than see a terrorist waterboarded.

Then again, a lot of people would love to hear a coherent explanation of Sen. McCain's "torture is always wrong...except when it's not" position. Not gonna happen.

But that's no excuse for the Bushies. Get tough, Dick, and stand up for the good guys. It's not just the right thing to do, it's also politically smart.

No wonder the Bushies won't do it.

UPDATE: This is an excellent overview of the issue of waterboarding and coercive interrogation.