2:35 p.m. - 2004-05-10
The Pictures. You know the ones. With the Iraqi prosoners.
I'm deeply conflicted. Six and I were talking about this over the weekend.
My thoughts are, these prisoners were not "innocent." They were cold hearted killers. Essentially terrorists. They were being interrogated. I don't believe that you can successfully interrogate killers, who have no respect for human life, nicely. Politely. With dignity. Without threatening. Without humiliating. Without making them repend for what they've done and/or wish they were dead.
It doesn't work.
I value my freedom. There are evil people out there who do not value it. I can't hurt people unless my life/safety/humanity or those of innocents are threatened. I believe that I could be pushed to hurt someone evil if it meant that my loved ones and innocents around the world would be protected from them and theirs.
I'm not sure that posing killers in degrading poses is so bad. And even toruring them as they've tortured others seems like justice. Its not like they are innocent prisoners such as in the Holocaust. These people actually did wrong and would do it again in a heart beat.
The conflict is, that it goes against my nature to believe and accept humiliation, intimidation and torture. And I wonder whether I have been so affected by the events of 911 that I would be so accepting. Can I have been so broken by it that my own sense of humanity has been altered?
It has always been my belief that the bullies should be bullied. An eye for an eye. Unless there is valid doubt that the person is guilty.
There are prisoners in other countries and our own who are truely innocent, and I would fight tooth and nail to have them protects from what happened in Iraq. And by setting an example of withstraint, America would be in a position to push others to do the same without being hypocritical. So that would be good.
But is it worth our freedom to practice withstraint with bullies and killers in order to set that example?
I don't know. I'm conflicted.