Faint praise

When I first heard that Bush and Rumsfeld had signed off on pro-torture policy documents written by our new Attorney General, one of my first thoughts was: How will they react when American soldiers are tortured by foreign powers?

The answer, amazingly enough, is that they are being consistent. The Bush administration is now fighting Gulf War veterans in court, trying to prevent them from claiming compensation for being tortured by Saddam Hussein. The rationale given is…well, several rationales are given, ranging from the legalistic to the economic, but conspicuously avoiding any discussion of morality. So much for “values”.

I guess Bush and his cronies think torture is no big deal in general—not just when carried out on Arabs. I feel like I ought to at least be glad that everyone tortured at Abu Ghraib is being treated equally badly, whether American or not, but instead I just feel even more horrified. It’s easy to believe that Bush doesn’t give a shit about Iraqis; it’s somewhat harder to accept that he doesn’t give a shit about US veterans either.

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