Support our troops. Protect the Geneva Conventions.
President Bush wants to “redefine” the Geneva Conventions to allow brutal interrogations of suspected terrorists and prisoners of war by the CIA and/or military.
However, in this he stands alone. Democrats and Republicans are saying that Bush has gone too far. Retired General Colin Powell (former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs under G.H.W. Bush and Secretary of State during G.W. Bush’s first term) has led the battle against his former boss:
“The world is beginning to doubt the moral basis of our fight against terrorism,” Powell wrote.
Powell said Bush’s bill, by redefining the kind of treatment the Geneva Conventions allow, “would add to those doubts. Furthermore, it would put our own troops at risk.”
He’s supported on the left and the right by most of the Senate Armed Services Committee, which shot down Bush’s proposal last week. Senator (and former POW) John McCain is also vehemently opposed to Bush’s plan, and supports counter-legislation that falls in line with the Geneva Conventions.
Here are my two reasons for supporting Powell and McCain in this fight:
1) If we can do it, they can do it. Bush’s proposal would endanger our troops in the event that they are captured.
2) We are supposed to be the Good Guys. Does anyone remember that? We condemn foreign governments for pulling shit like this. We prosecute war criminals based on the Geneva Conventions. We aren’t supposed to be finding loopholes and having congress “redefine” treaties that we signed in good faith. We would lose what moral high ground we have and send the world a message that we are nothing more than arrogant hypocrits.
Mr. Bush, I ask you: Where are your values now?