Thursday, April 10, 2008

Well What If...

The last few weeks for me have involved my professional life becoming a bit surreal, a lot of walking, a lot of talking, and dangling 866 feet above the ground.  And what is with teenage boys wearing capris, tight fitting shirts, and having perfectly coiffed hair made to look uncoiffed?  It is like Dr Frankenfurter meets Audrey Hepburn.  Perhaps I do not go to shopping malls often enough (or at all) to maintain any modern fashion sense.

Androgynous adolescents aside, I have a few more questions for current presidential wannabes:

Would you support water boarding and similar techniques if they alone were able to coerce terrorists into divulging their plans?

We do not even have to use a hypothetical situation.  Instead, I offer the example of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a known terrorist.

Is hurting him acceptable in order to save lives?  If not, how many people would have to die before changing your mind?  What if his having knowledge is uncertain?  Would it be acceptable as a matter of course or would we have to wait until we were hit before hurting him?

For now, I am not even talking about the gray areas like the "when does it end" scenario such as jack booted thugs applying thumb screws to jaywalkers.  Instead, I am only referring to the most extreme examples.

Even then, the current crop of candidates cannot say that they would make that difficult decision to do so.  It seems that they will do anything to avoid the question being asked of them.

What if getting KSM to "talk" meant hurting his pre-adolescent progeny?  Forget that question.  I would like to hear them even answer the first.

It seems that before they even avoid the question, they start talking about the justifications for not doing so.  Sometimes this involves, "Well we are better than..." or "It really messes up the interrogators..." or "It will alienate allies x, y, and z."

They still do not answer the question.

I wonder if they would object to holding them over the side of a building.
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