The Reality Of Terrorist Treatment
Wednesday - June 15, 2005
In 1976 I wrote a letter to then- President Jimmy Carter asking him to reconsider his plan to pardon Vietnam draft dodgers still hiding out in Canada.
I suggested they should at least be required to put in one year of National Service — Peace Corps or National Health Service, for example — for every two years the average POW had been held in Vietnam. I received no reply, and the snivelers came home free.
So I suppose it was no surprise when Carter, that “hard-nosed” negotiator sent to North Korea by Bill Clinton to talk the Commies out of their nuclear ambitions, is now wading in on the Guantanamo diatribe. Joining Sen. Joe Biden and every global organization with “international” in its name, Carter is calling for the closing of our detention facility at Gitmo. After all, it has been characterized as a “gulag” by Amnesty International, comparing it to Stalin’s Siberian forced labor camps where death and hopelessness reigned.
Carter and his kindred spirits exemplify the supreme naiveté which will be the undoing of us all. Our transgression a la mode is, of course, the “desecration” of the Koran at Guantanamo Bay. Oops! I mean the new P.C. version — Quoran (did I just do another desecration?). This has been covered ad nauseum by commentators of every stripe, including one who tried unsuccessfully to flush one down the toilet to confirm his doubts that it could even be done. (It couldn’t). But has anyone even wondered why there were Quorans there to abuse in the first place? And prayer beads and prayer mats and Muslim-appropriate white clothing and Muslimappropriate food? Or how about the state-of-the-art medical and dental facilities, or the soccer balls, or the International Red Cross kiosks in the recreation courtyards where detainees can have letters written and even air their grievances? All of this I personally witnessed during my factfinding tour there two years ago (MidWeek May 17, 2003).
We know the terrorists, be they al Qaida, Taliban or garden variety jihadists, are trained to resist interrogations (not a great challenge considering our restrictions), but also to bait prison guards, feign injuries, complain and, of course, lie, cheat and steal. In fact, a recently released Taliban detainee testified that his treatment and conditions were about what he had been trained to expect, but that he should gripe and complain in any case. But then he went on to say that with three meals a day and clean sheets, his living conditions had been better than he had ever experienced, before or since!
And speaking of released detainees, in spite of the nattering, talking-head critics who continue to demand we release those who never or no longer deserve to be detained, more than 230 or so have, in fact, already been released.
What a contrast our treatment of illegal combatants at Gitmo is with that of the Muslim terrorists who saw off the heads of innocent American or Western hostages in Iraq. Why is it that America’s mainstream media refuse to replay the horrendous events of Sept. 11, or the grisly beheadings obligingly broadcast by Al Jazeera to the “Arab street”? Might the comparison tend to undermine the media’s commitment to make America look bad?
Oh, and what about all this baloney about our treatment of terrorist prisoners providing the incentive for more terrorists to join up?
In the first place, as I’ve just pointed out, the treatment has been far from bad. But even if it were, it’s irrelevant. The terrorists don’t need more reason to hate us. They hate us in any case. What were the attacks of Sept. 11 in retaliation for? They hate us and would kill us simply because of the happiness we pursue that they can’t, and the freedoms we enjoy that they don’t. And because we love life and they love death.
It’s past time for all the Carters and the Bidens of our country to pull their heads out of the sand and face reality. But then, that might not be a problem in the future. You can’t bury your head in the sand if you don’t have one!
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