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"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." - John 8:32
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Author:  Jayme Evans
Bio: Jayme Evans
Date:  September 18, 2006
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Topic category:  Other/General

Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don't

Because he was tortured, McCain's judgment is clouded by his experience. I'd bet he would be likely to regard anything more aggressive than voluntary questioning over tea and cookies as torture.

In order to make sense of what's going on around you, you must use reason, logic, and critical thinking. You must make your decisions, not based strictly on short-term goals, but also on long-term consequences.

When the Supreme Court rebuked the President's detention and interrogation policies, they stated that nothing precluded the President from gaining approval for those methods through legislation.

The President is finally seeking that approval, and the US Senate is -predictably- standing in his way.

To be sure, in this argument there are pros and cons to both sides. The key is to make your decision based on the totality of the evidence, and not on your gut feelings, like John "Maverick" McCain.

McCain should remove himself from this entire detainee debate. That goes for any other Congressman or Senator who was torturedor even held in captivity.

Because he was tortured, McCain's judgment is clouded by his experience. I'd bet he would be likely to regard anything more aggressive than voluntary questioning over tea and cookies as torture.

The same rules are applied by attorneys in peremptory challenges to prospective jury pools, and in the recusal of judges and attorneys from cases where their individual relationships or judgments may get in the way of the proper execution of their duties. Why shouldn't it apply here?

Bush's position is that he needs a clear definition of what acceptable detention and interrogation tactics are, so he can stay within the law, while fighting terror, and he would like many of the current tactics to remain legal. Sounds simple enough.

The pros to this argument are that we'll now have clear directives and hopefully, a somewhat expanded playbook on how to deal with the enemy.

There are some cons. First, we will be broadcasting our methods so our enemy can learn how to counter them.

Second, according to Senators Warner(R-VA), McCain(R-AZ), Collins(R-ME), and Graham(R-SC), other countries will feel free to follow suit. The problem with their logic is twofold.

First, we're fighting a stateless enemy, and second, they're already sawing off heads, booby-trapping corpses, and generally not respecting any laws whatsoever.

McCain himself acknowledges that al Qaeda will torture US troops regardless of what laws we adopt, but still insists we must "take the moral high ground", and that we can't "lower our standards because others do."

Truth be told, we could actually lower our standards quite a bit, and still be on higher moral ground than those who saw off the heads of bound captives or hide behind and target innocents.

Second, if we do not escalate our response to at least one level of force higher than the terrorists, how can we expect to win? Remember, we're talking about people who have no compunction about incinerating whole cities, sawing off heads, shooting nuns, or blowing up babies.

If your enemy sucker-punches you, you have to kick him in the groin. If he pulls out a knife, you have to pull out your gun, it's that simple. Anything less, and you're going to lose.

Looking at all sides of this issue, our leadership seems divided among two schools of thought.

Modernize our laws to account for a 21st century, stateless enemy who respects no borders, laws, or treaties, so we can deal with them more effectively; or take the moral high ground, and lose the fight altogether.

Either way, we face tough choices. But why not err on the side of strength, as opposed to weakness?

Jayme Evans

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Notes:  It appears that more Senators are about to bail on the President, so negotiations are underway to try and reach a compromise. Let's hope it doesn't come at the expense of a major metropolitan US city. In the Author's opinion, when it comes to US National Security, and the lives of US soldiers or citizens, there is no room for compromise.

Biography - Jayme Evans

Jayme Evans is a veteran of the United States Navy, a military analyst, conservative opinion columnist, and an advocate for disabled and other veterans. He has served for many years as a Subject Matter Expert specializing in the testing of systems software for numerous major US organizations. He has extensively studied amateur astronomy and metallurgy, as well as military and US history. His brutally honest, in-your-face political commentary has been published in many west coast newspapers, and he is a regular contributing columnist to a multitude of internet sites, including, The Conservative Voice, and Conservative Crusader. Mr. Evans has also written guest editorials for Military Magazine, and he has been a frequent guest columnist on WorldNetDaily, writing about legislative and veteran's issues.

Read other commentaries by Jayme Evans.

Copyright 2006 by Jayme Evans
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