Remember my Republican friend? Well, he’s a friend no more. He stepped over the line.
I firmly believe that George Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Condi Rice – all of them – are war criminals who have shamed the United States forever by using torture in their trumped up War on Terror. The Bush Crime Family used White House attorneys John Yoo and James Bybee to concoct a laborious and twisted new definition of torture in order to cover their war criminal asses.
To be torture, the memo concluded, physical pain must be “equivalent in intensity to the pain accompanying serious physical injury, such as organ failure, impairment of bodily function, or even death.” And inflicting that severe pain, according to the memo, must have been the “specific intent” of the defendant to amount to a violation of the statute.
So, now, according to the Bush administration, they could now do any old thing they wanted to to a prisoner or detainee – as long as they 1) didn’t cause organ failure and/or death, and 2) they did it out of patriotism (instead of good old-fashioned sadism) – and the pain didn’t count.
I said bullshit then, and I say bullshit now. We Americans prosecuted not only Japanese prisoners of war for waterboarding American soldiers, but we have prosecuted Americans as well. As it says in the linked article, “Waterboarding used to be a crime.” As far as I’m concerned, it is still a crime – and no amount of silly fearmongering bullshit about “Islamofascism” and self-serving pretzel logic from attorneys who would feel right at home working for a Mafia capo is enough to justify the torture of another human being. Ever.
My Republican ex-friend implied that I was being silly when I called the Bushies war criminals. Why, he said, they couldn’t possibly be war criminals, because the lawyers said that it was legal! Silly me, right? John Yoo said it was okay, and voila! No torture, no war criminals, just flag-waving American patriots defending their country from those nasty Islamofascist terrorists who want to kill us.
The fact that we Americans used torture on prisoners is a stain on our national soul and our honor, and I will not speak to someone who defends that, nor will I ever call him or her a friend.