Sunday, November 19, 2006

Another “Brave” Ambush on Authority

Dutch military interrogators abused 15 Iraqi prisoners in 2003 with bright light.

There’s been yet another attempt at an infantile pre-electoral surprise. This time it’s by a bunch of dim bulbs in the Netherlands. The newspaper De Volkskrant reports on a torture scandal with the politically potential usefulness greater than abu Graib ever was since we’re talking about Europeans who have convinced themselves that the dozen prisoners abused at abu Graib was a chamber of horrors on the scale of Auschwitz.

"Dutch torture Iraqis" was the headline in the national daily De Volkskrant on Friday and it sparked a furore amongst politicians busy with the last days of campaigning ahead of national elections next week.

The motives to publish the story are clear, and seem to have nothing at all to do with timely and honest journalism.
De Volkskrant, or "People's Newspaper," which bills itself as "progressive and change-oriented," said the prisoner abuse happened when Dutch troops were stationed in Iraq's Muthana province.
The newspaper revealed that a cell from the military intelligence and security service (MIVD) had carried out 'heavy handed tactical questioning' of tens of Iraqis taken prisoner in the southern province of Al Muthanna. This was during a Dutch tour of duty in Iraq in 2003.
Just as with abu Greib, the press timed just when it was when they would get worked up. The US Department of Defense released all the information relative to the scandal months before the New York Times decided to become outraged just in time for the 2004 election by publishing the same story with no new information for 83 straight days.

Femke Halsema, the leader of the Green Left opposition party, said: "We take this very seriously - we can all remember Abu Ghraib. If this has been kept quiet since 2003 then it's certainly something we have to examine."
[ ... ]
Questions were asked in parliament in 2004 about rumours that Dutch troops had been involved in the abuse of prisoners
The method is the same here. The “stance” taken on events is most notable relative to the press and the green left pretending to be entirely unaware of the timing of repeating the report’s findings.

Except for on little problem with the spinability.of this "scandal". For one thing, it happened in the British sector, nowhere near abu Graib, so it can’t be said that it was inspired by what the few bad-apple reservists did between 18 October and 30 December 2003 at night and in secret. The difference between the Dutch scandal and that of the Maryland National Guard troops is nearly Guantanamoan in nature. The Dutch had operational reasons, and not just an exercise in a few soldiers acting out of their frustration at a handul of criminals and rapists:

According to De Volkskrant, the interrogations were carried out by members of the Dutch Military Intelligence and Security Service in November 2003 in buildings of the Coalition Provisional Authority in the town of Samawah, on the Euphrates River about 230 miles southeast of Baghdad.
Prisoners were forced to wear darkened goggles then exposed to bright lights when the goggles were removed, De Volkskrant reported. They also were kept awake for long periods by being doused with water or subjected to high-pitched noises.
Bright light! The horror! This is what makes the Green Left’s comparison to abu Graib incredibly fatuous.

The bottom line is that they would have their troops not lean on a prisoner at all, even if the information might lead to heading off violence on Iraqi civilians. After all, the left desperately need that violence to somehow prove their point about themselves because they demand “peace.”

Shrinkwrapped has long been putting the “root causes” of the kind of politics of the “peace camp” that drools over the political usefeulness of these scandals on the couch:

The anti-war movement, as if to re-confirm their essential morality and bravery, continue to "speak truth to power" at no real risk to themselves. In order to avoid the deeply hidden questions, maintain consistency in their rationalizations, and continue to retroactively justify their anti-Vietnam War beliefs, the anti-War campaigners are willing to once again abandon people who trusted us. Millions of Iraqis will be killed but they will feel morally superior and will continue to support the edifice of rationalizations that have sustained their image of themselves as brave rebels since the glory days of the 1960s.

How much is it worth to stabilize a nation that has never known consensual governance and create an eventual democratic state in the middle of the most dangerous place on Earth? The reality is that our casualty rate in Iraq is minimal compared to past wars and the primary reason to abandon the Iraqis at this early date in their attempts to gain stability is a continuing need for too many Americans of a certain age (who unfortunately have great power over the image of the war) to maintain a defensive stance that has already caused untold misery and threatens to compound the misery once again. I do not mean to imply our conduct of the war has been perfect or that victory is right around the corner, but the only way we can lose this war is by abandoning the fight. Our enemies know this and count on it. We should not rationalize our failure of will as a triumph of morality; we did that once and it was the height of immorality.
If there is anything that’s to be though of as “senseless” it’s the left’s abuse of a military trying to restore a civil society after justly deposing a warmongering dictator.

The insurgents are the ones behind the killing of innocent civilians, and by some great leap out from the shackles of morality and common sense, the “peace” camp can’t seem to countenance shining a bright ligh in the eyes of 15 men in the effort to put a stop to it.

Just to reiterate: in the world view of the caring, loving, lefties of the Netherlands, buggery, an abuse of animals for non-concentual personal jollies for no productive reason is completly legal, but shining a light in the eyes of military prisoners with information that can save lives isn't.

Are we all clear on this? Good.
The Fuse is Lit (No Pasaran!)

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