In "The New Yorker" David Remnik writes:
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld allowed that the photographs and the
acts they depicted were indeed horrifying, but he seemed more interested in
parsing definitions of "violence".
"My impression is that what has been charged thus far is abuse, which I
believe technically is different from torture", Rumsfeld said at a press
conference that might have been scripted by Lewis Carroll. "I don't know if
it is correct to say what you just said that torture has taken place, or
that there has been a conviction for torture. And therefore I'm not going to
address the torture word."
Thus does the Secretary torture words. Or maybe he's abusing them. Anyway,
whether unleashing guard dogs on naked prisoners, for example, is torture or
abuse is not the question. The question is how such things came to be done
under American auspices.
(End of quote)
The language used by the current U.S. administration is revealing and the
euphemistic term "abuse" utterly sickening. We have yet to see the videos of
women being raped and prisoners beaten to death, and all this in Saddam's
dungeons, the very place where he butchered hundreds every week, used now by
the United States -- what a monstrous planning error to use that place as a
There have been over a dozen suicide cases in Guantanamo, by people
incarcerated without habeas corpus, without legal aid. So far, there has
been no investigation whatsoever. Perhaps there never will be one.
What is most unnerving and also one of the main reasons for the preemptive
strike against Iraq is the permanent reiteration of the slogan "war against
terrorism". In my understanding terrorism is a way of killing people. The
term is as absurd as, e.g., "war on Blitzkrieg".
One way of drying out the swamp where terrorism grows would be to stand up
against the increasing injustice happening in the Middle East. No one else
except the U.S. is able to coerce Israel into pulling back behind the Green
Line, its legal borders, and to give back all the stolen land to its
rightful owners, the Palestinian people. For the relocation of the thousands
of inhabitants living on the West Bank and in the Gaza strip Israel would
need extensive financial aid by United Europe and the U.S.
But as long as there is an administration bereft of all perspectives except
to get re-elected this will never happen.
I will not listen to Mr Bush's radio address to the nation starting right
now. He makes me physically sick. God bless America, indeed -- the whole
world needs it.