Monday, May 17, 2004

Torture, Schmorture! 

Finchy writes:

Colin Powell is putting his foot down.

He is very, very upset that the Arab world has not been very, very upset about the beheading of Nicholas Berg. From CNN:
Powell said that there was "no comparison" between Berg's killing and the revelation of abuses at Abu Ghraib prison by American soldiers.

"All this kind of behavior is unacceptable in the modern world," he said on "Fox News Sunday." "Torture of any kind is unacceptable."
Hmm! Bit of a contradiction there? So which is it, Colin? Is there "no comparison" between the two incidents of torture, or is "torture of any kind" in fact "unacceptable," which would in fact establish equivalence between the killing and the abuses?

CNN neglected to report on Powell's remarks a few moments later, as he attempted to clarify himself:

"Let me explain. It's like apples and oranges. They're different. But they're both pieces of fruit. And both edible."

When pushed for further clarification, Powell mused:

"You need to understand. Let's say I was to sodomize Donald Rumsfeld with a plantain. That would be torture. But the torturer would be a decorated general of the United States military. And Rummy would appreciate that; he'd get through it, with the same moxie and determination that he's using to get through this current controversy. Now let's say an Iraqi insurgent did it; poked around in there. Totally different situation. First of all he's breaking the law. Second of all, this is the kind of thing that Arab countries should be concerned about. Moral individuals in modern societies just don't do this sort of thing. And that's precisely why it's okay if I do it! I'm from the United States of America. And proud of it."


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