Monday, November 14, 2011

The Republican Candidates on Torture

At this weekend's debate, only Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman stood up against the Bush torture regime, which Paul called "illegal, immoral, and ineffective." Huntsman:
We diminish our standing in the world and the values that we project which include liberty, democracy, human rights, and open markets when we torture. We should not torture. Waterboarding is torture. We dilute ourselves down like a whole lot of other countries. And we lose that ability to project values that a lot of people in corners of this world are still relying on the United States to stand up for them.
By contrast, here is Texas tough guy Rick Perry:
For us not to have the ability to try to extract information from them to save our young people's lives is a travesty. This is war. I am for using those techniques.
Sickening. Bachman, Cain, Gingrich and Santorum were just as bad. Likely nominee Mitt Romney said nothing very clear about torture in this debate, but he is on record saying that waterboarding is not torture and that he is proud of how Americans conducted themselves in the prison at Guantanamo Bay. This weekend he pretty much declared war against both Iran and Syria, and his foreign policy advisers are a bloody-minded lot.

Obama is nobody's idea of a pacifist, but compared to the leading Republicans, who have all pretty much promised to drag us into unending war, he seems like the least militaristic option.

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