June 23, 2005
Q: What forms of torture do they use in Gitmo?
A: The interrogators make a point of handling the Quran with gloves, to indicate they accept the prisoners' definition of infidels as "unclean." But the guards occasionally suggest that the gloves are not only washed with the general laundry that might include the socks of Jews, but that sometimes the anti-static cling sheets are deliberately left out.
Q: It might all be worth it if we learned something. Have we learned anything?
A: Who knows? We have to err on the side of self-castigating doubt, reflexive suspicion of the military, and a churlish institutional bias against reporting anything other than bad news that might sap the national will. So let's assume the interrogators learned nothing.
Q: Wow. This is bad.
A: It is. It's worse than Waco, because at least those people aren't suffering anymore.
Q: When did they build this place?
A: After Sept. 11, 2001.
Q: That date seems familiar for some reason. Did something happen?
A: Not really. You can roll over and go back to sleep.
Q: Isn't it our role as citizens to be wary of government?
A: Sure. But take this quote: "I call on those who question the motives of the president and his national security advisers to join with the rest of America in presenting a united front to our enemies abroad." That was Sen. Dick Durbin in 1998, when Bill Clinton attacked Iraq. But that was then, and this is George W. Bush.
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