Charming

From the comments:

“My position on the POW issue has been widely misquoted and taken out of context. What I originally said and have continued to is the POWs are lying if they assert it was North Vietnamese policy to torture American prisoners. –Jane Fonda, Who is Being Brainwashed? An Indochina Peace Campaign Report Santa Monica: Indochina Peace Campaign 1973

We have no reason to believe that US Air Force officers tell the truth. They are professional killers.
–Jane Fonda, Washington Star, April 19, 1973

No reason. Just thought it looked right at home on this site.

Because, as you know, demanding that your country transparently deal with cases of torture and abuse is exactly the same thing as traveling to a foreign capital, helping the enemy cover up abuses, lying about the war, lying about the nature of North Vietnamese policy, serving as a propaganda tool, and making the lives of millions of soldiers and servicemen, if not more dangerous, then, less pleasant.

Asshole.






29 replies
  1. 1

    I don’t get it. I know since John and I are on the same page about fonda that the asshole should be fonda, but the post seems to rail against the commenter.
    Am I just bone headed here or does this need more context?
    Is the commenter somehow defending fonda?

  2. 2
    Stormy70 says:

    Does the commenter think you are Jane Fonda? It is the first day back after a three day weekend, and my mind is slow to rev up this morning.

  3. 3
    DecidedFenceSitter says:

    Apparently Mr. Scott thinks that Mr. Cole would be right at home discussing Iraq with Ms. Fonda, and she’d find a soul-mate with Mr. Cole considering his recent discussions regarding, I presume, the torture prosecutions, or lack there-of, in Iraq.

    I love the Internet, it’s such a wonderful place for discussion, insight and flinging shit.

  4. 4
    Darrell says:

    I’m with stormy and non-fat. It’s no so “apparent” to me either that the poster was accusing Mr. Cole of being like Jane Fonda.

    This post did cause me to peruse the comments on that thread though. Another commenter wrote regarding the US: “and we’re supposed to be the good guys?”. There seems to be a LOT of people on the left who don’t believe that the US is essentially a good and decent nation.

  5. 5
    John Cole says:

    Well- if he wasn’t I don’t know what else he meant. And, if he didn’t mean that, I owe him an apology.

    Well, two of them now.

    But I don’t understand what else he could have meant…

    This post did cause me to peruse the comments on that thread though. Another commenter wrote regarding the US: “and we’re supposed to be the good guys?”. There seems to be a LOT of people on the left who don’t believe that the US is essentially a good and decent nation.

    You know, there can be a middle ground. Why can’t people just get it in their heads that we are, over all, a good nation, but that we do mess up from time to time…

  6. 6
    AWJ says:

    Here’s another winning comment from your buddy Rick several posts down.

    Toss [Tariq Aziz] totally to the Iraqi government. His service to Saddam hurt that nation the most. And, he’s famously a Christian, so his torments really ought to delight some of the clientele here.

    Because, you know, worrying about whether certain Christian sects with extreme views have undue influence in your political party is the same as wanting to see Christians tossed to bloodthirsty Muslim mobs.

  7. 7
    Shawn says:

    That’s the mindset these days.

    “You’re either with us or against us.”

    If you question government actions, you are aiding the terrorists and not supporting the troops.

    By today’s standards, dissent=treason.

    Questioning the government, dissenting with government policies, and exposing/condemning government lies is so 90’s, John.

    Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

  8. 8
    TheMadBrewer says:

    “we are, over all, a good nation, but that we do mess up from time to time…”

    Its not some much the messing up that bothers me — that can happen to any person, any country — What bothers me is our govenment doesn’t recognize that we are messing up. And that people who say “we should be doing better” are being castigated as “un-American” and “un-patriotic.” I don’t see how somebody who is trying to make America better can be called un-patriotic.

    This is not a monarchy. The Bush Administration is *not* America — one can critisize the former without be disloyal to the latter.

  9. 9
    Shawn says:

    This is not a monarchy. The Bush Administration is *not* America — one can critisize the former without be disloyal to the latter.

    There is a scary article on Yahoo today about the Cheney’s discussing Hillary vs. Laura. Lynne says, “You know, people are thinking of Mrs. Clinton running for president. I think Mrs. Bush ought to run for president,” Mrs. Cheney said. “If we want to have a Bush dynasty, let’s get Laura Bush.”

    Gah! No more Bushes, no more Clinton’s, no more freaking dynasties. Like you said, this is not a monarchy!

  10. 10
    Darrell says:

    AWJ wrote: Because, you know, worrying about whether certain Christian sects with extreme views have undue influence in your political party is the same as wanting to see Christians tossed to bloodthirsty Muslim mobs.

    Textbook dishonest leftist hyperbole. Turning Tariq Aziz over to the Iraqi govt (which already has legal custody over him) is = tossing him “to bloodthisty Muslim mobs”.

    You can’t reason with such mindset. Leftists cling to dogma like a safety blanket.

    Many leftists who really are unpatriotic, insist that they are merely “questioning our government”.. yes of course, simply a noble search for the truth, right? I might be persuaded to believe them if their criticism wasn’t so one-sided, and if they would ever once give the benefit of the doubt to their own country

  11. 11
    BadTux says:

    I think Mr. Cole is comparing apologists for torture in the POW camps with Jane Fonda, who was an apologist for torture in POW camps. Both Fonda and Cheney say that there are no torture in the respective camps and that those who say there is are professional killers so they’re not credible (BTW, the FBI and several GI’s have all reported practices that, under every international definition, are torture, but I suppose they’re liars too). Bravo, Mr. Cole! It was wrong when Fonda did it, and it’s just as wrong today when the Vice President of the United States of America does it.

    As for the “We’re supposed to be the good guys?” quip, when it comes to torture, if we cannot even meet the minimal standards of the United Nations Convention on Torture (which allow torture as long as you give them a trial and convict them of a crime first), nevermind the standards of Russia, which is barely even a democracy… should not any patriotic American who believes his nation to be fundamentally decent be apalled?

  12. 12
    John Cole says:

    Bad Tux- Hunh? I never made any such comparison. Someone else posted that- not me.

    My head hurts.

  13. 13
    AWJ says:

    Textbook dishonest leftist hyperbole. Turning Tariq Aziz over to the Iraqi govt (which already has legal custody over him) is = tossing him “to bloodthisty Muslim mobs”.

    Textbook wingnut miscomprehension. Note the portion of Rick’s comment which I emphasized–the suggestion that “the clientele here” would take particular delight in Tariq Aziz’s “torments” because he is Christian rather than Muslim.

    Rick was the one implying that Aziz’s fate at the hands of his countrymen will be “torment”, as opposed to a fair trial and just punishment if convicted.

    I actually fully agree that the new Iraqi government should deal with (meaning “try”, not “lynch”) Aziz. That’s what is being done with Saddam Hussein, isn’t it?

  14. 14
    Ben Lange says:

    I strongly object to the insinuation that anything resembling a policy of “torture” has occurred in American prison camps or that interrogation tactics constitute the same.

    If the Administration has been less than forthcoming, we should consider they may have a good reason. After all, the NYT would like to fit all American soldiers into the “baby-killing rapist” template that served them so well in destroying our national morale during and after Vietnam.

    There is a deep need for the left to “prove” that America is no better than its enemies, and in fact worse. So saying that Koran-touching is “torture”, panties on the head is Auschwitz, fits neatly into an ideology.

    But you, Mr. Cole, are just a crank. You imagine yourself to be too smart to take a side in any issue. You therefore cannot acknowledge that, a few isolated incidents aside, we are not torturing anybody. It is not because you don’t know this, but because you are so dedicated to being “above it all” that you just can’t take your own side in a fight.

  15. 15
    John Cole says:

    Ben- I have a pretty clear position, not that I have to respond to you.

    I think the overwhelming majority of our soldiers are good folks. I thnk that for the most part, the incidences of torture were few and far between.

    I do think, however, that there is enough evidence to suggest that torture, while not a policy that can be traced all the way to the top of the administration or one that was even created by the top of the administration, has at least been condoned by certain segments within the intelligence community, and they are responsible for corrupting a few untrained groups of soldiers.

    But, I am just a crank who wants to be above it all, and refuses to buy into the black white world you seem to have niftily created.

    Get out much?

  16. 16
    Rick says:

    Hey, thanks for showing me the love. Great to be quoted.

    Cordially…

  17. 17
    BadTux says:

    Ben, I’ve posted the definition of torture as written into a) the laws of another democratic nation and b) the United Nations Convention on Torture. What we’ve done to prisoners, as reported in photographs, in FBI reports, by soldiers who have gone public, and otherwise, qualifies as torture by either of those definitions, even by the laughably lax definition of the United Nations, by which what China does to its prisoners doesn’t count as torture (though any decent person should be apalled whether the UN thinks the Chinese are torturing people or not).

    If what is being done to people at Abu Ghraib, Baghram, Gitmo, etc. isn’t policy, why are we getting the same friggin’ stories out of every single one of them? It may not be an “official” policy. But nothing like this can go on for the amount of time that it’s gone on without some sort of cover from higher-ups. Well, unless our officers in charge of these prisons are total incompetents and have lost control of their men, but frankly, that contradicts everything I know about the most professional military on the face of this planet.

    Now, we can’t help it if you don’t want to believe it. But facts are facts, and only delusional people — or liars — deny them.

    — Badtux the Reality-based Penguin

  18. 18
    Barry says:

    “You know, there can be a middle ground. Why can’t people just get it in their heads that we are, over all, a good nation, but that we do mess up from time to time…”

    Posted by John Cole

    John, because what’s happening is not messing up, from their point of view. They’re fine with it, and would be urging it if it wasn’t happening. How many people have you seen mixing denials with justifications? By now I’m firmly of the opinion that the denials are for public consumption only.

  19. 19
    Darrell says:

    BadTux wrote: If what is being done to people at Abu Ghraib, Baghram, Gitmo, etc. isn’t policy, why are we getting the same friggin’ stories out of every single one of them?

    Every single one of them? “I had a good time at Guantanamo”, says inmate.

    As for why many of the other terrorists in Gimto would claim to be tortured.. Well, gee, could it be because the Al Queda training manual explicitly instructs them to lie about being tortured? But please dont let these details get in the way of you and all your ideological brothers believing our enemies, never giving the benefit of the doubt to our military.. Don’t let it stop you from making your case that systematic torture is US policy. No different than the folks now calling Gitmo the gulag of our times. No perspective, no proportion, and no honor.

    BadTux is another classic example of what Ben Lange explains above, that there is a deep need for the left to prove that America is no better than its enemies, and in fact worse. Its why yesterday BadTux felt compelled to give us his Memorial Day list of US military actions which he felt were less than honorable.. to try and remind everyone that America really isnt so good after all. Lest anyone might think differently

  20. 20
    ppgaz says:

    Say, Darrell, you are on a roll. Do you cut and paste directly from the Limbaugh radio show, or is your material original?

    BTW, did you ever find those “crack baby” statistics that you were going to look up for me? The ones that supported your assertions from the other day?

    I know, there is probably a “leftist” conspiracy to cover them up. Keep diggin, though, you are nothing if not indefatigable.

    Crackheads everywhere — whoops! there’s one, right next to you — are hoping you’ll fail, but I know you, you won’t let us down.

  21. 21

    There seems to be a LOT of people on the left who don’t believe that the US is essentially a good and decent nation.

    As a lefty I have to say I don’t why either. It’s a problem but not a strictly partisan one. I’d put Buchanan there, lately at least. Although, alas, it’s much pronounced on my side. Damn you Michael Moore!

    You know, there can be a middle ground. Why can’t people just get it in their heads that we are, over all, a good nation, but that we do mess up from time to time…

    Exactly. If this makes you just a crank who wants to be above it all
    or is this textbook dishonest leftist hyperbole?

    I’ll take a double on the rocks.

  22. 22
    Far North says:

    It’s truly amazing to see the Bush / torture apologists alternate between denial of torture, excusing the torture and then attacking those that condemn the torture.

    Every single argument by these poor excuses for Americans includes one, two or all three of these elements:

    *deny torture occurred
    *excuse or justify the torture
    *attack those that condemn the torture as unpatriotic, America hating leftists.

  23. 23

    Sad, but true, Far North.

  24. 24
    jack says:

    Here’s how it works, Far North

    “deny torture occurred”

    much of what has been called ‘torture’ simply doesn’t pass muster. It just doesn’t click in people’s heads when it’s described. So euphemisms–or simply the word ‘torture’–is used in place of descriptions. Starvation sounds much worse than having food withheld for behavior infractions or uncooperativeness(why? because many parents send their kids to bed without supper as a common– non torture –punishment) And a lot of them are like that. Forced postures? Stand in the corner. It just doesn’t click. People think of much more monstrous things when you use the word ‘torture’.

    “excuse or justify the torture”

    Because the explained ‘torture’ just doesn’t sound like the image associated with torture in people’s minds, it’s fairly easy for people to shrug it off.

    Though, bear in mind that this is coming from someone who condones ACTUAL torture if it will save lives in the long run.

    *attack those that condemn the torture as unpatriotic, America hating leftists.”

    Well, let’s be honest. A lot of you expose yourselves as unpatriotic America-hating leftists whenever you open your mouths. Despite invesigation and punishment of those found to be torturing or murdering detainees, many of you insist that this somehow proves high-level connection and demand that upper echelon heads roll.

    In short, you seek to undermine the war effort in your zeal to take potshots at Bush.

  25. 25
    Kimmitt says:

    In short, you seek to undermine the war effort in your zeal to take potshots at Bush.

    Aw, c’mon. You were this close; just admit that criticizing the President is the same as sedition and we can all go home.

  26. 26
    Dana says:

    “This is not a monarchy. The Bush Administration is *not* America — one can critisize the former without be disloyal to the latter.”

    A million amens to that.

  27. 27
    Far North says:

    Hey Jack, Bush doesn’t need anyone’s help to “undermine the war effort”. Try this:

    Lie about WMDs
    Lie about reconsituted nuclear weapons
    Lie about Iraq and Al Qeada
    Tell everyone that we’ll be greeted as liberators
    Criticize the people who were right, the UN weapons inspectors
    Present a load of bullshit evidence at the UN
    Start the fun house call Gitmo
    Tell everyone Iraqi oil will fully fund this fine adventure
    Go to War

    Don’t bring enough troops to do the job
    Disband the Iraqi army
    Start that fun house called Abu Graib
    Round up innocent Iraqis along with the guilty ones
    Kill coutless innocent Iraqis citizens and claim you are part of the culture of life
    Watch as basic security worsens by the month
    Fail to restore the basic essentials in Iraq such as electricity and water
    Get bogged down in a war that you, nealy two years ago declared “mission accomplished

    And one other thing: Speak not his name, Osama bin Laden. Maybe people will forget that the man behind 9/11 hasn’t been caught, dead or alive.

    Now Jack, do you think Bush needs any help undermining this “war effort”.

    Idiot,

  28. 28
    jack says:

    Ah, had no real answer, eh?

    Typical.

    When you can’t win the argument–divert the conversation to other subjects–and declare yourself the ‘winner’ or ‘smarter’ while you’re at it.

    And you even included the very things we’re arguing about in your points. How cute!

  29. 29
    Far North says:

    Jack, Jack, Jack, whatever the fuck are you talking about?

    “In short, you seek to undermine the war effort in your zeal to take potshots at Bush”

    My post was a response to your rant about “undermining the war effort” or, in your words, your effort to divert the conversation to other subjects as in “When you can’t win the argument-divert the conversation to other subjects…….”

    I think you just caught yourself in the act. Can’t see that, can you, Jack? Didn’t think so.

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