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The Coach’s Team (TCT) offers the best in conservative essays along with articles taken from various internet sites. The victory of Donald Trump has provided a God-sent opportunity to reverse the years of willful damage done our nation by Barack Hussein Obama.
Friday, May 11, 2018
Did John McCain’s experience in captivity ruin his judgment?
President Trump notoriously
once said of John McCain, "He’s not a war hero, I like people who weren’t
captured." Trump seemed to be saying, inartfully, that McCain played on
sympathy for his experience as a POW of the North Vietnamese to catapult
himself, inappropriately, into the US Senate.
At the time I thought
President Trump's remarks were inappropriate, but now I wonder if Trump was on
to something. Specifically, I wonder if McCain's experience as a captive
diminished his judgment.
McCain has never been
what you might call a very "solid" Republican or Conservative. He was
the decisive vote against the "skinny repeal" of Obamacare; he was
the author of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance act, which tried to limit
political free speech; he believes in imaginary global warming; he was never
strongly in favor of tax cuts, and supported amnesty for illegal aliens.
But what caught my
attention was a statement McCain made yesterday against CIA nominee Gina
Haspel. McCain, who is so ill that he cannot attend Senate sessions, could have
chosen merely to be silent about Haspel if he were not predisposed to voting
for her. Instead, he made a special effort to stab her and President Trump in
the back with a statement seemingly intended to torpedo
McCain's problem with
her? That Haspel participated in some capacity in interrogating 9/11 suspects.
McCain, the victim of torture, real torture, at the hands of the North
Vietnamese, finds any kind of enhanced interrogation techniques unacceptable.
Sen. John McCain is urging the Senate to reject Gina Haspel, President Trump's pick to run the CIA, claiming
Haspel's "refusal to acknowledge torture's immorality is
McCain, who is home at his ranch in Arizona as he battles brain
cancer, made the statement after Haspel testified in her confirmation on
Capitol Hill Wednesday morning. McCain said Haspel had a chance to
"explain her involvement in the so-called enhanced interrogation program
during the Bush administration and account for the mistakes the country made in
torturing detainees held" after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Senator McCain has
totally lost sense of right or wrong as well as any sense or proportionality.
First of all, what
the CIA did to terrorists was not torture. Torture inflicts permanent damage to
parts of your body. John McCain was bayoneted in the stomach and foot. Water
boarding, while certainly unpleasant, is nothing like being bayoneted.
John McCain was also
a prisoner of war, entitled to the protections of the Geneva Conventions.
The 9/11 terrorists
were not in uniform and were specifically intending to kill large number of
civilians. That made them entitled to no protections at all.
thousands of Americans were killed in 9/11, there was concern about other
possible mega-attacks on American soil. Under those circumstances President
Bush was fully reasonable in authorizing enhanced interrogations and Gina
Haspel, in whatever capacity, was justified in carrying them out.
But John McCain
doesn't seem to understand any of this context or distinctions. He equates the
CIA, which was trying to protect American lives, with the brutal North
Vietnamese. He equates being bayoneted with being water boarded. He equated
uniformed soldiers with terrorists who blend in and target civilians.
I know that Senator
McCain is very ill and it's not politically correct to criticize him, but I
think by putting a statement out against Gina Haspel, he opens himself up to
legitimate criticism. And I think that the North Vietnamese broke Senator
McCain, making him unable to see the difference between torture and
interrogation, and between soldiers and terrorists, and it's sad that one of
his final acts in politics is to try to cripple the CIA by torpedoing Ms.