Monday, May 11, 2009

Man-caused disasters

When it comes to counterterrorism or “man-caused disasters,” the Obama administration has fascinating moral priorities. On the one hand it refuses to ever use sleep deprivation, stress positions, forced nudity, or waterboarding on terrorists to extract actionable intel. That would amount to “torture.” We “lost our moral bearings” when we resorted to such methods.

On the other hand, the Obama administration is conducting military operations in Afghanistan which target suspected terrorists. Needless to say, it’s not as if the suspected terrorists are tried and convicted, or even Mirandized, before we order an airstrike. So this amounts to summary execution.

Now I have no objection to killing terrorists in Afghanistan or Pakistan. It would be incredibly dangerous to American national security if the Taliban were to seize power in Pakistan.

I am, however, fascinated by the moral logic of claiming that it’s impermissible to subject a high-value terrorist to sleep deprivation to extraction information which would save innocent lives, but it’s permissible or even obligatory to conduct a military campaign with the express purpose of killing terrorists.

1 comment:

  1. Obama's hypocrisy is politically expedient, of course. He's a hero to the limp-wristed lefties because he announces he'll close down Gitmo (whenever he gets around to actually having a plan to do so), but the Predators in Pakistan and Afghanistan continue to drop Hellfires onto the turbans of dozens of Al Qaeda goons every month.