Jackals on TV

GOP Candidates

 

Jackals that the jackals would despise…

The line is Pablo Neruda’s. I remembered it while watching a news roundup of the GOP “foreign policy” debate and hearing the assorted desperados declare that torture is an excellent practice. At one point I thought Michelle Bachman was going to hold up a box of cereal called “Torture Toasties”–”All the human misery children can absorb!” Lost on every one of these bandits is the understanding that abduction and torture never happens in a vacuum. The discontented of the world are acting out of exhaustion and frustration, for long before 9-11 they saw rivers of blood in their cities and towns, saw the blood of children in the streets; the cold war was fought in their villages, the losses were substantial and real in Afghanistan. We armed Afghanistan. We watched it burn. We trumpeted our victory in the cold war. We left people in the dust. The people at Guantanamo are real people. Forget the sophistry and self-congratulatory revisioning of history–Bachman declaring that waterboarding produced real information–a lie, a total lie–forget all that. Just remember that we are holding people in an illegal prison and that we’ve decided this is business as usual. Jackals would turn their backs on us. I salute Senator John McCain for his declaration of dismay at the criminal chatter coming out of the Republican debate. Torture is torture. It seems that we have crafted a world order in which it never stops.