Monday, May 30, 2005

Koran Abuse II

I meant to publish this Friday, but I got caught up in other matters...enjoy!

The Ox Rant has this posting of the most unnecessary briefing on the "Koran abuse" matter at Guantanamo Bay. And at this point, I think we can all safely utter a collective "gimme a break!!" given that nobody's rights (actual or imagined) were even close to being violated.

People touching the Koran (as opposed to using the force?)...people putting it on a TV (probably because Roseanne was on at the time, which would have offended anyone)...standing over the Koran (is it still bad if you are on a different floor from the Koran, yet still standing "above" it?).

Taking this implied argument in the light most favorable to it (that the guards and interrogators have to perfectly manage the treatment of this book), misses a pretty significant point--we are running a prison, not a mosque.

Lest we forget, these people are terrorists who have no respect for other people in their own culture, let alone ours. One only needs to look to Taliban Afghanistan to see what I mean. Women were the pinatas of that civilization. When they are victims of rape, they are accused of being seductresses. When their burkas are above their ankles, they are punished by being spat upon if it's a good day, or being stoned or otherwise executed if the judge, jury and executioner is not in a good mood. These people are anti-civilization and misanthropic. They practice interpersonal disrespect and the use of violence as a tool to enforce cultural and religious conformity. Nevertheless, part of our dignity is that we treat people properly regardless of their history of behavior. So how seriously can we take their whining when these terrorists have no respect for others, and to a very significant degree, their own religion when they mistreat their own book in ways that would create significant trouble if done by Americans?

But the fact that this made the media in the first place shows that the terrorists are wanting to create a stir, knowing that the media-left would go into a fury. And they knew that these people would insist upon prisoner treatment commensurate with service at an exclusive resort, ignoring the fact that these terrorists are entitled to no creature comforts of any kind, as they do not fall under the Geneva convention.

So to take the arguments implied by the Newsweek faux "Koran abuse" story seriously, namely that the terrorists' most minute religious sensibilities should be carefully respected, should the Gitmo chaplains be educated in the ways of Wahabism? Should they be preaching the allegedly peaceful message of Islam, or in order to respect the beliefs of these terrorists, should they be encouraging them in pursuing a violent jihad against "infidels", namely their American captors? And should the chaplains be excused from insubordination and/or treason charges so long as they are encouraging the overthrow of their own government for the benefit of imprisoned terrorists?

It seems that had we not shown the human kindness of attempting to provide these terrorists with some comforts and in showing them gratuitous respect for their fairly harsh and disrespectful traditions, we would not have had to deal with this series of ridiculous grievances.

But if our soldiers are held to the standard of running Guantanamo Bay like a mosque, I have a very serious suggestion. Take away the Korans. Remove all trappings of religion altogether, leaving the prison as a secular place of confinement. That way there will be no sensibilities to offend.

This is a war. It's not Club Med.


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