Tuesday, June 28, 2005

IT'S NICE TO KNOW that even though the Bush administration unilaterally decided that Guantanamo detainees are "enemy combatants" and do not merit protection as prisoners of war under the Geneva Conventions, every one of the 500-plus detainees at Guantanamo are treated like honored guests -- even though they are all dangerous terrorists who would slit every American's throat if they got the chance.

It's immensely comforting to live in the kind of country where our legislators can give Southern Command the courtesy of advance notification when a congressional delegation is planning to visit, and not have to worry that things will be prettied up for the delegation's benefit.

It's no wonder that our government is so adamant on the point that the United States should not be bound by international legal treaties or conventions: We don't need to be. Americans are a special, unique, higher form of human being: Respect for human rights is imprinted in our genetic code. Really. We could not torture enemy combatants even if we wanted to. Of course, being America, we have to have the flexibility and the freedom to deny human rights protections to those who don't deserve them, but we would never take advantage of our right to be exempt from the legal agreements that bind every other nation in the world.

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