June 15, 2008

The Torture of John McCain

The New York Times pretends to criticize John McCain, who once blamed the anti-war movement for weakening the resolve of American POWs held by the Vietnamese.

In the guise of dishing this mild rebuke, the Times engages in a fare amount of disgusting hero worshiping of a war criminal, laced with all the usual drekkish stew of masculinity, war and patriotism.

Here's a sample.

Mr. McCain was as enraged as any of the tough resisters by what they considered the treason of the two officers and enlisted men, his friends said. “He thought this was ‘terrible, terrible, terrible,’ they should all be shot,” said John Dramesi, a fellow prisoner....

But Mr. Schweitzer, who died in a car crash soon after the war, became an example of what Mr. McCain later called “the necessity to forgive.” Confronted by a senior officer, Mr. Schweitzer renounced his participation in the propaganda and resumed his place in the American ranks.
This is of course the New York Times, the paper whose mission is to feed right-wing propaganda to those whose self-image includes being slightly left-of-center. As this piece shows, the Times is at the top of its game.

So let's put it in words simple enough for a Times reader:

John McCain is a war criminal. As he himself admitted. He flew missions against civilian targets. He incinerated, men, women, children and farm animals in their huts. And he did all this in a war of unprovoked aggression against a country half a globe away, a war he fully supported, and that killed three million Vietnamese.

The Vietcong should not have tortured him. For a reason hard to understand, they wanted him to confess that he was a war criminal, as if his word could carry more weight than his actions. But they had every right to soak him in gasoline and burn him alive.

From the same article:

In his memoirs, Mr. McCain addressed only briefly what he called “the camp rats.” During a stint in solitary confinement, he had caught a glimpse of two other American officers acting friendly with their guards and enjoying delicacies like eggs and bananas,

Times journalists should think twice before mentioning something as delicate as sucking up to power. Although I don't think Judith Miller's handlers ever served her humble eggs and bananas...


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