Saturday, May 09, 2009

Moving Towards A Real Torture Debate

Andrew Sullivan makes a good point about the Pelosi revelations:

The emergence of the possibility of Pelosi's and Rockefeller's enmeshment in the torture program could have, to my mind, a salutary effect on the debate.

Responsibility for creating and perpetuating the torture program lies with Bush and Cheney - but if they brought in senior Democrats who did not complain or do all they could to stop it, then those Democrats bear some responsibility as well.

And that perhaps helps the case for accountability.

So while Cheney et al. clearly believe that the Pelosi revelations somehow justify the previous administration's conduct simply by making it harder for Democratic politicians to score points against an easy target like Bush... as if the case against waterboarding were a tactic of Democratic Party apparatchiks and nothing more. Something quite nearly the opposite may turn out to be true. The fact that the debate about torture is now (slightly) less vulnerable to politicization will make the anti-torture argument that much stronger.