A reader writes:

I'm sorry your soldier is a moron.

Iraqis had a choice, surrender and receive fair and humane treatment. Fight us?  Cross us?  Hide behind civilians?  You will receive no quarter, no kindness, you will forfeit your life and your humanity.

It's imbecilic to think that they surrendered because they knew our kindness.  They surrendered because of the hellatious ass-whomping they would receive.  Prostrate yourself and be treated kindly.

Fight us and die. Those we detain and torture are those that chose the second path. This makes them a good lesson for those contemplating the first.

Well, some Cheney-supporters read this site, don't they? Here's another reader's observations:

I hear the most dreadful things from Americans I'd thought had decency. These are women, mind you, middle aged women who've never known anything but comfort and privilege. They're women who have raised children and done a good job of it, women who do charity work and who go all out to help dogs and cats and any other animal in need.  But they don't see this issue as you and I see it. They talk about the people tortured as if they're not human beings.  They see every Muslim, every Arab, as another species. Their usual term is "scum" but "murdering bastards" is also a favorite. Yes, all of them are guilty, all terrorists. These are women who've traveled extensively, some who were even born in other countries. Thus it's not all foreigners who come under this sub-species heading, only the people they've labeled terrorists without knowing what they're talking about. It's racism at its worst and that, sadly, is what Bush and his cronies are playing to.

None of the people I know who think torture appropriate would admit to being racists, of course. High IQs, high incomes, no brains at all -- or is it no hearts? Perhaps no empathy is the key. To one of them, I said, "This sort of thing can escalate and next they'll be coming for us." She replied, "Oh, for God's sake!" with disgust, the implication being that such methods would never, ever be used for us fair white middle class people.

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