The Passion To Be Reckoned On Is Fear

Liz Cheney's terror-mongering advocacy group releases an ominous short documentary about how the citizens of Standish, Michigan, are supposedly dead set against the transfer of detainees to a nearby prison. Greg Sargent cuts through the deception:

But Standish’s City Manager tells us that local leaders and residents want the facility, and dismissed Cheney’s efforts as “fearmongering.” Cheney is “certainly not representing the views of our community,” the City Manager, Michael Moran, told our reporter, Amanda Erickson. While some local residents do appear to have expressed mixed feelings or opposition to the plan, Moran says that they’re an isolated minority that Ms. Cheney’s video elevates out of proportion in a way that’s “off base.” What’s more, the Standish city council recently passed a unanimous resolution expressing support for bringing Gitmo detainees, citing job losses in the wake of the closing of the facility.

Under-blogger Bodenner profiled the town for TNR last month and found the same findings. Noam Scheiber this week suggests that the scare tactics in Standish are working, and that similar tactics are showing up in Thompson, Illinois - the latest potential destination for detainees.

It's so bizarre that transferring prisoners to mainland jails in order to shut down the objective black eye of Gitmo is receiving so much resistance from the pro-torture right. We can argue about how to try these suspects, but their location should surely be a non-issue.

What Cheney fears, I suspect, is that Gitmo will be shut down, that history will record it as the lowest point in US human rights ever, that the Cheney family will be tarred as the brand that destroyed America's moral standing, and that Dick Cheney will become one of the darkest figures in modern American history.

But if you can keep Gitmo open, if you prevent detainee transfer, if you can spin the next terror attack as caused by the refusal to torture ... you have a chance to rescue the narrative again. And so America's cold civil war continues ...