Frank Rich of The New York Times argues that although there’s plenty to blame on the Bush administration, a timid Congress and a compliant press, it’s time for the American people to accept at least some responsibility for the Iraq war and its many disastrous episodes. From Abu Ghraib to contractor killing sprees, we the people have known far too much for far too long to feign surprise when things suddenly go sour.
New York Times:
By any legal standards except those rubber-stamped by Alberto Gonzales, we are practicing torture, and we have known we are doing so ever since photographic proof emerged from Abu Ghraib more than three years ago. As Andrew Sullivan, once a Bush cheerleader, observed last weekend in The Sunday Times of London, America’s “enhanced interrogation” techniques have a grotesque provenance: “Verschärfte Vernehmung, enhanced or intensified interrogation, was the exact term innovated by the Gestapo to describe what became known as the ‘third degree.’ It left no marks. It included hypothermia, stress positions and long-time sleep deprivation.”
Still, the drill remains the same. The administration gives its alibi (Abu Ghraib was just a few bad apples). A few members of Congress squawk. The debate is labeled “politics.” We turn the page.