i've been slowing digging further into thoughts about the relation between vulnerability and security in my last two posts. i haven't had the time to be very thoughtful even though i keep thinking i will. so instead i keep putting up posts that provoke, that point the direct i'd like to go when i get the chance. maybe that is all i can do on this blog these days.
so, today is about the stunning new york times book review article by andrew sullivan on the abu ghraib investigations. it is a stunning piece. sure, it details the horror of what happened, and this is the most detailed and aweful version of events i've read. but the article also details how clearly the actions flowed from actions taken by george bush and donald rumsfeld, and the systematic influence that their high level influence had on broad abuses not only at abu ghraib but in afganistan, at guantanamo bay, and so on.
it was especially powerful to see a conservative like sullivan say this: "in a democracy, the responsiblity is also wider. did those of us who fought so passionately for a ruthless war against terrorists give an unwitting green light to these abuses? were we naive in believing that characterizing complex conflicts from afghanistan to iraq as a single simple war against 'evil' might not filter down and lead to decisions that could dehumanize the enemy and lead to abuse?"
yes, too many spoke of 'hunting down' the terrorists, and the fear of the vulnerability exposes by the 9/11 attacks pushed the usa to broad-brush characterizing of arabs or muslims as suspect as a matter of course. i fear that this torture and the photos that document it are alone enough to mean that we will not succeed in iraq until we leave.
one of the pastors we work with at yale, skip masback, at new canaan congregational, preached a powerful sermon on abu ghraib a few months ago. here it is.
anon, and +peace