I am so sick of the liberal left, both domestic and foreign, constantly berating America as being morally bankrupt and a plague upon mankind. To them, we are quite singularly responsible for all the evil in the world through our crass, greedy, capitalistic practices. So, Sunday night, this unapologetic capitalist was watching Oliver North's War Stories on Fox News Channel, and seeing American sailors who survived the sinking of their ship and were imprisoned by the Japanese. A photo reveals their starkly emaciated condition upon their post—war emancipation, graphic evidence of the cruel deprivation inflicted upon them by the Japanese. A now—robust surviving sailor tells Ollie he came out of that camp weighing 95 pounds.
I think about that for a moment and a kaleidoscope of such images that I have witnessed in my sixty—three years lights up my mind: innumerable accounts of the gross mistreatment of prisoners from many sources; the bone—visible survivors of Auschwitz and other German concentration camps; the human skeletons emerging from the Philippine hellholes the Japanese maintained; the skeletal denizens of the Soviet gulag, starved and worked to death for transgressions against the regime; American POW's, repatriated from North Korea and Vietnam. And, more recently, I recall the videos of bloated—bellied African toddlers, starved by an uncaring, despotic government in Sudan.
But you know one image that isn't there? I delve deep into my mind trying to find even one example and I cannot find it. Can you guess what it is? Try this: go back through all your experiences of the Twentieth Century and try to come up with one, just one, just one single image of a starving, emaciated prisoner in the custody of American troops or the American government. I'm not saying it may not exist, but if it did, don't you think some self—loathing, America—hating college professor would have revealed it to the world by now? Yes, mistreatment occurred on both sides during our civil war, but by the time I grew up, literally in middle America, in a small town in Oklahoma, attitudes had changed; the German POW's incarcerated in our local prison were well—treated, well—fed, and encouraged to be healthy contributors to our economy. They did.
And that folks, says a hell of a lot about us, about you, about me, and about this great country, which together, we comprise. Yeah, we may take some terror suspects into custody and interrogate them aggressively. We may imprison Taliban suspects in Guantanamo and deprive them of sleep and discomfit them in other ways in our efforts to glean battlefield intelligence from them. We may even have committed the horrible transgression of putting panties (gasp) over some terrorists' heads in Abu Ghraib. But guess what? None of them, not one single prisoner whom I've seen in the mainstream media's avalanche of news reports of our horrible transgressions, exhibits any evidence of being starved.
Nope they all look amazingly well fed, don't they? There wasn't one single scarecrow in that pornographic pyramid of prisoners in Abu Ghraib. Nope, all those butts looked amazingly rotund and well fed, didn't they? Admittedly, they're kinda skinny by American standards, but there's not one human skeleton in the lot as far as I've been able to determine, not a single starvation induced, skin—stretching rib or jauntily jutting hipbone in evidence in any one of those pictures.
So what does that say, America, about our moral bankruptcy, our inhumanity and our lack of concern for our fellow man? Well, it tells this ol' Texas boy that all those pointy—headed academics, like that phony, overweight, cigar—store Indian, Ward Churchill, and all his loudly complaining, liberal supporters, don't have one single clue about the real evils that exist in this world. From their ivory castles, they hurl barbed charges against us, you and me, us ol' ordinary folks, proclaiming us the spawn of the Devil because we support that other devil, Karl Rove, who is out to put them all in chains. They are clueless, totally clueless; and they damned sure don't have a clue about the good fortune that has been visited upon them by their birthright to be citizens of this great nation, a nation that, in spite of all its faults, does not starve its prisoners.
There is no greater cruelty in life than that of depriving a living creature of food to the point of starvation.
Just think about that, all you pet—owning, America—hating Liberals, and then consider your political friends.
2d Bn, 327th Parachute Infantry Regiment
101st Airborne Division
Russ Vaughn is the Poet Laureate of The American Thinker