Wikileaks is leaking again, and the left is ecstatic. In particular, they're simply wild about Wikileaks' revelation that American soldiers turned a blind eye to Iraqi soldiers mistreating captured enemies, marking many reports with "no further investigation" necessary. The UK Guardian gloated, "The systematic viciousness of the old dictatorship when Saddam Hussein's security agencies enforced order without any regard for law continues."
These abuses are tragic and problematic. They make our job harder in Iraq and Afghanistan -- or, more specifically, media revelations of these abuses make our job harder in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Of course, this is also a war. In order to stay alive and save the lives of their comrades, soldiers can do dire things while prosecuting a war. Liberals and do-gooders seem utterly ignorant of the fact that war is dirty business, should never be regarded as anything even slightly resembling polite society, and should never be imagined as anything else but a cold-hearted business meant to kill, defeat, destroy, and demoralize the enemy. Orders come from Four Stars, not Emily Post.
Pansies like the editors of the UK Guardian seem to think that war is a garden party, complete with scones and raspberry tea. The UK Guardian says that President Obama should "order a full investigation ... the administration has a legal and moral obligation to investigate credible claims of US forces' complicity in torture. It is not irresponsible or partisan to publish possible evidence of complicity in torture. It is a duty to do so."
At the risk of Juan Williamsing ourselves, let's have some honest talk at this point: is there anyone out there besides Tinkerbell and the UK Guardian editors who truly believes that such an investigation will end similar abuses? Or will the investigation promote them?
I've got news for everyone: It will both end the abuses and promote them.
Here's the scenario: Americans will not allow Iraqis to torture prisoners. Americans will not turn a blind eye to torture. Instead, Iraqi forces -- having to serve as judge and jury as well as soldier -- will end up killing more enemy forces outright. Treating captured enemies with white gloves (literally) and then releasing them only incentivizes troops to ensure that their enemies are immobilized on the battlefields and not freed in a courtroom or by some out-of-touch crybaby bureaucrat. Creating rules of engagement that force American and Iraqi forces to hold their fire against terrorists -- who after spraying our troops with every last bit of their ammunition, simply drop their weapons while running house-to-house, only to return the next day to annihilate them for good -- incentivize killings and cover-ups. These are men in the field, fighting for their lives. We can't treat them like preschool teachers trying to control unruly toddlers.
The enemy is meant to be immobilized and defeated. That doesn't mean caught and released like some enviro-friendly fishing program in Montana, as President Obama is doing with even the most dangerous terrorists at Gitmo. That doesn't mean questioned gingerly with Miranda rights and a lawyer and then set free. That means killed or jailed -- permanently taken out of the game. In some cases, that goal will result in abuses. But better that rational rules should be abused on occasion than that irrational goals should be established, then purposefully subverted wholesale by men and women simply trying to survive.
The left disagrees. They want perfect behavior without blood or dirt or hangnails. The left wants terrorists to be treated with all available etiquette, and they want soldiers punished for breaching that etiquette. If they can't have it, they want the war abandoned forthwith, our national security and the troops' sacrifices be damned.
Unless they're completely and utterly delusional, people on the left know full well that such standards will never be met. For God's sake, these goofballs have even complained about the most humanely run facility in the history of man at Gitmo and used that as an excuse to call for the end of all war-making capacity.
They're not concerned about detainee abuses -- if they were, they would have redacted the names of the soldiers implicated in them. By making those names public, all they do is incentivize Iraqi soldiers to kill those they abuse rather than simply abuse them.
Wikileaks is an antiwar sideshow in human rights garb. It's just another example of the left setting unreasonable and foolish standards for our military, hamstringing them further and further. With the current rules of engagement, the risk of being "outed" by faux journalists, and the assault on our military funding and structure, it is a wonder that men and women keep volunteering. It is a testament to their strength and courage and patriotism and honor -- the same strength, courage, patriotism, and honor that the left derides as old-fashioned nationalistic jingoism.
There's a famous scene in the classic The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly in which Tuco (Eli Wallach) is confronted by a gunfighter while sitting in his bathtub. The gunfighter lost an arm to Tuco and is back for revenge. "I've been looking for you for eight months," the gunfighter babbles. "Whenever I should have had a gun in my right hand, I thought of you. Now I find you in exactly the position that suits me. I had lots of time to learn to shoot with my left." At this point, Tuco shoots the gunfighter from beneath the suds. "When you have to shoot, shoot: don't talk," he quips.
The left wants to talk because they don't want to fight. Our enemies, however, are perfectly willing to fight us, behead us, mutilate us. If we hamstring our soldiers because we're so interested in talking, we'll eventually be silenced by those who have no such qualms.