A Question of Moral Integrity

The Peace Tree welcomes our newest contributing author, Chrisotpher David Peter Wilcox.
I have been a fan of his blog for sometime and I am very pleased that he has agreed to share his work with Peace Tree Readers.
You may visit his blog via the link at the end of this post, his link in my favorite blog section or the Peace Tree Contributing author section.

Thanks Christopher for helping to make The Peace Tree a more informative place for our readers!

A Question Of Moral Integrity
Christopher David Peter Wilcox

John Warner, former Navy secretary and chairman of the Armed Services Committee, John McCain, former Navy pilot and POW, Lindsey Graham, former Air Force Reserve Judge, Colin Powell, retired General and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and George W. Bush, former AWOL Reservist made interesting news this week. The four Republican leaders who have served our country proudly in the military were at odds with President Bush, about the tactics he proposed to deal with the war on terror. When 150 million Americans and the Conservative military men that serve on the Armed Services Committee all believe that the President is acting the fool you would expect that the President should abandon his failed tactics and take steps to offer the American people effective and comprehensive security that he took an oath to provide. I guess the presidential oath doesn’t mean very much to a man of Dubya’s integrity.

President Bush had proposed the withholding of evidence from a defendant to protect classified information in military tribunals. In effect he was hoping to wave a sealed manila envelope in the air and condemn suspected criminals on his word. I would accept such judgment from St. Peter but I think we can all agree Boy George is no St. Peter. The leaders of the Armed Services Committee took a line more in tune with American tradition and would like to guarantee specific legal rights to defendants, including access to all evidence used against them. Senator McCain said, "I think it's important that we stand by 200 years of legal precedents concerning classified information because the defendant should have a right to know what evidence is being used,"

The President also proposed that coerced testimony should be admissible against defendants. Color me skeptical but I don’t know many people who won’t confess to almost any crime if you beat them long enough. Colin Powell said Bush’s plans to redefine the Geneva Conventions would cause the world “to doubt the moral basis” of the fight against terror and “put our own troops at risk.” We can’t expect Bush or Cheney to understand that concept because they have always been successful in side stepping any situation that would have had them in jeopardy as a member of the United States military.

What did the “would-be soldier”, our president, have to say about Powell’s comments? "If there's any comparison between the compassion and decency of the American people and the terrorist tactics of extremists, it's flawed logic," Bush said. "It's just — I simply can't accept that." and "It's unacceptable to think that there's any kind of comparison between the behavior of the United States of America and the action of Islamic extremists who kill innocent women and children to achieve an objective." What else would you have expected this president to say? He has made a career of clouding issues and distracting attention from his failures by cloaking himself in faux patriotism and shielding himself by generating fear across the land

Colin Powell was making no comparisons! Colin Powell was talking about the integrity of the United States of America; period! We must always hold ourselves to the high standards that our Constitution and Bill of Rights deserve. George just doesn’t understand that. The fact that those opposed Bush’s tactics in the war on terror are presented by the chicken-hawks as choosing terrorists over America the only flawed logic Bush should be concerned about. Those who truly love America will continue to fight the war on terror while defending the integrity of the sacred documents and principles that America was founded on. And we will continue to fight the war on terror as responsible citizens of our global community by adhering to the Geneva Convention.

Bush showed his true character when asked about Powell's assertion that the world might doubt the moral basis of the fight against terror if lawmakers went along with the administration's proposal to redefine Geneva Convention's ban on "outrages upon personal dignity." Bush said the Geneva Convention's ban was "very vague" and required clarification. "What does that mean, 'outrages upon human dignity?' That's a statement that is wide open to interpretation." And there lies the problem. If Mama Bush never taught Boy George the difference between right and wrong there is little hope he will have the moral integrity to heed the advice of the conservative military leaders of his party; let alone the millions of Americans who demand more from the occupant of the oval office.

Read all of Christopher's work at Red Hog Diary


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