Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Ultimate Reality Show

Christopher Hitchens describes the Iraqi TV show Terrorism in the Grip of Justice and adds some ascerbic comments about the Geneva Convention and Amnesty International. Here is an excerpt from the early part of the article:

A favorite slice of reality TV in today's Iraq is the melodramatically named program Terrorism in the Grip of Justice. Aired on state-run Al Iraqiya, which doesn't require a satellite dish, it shows the confessions of captured "insurgents," mainly foreign fighters. When possible, it also shows the videos that these people have made, so that, for example, a man can be viewed as he slices a victim's throat and then viewed, looking much less brave, as he explains where he comes from, how he was taught to rehearse beheadings and throat-slittings on animals, and other insights into the trade. On occasion, these characters are confronted with the families of their victims. At other times, they have been able to tell the families of the missing what happened to their loved ones. The aim is to demystify the holy warriors and also to encourage civilians to call in with further tips.

And here is my favorite line from the entire piece:

No need to waste words here: Not everyone in the gulag was a "prisoner of conscience," either. But if an organization that ostensibly protects the rights of prisoners is unaware of the nature of a colossal system of forced labor and arbitrary detention—replete with physical torture, starvation, and brutal execution—then the moral compass has become disordered beyond repair. This is not even neutrality between the fireman and the fire. It surely expresses a covert sympathy with the aims and objectives of jihad and an overt, if witless and sinister, hatred of the United States. If only this were the only symptom of that tendency.

It is extremely tiresome to have the anti-US, anti-Bush crowd so consistently and unhesitatingly always, ALWAYS, put every other nation, every other culture, and every other point of view as a higher priority than our own national interests. They claim they do this out of principle.

If so, then their "principles" are obvious for all to see. Not only that, but we can look at Europe and know for certain where such "principles" inevitably take the country that embraces them.

Take a look across the ocean at Europe for the ultimate reality show.

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