White House spokesman Tony Snow got incredulous at his briefing today when asked if indefinite detentions of enemy combatants at Guantanamo Bay undermines President Bush’s global push for democratization. Quoth Snow: “Are you kidding me?”
Are you saying that detaining people who are plucked off the battlefields is an assault on democracy? Are you kidding me? You’re talking about the people who were responsible for supporting the Taliban, somehow detaining them is an assault on democracy?
Right, who could see any tension there? After all, the Founding Fathers fought a revolution to ensure that in a time of war, which can last as long as a president says it does, a chief executive has the right to detain whomever he wants, for as long as he wishes, with no recourse to habeas corpus, and under conditions that an international human-rights monitor considers “tantamount to torture.” How could there be a credibility problem?