There may be some who would abstractly prefer more dead Americans to a very few water-boarded and otherwise harshly interrogated terrorists, on the ground that the United States should not engage in what they classify as "torture," for any reason, and regardless of the consequences of not doing so. I find this position very difficult to understand and even more difficult to accept. I wonder how many of them would feel the same way were they permitted to travel forward in time and see alternative scenarios in which they and their loved ones were, and were not, killed violently and painfully depending on whether "torture" had been employed. Some might view the killings with equanimity, but I doubt it; slaughter does not occur in the abstract. Perhaps lacking the benefits of such time travel, they are excessively intent upon demonstrating their own moral superiority in a context where they and their loved ones are not in immediate danger from their choices, except in the abstract.
This recent Blogcritics Magazine article apparently seeks to have show trials and thereby make a mockery of justice and of national security.
We have every right to see in the public limelight what the world saw after World War II when Nazi criminals were tried and punished on the world stage.
Attempting to create an equality of "torture," in ways previously determined to be lawful, to gain badly needed intelligence, with the blatant crimes committed by Nazis during World War II, is on a par with referring to a city sanitation agency as engaging in a "war" on litter. It grossly dilutes the meaning of both "war crimes" and "war." The comparison to Nazi war criminals and their slaughter of many Jews and others in concentration camps is absurd, and "tortures" both history and common decency.
Although President Obama seems to be trying to "clarify" his administration's position on whether to have some sort of truth commission on "torture" by changing that position as the winds shift, substantial confusion has resulted, possibly causing the persistent economic problems facing the country to recede in perceived importance. For example, Chrysler appears to be in imminent danger of bankruptcy, and "the Treasury has an agreement in principle with the United Auto Workers union to protect pensions and retiree health care benefits as a condition of the bankruptcy filing. . . ." GM plants are to be closed for the Summer, following a multi-billion dollar bailout and the replacement of a CEO, which one supposes may have been intended to prevent that sort of thing, as well as the default on a one billion debt and GM's very likely ultimate bankruptcy. Some U.S. banks may well need another trillion dollar bailout on top of what they have already been given. These difficulties are in danger of being displaced from view by a "torture" distraction or something else, perhaps worse.