Your Weekly Rush: If you Ignore It, It Doesn't Exist
"Now, the premise of the whole question offends me because I don't think (we've lost it [respect]). We're in the process of losing respect doing this. If we're in danger of losing respect, it's this. The people who have struck us and target us are laughing at us today over all of this."
In other words, our actions in the Abu Ghraib didn't make us look bad, but holding hearings condemning the actions in Abu Ghraib makes us look weak. I think he's playing off the theory that the only thing "Arabs" respect is power, and that by apologizing for our cruelty we are showing weakness.
You know what, he might be right. I'm suspicious of any generalizations about how "Arabs" look at the world, but let's assume he's correct. What should we do about it? I mean should we really abandon our Democratic ways to present a hard face to the Middle East?
I mean if that is something we want to do there are lots of things we might try (say, calling off the election so that they know they have to deal with President Bush). But I don't think we should let Terrorists determine how we act here. I mean we are, like it or not, a democratic republic. If we chose to abandon those principles to fight terrorists or Iraqi resistance, haven't the Terrorists already won?
Rush, of course, also takes time to remind us of Chappaquiddick ("Ted Kennedy was asking about the International Red Cross, and he's asked Rumsfeld about the International Red Cross. [Kennedy impression:] "Why wasn't the International Red Cross in there?" Same reason the local Red Cross didn't show up at Chappaquiddick, senator!") and that Robert Byrd was in the KKK ("everybody is concerned about these pictures and all these hoods in the pictures -- and I say again: "My friends, you could have seen more hoods had a Robert Byrd birthday party 40-or-50 years ago than you see in all these pictures combined,"). Not that that has much to do with anything, of course. But it's always nice to point out.