If they truly understood the nature of the enemy, would they coddle them as if they were their pet criminal defendants on the mainland of the United States? Would they insist on mischaracterizing -- to the detriment of America's image and the demoralizing of our troops -- the conditions at the prison camp at Guantanamo?
It is hard to overstate the egregiousness of Dick Durbin's suggestion that we are torturing and abusing prisoners comparable to the Soviet Gulags, and worse, implying that we are doing so as a matter of Bush administration policy.
Bulletin to Dick Durbin and like-minded America-bashing appeasers: These enemy combatants are not criminal defendants; they are not criminals at all. They are part of an incorrigible war enemy. But they are unlike any enemy we've faced before, because they are unattached to any nation state that could be made to surrender. Their cause transcends rationality and will survive the fall of any nation.
If Democrats understood the nature of the enemy, they would know that it is not only not unreasonable for us to hold terrorist enemies in perpetuity, but utterly mandatory. These people -- those of them we can confirm through military tribunals are indeed enemy combatants -- can never be released back into the world as long as this war continues, and there's no reason to expect that it will end in the next 50 years.
I'm completely serious about this. Whether we like it or not, the war is going to continue as long as there are significant numbers of Muslim extremists in the world to prosecute it, and there will be, irrespective of whether we do everything we can -- short of converting to a Muslim theocracy -- to make them like us.
Besides, the Gitmo prisoners, in effect, have the keys to their own jail cells because it is their allies in terror who will decide when to quit waging war against civilization. Until that happens, we cannot afford to give them liberty and a license to come back and kill us.
In moral terms, there is no comparison between us and the enemy, and it would be most helpful if the minority party in the United States would quit feeding the lie that there is.