The Moral High Road

I’m not a fan of Saddam Hussein. He is as bad as it gets – a man willing to kill to eliminate or intimidate his enemies in the most vile ways. I do not shed a tear for him or his fate.

Sometimes, however, I think we lose sight of the fact that we are judged by the world for our actions, not his. Whoever thought it was a good idea to take photos of Saddam in his underwear and then pass them out like some high school prank, has injured all of us greatly.

Make no mistake, it doesn’t take Saddam off the hook, but we are losing… maybe have lost… the moral high ground. This is not the first public display which reflects badly on America.

Having morality on our side won’t help us with Al Qaeda or other terrorists, but it is important with much of the rest of the world.

The photos are an embarrassment. It is a shame.

2 thoughts on “The Moral High Road”

  1. Oh, Geoff, so well put! I agree with you. I find it sad to contemplate our continuing fall from morality, grace, and esteem in the eyes of “…much of the rest of the world.”

    Carol R

  2. Geoff:

    As Americans, we should be better. Although Saddam is an Iraqi prisoner and his detainment conditions do not have to meet the Geneva Convention, we pledged to the American Red Cross that we would make efforts to adhere to the Geneva Convention as a guideline.

    Nonetheless, do I shed a tear for a guy who liked to torture his opponents by camera? After all, he videotaped rapes of relatives of his opponents and forced them to watch. It is ironic that his second favorite tool (mustard gas was his first)- the camera- was used to utterly humiliate and injure countless people- and now it is being used by someone to embarass him.

    I don’t endorse what we did, but let’s put it in context. Showing the old man in his underwear pales in comparison to what he showed people. Al Jazeera refused to run the Saddam photos because they were humiliating, but they couldn’t wait to air pictures of Nicholas Berg’s decapitation. Again, we have to be better than them- but we must not wring our hands too much lest we look weak. Which is what got us here, IMHO.

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