Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Bad Karma Torture

It's the convergence of stories like the following that would convince me that the God of the Bible lives, if there weren't already a wealth of other evidence, because mere mortal men could never contrive or coordinate anything this delicious.

We begin with the climax of a thwarted Islamist terror plot in France (via Powerline):

A court on Wednesday convicted twenty-five people for their roles in preparing an attack in France in support of Islamic fighters in Chechnya.

You see the logic in that, don't you...?

The five top defendants received prison terms of eight to ten years, while the others received lesser sentences. Two were acquitted. All but one defendant had been accused of helping Islamic fighters in Chechnya in what prosecutors said underscored the "globalization of the jihad movement."

Prosecutors were unable to prove strong suspicions that the attack was to have involved chemicals, even though investigators found equipment, including a protective suit, and chemicals including the highly toxic ricin.

In handing down sentences, the court followed the prosecutor's office by giving the maximum ten-year term to the group's alleged chemicals expert, Menad Benchellali. However, Menad's father, Chellali Benchellali, an imam, or prayer leader, in the Lyon suburb of Venissieux, received only an 18-month suspended prison term - far lower than the prosecution's demand for six years behind bars.

The court convicted twenty-four defendants of criminal association in relation with a terrorist enterprise, a broad charge used by France to sweep wide in bringing terror suspects to justice. One other was convicted of using false papers.

The Benchellali family was at the center of the case, with Menad's mother, Hafsa, and brother, Hafed, also on trial for roles in the plot to carry out an attack in France.

The network was dismantled in two waves, the first in December 2002 as investigators stormed two houses in the Paris suburb of La Courneuve and the nearby town of Romainville. They found gas canisters, fuses, chemicals and a suit to protect against chemical attacks.

During a second wave of arrests, in January 2004 in Venissieux, in southeast France, investigators found chemical products, including ricin, and definitively broke up the network.

The prosecution contended that the group was plotting an attack in Paris, but could not define the target. The Russian Embassy, a police station and the Eiffel Tower were mentioned during interrogations.
The ASSociated Press leaves pretty much all the dots either omitted or unconnected, as Brother Trunk proceeds to expound. My point of interest, though, is the Benchellali family. Why, you ask? Because guess who was given op-ed space by the New York Times to spin Islamist propaganda about the supposed depravations visited upon poor jihadi prisoners at Gitmo that purportedly led three of them to commit suicide recently? [Maxwell Smart voice] Would you believe Mourad Benchellali? Evidently he didn't get the family memo, or overslept, or missed his flight to Paris or something. Or he's the designated propagandist of his mosque. Every imam has one, y'know.

I say "supposed" and "purported" because on this very same day comes a report from an Afghan delegation that spent a week and a half turning Gitmo inside-out that pronounces that the facility's conditions are, and I quote, "humane":

The head of the delegation, Abdul Jabar Sabhet of the Interior Ministry, said the delegation was given the chance to speak freely with all ninety-six Afghan prisoners about their living conditions.

Sabhet said there were "only one or two" complaints.

"Conditions of the jail was humane. There were rumors in this country about that. It was wrong. What we have seen was OK," he said.

Sabhet's assessment comes five days after the suicides of three detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba.

Cap'n Ed makes a sage and salient point that (1) the three suicides were "suicide smearings," the next best thing to suicide bombings in the jihadi mindset; and (2) suicides in prisons in general are a frequent occurance, and yet we don't shut down the correctional system and turn all the crooks and rapists and murderers loose to resume "plying their trades."

Mr. Morrissey makes an appeal to logic, though, when logic has nothing to do with the jihadi-symps' insane drive to shut down Gitmo and release hundreds of mass murderers by any means necessary. Indeed, I can just hear the Kos-hacks and DUmmies klackity-klacking away at conspiracist posts claiming that "Of course, a delegation from the Afghan puppet regime is going to say what Bushitler told them to say; if they hadn't, they'd have been thrown into Gitmo as well!" By their "logic," only enemies of America have any objectivity or credibility to make such judgments. Which, in turn, says a great deal about their own loyalty, much less "patriotism."

My point, however, as I have argued before, is that Gitmo's "humanity" is precisely the problem. We feed the terrorists better than we do our own combat soldiers, we cater to their barbarous religious whims, and generally give them better lives than they ever experienced before falling into the "Great Satan"'s hands. And they show their gratitude for this tender, loving care by hurling obscenities, epithets, and bodily substance concoctions containing everything from spit to snot to urine to poop to ear wax to semen at U.S. service personnel. And, of course, promising to get out and kill them and their families and turn America into a sea of flames.

The wonder is that there isn't more abuse of "detainees," not less. Certainly the "holy warriors" would deserve it, and should be treated much more like, well, prisoners who are acutely aware that they continue to live only because we allow it, rather than as frigging spa patrons. Given the media abuse heaped upon Gitmo anyway, it's difficult to see what the Bush Administration is gaining from its (almost) universally unappreciated hospitality.

Except, perhaps, the fair opinion of a new, and grateful, friend.

UPDATE 6/15: Jed Babbin sums it up: "There's no alternative to Gitmo."