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Location: Montgomery Area, Alabama, United States

Former BUFF driver; self-styled military historian; paid (a lot) to write about beating plowshares into swords; NOT Foamy the Squirrel, contrary to all appearances. Wesleyan Jihadi Name: Sibling Railgun of Reasoned Discourse

Thursday, June 23, 2005

What You Need To Know About Gitmo and Apologies

I know...I know! I said I wouldn't write any more 'bout Gitmo and Turban Durbin...
Well, I lied. So sue me.

Besides what, this is really great stuff. First, Lileks nails the leftist coffin* shut on the Gitmo affair:

Gitmo is the gulag equivalent of a Ben Affleck movie: no one's seen it, but everyone has an opinion about it. Given all the rhetoric that's been spilled about this sorta-kinda-not-really Death Camp, it's time we re-examine the facts, and remind ourselves what's really at stake. Herewith a summation.

Q: What is Gitmo?

A: Contrary to what some suggest, it does not stand for "Git mo' Peking chicken for Muhammad, he wants a second portion." It stands for "Guantanamo," a facility the United States built to see if the left would ever care about human rights abuses in Cuba. The experiment has apparently been successful.

Q: C'mon. Why do they hate us?

A: Because our women wear thongs, our media are naughty, our homosexuals walk around unstoned, and we refuse to let them finish Hitler's plans for the Jews. Because we are the infidel sons of monkeys and pigs who do not believe that most holy of books, "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion." Also because we had something to do with Afghanistan.

Q: Afghana-what?

A: Afghanistan is a large, mountainous country that suffered an unimaginable geographical calamity a few years ago, when the entire nation slid off the front pages of the newspapers. Poor country: not a single runaway Caucasian bride to interest the media.

The whole thing is adroit and hilarious--go read it yo'own sef.

And then there's this from Instapundit:

DURBIN UPDATE: A Salon article on apologies says:

"I'm sorry I was rude" is good.

"I'm sorry if I was rude" is not. It weasels. It implies that maybe you weren't rude. It implies that the person being apologized to has a twisted little worldview if they think "Oh, shut up, frog-lips" is rude.

An apology should give the sense that you actually feel some form of regret. "Sorry if" is a conditional apology. Conditional apologies make things worse, not better.

Words to the wise, but usually unheeded. Compare to Durbin's apology:

"I'm sorry if anything that I said caused any offense or pain to those who have such bitter memories of the Holocaust, the greatest moral tragedy of our time," he said, adding, "I'm also sorry if anything I said in any way cast a negative light on our fine men and women in the military."

Kind of iffy, I'd say. . . .


*You know--the one they carry in Berkeley & DC protest marches; the one that the Nuclear Death's Head comes out of to throw blood on the police.

Update: The publisher of the tiny Carolina Journal put his finger on it:

No major television network news show reported his initial remarks. No national newspaper saw them as newsworthy. So, where did this outrage come from, given that the media ignored his remarks? How did millions of Americans come to know Durbin as “Turban Durbin” if the mainstream media looked the other way? You’re looking at it right now: the Internet. [Read: blogosphere]

Durbin was quaking and begging in the Senate Tuesday because of the tsunami of outrage from everyday people. Many of those, presumably, were his constituents. No senator does what he did yesterday without great pressure. He must have seen his political career teetering on the abyss. He was in danger of being remembered as the Democrat who thought American servicemen and women were monsters equal to Hitler’s SS or Stalin’s NKVD. He may still be so remembered, for even with the tears and the choking sobs he never actually took back what he said.

The Durbin affair is yet another example of how the times they are a-changin’ for the mainstream media. Dan Rather and the Swift Vets are others that come to mind. The MSM are no longer gatekeepers or agenda setters. Their attempts to blackout a story that doesn’t fit their template or rise to their level of interest no longer work. Increasingly, the American public is learning that it can go around the ossified hulk of the MSM to get to lively, often better informed, news and commentary.

What he said. (Bow to LaShawn Barber)


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