The world collectively yawned when Momar Gaddafi was sodomized with a crude instrument in his last bloody moments. Egypt’s Hussein Tantawi has a military whose first major objective after the fall of Hosni Mubarak was to strip down female protestors, drag them by the hair, and stomp on their chests. North Korea runs modern-day gulags, and it’s somehow fodder for late night comics. By and large American liberals are tight lipped about the barbaric nature of the enemies we face around the globe, so it’s rather peculiar that the video apparently depicting U.S. Marines urinating on dead Taliban has got them talking.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations has put out a statement calling for those found guilty to have the book thrown at them:
“We trust that this disturbing incident will be promptly investigated in a transparent manner and that appropriate actions will be taken based on the results of that investigation. Any guilty parties must be punished to the full extent allowed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice and by relevant American laws.”
Missing from CAIR’s website is a condemnation of the tactics used by the Taliban, or the call for their members to be tried by an Islamic equivalent of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. The fact remains: The Uniformed Code of Mujahideen Justice doesn’t exist. In 2004, a judicial system also wasn’t set up by al-Qaeda in Iraq when they charred American civilians in Fallujah, hung them from a bridge, and danced around their desecrated remains.
Also missing from the current debate are calls for Secretary of Leon Panetta to step down, as was the demand de rigueur for Donald Rumsfeld when details surrounding Abu Ghraib came to light. Those looking for intellectual consistency from the left will not find it, but the broader point is not missed by fair-minded folks: the Uniform Code of Military Justice works. When American troops lose their military manner they are held accountable for their actions. Liberalism’s self-flagellation brigades don’t understand that, but most Americans do.
Lynndie England and those responsible for Abu Ghraib were court-martialed and convicted. For every rare instance where an Army Specialist violates the UCMJ, there are countless others who never deviate from the Seven Army Values: Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage. For the outlier Marines that falter, there are battalions defined by the Marine Corps Values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment.
American soldiers deployed overseas are facing an enemy that uses women and children as shields, hide in hospitals and mosques, and don’t wear a standard uniform. Terrorists take advantage of Rules of Engagement crafted more for scoring points with the United Nations cocktail circuit than winning a war and securing the peace. Then, the politically correct chattering class wrings its hands over the blow back they’re largely responsible for.
The last thing the Pentagon wants is this generation’s John Kerry testifying before Congress that American war fighters are “reminiscent of Genghis Khan.” The top brass will see to it that Uniform Code of Military Justice does its job, as it has for over half a century. Liberals attempt to put the entire military on trial in the court of public opinion every time they see an opening. Once again, it’s up to conservatives to provide the proper defense.