21 Jun 05

Apology acceptedwe'll think about it. Maybe.

Well, after being badgered incessantly for a week straight by everyone with a shred of decency (and some without), Senator Durbin has apologized for his remarks comparing people like- oh, say, me- to genocidal tyrants.

Thanks. Thanks bunches. Can't tell ya how much that means to me. All that's left is to decide whether he really meant it. Or did somebody explain to him that he was committing political suicide faster that "Howlin' Mad" Dean, and that if he ever wants to be elected again, he should take it back?

Sen. Dick Durbin went to the Senate floor late Tuesday to offer his apologies to anyone who may have been offended by his comparison of treatment of detainees at the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Nazis, Soviet gulags and Cambodia's Pol Pot.

Uh... was anyone not offended?

"More than most people, a senator lives by his words ... occasionally words fail us, occasionally we will fail words," Durbin, D-Ill., said.

He "failed words". Does that even make sense?

"I am sorry if anything I said caused any offense or pain to those who have such bitter memories of the Holocaust, the greatest moral tragedy of our time. Nothing, nothing should ever be said to demean or diminish that moral tragedy.

"I am also sorry if anything I said cast a negative light on our fine men and women in the military ... I never ever intended any disrespect for them. Some may believe that my remarks crossed the line to them I extend my heartfelt apology," Durbin said, choking on his words.

Are Democrats even capable of dealing in absolutes? Everything isn't perceptions and feeeeeeeeeelings! I don't "believe" your remarks crossed the line, Senator. Your remarks were ludicrous and hateful. Period. You missed "the line" by a couple of light-years.

Durbin said in the course of his remarks on June 14, he raised "legitimate concerns" about U.S. policy toward prisoners and whether their treatment makes America safer.

"Legitimate concerns"? Like the following list of crap, which sure sounds like an interrogation-type atmosphere to me:

Durbin read from an FBI report that included descriptions of one case at Gitmo in which a detainee was held in such cold temperatures that he shivered, another in which a prisoner was held in heat passing 100 degrees, one in which prisoners were left in isolation so long they fouled themselves and one where a prisoner was chained to the floor and forced to listen to loud rap music.

Do you have a better, more terrorist-friendly method of dragging information out of them? Perhaps we could turn Gitmo into a tropical paradise, let them chill on the beach for the next 40 years, and hopefully when they're old and frail they'll feel guilty and offer up a deathbed revelation on where their friends are? Think that would work?

If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags or some mad regime — Pol Pot or others — that had no concern for human beings," Durbin said last week.

I'm sure the whole blogosphere is aware of what he said by now. But I haven't had a chance to weigh in, so- no, Senator. I wouldn't think it was the lackeys of a tyrannical dictator. I'd think it was any given penitentiary in America.

After the uproar that followed those remarks, Durbin clarified that he was not comparing U.S. soldiers to Pol Pot, Nazis or Soviet guards, but was "attributing this form of interrogation to repressive regimes such as those that I note."

Nice try. And I'm not calling Senator Durbin a horrible, despicable fool, all I'm saying is that anybody who would say the things he says is a horrible, despicable fool. I'm not making any comparisons here...

Durbin attempted to clarify his remarks last Thursday evening and then again Friday, saying that he regretted if people did not understand his historic analogies, and he suggested that he could not verify the accuracy of the FBI document.

No clarification required. Your meaning is crystal-clear.

"If this indeed occurred, it does not represent American values. It does not represent what our country stands for, it is not the sort of conduct we would ever condone ... and that is the point I was making. Now, sadly, we have a situation here where some in the right-wing media have said that I have been insulting men and women in uniform. Nothing could be further from truth," Durbin said.

The "Right-wing media"? Ooooooooooookay. Get this man a drug test, quick. And nobody in the media needs to say that you're insulting us... we have brains. All we need to do is hear what you said to know we're being insulted.

But on Tuesday, he left little room for second-guessing whether he realized his error.

"After reading the horrible details in that memo which characterized the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo, I then, on my own, my own words, made some characterizations about that memo ... I have come to understand that was a very poor choice of words," he said.

"I meant to say you were just like Saddam!"

Under Pol Pot's regime, 1.5 million died in death camps and another 200,000 so-called "enemies of the state" were executed. The Nazis killed 6 million Jews and forced hundreds of thousands into slave labor. The USSR's Joseph Stalin sent 25 million people to labor camps where many were worked to death.

And we're about to reveal how many millions of poor, downtrodden political prisoners have been starved to death or gassed at Gitmo...

While more than 1,700 U.S. soldiers have died helping to liberate Iraq first from Saddam Hussein and then from a deadly insurgency, no detainees at Guantanamo Bay have died in custody.

Oh! None! Not one friggin' terrorist!

"...but that can't be right! Those soldiers- whom I cherish dearly, of course- are all acting like the SS! There must be at least a couple mass graves by now!"

Durbin pledged to "continue to speak out on the issues that I think are important to the people of Illinois and the nation," but added that he did not mean to diminish the image of the United States in the world.

"I don't want anything in my public career to detract from my love for this country, my respect for those who serve it and this great Senate. I offer my apologies to those who were offended," he said.

Trust has to be regained. You gotta show me. Otherwise- sorry, don't believe ya.

Immediately after his remarks, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said he thought Durbin made a "heartfelt statement" and he was satisfied with the apology.

"He did the right thing, the courageous thing and I think we can put the situation behind us," McCain said.

And we'll give the last word to the King of Rhinos. Er, RINOs.

UPDATE: Scrappleface has what Durbin meant to say.

Michelle Malkin has more.

Army NCO Guy decided you should know this at 1717 | TrackBack
Loyal Readers™ have spoken up!

Typical political non-apology. He's sorry if people were offended, but he's not sorry he said it.

CD decided we should know this on 21 Jun 05 at 2303

Exactly. "I'm sorry everybody misunderstood what I said" just doesn't hold the weight that "I'm sorry I said something tasteless and vile" does.

Army NCO Guy decided we should know this on 22 Jun 05 at 0952

Er, carry the weight. I'm a little slow this morning...

Army NCO Guy decided we should know this on 22 Jun 05 at 0953

Again he did not apologize. Again he said the fault lies with dumb Americans that do not understand how bad America is.
Had he said "Gitmo never has been and is not anything like the camps run by the Socialist Labor Party."; that would be an apology.

Rod Stanton decided we should know this on 22 Jun 05 at 1233

Hooray! I got trackback spam! That means I'm on my way to the Big Time™!

Army NCO Guy decided we should know this on 25 Jul 05 at 0749
Speak up, you!

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