Sunday, November 06, 2005

Where there is smoke …


This morning it comes out that the persistent Bush Administration contention that Al Qaeda was working with Saddam Hussein's Iraq was based on statements elicited by torture. The NYT provides the story of how the tale was "offered" by a captured Al Qaeda operative. The excellent "emptywheel" at The Next Hurrah connects the dots to show how very probable it is that this "evidence" for something Bush and Cheney wanted to hear was extracted by torture.

So there it is -- the city on the hill has morphed, before our eyes into its guise of evil empire spewing poisons on the earth. My optimistic ancestors weep from their graves; what do I do?

In the teachings of historic Christianity, hope is not a feeling, but a virtue, an orientation to the human experience to be cultivated as an expression of faithfulness to the knowledge of the goodness of God. Hope at this time of shame and horror is also a necessary civic virtue, an orientation faithful to the vision of a society where justice, not capricious human greed, prevails. Lots of work to do.

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