White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer chimes in on the latest Cheney-Obama dustup:
Second, the former Vice President makes the clearly untrue claim that the President — who is this nation’s commander in chief — needs to realize we are at War. I don’t think anyone realizes this very hard reality more than President Obama. In his inaugural, the President said “our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred.”
Charming! The rabbit people on the left now agree with the rabbit people on the right that “we’re at war.” The only problem is that we’re not. We are being attacked by an international terrorist organization. They carried out one successful attack on our homeland nearly a decade ago that cost the lives of 3,000 people give or take. In the intervening years we have lost more than 100 times that many in traffic accidents, not to mention a far greater number of serious injuries. Nearly a hundred times that number have been killed by handguns. Shouldn’t we declare war on automobiles and handguns as long as we’re at it? From the time of the Decembrists until the October Revolution, Russia was constantly under attack by a host of anarchists, social revolutionaries, Bolsheviks and other assorted radical terrorists. They succeeded in assassinating Czar Alexander II and many other important government officials. Dynamite gained the nickname “Russian candy,” yet it never occurred to the Russians or the rest of the world, for that matter, that Russia was “at war” with these people. Anarchist terrorism was pervasive in Europe and the United States in the last decades of the 19th and the first decades of the 20th century. The terrorists succeeded in murdering French President Carnot in 1894, bombing the Greenwich Observatory in London in the same year, and assassinating President McKinley in 1901. They carried out lesser known indiscriminate bombings in theatres, marketplaces and a host of other venues, killing thousands in the process. It never occurred to any of the countries involved that they were “at war.”
Now we face a similar threat, and the rabbit people insist we are, in fact, “at war.” Indeed, they get red in the face and begin frothing at the mouth if anyone begs to differ with them. I, for one, beg to differ with them. One always finds these same zealots howling about “Liberty” and “Freedom.” They have no clue what those words really mean. War, in the United States and elsewhere, has always implied the suppression of Liberty and freedom. Our wars have commonly been accompanied by the suspension of habeus corpus, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press. In real wars those steps may become necessary because our survival is at stake. The battle against Al-Qaeda is not a war. These enemies do not threaten our survival except in the dreams of the most timorous of the rabbit people, and the surrender of our liberties that their phoney “war” implies really represents an abject surrender to our enemies in the name of perserving our security at all costs. The proper slogan for the rabbit people is not “Liberty or Death!” It is “Security for Me, and Damn the Rest!”
Cowards that they are at heart, they are quite willing to surrender every freedom our forefathers fought for if only the government will keep them safe. By destroying our Liberties, they concede victory to our enemies, lowering us to their level, all in the name of a false security. When a couple of former Gitmo prisoners turn up in the Al-Qaeda organization in Yemen, all we hear from them is loud shouts of “We told you so!” Forgotten are the words of William Blackstone, “Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” One commonly finds these heroes thumping their Bibles, but forgotten, too, is the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, in which God tells Abraham that He would have spared these entire cities for the sake of ten righteous men. Forgotten are the very reasons it even occurred to our Founding Fathers to object to arrest without due process of law.
It never occurs to the rabbit people as they chant their “war” mantra that any of the prisoners held for years now at Gitmo could actually be innocent. For them, they are all so many convicted terrorists. Tell me, what justifies them in coming to this conclusion? Have the prisoners at Gitmo ever been given the right to a fair and speedy trial? Have they even been allowed to stand before military tribunals? How is it that we have arrived at this absolute certainty that they are all terrorists? The process was certainly unheard of at the founding of our Republic. By what new miracle of jurisprudence have the rabbit people concluded that we “know” all the prisoners at Gitmo are guilty, and fuzzy-headed thinking about fair trials be damned?
The rabbit people always assume that they will be the ones sitting in the seat of judgment. It never occurs to them that the precedents they are setting now may well come back to haunt them, and the rest of us as well. Let the rabbit people recall some familiar but wise words: “What goes around comes around.”