Skip navigation




    • ikabod
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 11:37 am
    • Permalink

    Zack, excellent again, and so timely too. Imagine todays CIA going after Al Queda. I think my position on this very clear, and is not at all liked by the current administration. No wait… Yep I’m sure of it.

    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 1:45 pm
    • Permalink

    Zack…you’re fantastic! …you really are one H-E “double hockey-sticks” of an artist too.

    That said, I always had to be the THRUSH agent when we played Man From U.N.C.L.E.

  1. Global politics and military actions are not “Cowboys and Indians” or “Cops and Robbers” or whatever you like to say.

    Al Queda is a terrorist group, they’re terrible and they don’t respect human life and they deserve to be called “bad guys”. If you can cite any example of American media or individuals making them out to be heroes, I’d love to see it, because I’m pretty sure it never happens.

    Now, I suppose in your mind that means that the CIA are beyond reproach in their position as THE GOOD GUYS, fighting Al Queda. And they should fight Al Queda, they are bad guys.

    But “good guys”, you know, should actually be good. They shouldn’t torture people. They shouldn’t break laws. They shouldn’t harm innocents. They shouldn’t act like complete and utter monsters just because “hey we don’t like the BAD GUYS”.

    It’s kind of awesome how worried you all are about the creeping fascist nazi subliminal hints of OBAMANATION and positioning yourself as freedom-loving patriots while at the same time blindly appealing to a brutal authority that dehumanizes people but One Cannot Question It because the Perfect Government Force is protecting you from the savages.

    • Mark
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 2:55 pm
    • Permalink


    Of course, every organization needs to be perfect and employ perfect individuals before it can be defended in any shape or form.

    Guess I need a dose of ‘reality’, huh?

    What nonsense.

  2. What are you defending the CIA against, Mark? Its members being subject to laws?

  3. Maybe I wasn’t clear with my previous post.

    This cartoon has a childish and flawed premise:

    That people think the CIA is the “bad guy” because people believe that the CIA should not commit crimes.

    That by investigating crimes committed by individuals who are part of the CIA, they are casting the entire organization as “the bad guy”.

    And that if the CIA is “the bad guy” (which no one is saying) then conversely that al Queda somehow becomes “the good guy” in this demented scenario.

    This is something that literally nobody believes. It’s an easy way to convince yourself that torturing people is okay, and to demonize the Left as “palling around with terrorists” or whatever, but it’s completely insane.

    If my house is on fire, and the firefighters show up and stop the flame but on the way out shoot me in the stomach for waking them up, I would condemn the firefighter that shot me, because shooting me is a crime.

    That doesn’t mean that I disagree with the notion that firefighters should exist, they have a noble goal just like the CIA, but that doesn’t give them carte blanche to commit criminal acts.

    It also, it should be noted, does not make me think fire is a good guy.

  4. Chris E.: When you condemn the CIA for such “tortures” as blowing smoke in peoples’ faces or waterboarding, you are giving al Qaeda de facto “victim” status and betraying that you “feel bad” for them because of what has been done to them. Like it or not, your stance does in fact encourage them to be viewed with some degree of sympathy.

    Also: the very public nature of an Eric Holder going after the CIA for their “crimes” will definitely encourage some small children (like Jayson) to misconstrue them (the CIA) as Bad Guys. In general on the left there is far more visceral, heartfelt hostility toward American forces (e.g. Bush, the CIA) than toward Islamoterrorism or Mideast-based terrorism of all stripes; I recall the hatred and disgust heaped on Saddam Hussein to have been virtually nil on the left– especially when contrasted with the unending years of nonstop, visceral hatred and disgust heaped on George W. Bush. A child growing up in a household like the Lanes’ would unquestionably believe– via osmosis– that Bush was an incalculably greater evil than Saddam. Likewise he might– via the family vibe, the leftist news sources they tune to, etc.– easily these days misconstrue the CIA to be the great enemy of the day, as opposed to the foes they are attempting to interrogate in order to keep our country safe. That’s simply the leftist zeitgeist currently: “that cruel, criminal CIA”– rather than “that cruel, horrific al Qaeda.” Parallelling the Bush years, I hear next to zero public expressions of horror on the left regarding al Qaeda, especially when compared to the left’s public reviling of the CIA nowadays. As with so much on that side of the political spectrum, it is all extremely faddish, extremely fashionable, with disgust at the “crimes” of the CIA being a kind of “excoriation du jour.”

    • Melek
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 5:24 pm
    • Permalink

    Outstanding Zack!!

    A perfect depiction of the constant fikle progressive world!!

    This brings to mind the John Adams Project and GITMO … & those who constantly try to weaken us from within … behind the smokescreen of “morality”!

    The defense counsel for some Guantanamo Bay detainees is getting help from the John Adams Project, a combined effort of the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Defense lawyers have John Adams Project researchers taking photos of CIA covert operatives. These lawyers have already shown these photos to their clients in Guantanamo Bay and are now seeking the legal right to release the photos to the public.

    A spy ‘outing’ game for real:

    I wish you well 🙂 Melek

    “Pity for the guilty is treason to the innocent.” ~ Ayn Rand

    • Manuel Calavera
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 7:19 pm
    • Permalink

    so are you saying waterboarding isn’t torture Zack?

  5. You see, what I mean about Zack’s illustrations. You see when they say, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Zack had to explain to Chris E. exactly what his illustration stood for and there’s room for even more.

    Here Chris E., another example:

    This is the Human Rights Report (2008) from the white house. Now, tell me who is the bad guy here. Well, from what I see the media never mentioned anything about this and actually praise the Castro regime. Not to mention, you have representatives of our congress going over there and siting down and having Mojitos with one of the worse and most murderous dictator that ever existed. American movie stars, producers and directors are traveling to Cuba and parading around with this regime. But they are not the bad guys, you see Chris E.?? This is happening in Cuba where Guantanamo Base is located and not a word is mentioned about it. Not a word is mentioned of the Human Rights abuses that occur on a daily basis there. Does this have anything to do with the embargo??
    This is just another example of what Zack’s illustration is all about.

    By the way, I saw today on CNN, they were reporting LIVE on the hijack of a Mexicana Airline commercial jet. The CNN anchor asked a reporter on the scene this question: “Tell me, these hijackers, tell me, are they the middle eastern type of terrorist, or tell me, what BRAND of terrorists are they?

    Wow! I didn’t know that terrorist came in different brands.

    Terrorist are murderers, simple as that. Just like Fidel Castro’s regime is a murderous and terrorist regime. Yet, the Liberal-Leftist Main Stream Media of America make them to be some kind of gods. This is what Zack is trying get across.

    Yet, you Chris E., take time off to “defend” the stance of your Obama administration. With all these little details and corrections. Come on man, it’s the double standards that we are talking about here and you know very well!

  6. Manuel: I’m saying a) Whether waterboarding is or is not “torture” is obviously a matter of opinion. To me, no, it is not. And, b) Whether it is or is not “torture” according to disparate opinions, I am all for it. It has been successful in obtaining important, lifesaving information from pitiless human monsters and I could care less whether they or their defenders on the left are upset by it. I am upset when innocents are slaughtered, not when sadists, murderers and would-be murderers are discomforted.

    P.S. This line of thinking is what is known as “normal.”

  7. Jose: Maybe we can cobble together a ticket for Chris E. so that he can spend some teachable time in Cuba– kind of get a real taste of a full-blown Leftist government. How long do you think he’d have to live there to “get” our point? I’d wager it would take less than a week before he’d be ready to escape– on a home-made raft if necessary, as so many others have attempted in desperation…

  8. He doesn’t have to even pay. All he has to do is join one of these organizations:

    Those are the violent ones, here are the friendly ones:

    Manuel can go there to, there’s no waterboarding there. That only occurs where the the CIA is involved. Useful Idiots!

    • Mark
    • Posted September 9, 2009 at 10:15 pm
    • Permalink

    Chris E,

    Your criticism here is invalid just like most of your others are invalid or trivial. You bring out the same old rant every time – “that’s not like reality!” and think that is a brilliant observation. No, it isn’t – it’s tedious and childish; cartoons routinely exaggerate to make a point. That’s why they’re called cartoons. Duh.

    You didn’t address my point, Chris, you ignored it. My point is that your standards are not consistent – you just move them to wherever is convenient for you. That’s why you’re a troll – it is impossible to pin you down to anything, you just exist here to disagree no matter what.

    The difference between the CIA and al Queda should be obvious. Your next post should contain this little exercise – write a short mission statement for both organizations. Then write a list of every perfect organization on the planet. (I can only wonder if you are willing to apply your insightful observation that “its members be subject to laws” to an entity like ACORN. Watch those double standards/goalposts move again… If only you were as consistent with your logic the way you claim to apply the rule of law.)

    (I just felt like laughing)

  9. Believe it or not, I understand the way cartoons work. There’s a difference between exaggeration and falsehood. Maybe it is because I am not looking at everything through the eyes of a child that I can discern the difference. I have no idea how I am being cast as the person with the simplistic or hypocritical beliefs here.

    Al Queda is a criminal organization. To say that their actions are illegal and deplorable is redundant.

    The CIA is not a criminal organization. It is a law enforcement agency and it has rules and codes it enforces, but also (as a lawful organization) rules and codes it abides by. When those rules are broken, they don’t get a free pass to say “oh but we’re a lawful government agency, when we do it it’s legal.”

    To use your ACORN example, guess what: when rules were broken, they reported that the rules were broken. I assume you’re talking about the improper/faked voter registrations.

    Employees of ACORN put together fake voter registrations. ACORN caught this, fired those responsible, and reported it to the FEC. BY LAW they were required to submit their full voter rolls. The fake registrants were not accepted by the FEC. Sounds to me like ACORN is a great example of a lawful organization operating under the rule of law.

    The CIA could also be a lawful organization operating under the rule of law. It could actually give people some sort of formal trial so we know that the “bad guys” they have detained are actually al Queda agents. Then they could operate as a lawful organization and treat these convicted criminals in a lawful way. This sounds like a pretty awesome idea, and a reasonable expectation.

    I have no desire to live in Cuba and have absolutely no idea what that has to do with a desire for my government to behave in a lawful manner.

    I would also love to hear the valuable information we’ve received through waterboarding and other torture techniques. Episodes of 24 do not count.

    • Mark
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 12:08 am
    • Permalink


    I have no idea what universe you live on. Fighting al Queda is not like nabbing common criminals where investigators can, for example, publicize potential suspects of a bank robbery with photos in the newspaper and run interviews with the investigating officers. I don’t really have an opinion on whether the CIA acted improperly or not, but painting them as the ‘bad guys’ is not a good idea if they are the main ones standing between you and some lunatics who just want to kill you and/or your loved ones.

    You may consider it “redundant” to describe al Queda as criminal, but people have short memories. It’s your safety at stake, don’t you get that?

    FYI, haven’t watched ’24’ in about 5 years. And I really do doubt your capacity to understand political cartoons. Read back through the threads here of people who ‘get it’ in regards to any number of Zack’s cartoons. But who’s voice is it that cries ‘That’s not reality!’? Good ole Chris. Same old. The simplest explanation is that it is your problem. I have a hunch you will be bleating the same tedious message regardless of what Zack creates.

  10. I am fully aware of the difference between “nabbing common criminals” and “fighting terror”. One is tougher than the other, but we should be able to have people in both positions that can perform their tasks within the bounds of the law.

    No one is painting the CIA as a group as “THE BAD GUYS”, but if we don’t hold “THE GOOD GUYS” to a higher standard than “THE BAD GUYS” what exactly makes them “THE GOOD GUYS”? It devolves into tit-for-tat barbarism at some point.

    Let me kick down a little thing to you that our founding fathers kicked down to me:

    “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

    • z
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 12:46 am
    • Permalink

    Okay, it’s official. I want to CHOKE THOSE PARENTS!

  11. Melek: It’s a dark day indeed for America when the ACLU joins forces with another “do-gooder” clan to help further undermine America. Thanks for this highly disturbing but most important info.

    Z: Some days I wish I’d never invented them at all…

    Mark: I prefer to imagine that Chris is drinking before he writes these things. It makes his worldview somehow more comprehensible to me.

    • Manuel Calavera
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 9:44 am
    • Permalink

    How’s that 80-90 hours of research goin Chris?

    But anyways, back to my question since you guys aren’t actually reading what Chris is saying (protip, he is right.) On your waterboarding opinion… yes it is torture. Ask Mr. McCain how water can be used as torture, or any POW still alive from Korea or WWII. Or any pundit who has volunteered to be waterboarded for that matter. It’s not a matter of opinion when empirical data points one way or the other, in this case, that yes it is torture. Psychological torture, anyone?

    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 2:20 pm
    • Permalink

    Chris…You bet it has…YOU BET what you call “torture” has absofreaking worked.

  12. Chris E, you know that comment about beating kids was asinine in the extreme. It’s garbage like that which loses you all credibility here. It is clear that the enhanced interrogation techniques did indeed work. Go look it up, since you aren’t going to take my word for it. Until the dude who planned 9/11 was water-boarded (something I am OK with) we got squat out of him. After he had been water boarded etc, he was a gold mine of information.

    Sadly we’re back to the 9/10/01 mindset in regards to terror and we’re going to pay a hefty price for it.

    • ikabod
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 4:40 pm
    • Permalink

    I guess the importance of finding these individuals such as Al Queda, and actually stopping them from causing harm to Americans, depends on how far one is willing to go. Would you consider beheading as torture? Is gathering information so easy that we have forgotten to just say pretty please? Information extraction sometimes takes a little more effort and discomfort than simply asking the person what they know. As for giving up information as a result of torture, I have no idea, as to these numbers of “successful torture sessions”. Yet perhaps we should look at the overall effectiveness of what ever their doing seems to be work. Now if the cost of no further Terrorist action from organizations like Al Queda, and was a direct result of this torture. I’M pretty cool with that. Does torture lower us to the level of the terrorist? I could care less. I want their next attack stopped. I also want them found and killed. Again I’m asking those who feel that torture is a worthless process of gathering intel. Can you smart-then-the-rest-of-us, tell us of some alternatives. I know you have them like:
    Once you get that warrant, and serve them in the mountainous regions of Pakistan. I’m sure your “negotiations for information discovery” will include the following:
    1. Ask them again.
    2. Ask them again.
    3. Take them out to dinner.
    4. Ask them again.
    5. (add your non-torture process here)

    Since this is all about torture, where or rather are you guys when Cuba, North Korea, Iran, Saddam did far more torture? Is it because you had no way of bringing them to trail, or even filing suit? I guess its nice to select your battles. To bad the folks that could have used your advocacy, your demonstrations, complaints to the UN, are more than likely dead. But you should them! I’m sure your example of going after the CIA will really teach our enemies a thing or too! Better not mess with the US….. Your libel to get….. well….. taken out to dinner!
    “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” This statement would apply to citizens of the US. Again the problem here is the fact that terrorist know the law, OUR laws. They also know they have a willing and able supply of so-called civil rights lawyers at their disposal: Such as Lynne Stewart.

  13. I think “how far one is willing to go” is a great question. It’s clear you guys are fine with torturing suspected terrorists. Why stop there? Why not torture suspected criminals? Why not just summarily execute suspicious people? Hell, we could bomb “rogue nations” into smoking craters to ensure that America is never harmed by North Korea and Iran, because a smoking hole could never harm America. If all that matters is our safety, then our governent could do a hell of a lot more to ensure safety.

    Our government could also do a lot more to ensure people don’t die of treatable diseases or starve, but I realize you see that as treasonous socialism.

    I understand that neither of us are CIA agents, but you do realize that the CIA already has an interrogation manual that goes way beyond “Asking them nicely.” You can look them up. I don’t know why the concept of “following rules” is such an anathema to you. Perhaps you’re worried you’ll get tortured if we enforce laws?

    There’s also an obvious reason why people speak out more about the American government breaking the law as opposed to when “rogue nations” do it. They are ROGUE NATIONS. The international community denounces them, harsh economic sanctions are laid down, sometimes we go in and topple their regimes.

    Everyone here agrees that these “rogue states” are terrible places to live and their governments should not be in power. Are you saying you’re content to let America keep them company?

    And I have no idea the point you’re making in your last paragraph. Yes, that statement applies to citizens of the United States. Because you apparently would have no problem with your country torturing people and becoming a rogue nation, that’s some pretty essential liberty you’re willing to fork over in exchange for feeling safer at night, because there hasn’t been a massive terrorist attack on our shores for nearly a decade, something that coincided with us deciding to start torturing people. Again, if the problem is that people “know the law”, why don’t we torture everyone suspected of crime? I’m sure that your average murder suspect knows the law too. Let’s torture them til they confess!

  14. Chris E. We have solid proof that Iran is supplying weapons and training to the terrorists in Iraq that resulted in the deaths of US troops. And it wasn’t even on Fox News. had the information as did if I remember correctly. And Iran is a huge threat to us and to Israel so I would be fine with us destroying their Nuclear facilities and their terror camps and their army bases and their naval bases and their munitions factories. And North Korea is a threat to us, Japan, S. Korea, China and every other country in that region. But if you like Kim Jong Il that much, go visit that worker’s paradise and get back to us… if you can.

    And there is a difference between a criminal and a terrorist. My goodness you do know that don’t you?

  15. vegas art guy:

    Yep, North Korea and Iran are rogue states. They’re bad. We both agree they’re bad. The only difference of opinion here is that you want America to be more like them.

  16. I’m curious to know what you consider the difference between terrorists and criminals are. I mean, I know what differentiates them in my mind, but I’d be very curious to know what your differentials are.

    • Melek
    • Posted September 10, 2009 at 10:12 pm
    • Permalink

    I thought that for torture to be torture, some part of permanent injury has to be involved.

    I understand that terrorists,(BTW, who induce terror via death & destruction)who were waterboarded were ironically terrorized by the “illusion” that they would meet the same fate of their victims. However, at the end of the day, although humiliated, they were uninjured and safe. More importantly, innocent lives were saved!!

    I wish you well 🙂 Melek

    “Pity for the guilty is treason to the innocent.” ~ Ayn Rand

  17. Simple a criminal is the guy who steals your car, robs the bank, defrauds your mom and basically breaks the law with no political motive.

    A terrorist has a set political agenda that they wish to enact through the use of violence and terror against a civilian population because they do not have the military capability to make the changes through pure military force. Most often terrorists are zealots who firmly believe that the ends always justify the means and that when innocents die, it’s simply the price to be paid.

    Criminals come in all shades from petty to Charles Manson and the justice system is there to deal with them.

    Terrorists are political psychopaths that cannot be reasoned with and must simply be eradicated. They do not fall under the Geneva Conventions because they do not fight under a national flag. Because they are a multinational threat, our justice system is not set up to deal with them, but the CIA and military are. They do not have nor do they deserve the same rights as common criminals because they are not criminals although their actions are criminal.

    Now I have to get back to lesson planning.

  18. Again, Melek, explains it right. If it’s called torture then it must feel like torture.
    So Chris E. how would you have tortured this SCUM? Now remember, you need to get information from him, how would you do it then?
    And don’t switch back to the Zack’s Illustration. Just answer this simple question, treat it as a separate issue, like you have been doing all along.
    How would you get information from this Murderer?

    What technique would you use to break this Killer?
    Remember, this is an individual who would shoot you in the head with no remorse, with pleasure and he would probably cut your head off afterwords and dump it in a public street where everyone would see it.
    Oh, by the way, he would film the whole thing and place it on YouTube!
    Tell me Chris E. how would you handle the interrogation?

  19. Melek: your definition of torture is one that is popular with people who defend torture, but in the real world, torture is not restricted to permanently maiming/killing someone.

    The United Nations Convention Against Torture, which the US signed in 1988:

    “any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him, or a third person, information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person,”

    The Geneva Convention, signed by the United States in 1949:

    “The treaty also states that there must not be any “violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture” or “outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment”.”

    You’ll be glad to know that America refused to sign the Rome Statute in 2002, which puts us in the lofty company of Iran and other “rogue states”.

    As for your further point, the concept that “they were uninjured and safe” is called into question considering that around one hundred prisoners have died in custody since we began this brave new War on Terror. Some of them have been judged to have committed suicide, while others did not. This is only among the officially reported detainees, and I am not referring to these people as terrorists because for whatever reason we are not taking these proven-to-be-dangerous people and, you know, proving that they’re dangerous in any sort of legal setting.

    And again, can anyone provide any actual example of torture ‘saving lives’? What information, obtained via torture, has prevented any sort of attack or loss of life?

  20. Cubanology:


    First off, if these people are such clearly reprehensible cartoon monsters, it should be easy to formally charge them with crimes and convict them of crimes, right? That’d be an important first step in determining whether they are murderous terrorist scum. Without that, I have to question why we’re so certain that they have information in the first place.

    Secondly, I am not a CIA interrogator, but I would probably use the CIA Interrogation Manual. It’s the result of a lot of research and consideration and is proven to actually coerce people to give up valuable information, as opposed to torturing people, which doesn’t actually work in pretty much any recorded instance ever, which is possibly why people weren’t using it, on top of the fact that it’s morally reprehensible .

    But I realize that the “morally reprehensible” thing doesn’t mean anything to you guys, so let’s focus on the “actually working” part. I am begging you guys, please provide a single piece of valuable information in THE WAR ON TERROR provided via torture.

    • Tyrone
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 5:46 am
    • Permalink

    ask any brotha if law enforcement are the good guys, bet u’ll get a different story then. but then u’d have to talk to a black man and i kno how scary we r to u

    • Melek
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 5:56 am
    • Permalink


    I was not attempting to “define” torture, I was expressing my opinion. Just like someone who supports a war does not imply that they are pro-war; someone who may believe that at times torture may be necessary and justifiable, is not pro-torture!!

    You asked: “Can anyone provide any actual example of torture ’saving lives’? What information, obtained via torture, has prevented any sort of attack or loss of life?”

    It may be difficult to give specific examples because most of this information was classified for obvious reasons. I can’t mention a specific instance, but I remember that terrorist plots had been stopped (a similar plane attack in Los Angeles?)as a result of the information obtained. Therefore, lives were saved!

    “As late as 2006, fully half of the government’s knowledge about the structure and activities of Al Qaeda came from those interrogations.” ~ Michael Hayden, Bush’s last CIA director, and former Attorney General Michael Mukasey
    Former National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell: “We have people walking around in this country that are alive today because this process happened.”
    Dennis Blair, Obama’s own national intelligence director, in an April 16, 2009 memo to his staff wrote that “high value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding” of Al Qaeda. Blair later qualified this by adding, “There is no way of knowing whether the same information could have been obtained through other means. But a REASONABLE (emphasis mine)person might imagine that it would take more than sweet talk, mind games, and lollipops to get hardened terrorists to sing.”

    Of course, it’s our prerogative to agree with the above statements or not …!

    Chris, BTW, thank you for the information on the number of prisoners who have died while under the US custody.

    I wish you well 🙂 Melek

    “Fighting terrorism is like being a goalkeeper. You can make a hundred brilliant saves but the only shot that people remember is the one that gets past you.” ~ P. WILKINSON

  21. Hey Zach,

    Why are all the other obvious trolls getting their posted deleted, but not Tyrone?

  22. Tyrone is a troll, but I find his ebonics shtick sort of amusing. Until I multiculturalize my series with a couple characters of color(coming soon!), he’ll just have to do.

    A troll is only a troll in my book if he’s vicious and /or obscene, without any worthwhile substance. Also, a funny troll is allowed in.

  23. You already have La Duanye, not to mention those black people shooting up and throwing grenades at the neighbors’ house…

    I guess I can see why you like “Tyrone” and his minstrel routine so much!

  24. I guess I am a little late on this one (I have to wait for lunch break), but I would like to add that a lot of people’s disgust with what Holder and Obama are doing has to do with a little double jeopardy for these agents. The investigation and its report have been out for at least a couple of years now and actions were taken by the CIA to discipline some of these agents. Further action can easily be construed as a political stunt to satisfy those on the far left.

    The torture debate can go round and round with no end, but there are things that should be taken into consideration. First, waterboarding is not something that was used on everyone. There were just a select few and it was done when other methods would not work. The tactic used depends on the person. A great example is how they broke Saddam, which was ingenious, but then again they had months with him. These other guys I imagine had more time sensitive information that they were withholding.

    Other arguments outside of the fact that terrorists are not protected under the Geneva conventions include the intent. Terrorists torture for ransom or to spread fear. The techniques we use are only used to protect the lives of our citizens.

    The techniques in the Army manual (Which Obama wants to limit the CIA to) only really work in most cases if the person already wants to co-operate. These are basically criminals that do not have a lot of information anyways and most of the time we would just buy them off and use them as informants if we needed information. These techniques would not work on hardened terrorists. I guess it is hard to imagine the hatred these terrorists have for everyone so it is hard to understand why these things must be done. I have never met one of these guys, but I have seen a few of the lower level ones and they still scared the bejesus out of me.

    I know someone pointed out the Iran connection to terrorists in Iraq and I do have first hand knowledge on that. 5 members of my unit were killed with an EFP made in Iran. We later took out the IED cell with help from an SF team and trailed it back to a religious leader in Najaf who was helping to push them in from Iran. For those concerned about the well being of the terrorists…dont fret, we did not have to use torture techniques to track them down. But a good question to all…would it have been worth it in order to stop the killing of American and Iraqi soldiers while we were preparing Iraqis to take over security? I am sure the parents of those saved would think so.

    On an off topic…ACORN was brought up. Everyone should read the following report from Committee on Oversight and Government Reform with regards to ACORN. Its a lot more than a few voter registration errors.

  25. Chris E., you do realize that the Geneva Conventions do not apply to terrorist because they do not fly a national flag nor do they fight for a specific country right?

  26. The Geneva Convention actually has a provision for non-state combatants, and even the Bush administration acknowledged that the detainees held in the War on Terror are included in this provision Common Article 3.

    Seriously, just admit you don’t think the United States should be bound by law. We’re not the first nation to be attacked by terrorists, and we won’t be the last, and there are commonly agreed on codes and laws to deal with terrorists. If we don’t even try to follow these rules, we’re basically accepting status as a Rogue State, albeit one too powerful and influential to get called on it.

  27. “In June 2006, the United States Supreme Court ruled in the case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that America’s armed conflict with al-Qaeda was non-international in character and, as such, was governed by CA3.”

    That is why Bush and his administration made the comments you refer to. It is because they did respect our checks and balances system. It was actually more in reference to the conditions at Guantanomo Bay though. But even with regards to these harsh interrogating techniques, CA3 is very vague in nature, which is why I stated before that this debate could go on forever. Chris E, your view of what is acceptabe will not be the same as someone else’s. We do follow these rules more so than any other state. You reference a couple of instances of waterboarding, which could not be prosecuted under CA3 because of the vagueness i mentioned before, is not by any means reason to say we are some rogue state. In the end you are missing the point about this administation unnecessarily trying to prosecute the CIA for something that has already been addressed. Zach can correct me if I am wrong, but that is what I got as the message of the cartoon.

  28. No need for me to correct a thing, Chris– you read my cartoon just as I intended it. Thanks for the extremely well-informed feedback and most courteous argument.

    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 6:22 pm
    • Permalink

    Oh Cris I totally do not think we should be bound by law if a group sick non citizen will attempt to use a nuke, bio-terror or fly a plane into a building…LET ME DO IT.

    • sad daniel
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 8:06 pm
    • Permalink

    important question

    what happens when the cia has someone in custody

    waterboards them or whatever

    and then it turns out that oops they were wrong, this is the wrong guy, this is someone who isn’t a terrorist after all?

    • sad daniel
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 8:10 pm
    • Permalink

    important question

    if a prisoner is telling you that he doesn’t know anything

    does that mean he’s lying and needs to be tortured? or does it mean he really doesn’t know anything? and how can you tell?

    and if you waterboard him and he starts talking about secret plans

    does that mean you’ve got the truth? or does it mean he’s just telling you what he thinks you want to hear so you’ll stop torturing him?

    and how can you tell?

    • sad daniel
    • Posted September 11, 2009 at 8:16 pm
    • Permalink

    important question

    does the cia ever make mistakes?

    does the wrong person ever get arrested/captured/whatever?

  29. Uhhhhh…ChrisE…

    Under the Geneva Conventions soldiers who fight out of uniform or commit atrocities ( murder prisoners or target and kill noncombatants ) may be sent before firing squads too…

    Let’s not go “there” mmmk?

    Or better yet, LET’S!

    • Mark
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 12:11 am
    • Permalink

    Chris E about ACORN:

    “Sounds to me like ACORN is a great example of a lawful organization operating under the rule of law.”

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Well, the last couple of days have made THAT statement look ridiculous, eh?

    • Anon
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 3:40 am
    • Permalink

    “a couple characters of color(coming soon!)”

    Oh good, more of your confused opinions on the evil brown people. What’re they going to be called? Uncle Tom, or Saddam bin Suicidebomber?

    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 4:54 am
    • Permalink

    To Marxists the truth always looks confusing.

  30. Sad Daniel – Why so sad? Legitimate questions, but it is important to know that we build significant packets on terrorists before we are even allowed to take them down. Some guys like the one I mentioned we took down in Najaf was on a no touch list (political reasons)for a couple of years until we finally had enough on him to take him off the list.

    The military / CIA do make mistakes, but usually not with these top tier guys. We already have certain information that we know is true. Based upon what we know, we can usually determine the truthfulness of the new information. It is the gathering of information from several people and putting the puzzle together. I am no interrogation expert, but this isn’t exactly rocket science if you think about it.

    And like I said before, the techniques used are determined by the person being interrogated. Different tactics for different people. It is not as simplistic as he’s not talking so lets waterboard him.

    Hope that answers your questions.

  31. SondraK: Could you cite the part that puts them up against firing squads? I don’t doubt it exists, but like most state-sponsored executions, I have to assume there are provisions for due process and habeas corpus, not just “yep, we get to kill people because we say so”.

    Mark: Yes, there are continuing investigations into the behavior of specific ACORN employees. The arrests in Florida were because of a specific tip provided by the ACORN organization regarding some employees breaking the law. In Baltimore, they fired two people for breaking the rules. It’s a shame these thirteen people were acting improperly, but I have no idea how this proves that ACORN as an organization doesn’t respect the law.

    Buzz: Ha ha, Marxists! Thanks for confirming you have nothing worthwhile to say.

  32. I don’t know Chris E., just how many times does ACORN need to be investigated before it’s clear they’re as dirty as three day old soiled diapers?


    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 3:12 pm
    • Permalink

    Chris E you just can’t stand the truth…you are either a Marxist or a tool…which are you?

    • Manuel Calavera
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 9:28 pm
    • Permalink

    How is he a Marxist Buzz? How is any “troll” here a Marxist?

    @vegas – individuals within the company do not make the company itself bad. The politician that sleeps around does not make the government bad, and the CEO stealing money does not inherently make the company as a whole bad.

    • Mark
    • Posted September 12, 2009 at 9:34 pm
    • Permalink

    Manuel, doesn’t the same logic applied to the CIA undermine the criticism of the original cartoon?

    But really, I think defending ACORN imperils credibility.

  33. Mark:

    Here is the logic being presented. ACORN has some employees that do wrong, and ACORN specifically points them out. They actively assist law enforcement officials in ferreting these people out and charging them with their crimes. This makes them a corrupt organization and THE BAD GUY in your eyes.

    In my eyes, it makes them an organization that plays by the rules and punishes people who do not.

    The CIA has employees that have done wrong — unambiguously, they have broken the rules. If you think the rules are wrong, that’s fine. If you think the CIA should stick together and the law be damned, that’s fine.

    In my view, some employees breaking the rules does not make the CIA a “bad guy”, but it makes some of their employees law breakers.

    But I guess most people here do not want morality or distinctions made that are more complex than those employed by children playing, so ACORN are THE BAD GUYS because someone associated with them are breaking the law.

    And the CIA is a group whose charter protects us, so they can never ever ever be anything but the GOOD GUYS, even though your simplistic mentality cannot rationalize them being anything but, assuming someone in their organization broke the law.

    After all, that’s why ACORN are THE BAD GUYS, right?

    • Buzz Bannister
    • Posted September 13, 2009 at 6:29 am
    • Permalink

    Either a Marxist or a tool.

  34. Buzz: I realize that you’re a repressed homosexual and are just name-calling to distract people from that. That’s no way to live. Don’t let small-minded people keep you from being you.

  35. Now someone else try to make a completely baseless assumption about another poster. It’s really quite easy!

  36. Again, how many times does ACORN need to be investigated/indicted before it becomes a corrupt organization?

    And that attempt to link the CIA and ACORN was weak at best.

  37. vegas: I think the test of whether or not an organization is corrupt is how it deals with people that break the rules.

    ACORN is a nationwide organization that works with many thousands of people. The fact that the right has latched onto them as a boogeyman and trumpets loudly when a couple — or I guess two couples in recent weeks — are fired and otherwise properly punished for wrongdoing — does not make them a corrupt organization.

    How often do you think Walmart has to fire an employee for stealing or otherwise breaking the rules? My guess is hundreds of times a year. Does that make Walmart a corrupt organization? There’s nothing in any of these ACORN scandals that reflect poorly on the management and and leadership of ACORN. If only the same could be said for the CIA.

    • ikabod
    • Posted September 13, 2009 at 7:43 pm
    • Permalink

    You look at ACORN as an otherwise “good” organization. The CIA on the other hand because it must do things like kill people in its pursuit of protecting the nation is looked upon as being a “bad” organization. Your making the distinction that Walmart can have some bad apples, they get fired, and all is good. You apply the same rules to ACORN. Liberals cannot give that pass to the CIA. As far as ACORN is concerned “by any means necessary” and “the ends justify the means.” If they are corrupt, its for the “good” of the poor and down trodden. The CIA is tasked with finding out what the bad guys are doing, and stopping them. Apparently they are on a lower moral ladder than the likes of ACORN? Let me know of ACORN folks putting their lives on the line for getting low income families Home loans they can’t afford. You know better than that Chris.

    • Manuel Calavera
    • Posted September 14, 2009 at 9:29 am
    • Permalink

    Chris never said that the CIA is a “bad” organization. There are bad individuals therein, but the organization as a whole is not “bad”. That’s what Chris has been saying, don’t put words in his mouth like that ikabod.

    • ikabod
    • Posted September 14, 2009 at 10:34 am
    • Permalink

    “There’s nothing in any of these ACORN scandals that reflect poorly on the management and and leadership of ACORN. If only the same could be said for the CIA.” Regardless of putting words into the mouth of Chris. The concept of applying the same leadership moralistic standards to ACORN yet not to the CIA is ridiculous. If your going to go after the CIA leadership for crimes of a “few bad apples”, I would assume the same would go for ACORN.

    ACORN Crimes: reflect on the individual?
    CIA Crimes: reflect on the organization as a whole?

    Pardon me for mis-characterizing Chris’ argument.

  38. Chris E. – Did you read the report that I linked to?

    If there were isolated instances of corruption, then maybe I could agree with you, but that is not the case. Problems with ACORN are systematic and have been documented for over a decade. There are way too many whistleblowers for all of them to be blowing smoke about the same organizational policies.

    What about the $1 million dollar embezzlement covered up by their leadership? What about the donor list given to them by the Obama campaign? Followed by over $800,000 contribution to the organization that was not properly disclosed? What about its corrupt founder? What about the foreclosure schemes by ACORN leadership? All of this illegal activity cannot be simply ignored, especially when they operate with taxpayer money. And especially since they will have a significant role in the next census.

    • Mark
    • Posted September 14, 2009 at 10:39 pm
    • Permalink

    The last few days of ACORN can be followed on:

    Oh yeah, “They actively assist law enforcement officials in ferreting these people out and charging them with their crimes.”

    You’re done, Chris E. Sorry, but any semblance of reason or credibility you think you have on the subject matter here is an illusion.

    • thesecolorsdontrun
    • Posted September 23, 2009 at 4:15 pm
    • Permalink


    If your statement regarding ACORN’s employees indicating that the entire organization is corrupt and a bunch of dirty pimps and hookers,

    Then doesn’t Sen. Larry Craig’s bathroom exploits make every member of the GOP a closeted dick sucker?

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: