Dallas News Says It All
So, So Sorry: Regrets, we have a few about Sen. Durbin
Dick Durbin is sorry.
He says he's sorry that his ill-advised words comparing U.S. military interrogators to the most tyrannical regimes of the 20th century have been twisted to make it sound as if he doesn't support our troops, which he really, really does.
He says he's sorry the right-wing media left out his exquisitely parsed context, leaving him looking like some kind of Howard Dean knockoff.
He should be sorry that Al Jazeera turned his comments into a news story that had him "comparing the actions of U.S. soldiers at Guantánamo Bay to those of Nazis, Soviet gulags and a 'mad regime' like Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge in Cambodia."
Hey, we're sorry, too.
We're sorry that anything else Mr. Durbin might say about allegations of torture at Guantánamo Bay simply cannot be believed, thanks to his way-over-the-top screed.
We're sorry that in his haste to score political points against the Bush administration, he chose to squander his credibility by linking U.S. troops to despots who killed millions of innocent people.
We're sorry that at this key moment in the war on terror, when democracy demands a full and open debate on all U.S. policies and tactics, he so devalued his own voice and potential contributions.
We're sorry that Mr. Durbin woke up this morning still the Senate's assistant minority leader – the second-ranked Democrat – and that it apparently hasn't occurred to fellow Democrats that he should step down from the leadership.
This afternoon's statement was more of the same. Durbin still did not say the Nazi-Gulag-Pol Pot axis compares in no way with what U.S. troops do. He never said that he was flat-out wrong. He never said, "To you soldiers stationed at Guantanamo, I apologize for attacking your integrity."
And because he hasn't done any of that, Democratic leadership is standing by him.