The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


March 25, 2009

Voices: Enemy combatants

Former Vice President Dick Cheney criticized President Obama’s inflexible determination to close “Gitmo” and disperse its prisoners to who-knows-where (perhaps to Oz amongst the munchkins).

“His Nibs, Mr. Gibbs,” trying to be cute, because they can’t marginalize Rush Limbaugh, said the opposition was “calling on another of the Republican cabal” (cabal — a secretly plotting junta).

Mr. Gibbs should know a “cabal” when he’s a part of one. According to the press, POTUS has forbidden the use of “enemy combatant” to describe those in “Gitmo” vowing in their own words to kill every American. Well, “enemy combatant — enemy combatant — enemy combatant” upon every one of them. Forbid that.

During the American war for independence, “Tories” who were American-born and took up arms against the Continental Army were called “enemy combatants.” During the American Civil War, Confederate-Americans who took up arms against the Union were called “enemy combatants” — and vice versa!

To quote Dennis Miller, “Good grief, they (Gitmo enemy combatants) call us the Great Satan (and kill us whenever they can) and we can’t even call them ‘enemy combatants?’” I’ll say it again and again, “enemy combatants,” and they should be treated as such.

Paul T. Butler


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