From the October 2001 Idaho Observer:
It is a Savage world -- just ask him
You are either for the Taliban or you are for America. There are no gray areas anymore, said radio talk show host Michael Savage September 30.
He then went on to demonize those he characterized as peaceniks because they feel that there are a few gray areas left to be colored black or white and do not necessarily trust that our government can claim the high moral ground in the wake of the WTC bombing.
In obvious support for what may well become WWIII, Savage explained to his audience what type of murderous, intolerant animals these Afghani/Taliban terrorists really are. He described video footage wherein men who were alleged to be Taliban officers had beaten a man so badly and was so bloody that you could not tell whether or not he was wearing clothes. When the man would pass out, Savage explained, they would throw salt on him so that he would regain consciousness in screaming agony. He believes that all those peaceniks should see this video and see how barbaric the most intolerant people on the face of the earth really are.
As a journalist, I was shocked that a man with such a large listening audience could be so irresponsible in his portrayal of an entire culture of people in an attempt to justify having tactical nuclear weapons dropped on their country.
Then I thought about justice. We have no idea what this man did to deserve the treatment Savage described. Regardless, our own military history is replete with incidents where captured military adversaries are tortured as sadistically as Savage's example. The stories of WWII and Viet Nam vets, some published, some a matter of public record and some just told to friends and family, prove this point. War is hell. It is kill or be killed. Military forces haven't the luxury of compassion for their adversaries.
Sure, we can claim that we are more civilized because our cultural mores do not allow us to publicly brutalize our own people so barbarically (The IO has, however, reported more than one incident wherein people have been beaten to death by government employees).
In the last seven years I have witnessed and participated in hundreds of courtroom proceedings all over the western U.S. I have written the stories of dozens of innocent people who have been tortured psychologically and, after years of relentless persecution, are executed in one metaphoric way or another or finally take their own lives. To date, mainstream journalists such as Savage prefer to look the other way so that kleptocrats in pin-striped fatigues, penny loafer combat boots and $50 haircuts, armed with laws, rules, regulations and their shiny canons of conduct, can steal the property, the business, the children and/or the freedom of hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned (and often innocent) people on the courtroom battlefields found in every city, county and state of America.
You tell me, is it more humane to torture an adversary, or a countrymen for awhile and then let him die after a few hours of physical pain or is it more humane to throw an innocent person into the court system where he can spend 10 years of his life and his life savings defending himself only to lose everything to corruption in the end when he finally reaches bankruptcy and/or ultimately takes his own life?
It seems that life is not so black and white and that Savage intentionally typecast the Afghani people to justify killing them.
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