This reminds me of the climax of “A Few Good Men.”
“Yeah, we waterboarded Khalid Sheikh Mohammed,” the former president told a business audience in Grand Rapids, Michigan. “I’d do it again to save lives.”
It occurs to me that you could substitute “killed’ for “waterboarded” and the rationale would be the same. He was a terrorist, not a soldier, and therefore not entitled to the protections of the Geneva Conventions, killing him could save lives, blah, blah, blah… I wonder if the argument about the rightness or wrongness of torture would seem any different if they had tortured him to death.
That’s hypothetical, but what isn’t is that you have a guy going around saying he committed what can reasonably be called a crime by the laws of our country. People have argued as to whether it was or it wasn’t, and we’re not going to settle that issue here, but it sure as heck seems like something that should be settled by a court once and for all. I’m sure being indicted would be a heck of an inconvenience for Bush and Cheney, but it would allow us to work out some important questions about war, terrorism, presidential powers, and evenhanded justice in the United States.