RUSH: Dick in Concorde, North Carolina, you’re next, sir.
CALLER: I would like to know what your thoughts are about the Marines being charged with murder in Iraq.
RUSH: This is a difficult time for me on this. I’m torn. Four Marines are charged with murder, and four others are accused.
RUSH: I know it’s a charge; it’s not a decision, and I know that the charge against the Marines has been made by Marines, and hopefully for Marines, but here’s the thing that troubles me about this. For heaven’s sake, we’re involved in urban warfare, and we were told before this war started that it was going to be this way, and we’ve had this kind of urban warfare before. We have got our enemy posing as women and children. We have the enemy killing us dressed up as women and children.
RUSH: They don’t wear uniforms. They’re cowards. They hide out in their mosques and so forth, and I think charging these Marines with murder in the midst of a war, if we’re not fine-tuning something that can’t be fine-tuned. It’s asking for a degree of precision that is going to lead to restraint, and it’s going to lead to erring on the side of mistakes and caution. I’m really troubled. I’m glad you called, because I was hoping to talk about this a little today. I don’t know if we’re playing Pavlovian experiments, where dogs get rewarded for good behavior, punished for bad behavior, but the difference between good and bad in a conflict like this is so indistinguishable that we put people in these circumstances. Their lives are threatened. They know that the enemy tricks them. They know that the enemy is disguised as children, as women, and they’re now just supposed to sit around and be sitting ducks. What’s that going to cause them to do?
CALLER: They’re not like police officers. They’re at war, and I think this helps our enemies.
RUSH: Oh, there’s no question. I’m going to tell you where I think the root of this is, to be quite honest with you. I know this is not the Marines, but I think that the over-hyping of what happened at Abu Ghraib and at Club Gitmo has so harmed the mission and our image and our long struggle in the Middle East — and that was done on purpose by the people who wanted us to be harmed by Abu Ghraib. We are in the midst of a war and we are fighting people who will stop at nothing, including blowing themselves up, claiming victory in the process, and that that’s what bugged me about this Abu Ghraib thing in the start. All that does is inhibit, and it creates an image of us, even in this country, that is not accurate and does not have any history precedence for accuracy. So I hate to see this. I know the Marines are doing this to Marines (sigh), but it still troubles me. It’s just another obstacle that we’re going to put in front of these people that wear the uniform. We’re sending them out there and telling them to win this, and then we punish them when they get involved in circumstances for which there probably isn’t a whole lot of training based on past experiences. So, I don’t know. It bothers me. That’s about the best I can say.
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