The politicization of policy differences has been a fact of life in Washington since the Watergate era, but in the past one could reasonably expect that such political warfare would end when a new administration commenced. Investigatory panels, such as the "Commission of Inquiry" called for by Sen. Patrick Leahy, Vermont Democrat, would represent an unprecedented escalation of political warfare in the American system. Proponents of such tribunals exhibit a spirit of political retribution not seen since the end of the Civil War.
There is little doubt that the ultimate target of such investigations would be former President Bush, who some in the far left of the Democratic Party consider to be a war criminal deserving prosecution. Those who had previously advocated that Mr. Bush be impeached for his alleged crimes may consider this as a way to pursue their version of justice after the fact. But it would inject poison into the body politic that would take a generation to fade ....
There is no value in pursuing any of these tribunals, which would quickly take on the theatrical attributes of show trials. They would be a gift to America's enemies who have fought for years to delegitimize our conduct of the war on terrorism, and they represent a distinct danger to a polity already riven by deep distrust. Any "truth and reconciliation" commission would produce neither truth nor reconciliation. The desire to punish political leaders retroactively for policies that have already been reversed marks a new level of meanness in America's political journey.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Maybe Green Eagle can learn a thing or two from this Washington Times essay, "Say no to show trials":