Three things this morning that make us go hmmmm.
Former Inquirer reporter Mark Bowden writes about the endurance of torture in an op-ed piece for The Wall Street Journal. Bowden, author of Black Hawk Down, wrote a 2003 cover piece about the dark art of interrogation for The Atlantic Monthly, where he is a national correspondent. He begins with a fresh episode from Commander in Chief, where the president, played by Geena Davis, become outraged when a security adviser misunderstands her, and orders the torture of a terror suspect who'd targeted elementary schools. "There is always another way to get information," the prez says.
Bowden writes: "Would that it were true. We like problems to have easy solutions in America, just as we like stories to have neat, happy endings. The show illustrated to me some of the wishful thinking, mythmaking and confusion that surround the difficult issues of torture, coercion and prisoner abuse, which our nation seems incapable of thinking about coherently."
Chase, cut to: "Abu Ghraib has hurt the American mission in Iraq more than any insurgent bombing or beheading. So it is terribly important that we not accept mistreatment as inevitable, and we should do everything in our power as a nation to make sure that those who break the rules are appropriately disciplined. Congress ought to pass Sen. McCain's provision and the president ought to make a great public show out of signing it. But we also need to realize that prisoner abuse, like collateral damage in a bombing campaign, is one of those things that will happen whenever the country--any country--goes to war. "
New York Times reporter David Carr is disturbed by Gawker's scorched-earth coverage of Peter Braunstein, the New York writer accused of setting fires outside a woman's apartment, impersonating a fireman, then sexually assaulting her for 13 hours. The blogs needs to keep pushing the envelope, he says, but sexual assault just isn't funny. Gawker has run polls over the suspect's whereabouts, mused about his nose and hair, and named the woman the former Women's Wear Daily and Village Voice writer was convicted of stalking.
The secret formula of Star Wars movies? It can now be revealed. Yes, there is a pattern to the introduction of certain elements in the films. All WeirdHat needed to do to find it was watch all six simultaneously! For a glimpse of what he's seen, click here.