The Corner

Fdr Vs. Gwb

Does anyone doubt that more “atrocities” and atrocities were committed during FDR’s prosection of World War II? Never mind the wholesale internment of the Japanese and how you think that compares to Abu Ghraib. It seems beyond doubt that there were summary executions, beatings, torture and generalized cruelty throughout the European and Pacific theaters. How much of this sort of thing was officially sanctioned and how much wasn’t would be interesting to know. If any of my military history guys want to shoot me some 411 on this I’d like to see it. But I find it pretty hard to believe that things didn’t get out of hand from time to time.

Anyway, I understand that the two wars are different in very practical senses. For example, we weren’t fighting a battle for many hearts and minds back then and there was no equivalent of al Jazeera. But if we’re talking about absolute morality, I’d like to know if any of the folks — like Senator Graham — who say that we’ve lost the high moral ground in the war on terror also think we lost the high moral ground in WWII when some GI shot a bunch of German prisoners or when the President of United States rounded-up 100,000 Japanese families?

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