politics, history and the war on terror
Thursday, May 06, 2004
The Lost Art of the Apology 

Chris Strohm of The New Republic rates the apologies for Abu Ghraib by military and civilian leadership. But before he judges the worthiness of the apologies, he states President Bush just can't bring himself to say I'm sorry like the good old presidents of yesteryear:

"President Bush and members of his administration have apparently decided to stop apologizing for anything at all."

Can someone explain the media's requirement of constant apologies from the President of the United States? Should he apologize for 9/11, lost jobs, the Northeast Blackout of 2003, Abu Ghraib, and my leaky faucet? When did the job of President transform into Apologist in Chief? The media's obsession with apologies from the Bush administration has reached a fevered state. What exactly is wrong with the statement President Bush made in response to questions about the abuse from Al Arabiya?

QUESTION: Mr. President, thank you for giving us this chance here in Al Arabiya. Regarding the alleged abuse of Iraqi prisoners, six U.S. soldiers are being reprimanded. Do you think that's enough?

BUSH: First, I want to tell the people of the Middle East that the practices that took place in that prison are abhorrent and they don't represent America. They represent the actions of a few people. Secondly, it's important for people to understand that in a democracy that there will be a full investigation. In other words, we want to know the truth.

In our country, when there's an allegation of abuse — more than an allegation in this case, actual abuse, we saw the pictures — there will be a full investigation and justice will be delivered. We have a presumption of innocent until you're guilty in our system, but the system will be transparent, it will be open and people will see the results. This is a serious matter. It's a matter that reflects badly on my country. Our citizens in America are appalled by what they saw, just like people in the Middle East are appalled. We share the same deep concerns. And we will find the truth, we will fully investigate. The world will see the investigation and justice will be served.

Not only does President Bush accept responsibility for the abuse and torture of the Iraqi prisoners, but he vows justice for those mistreated and assurances problems like this will be prevented in the future. Americans, Middle Easterners, Iraqis and the victims of Abu Ghraib do not need an apology from the President. We need justice.

Posted by bill roggio @ 1:12 PM