This is a tricky and touchy subject. As Americans, we want to support our troops at all costs.
The inaugural Navy-Marine Corps Classic game between and Florida-Georgetown on Nov. 9 will be hailed as an event to thank and salute our armed forces. The game aboard the deck of the USS Bataan off Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville will serve as a big-game opener for what projects to be a promising 2012-13 Florida season.
But the amphibious carrier Bataan V, commissioned in 1997, has had a mixed past. It has provided humanitarian aid and relief for victims of both Hurricane Katrina (2005) and the earthquakes in Haiti (2010). But it also been reputed as a ship that has illegally held and tortured terrorist suspects from throughout the globe.
The U.S. Navy vehemently denied the allegations, all the way up to current President Obama. But according to the British Daily Newspaper “The Guardian”, former President George W. Bush in 2006 admitted the Bataan was used as a prison ship off the coast of the Middle East from December 2001 to January 2002. During that time, then-President Bush said “enhanced interrogation techniques” were used. The Council of Europe said the interrogation techniques were “essentially a euphemism for some kind of torture.”
Terrible things happen in war, and the Machiavellian nature in us would say the end justifies the means. Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein are both dead. The war on terror is ongoing, though the Middle East has stabilized somewhat an al-Qaeda resources and leadership have taken a hit in the last decade. But there also is the matter on whether proper, legal techniques were used during interrogations or if basic human rights were violated.
Does all of this matter, or do you simply view the Bataan as a neat place to watch a college basketball game?
What are your thoughts?