Let me just play devil's advocate here . . .
Why don't we, as a nation, have nearly as much problem with capital measures in dealing with terror suspects abroad in the field as we do with torturing them for information but allowing them to live?
I honestly want to be that guy, pounding his fist in rage and screaming, "America does not torture!," but I have to admit some hypocrisy in doing so when still, even under Obama, engagement protocols in the field are just as happy as larks to let our soldiers blow suspected militants to a dozen pieces from long range.
I mean, during the action of O:IF we sent bunker-busters to surface targets, many of which missed targets and killed and maimed bystanders. We regularly kill dozens of alleged civilians in our continuing operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan. I certainly won't try to justify our interrogation techniques by comparing them to the atrocities performed by our aggressors on their captives, but at the end of the day, our detainees come out alive and in one piece. Yet we harp and crow about waterboarding them or emasculating them or denigrating their religion. But when an 18-year old Marine blows a carfull of militants to pieces with a 50-cal, we do very little other than congratulate the boy on his bravery.
Bottom line, I'm fairly torn on the issue. Not as to whether or not torture is wrong, but why we're making such a big deal out of it when it's still our policy to shoot suspected militants on sight. We're likely to spend the next six months arguing on whether Bush should be prosecuted or how strongly torture should be punished or who knew what an for how long, but guess what? Just like Uday and Qusay and Saddam and al-Zarqawi, when (and if) Bin Laden is finally killed, there will be parades in the streets and medals given out.
So forgive me for not engaging with full hyperbole in the face of such mass dissonance.