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May 18, 2005
ANDREW SULLIVAN writes that he didn't mean to claim that wrapping someone in an Israeli flag was torture, even though he listed it with other things that he clearly did regard as torture, and drew no distinction. He asks me to correct the record; I wish instead that he would try writing on (and thinking about) this subject with the clarity and seriousness of which he has shown himself capable in the past. All evidence suggests, however, that I am likely to be disappointed.
UPDATE: Reader Christopher Levenick notes that in an earlier post, Andrew specificially included wrapping in an Israeli flag under the heading ANTI-ISLAMIC TORTURE. If Andrew doesn't regard flag-wrapping as torture, then pehaps he should refrain from this sort of thing in the future. I've suggested in the past that Sullivan would be more persuasive in a cause with which I actually agree (I've long been anti-torture, after all) if he displayed more rigor and didn't turn the volume to "11." That remains true. I'm not interested in an inter-blog pissing match; I tend to take a blog-and-let-blog approach to these sorts of things. But I think that Andrew's take on these issues hasn't accomplished what he hopes to accomplish, and I don't think that it will do so in the future if his approach remains the same.