Those "see no evil' residents of the Third Reich came to be known as the "good Germans," and Rich unsubtly sets the tone for his New York Times column of this morning by entitling it "The 'Good Germans; Among Us."
Rich approvingly cites Andrew Sullivan's claim in last weekend's Sunday Times of London to the effect that "America’s 'enhanced interrogation' techniques have a grotesque provenance":
Verschärfte Vernehmung, enhanced or intensified interrogation, was the exact term innovated by the Gestapo to describe what became known as the ‘third degree.’ It left no marks. It included hypothermia, stress positions and long-time sleep deprivation.But Rich, unsatisfied with his Bush administration = Gestapo slur, goes on to smear millions of his fellow Americans. Thunders the Times columnist in self-righteous fury:
Our humanity has been compromised by those who use Gestapo tactics in our war. The longer we stand idly by while they do so, the more we resemble those “good Germans” who professed ignorance of their own Gestapo.
Note Rich's "their own Gestapo." As far as he's concerned, Nazi Germany had its Gestapo, and we have ours.
I believe that when the history of this war is written, it will be seen that our nation waged it in accordance with some of the highest ethical standards ever observed in a major conflict. Yet Frank Rich paints our government as adopting Nazi tactics, and average Americans as akin to passive supporters of Hitler's regime. Were it not ever-so-gauche to do so, you might call that unpatriotic.