In Final Trip to Beijing, Bush Calls on
Premeir to "Tear Down This Wall"
--WaPo Faux Headline contest
A federal judge last week "awarded more than $65 million to several men who were captured and tortured by North Korea after the communist country seized the U.S. spy ship USS Pueblo during the Cold War" (USS Pueblo Victims Awarded $65 M.)
The USS Pueblo was seized off North Korea while it was on an intelligence-gathering mission on Jan. 23, 1968. The North claimed the ship was inside its coastal zone while the U.S. Navy contended it was in international waters.
One of the U.S. ship's 83 crew members was killed and 10 others were wounded. The crew members, led by Cmdr. Lloyd Bucher, were released after 11 months of captivity and sometimes torture.
$65 Million because they were detained and tortured! Got it?
As an aside, the current Phony War on Terror (PWOT ©) and the USS Pueblo incident share anther common thread, which is that U.S. servicemen are being sent into locations where they lack adequate support. The Pueblo was in isolated waters without proper defensive weapons or air cover on-call. Ditto the PWOT on a regular basis.
Skip Schumacher, 65, a lieutenant junior grade on the ship said in a September interview, "I think the crew has always wanted someone in the Navy to stand up and say 'Hey, you guys did a great job in a poorly conceived mission without any backup'" (40 Years After Capture, USS Pueblo Crew Reunites.)
Well, that is the good news (even though the NK will probably never pony up the funds.) The bad news arises from the other similarity between the two actions. All the detainees held at Gitmo, secret prisons and CIA black sites, and victims of extraordinary rendition will soon be up for their day in court. The U.S. isn't exactly flush right now.
Turnabout is fair play.