As I see no evidence of the hand of God in the suffering or elevation of either the guilty or the innocent, I am left with human laws. And human laws, faulty, arbitarary, and oppressive as they often are, do not always bring about justice. Perhaps they never do, for who or what can compensate for people or things permanently lost?
We will not punish those who committed these horrible crimes of war and indifference because we are complict. We let it happen because we flattered ourselves that we couldn't do such horrible crimes, couldn't kill around a million people including thousands of our own. We might wince and shrug at a lot, but we will not accept that we kidnap, torture and murder. That's what the bad guys do, we've heard incessently for six years. If we impeach Bush and Cheney, we would have to admit what we've become. All the dirty lies would come tumbling out, and we would no longer be the Good Guys.
No matter how hard they try, though, people can't live with this kind of dissonance between myth and reality. We are no longer as isolated from foreigners or the consequences of our actions. So we are going to flounder for a while, confused and unsure about what to do. And the anger that has been kept to a low simmer all these years will burn like the wildfires in California.
It's not our punishment. It's just a consequence of our actions.