Asked during Thursday night’s vice presidential debate if the United States should apologize for Marines urinating on Taliban corpses, Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan said “Oh, gosh, yes.”
The question comes following news that a pair of U.S. Marines face court martial after they were videotaped urinating on Taliban corpses in Afghanistan last year. One of the two Marines is Staff Sgt. Edward Deptola, a native of Southold.
Moderator Martha Raddatz framed the question by stating that “No Apologies” is the title of a book written by presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the expression serves as a frequent foreign policy talking point for his and the Wisconsin Congressman’s campaign.
The exchange went as follows, according to a live Washington Post transcript of the debate:
RADDATZ: Mr. Ryan, I want to ask you about — the Romney campaign talks a lot about no apologies. He has a book called “No Apologies.” Should the U.S. have apologized for Americans burning Korans in Afghanistan? Should the U.S. apologize for U.S. Marines urinating on Taliban corpses?
RYAN: Oh, gosh, yes. Urinating on Taliban corpses? What we should not apologize for…
RADDATZ: Burning Korans, immediately?
RYAN: What — what we should not be apologizing for are standing up for our values. What we should not be doing is saying to the Egyptian people, while Mubarak is cracking down on them, that he’s a good guy and, in the next week, say he ought to go.
What we should not be doing is rejecting claims for — for calls for more security in our barracks, in our Marine — we need Marines in Benghazi when the commander on the ground says we need more forces for security. There were requests for extra security; those requests were not honored.
The focus of the debate quickly shifted to Iran.