Here's a snippet of conversation transcribed from video of Chris Wallace interviewing Tom Donilon, our National Security Adviser. FOX calls this "hammering" the guy as if they're proud of it. Wallace asks:
We'll all stipulate that bin Laden was a monster. But why is shooting an unarmed man in the face legal and proper while enhanced interrogation, including waterboarding of a detainee under very strict controls and limits, why is that over the line?
Donilon offers a defense of shooting bin Laden, to which Wallace responds:

I'm not asking you why it was OK to shoot Usama bin Laden. I fully understand the threat. And I'm not second-guessing the SEALs.
The conversation continues:
WALLACE: What I am second guessing is, if that's OK, why can't you do waterboarding? What can't you do enhanced interrogation of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was just as bad an operator as Usama bin Laden?
DONILON: Because, well, our judgment is that it's not consistent with our values, not consistent and not necessary in terms of getting the kind of intelligence that we need.
WALLACE: But shooting bin Laden in the head is consistent with our values?
DONILON: We are at war with Usama bin Laden.
WALLACE: We're at war with Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
And so forth.

Just to be clear, that line of questioning appears morally bankrupt. Its premise is that because it's ok to kill OBL, it's okay to do ANYTHING to him, including, in a vivid example provided by Mr. W., slow-roast him over a fire and draw out his intestines, as the Brits used to do to the martyrs. The Framers wanted to prevent us from being infected with such practices as were carried out by the French Revolution.*

Waterboarding, if it is permissible, is permissible only because it can reasonably be understood not to be torture. The primary reason we don't torture is not out of concern for the likes of OBL or KSM, but because the torturer degrades himself in the process. We mustn't make monsters out of our own interrogators, degrading their human dignity and ours in the supposed defense of human dignity. We put limits on what may be done to even our most brutish enemies as much out of concern for our own humanity as theirs.

I think the administration's efforts to prosecute Bush-era people for policies they don't like is obscene and I think its incoherent approach to enemy interrogation encourages "shoot to kill" where capture and question would be preferable (speaking in general, not second-guessing what was done with OBL.) But I defend Donilon in this exchange. I don't want to see the Right taking the line suggested by Wallace's question.

*Mr. W. thinks I haven't made it clear I understand the Constitution pre-dates the FR. Yes, I know. The Framers wanted to prevent us from being infected by the kinds of behavior subsequently seen in .....