June 17, 2008 archive

More Than 8 Million Iraqis Deserve Justice

Cross posted on KOS

Regardless of how you feel about the crimes of George W. Bush and impeachment, there are millions of innocent people asking for justice and who have no voice of their own. Follow me below the fold to hear ONE case for impeachment and justice.

At Last! Senate Hearings Tackle SERE-Inspired Torture Program

The Senate Armed Services Committee will be holding hearings into the treatment of detainees in U.S. custody. Tomorrow is part one, as Senator Levin’s committee looks into the origins of U.S. aggressive interrogation techniques. A new article by AP makes clear that these techniques were approved at the highest levels, and that the resulting torture revelations were not due to the actions of a few “bad apples.”

Also, on Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing entitled “From the Department of Justice to Guantanamo Bay”, which is the second part of its inquiry into administration lawyers, like John Yoo, and their role in writing and approving torture and guidelines for abusive interrogation.

Meanwhile, Human Rights First has a petition up, demanding that Congress ask William Haynes, former General Counsel to the Department of Defense – who “once advised the Bush Administration that waterboarding and death threats were ‘legally available’ options” – tough questions, bearing upon his culpability for implementing a U.S. torture program.

A ‘get out of jail free card’ for lame ducks?

I've been skeptical of the calls to impeach George Bush and Dick Cheney, fearful that acting this late in their terms will create a circus that overshadows the question of who will succeed them in January.

David Swanson, of Democrats.com, ImpeachCheney.org, and AfterDowningStreet.org, will surely disagree when he speaks in Milwaukee Thursday, sponsored by Iraq Moratorium and others. His topic is, "Peace, Impeachment and Election Day: Which Comes First." Swanson's own writings make a strong case for impeachment.

Dennis Kucinich, who read his 35 articles of impeachment against Bush into the record on C-Span the other night, clearly thinks there are more than enough grounds to impeach.

But the person who may convince me that it's time to act is a conservative Bush backer, a Marquette University professor and blogger named John McAdams.

McAdams lives in fear that a Barack Obama administration might prosecute Bush or others for crimes they may have committed while in office, based on this statement from Obama:

What I would want to do is to have my Justice Department and my Attorney General immediately review the information that’s already there and to find out are there inquiries that need to be pursued. I can’t prejudge that because we don’t have access to all the material right now. I think that you are right, if crimes have been committed, they should be investigated. You’re also right that I would not want my first term consumed by what was perceived on the part of Republicans as a partisan witch hunt because I think we’ve got too many problems we’ve got to solve.

You know, I often get questions about impeachment at town hall meetings and I’ve said that is not something I think would be fruitful to pursue because I think that impeachment is something that should be reserved for exceptional circumstances. Now, if I found out that there were high officials who knowingly, consciously broke existing laws, engaged in coverups of those crimes with knowledge forefront, then I think a basic principle of our Constitution is nobody above the law — and I think that’s roughly how I would look at it.

That seems pretty straightforward. If someone "knowingly, consciously broke existing laws" they should be prosecuted. You'd think a law and order Republican would have no trouble with that concept.  

Pony Party: Absentee Pickle II

Howdy ho there Ponies! I hope y’all are having a swell week. I’m still off yonder on a bizness trip. Yee haw! I’ll gallop back on to these here parts next week. ‘Til then, may all your pickles be bright!

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