Support for a Special Prosecutor

Let’s play….who said this!!!

Who said this?

“I would not mind looking backward if there’s reason to do so. If we have evidence of torture – go after it. If there’s reason to believe that these Justice Department officials have knowingly given the president cover for practices they know not to be right or sound – go after them. Some of the [OLC] opinions are more than startling, they’re shocking. If [OLC counsel] did that knowingly…it sounds to me that it may fall within criminal conduct.

“the subject matter areas, which such a commission would investigate – among them the interrogation and handling of captured enemy combatants and the gathering of electronic intelligence – are heavily regulated by comprehensive criminal statutes, and ensures that the commission’s activities would inevitably invade areas traditionally the responsibility of the Department of Justice.”

“In those countries they had to have commissions because they couldn’t have prosecutions. Peace was really in doubt in those countries … they had to trade off prosecutions for peace. We’re not in that situation. If people think we need to have prosecutions, we should have prosecutions.”


#1 Arlen “single bullet” Spectre [sic]

#2 David B. Rivkin, Jr.

#3 Jeremy Rabkin

All three “hostile witnesses” so to speak, at the exploratory hearing towards Leahy’s Truth Commission.

Or as Daphne Eviatar put it in the Wasington Independent, titled ‘Republicans Make a Case for Prosecuting Bush Officials’…

Proponents of the truth commission idea, meanwhile, while not ruling out the idea of prosecutions, saw a truth commission as serving a different, and broader, purpose. But it was surprising that, at a hearing cautiously called to discuss “a nonpartisan commission of inquiry,” we heard the strongest case yet  for the prosecution of former Bush administration officials – being made by Republicans.

Last night in Valtin’s diary over at Dkos (now proudly on our FP, as well) I was reaching for some Grand Unified Theory as to why Leahy would be pushing for a TC instead of a formal Senate Committee or just plain old prosecutions. My thought was that the scope of the Bushco subversion of the Constitution, Rule of Law and every moral code known to mankind was so vast that it needed to be put into some kind of context first, before prosecutions. Before prosecutions that would indeed increase the partisan combat and be grist for the RW inevitable ‘partisan witchhunt’ meme. Prosecutions that but for politics and Jingoism would convict practically the entire top echelon in a criminal conspiracy to torture perhaps hundreds of innocent people to death. As well as some form or other of treason (for what could be more treasonous) in tearing up the United States Constitution.

I think I was wrong. I think now, that Leahy IS just being timid. In the following (excellent) coverage by Rachel, Leahy says to the Republicans above…..”Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.” That indicates to me that he was just playing a cautious game given the politics of our time. And since the politics of our time are rapidly changing as the Republican Party completely debases and destroys itself in Limbaugh Worship, maybe Leahy will change his mind as well. After all, yesterdays hearings WERE just exploratory.

I do however think we still need some kind of Uber Commission to truly put what Bushco did in context and in stark relief for Americans, the world, and history. And we are still faced with exactly how to go about getting Obama and Holder to prosecute. But as events and the political zeitgeist move (relatively) rapidly forward, I think we all, Obama, Holder, Leahy and us….are scrambling a bit as to how to tackle the incredibly grave and monumental fact… that the former President of The United States is indeed a War Criminal.

Enough rambling! On to Rachel’s excellent report!


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  1. I bin pushing kinda hard lately and am in need of recharging!


  2. loudly and that’s hard work. You’ve done a good job as you seem to have gotten the attention of the cynics (me for one) and the let’s move on crowd. Leahy and even Mr. Progressive Patriot Fiengold have laid down too long with dogs. When push came to shove they did not use the law but instead put politics first. Now they are stuck as they are caught in their own creation of using the witch hunt political bs as an excuse to not stop the real nightmare of lawlessnes.

    The antidote to this has always rested in our laws and they are as guilty as the right when they throw them over as the ..enemy of the good. and political perceptions. The political excuses are gone, they are in power and need to use it to shine a light on what has occurred. Not timid, but a man out of time and one who blew his power off for politics which he put above the law. Sad really when good men deal with the devil and then seek to apply the the excuses of politics which they used when this occurred.

    Call the bastard’s bluff, Senators. Prosecute. The arrogance of these criminals from Rove to the architects of the war on terror and our sacred documents alone is good enough reason. If you don’t you only make their point. The law is what power decides. Witch hunts in this case does not apply as these are not nonexistent witches who indulged in blow jobs, but full blown war criminals who broke the law and wrecked our country. No mitigating excuses or reasons full disclosure and repudiation along with a return to the real law that supper cedes politics by intention.        


  3. although slightly different from how I was feeling last night, but anyway. I really had to laugh, w Rachels show, saying that the GOP’s are making the case for prosecution, because I CALLED IT! lol. … in the comments here yesterday while liveblogging it. funny. (I thought I must be pretty smart…lol)

    This stuff is emotionally draining.

  4. All of these options are before us:

    This, just received from Wexler today!


    In further news, I have added my name as a cosponsor to Chairman Conyers’ bill, HR104, which establishes a special commission to investigate Bush Administration abuses.   If enacted, this legislation would be a major step forward in our search for the truth.

    This legislation would investigate the broad range of Bush Administration policies including the secret detaining of prisoners by the intelligence community, the use by US personal of so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” that are not authorized by the Uniform Code of Military Justice, “ghosting”, extraordinary rendition, domestic warrantless electronic surveillance, and all other policies or issues that the established Commission deems essential and relevant.

    This is an important piece of legislation and the issues at stake are large enough that we can’t merely sweep them under the rug.

    And Cong. Nadler (March 1):  

    Nadler announced he is preparing a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder calling for a Special Prosecutor. The letter will resemble those he sent to former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who simply ignored Nadler’s letter, and then to former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, who replied but dodged all of Nadler’s issues.

    And this question posed to David Swanson:

    Ok… So does that mean that Nadler might actually accomplish something?  That there’s hope?  It’s so depressing, ranting against all that’s going wrong when no one is listening.  Watching the world creep, then gallop, closer and closer to the brink every day.  I really don’t expect to survive this summer.

    Does Nadler really have a chance of getting something done?

    And DS’ response:

    Others can offer their take, . . . I’m going to propose that the answer to all “can it actually work” questions for the next 12 months is Yes, the answer to all “should we bother” questions for the next 12 months is Yes if you don’t want dictatorship, and the answer to all “what exactly should we do” questions is ProsecuteBushCheney


    I have never been much for this Truth Commission, or any Commission, much because of the usually sad outcomes.  After having read Valtin’s diary and his fine “sleuthing” into the backgrounds of most of those who would comprise a panel — I am definitely not going to be for it, although, I had already signed onto the Center for Constitutional Rights’ Petition, which I believe is good in its premise.

    I still think a Special Prosecutor is the best way to go with an investigation into the war crimes of the Bush Administration, and prosecutions therefrom.  

  5. careful with your pace my friend……..

    find a time to go out and recharge……

    find a lodge or a hill and get some infilling for yourself….

    we seem to be involved in a self seduction……

    the american people and justice…….

    perhaps lady liberty has enough sparkle left to pull it off…..

    I keep hoping……..

    no justice, no peace…….

  6. just in from  By Daphne Eviatar 3/4/09 1:26 PM

    collected quotes from docudharma

    Uh hummm!  I think this is good! Yeh?  😉

    • robodd on March 6, 2009 at 5:23 am

    makes of Spector’s statements about its esteemed Professor Yoo.

    The Berkeley of old would have been in riot by now.  

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