American Torture: “A Bipartisan Skill”

Crossposted from Antemedius

The release of some of the Bush administration torture memos now presents the Obama administration with a crucial dilemma. President Obama at first exonerated CIA officials responsible for the euphemistic “enhanced interrogation” techniques. The White House has even expunged the word “torture” from its vocabulary. The bulk of corporate media favors a whitewash.

Pepe Escobar argues the question is not that the memos should have been kept secret – as the CIA and former Vice-President Dick Cheney wanted. The question is that those who broke the rule of law must be held accountable. Responding to growing public outrage, the White House shifted gears and is now leaving the door open for the work of a Special Prosecutor.



Real News – April 22, 2009

American torture

There can be no “exceptionalism” when the rule of law is broken

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    • Edger on April 22, 2009 at 5:36 pm
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    I do not agree with the idea of a “truth commission”. In my opinion we would see Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney, and Jay Bybee, John Yoo, and the rest of the Bush admin lawyers involved begin to enthusiastically embrace a “truth commission” as the prospect of their prosecution draws closer.

    I much prefer the idea of an “exceptional” job of investigation and prosecution done right. And done as soon as possible. Not rushed if it is done sloppily and allows them to escape justice. But done right.

    A special prosecutor generally is a lawyer from outside the government appointed by an attorney general or Congress to investigate a government official for misconduct while in office. A reasoning for such an appointment is that the governmental branch or agency may have political connections to those it might be asked to investigate. Inherently, this creates a conflict of interest and a solution is to have someone from outside the department lead the investigation. The term “special prosecutor” may have a variety of meanings from one country to the next, from one government branch to the next within the same country, and within different agencies within each government branch. Critics of the use of special prosecutors argue that these investigators act as a “4th branch” to the government because they are not subject to limitations in spending or have deadlines to meet.

    • Viet71 on April 22, 2009 at 7:32 pm

    because there are too many dirty bystanders (Jay Rockefeller, Nancy Pelosi, et al) in addition to those who are culpable (Bush, Rumsfeld, Rice, et al).

    So Obama’s screwed.  He’s damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t.  History will look upon him as a failure if he doesn’t.  Powerful enemies will go after him if he does.

    So is Obama a man of character?  That’s the question on the table.  The time for political maneuvering and gamesmanship is over.

    • dkmich on April 22, 2009 at 11:01 pm

    Once again, we will have those that broke it in charge of fixing it.  Because of the Geneva Convention and international pressure, I don’t think the torturers will get away as easy as the bankers crooks did.  

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