The Republicans have hijacked yet another issue with a meaningless deflection.
The first one is rather easily dealt with. One of their current deflections is rather easily dealt with, at least in theory.
They object that there was a ‘selective’ release of memos. They want more memos released.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney has requested that the administration declassify additional CIA memos that he said would show the tactics worked.
It is of course, a bluff. How do we call that bluff? Easy!
Great, we say! Release em all! All the way back to the secret energy meetings Cheney held early on that led to Enron gaming the deregulated energy market. And that some have claimed was part of the slicing up of the Iraq oil pie, post invasion. Release the memos around manufacturing the evidence to invade Iraq. Release the memos on the WTC site being environmentally safe after 9/11. Release the memos on the Don Seigelman case. Release the memos on the US Attorney firings. Release the memos on Blackwater. Release the memos on using white phosphorous in Iraq. Release the memos on the Katrina response. Release the memos on illegal wiretapping. Release the memos on how the Black Sites were established and what went on there. Release the memos on stalling on Climate Change and the political reasons for doing so. Release the memos about exposing Valerie Plame and an entire CIA nuclear counter-terrorism network.
Release the memos on Tora Bora and letting Bin Laden escape.
Release em all!
After all, we wouldn’t want to be ….selective…. now would we?
The second one is even more corrupt and sinister.
“Criminalizing policy differences.”
If a policy is illegal…as torture is…it is already “criminalized. By being a crime, by being illegal.
You can’t ‘criminalize‘ a crime.
Both under International AND US law:
§ 2340A. Torture
(a) Offense.- Whoever outside the United States commits or attempts to commit torture shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both, and if death results to any person from conduct prohibited by this subsection, shall be punished by death or imprisoned for any term of years or for life.
(b) Jurisdiction.- There is jurisdiction over the activity prohibited in subsection (a) if-
(1) the alleged offender is a national of the United States; or
(2) the alleged offender is present in the United States, irrespective of the nationality of the victim or alleged offender.
(c) Conspiracy.- A person who conspires to commit an offense under this section shall be subject to the same penalties (other than the penalty of death) as the penalties prescribed for the offense, the commission of which was the object of the conspiracy.
Yes yes you lawyers out there, I am absolutely positive that you can construct a defense for torture…..
….after all, Yoo, Bybee, and Bradbury did!
So knock yourself out, but if you are honest, you will admit that there are PLENTY of ways that torture is indeed…..a crime.
Which leads to the upcoming argument that will be presented by the Repubs in their desperate ass-covering traveling circus. There next line of defense is that they methods used did not constitute torture. To which I say….great!
Let’s talk in detail bout everything you did. Let’s get you on the talk shows and have you defend in detail every single approved torture technique. Let’s get YOU to intimately define what torture is and is not. Let’s let YOU catalog publicly what techniques were used alone and in combination.
And then WE can point out that there is PLENTY of evidence that not only ARE those techniques torture….
But that the Bush Torture Policy was often EXCEEDED in actual practice.
And how exceeding them proves that at least some of the torturers were not torturing….”in good faith.”
Yes, bad faith torture occurred too!
But…it was ALL criminal.
If a “policy” is illegal, it ceases to be policy and becomes ALL ON ITS OWN a crime.
To use an extreme example….You cannot declare a policy of killing the first born son of every terrorist. You cannot declare rape is a policy.
And then complain about Criminalizing Policy Differences. or use it as a defense.