Torture:Justice :: Both Feet on the Ground, Weekly Action Series #3

(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

UPDATE: This Diary has now morphed into a LIVEBLOG to watch the day unfold and hear the official News from the WH this afternoon re the release of the DoJ Memos… at the orange (link below in comments).

lots of News coming in this morning with several diaries at the orange now:

from Vyan: Spain Calls Off Torture Probe

from ctexrep: Spain a No Go

from J. Radack: OLC Memos: FOIA Test Fails


Eyes on the stars.

As an American, I have always believed in the concept that we, as a nation, are rooted in the ideals and values of our Constitution, that we have inalienable rights and all that jazz.  Now, at this fragile and tenuous time in our history, we have to remain grounded in them. We elect leaders who we expect to abide by their oaths of office and lead the way. We have to hold them to account when they waiver or fail.

We want to get it right … with or without you …

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 Editorial note: Quite by accident, my first diary of this series had an undercurrent theme of Water. The second, Wind/Air. So, this third one has, for its theme, Earth … in the sense of being grounded, rooted. Next week should be fun. Heh.

  I’ve created this place, this series, to be something of a landing zone for us, any of us in the progressive  community who feel the grief, who wish to contribute in some way to this growing call for justice, and/or who want to stay tuned in to any ACTION activities that emerge around this cause. I will publish every week, on Thursday’s. I invite you to share your thoughts.

        Some important ACTION Alerts below the fold…

This Diary Series offers “Pick Of The Week” features which I encourage you to critique or embellish in the comments. You can also email me directly… and please do, I’d like you to contribute to this Diary Series in the coming weeks…. I welcome your participation.

The headline grabbers of the previous week are detailed, explained, and documented in the  Sunday Torture News Round Up Series, which I highly recommend you go read,  in case you missed it.  This week’s top stories include the news that Spain is proceeding with indictments of the Bush Six, and the pending Release of a new batch of DoJ Memo’s, highly anticipated, with a deadline of April 16th (today) for the Obama administration to make the decision (or not). All that, and more

#4  by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse (PDNC)

Torture News Roundup: Panetta’s Move-On Torture Plan  04.13.09


#3 Valtin

 Sunday Weekly Torture Round-up:  DoD to Jail Gitmo Attorney?  04.05.09

#2 Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse (PDNC)

Torture News Roundup: A Woman Tortured? 03.29.09

#1 Valtin

Introducing DKos Sunday Weekly Torture “Round-up” 03.22.09

ACTION ALERTS! deadline today

h/t Lisa Lockwood

Common Cause: Sign the petition now calling on the White House and the Justice Department to release the Bush torture memos on Thursday.

ACLU:  More than four years after the ACLU began its legal battle to obtain the memos, the Justice Department will finally decide by this Thursday whether or not they are going to be released. Will the Obama administration live up to its promise of transparency? I am sending along a short video about just what this crucial moment means from Jameel Jaffer, Director of the ACLU’s National Security Project.

Quote of the Week

Me? I’m dishonest, and a dishonest man you can always trust to be dishonest. Honestly. It’s the honest ones you want to watch out for, because you can never predict when they’re going to do something incredibly… stupid.

~Captain Jack Sparrow

By The Numbers

# Days since Executive Order signed to close Gitmo: 86

# Days since Eric Holder sworn in as AG =  73

# Released since Obama’s Executive Order:  2

Ayman Batarfi and

Binyam Mohammed

NOTE: I fully support Obama’s efforts and appreciate that he must be up against tremendous obstacles with this, so, understand this is not a “criticism”… just keepin’ tabs.  I will update weekly, of course.

Some Guantánamo numbers, as per Andy Worthington’s comprehensive list and documentation.

# Total number imprisoned:   779

# Suicide (Hunger Strike) Deaths:  4

# Released since June 2007:    143

# Total still in Gitmo now is about 245

# Convicted…  1 Jose Padilla,  see Washington Post, August 2007,article and Padilla sentenced on Jan 22 2008

Community Comments

from this Comment string

Nipping Cheney in the Bud

It looks obvious that the Bush/Cheney gang has planned all along to hide behind the OLC memos as legal cover for all their crimes. The OLC was created after Nixon to tell Executives “No” when considering actions that might be illegal. Cheney perverted them into rubberstamping his criminal plans, and plans to blame them for not saying “No”.

Prosecuting the OLC henchmen first will give the opportunity to eliminate that argument right up front. Before the global media firestorm from indicting those at the top of the political (dung) heap that would give Cheney the chance to rely on it.

“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.”  HST

by DocGonzo on Tue Apr 14, 2009

Diary Rescues on Torture/Justice  

from the past week, through 4.15.09)

Doctors Who Torture

by Amnesty International USA

Fri Apr 10, 2009

“Rules must be binding. Violations must be punished. Words must mean something.”


Sat Apr 11, 2009

(a Saturday post that got overlooked a bit but worth the trip…LL)

Spanish prosecutors to move ahead?

by Compound F

Mon Apr 13, 2009

New York Times Blasts Obama Appeal on Habeas at Bagram

by: Valtin

Mon Apr 13, 2009

Submitting Evidence to the Spanish Court on U.S. Torture Plans

by Valtin

Tue Apr 14, 2009

“Bush Six” Are Being Indicted Today Rec Listed, 390 comments (I guess everyone saw this one?!)

by Jesselyn Radack

Tue Apr 14, 2009

Gitmo Attys Advise Panetta: Preserve Torture Evidence

by geomoo

Tue Apr 14, 2009

Website of the Week

h/t to Jesselyn Radack for this one!

Government Accountability Project (GAP)

GAP’s Homeland Security program created the “Show Me the Memos” project in order to test the new FOIA guidelines with regard to some of the most controversial memos written by OLC during the Bush administration (of which at least 35 remain secret), to let the public know exactly what GAP has FOIA-ed in this regard, and to provide “go-by” samples for other organizations in order to share information and avoid duplication.

Resource Spotlight


Patriot Daily  has set up a Google Group listserve.

This group is for ANYONE opposing torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of any person.  We are readers, posters, and lurkers on  This group serves as a clearinghouse and rapid alert system for anti-torture diaries.  This group is for ANYONE opposing torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of any person.  We are readers, posters, and lurkers on  This group serves as a clearinghouse and rapid alert system for anti-torture diaries.  

Click the badge to sign up!

Bloggers Against Torture listserve

Media Pick of the Week

h/t to PDNC’s Sunday Digest Diary

Human rights investigator John Sifton discusses the Obama administration coverup of CIA torture on Countdown, 04.10.09

KO Countdown : Bush 090410 : CIA Off Hook?

The Daily Beast’s John Sifton talks about Leon Panetta’s reluctance to further investigate the enhanced interrogations committed by CIA officers under the Bush administration at secret prisons.


*Whistleblower Groups Ask President to Reaffirm Campaign Promise

Campaign For Federal Whistleblower Protection Continues

As you know, the National Whistleblowers Center has been actively involved in the campaign to obtain stronger whistleblower protection for all federal employees, including national security employees.

* Sign the DD Petition…

Petition Badge
Get Badge

*Follow The Dog’s Monday’s Letter Campaign Diary Series and send one!

Weekly Torture Action Letter 6: Time Is Running Out To Investigate

by Something the Dog Said  Tues Apr 14, 2009

Links to the White House

This provides an email form, Street Addresses and phone numbers.

*Join the Facebook Group

Appoint a Special Prosecutor to Investigate Bush Administration War Crimes

Thanks for visiting LL’s brain. See you in the comment.o.sphere!


With or Without You…


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  1. hope so.


  2. First off I want to say, Great job LL! Once again a very nice compilation of articles and actions. As soon as I can get around to it I’ll make you a badge for our Series page and flickr widget.  

    Here’s an item you might want to include next week – Eric Holder’s speech at West Point’s Rule of Law Conference (on 4/15/09).

    Full text of speech

    and a few key quotes:

    There are some today who argue that as the most powerful military force on earth, international laws will only hinder our efforts and endanger our strength. But I reject the very premise of that argument. Even before the first Geneva conventions were signed, the United States long advocated for international laws and organizations to govern the conduct of all nations, recognizing that our strength as a country is amplified — not diminished — when we expand the sphere of the rule of law across the globe.

    Of course, our nation has not always been immune to the impulse to sacrifice the timeless principles of the rule of law to the transient fears of the moment. Even presidents like Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt have sometimes erred under the pressures of war. So great are the demands to keep the country safe, so unrelenting the stress of the moment, that our nation’s leaders have sometimes forgotten that the rule of law protects us not just from our enemies, but also from our own worst instincts.


    But the strength of our nation has always been our ability to correct course, because while presidents change and governments change, the Constitution endures.

    And so it is today, at the beginning of a new presidency, as we face a world filled with danger, that we must once again chart a course rooted in the rule of law and grounded in both the powers and the limitations it prescribes. Now, that should not be a controversial statement. And yet, there are those who equate a stated intention to apply the rule of law in a national security context with softness or naivete. I could not disagree more. Underneath the lofty pronouncements made by leaders must lay real principles that will unerringly chart our course as policymakers — principles that we will hold dear not just when we face the easy decisions, but also when we face the hard ones.

    Sounds like he’s saying the previous president did not follow the law.  And I say he needs to take action on that, oh yeah!  

  3. Diary now also up at l’orahnge.

  4. great roundup and would be good to have up when news breaks today on the torture memos, whether released and how much redacted.

    kinda live blogging on that issue and spain.

  5. This is a hell of a lot of work and you are doing it really well! I predict this is going to be huge over time.  

  6. maybe if your title had this format it would bring in more eyeballs if named the hottest subject or story in your diary for that day:

    torture:justice: Spain caves on torture case

  7. Very good job on this.  You developed a nice format for this.

    Very disappointing news about Spain.  The reason given for not proceeding with the lawsuit was “from outer space.”  


    I think this essay from Robert Parry has a great deal of merit!

    Right-Wingers Are Desperately Trying to Destroy Obama, and the Cowardly Corporate Media Are Helping

    By Robert Parry, Consortium News. Posted April 16, 2009.

    The right-wing media still pull the reins in DC, where they could sink the Obama presidency and even stymie a Democratic Congress.

    Watching Glenn Beck of Fox News rant about “progressive fascism” — and muse about armed insurrection — or listening to mainstream pundits prattle on about Barack Obama as the “most polarizing President ever,” it is hard to escape the conclusion that today’s U.S. news media represents a danger to the Republic.

    By and large, the Washington press corps continues to function within a paradigm set in the 1980s, mostly bending to the American Right, especially to its perceived power to destroy mainstream journalistic careers and to grease the way toward lucrative jobs for those who play ball. . . . .

  8. here

    • geomoo on April 17, 2009 at 02:31

    At least for me.  I was amazed how great I felt first thing this morning when my wife told me the memos were being released.  Oops, back down to earth, on learning of the deal.  Then the disappointing speech upon releasing the memos.  Now this news from Spain.  This has turned into the day the administration hoped to put this whole sticky torture question behind us once and for all.  Ain’t gonna happen.

    Thanks for including my diary.  It is in keeping with your grounded theme, involving as it does the physical implements and actual places of torture.  Something about that letter asking informing Panetta not to destroy physical evidence, something about the impersonal starkness of that really got to me.

    Going to watch KO’s comment now.  I’ve been quite agitated today.  Thanks so much for creating this stream of information and place to discuss it.  I’ll be here from now on.

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