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I remember the day George W. Bush, having already ordered torture tactics to be added to his "war on terror" as early as 2002, stood in front of teevee cameras and said..."We do not torture." I knew at the time that W. was lying. In fact, he knew he was lying. American military, CIA and private defense contractors had been torturing detainees for over 3 years when Bush openly lied to Americans in 2005.
Now, in 2013, a new independent, nonpartisan study group called the Constitution Project, headed by Asa Hutchinson and James Jones, has concluded in it's 577 page report that....
“it is indisputable that the United States engaged in the practice of torture” and that the nation’s highest officials bore ultimate responsibility for it.
According to NY Times reporting, it was only after Barack Obama refused to "look backward" at the numerous crimes of his predecessor's administration, that the Constitution Project was formed in 2009. By refusing to pursue an investigation into known criminal activities by the Bush administration, President Obama, in my opinion, became an accomplice after the fact.....in fact, Obama obstructed justice by "looking forward" away from the war crimes during Bush.
Gerald Ford wanted the nation to "look forward, not backward" at Richard Nixon's many crimes as well.....for the sake of national unity dontchaknow.....and perhaps Obama thought the same when he became president after another criminal administration. But I don't care what Obama was thinking when he refused to investigate the torture activities of his predecessor. We're either a nation of laws or a nation of men....and Obama only tarred himself with the Bush torture brush by refusing to pursue an investigation.
For those this past week who though it might be a good idea to apprehend the Boston bomber and use enhanced interrogation tactics upon him to find out what else he might know.....
The use of torture, the report concludes, has “no justification” and “damaged the standing of our nation, reduced our capacity to convey moral censure when necessary and potentially increased the danger to U.S. military personnel taken captive.” The task force found “no firm or persuasive evidence” that these interrogation methods produced valuable information that could not have been obtained by other means. While “a person subjected to torture might well divulge useful information,” much of the information obtained by force was not reliable, the report says.
You may be under the impression that Bush/Cheney only ordered the enhanced interrogation of a few very bad actors. Not so....
....one or more Libyan militants were waterboarded by the C.I.A., challenging the agency’s longtime assertion that only three Al Qaeda prisoners were subjected to the near-drowning technique.
The C.I.A. not only waterboarded prisoners, but slammed them into walls, chained them in uncomfortable positions for hours, stripped them of clothing and kept them awake for days on end.
The most sickening part of the torture regime of George W. Bush and Richard Cheney is described in the report....
The panel found that the United States violated its international legal obligations by engineering “enforced disappearances” and secret detentions.....
(The report) describes in detail the ethical compromise of government lawyers who offered “acrobatic” advice to justify brutal interrogations and medical professionals who helped direct and monitor them. And it reveals an internal debate at the International Committee of the Red Cross over whether the organization should speak publicly about American abuses; advocates of going public lost the fight, delaying public exposure for months, the report finds.
This was Nazi stuff.....not only did we torture helpless detainees, a brutal, illegal and cowardly practice in itself....but the CIA was wicked enough to have doctors on the scene directing the exciting torture action.
Even Asa Hutchinson, current shill for the NRA, and a red state's, red stater had this to say....
“This has not been an easy inquiry for me, because I know many of the players,”.... He said he thought everyone involved in decisions, from Mr. Bush down, had acted in good faith, in a desperate effort to try to prevent more attacks.
Indeed, that was the "defense" the Bushies offered up for openly and defiantly breaking numerous national and international laws....."to prevent more attacks"....when it was the Bush administration that repeatedly ignored all of the warning signs leading up to 9-11. George and Dick were going to Iraq come whatever, ignoring and brushing aside any warnings about Osama Bin Laden being determined to strike inside the U.S.
And when 9-11 happened, the Bushies used the event to launch their plan from February of 2001 to invade Iraq and secure the oil fields there......Iraq maps with oil field markings sprawled out over the desks in the high level Bush meetings that month. Many who followed that period carefully also believe that the torture ordered in 2002 was for the purpose of gaining confessions (false or otherwise) to justify the Bush administration's pre-planned attack of Iraq. After all, we know from the Downing Street memo that Bush was "fixing the intelligence around the policy" in early 2002.
I'm no newbee....I know that nothing will come of this report. The R's will reject it, the D's will embrace it....but nothing will change. How would I know? Republicans over the weekend were calling for "enemy combatant" status for the Boston bomber so that the apprehended U.S. citizen could be interrogated extensively (read: tortured) without any due process. The justification? To find out what he might know about "future attacks."