Tag: Dick Cheney

Sep 20

Larry Wilmore – He’s Baaaaaack

Adapted from Rant of the Week at The Stars hollow Gazette

He’s Baaaaaack – Dick Cheney on President Obama’s Iran Deal

Apr 26

The Jon Stewart Mysteries Presents: The Case of the Iranian Agent!

Adapted from Rant of the Week at The Stars Hollow Gazette

The Jon Stewart Mysteries Presents: The Case of the Iranian Agent!

Dec 28

Regulations for Pissing on Cheney’s Grave Announced

(Satire Alert)

DC – The National Park Service announced today that, responding to popular demand, it is preparing rules and regulations for pissing on the grave of Dick Cheney.

“It’s important to remember,” said a spokesman, “That Cheney does not have an actual grave at this time since he is not dead. However, public interest in pissing on his grave makes it increasingly urgent to have plans in place.”

“Ordinarily, we do not encourage urinating in public places. However, Cheney is so universally hated that we see no practical way of keeping it from happening, and have decided instead to regulate it like any other recreational activity.”

Once the final resting place of Dick Cheney is determined, NPS will conduct hydro geological studies to determine the likely drainage. “This is an important health measure,” said the spokesman, “Remember, the grave will house the rotting remains of Dick Cheney, a heavy load on the well being of whatever community it curses. We may have to install a large septic field as it is. Charging a small fee for pissing on Cheney’s grave may be the only way to recoup those costs.”

Sceptics claim that NPS is simply seizing an opportunity to profit from the burgeoning piss-on-Cheney’s-grave industry. “The first day my web store was up,” said one young entrepreneur, “I sold over 1,000 bumper stickers saying ‘Piss on Cheney’s grave? Hell yeah!” Now the government wants in on this? As Dick says, “F*** You!”

Others cautioned NPS against excessive regulation. “We’re talking about an expressive activity,” said a First Amendment expert. “Our forefathers, were they alive today, would be lining up to piss on Cheney’s grave.”

Current plans call for limiting pissers to a few hundred a day, charging a small fee for maintenance and upkeep. Children under 12 will be free, but dogs and other urinating animals will count as an adult. “Will someone bring in the elephant to piss on his grave?” Chuckled an NPS employee. “I hope so. Ever see one of those cut loose? We may have to close the place for the rest of the day!”

Apr 19

They Did Torture and They Should Be Prosecuted

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

While we were mostly fixed on the aftermath of explosion at the Boston Marathon, a non-partisan 11-member panel, that had been convened by the  legal research and advocacy group, Constitution Project to look into the treatment of detainees after 9/11, released a 577 page report (pdf) on Tuesday.

The report relying solely on public records, interviews with detainees, military officers and interrogators, concluded that “it is indisputable that the United States engaged in the practice of torture” under the Bush administration:

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.

At emptywheel, Marcy Wheeler points out the report contains a “number of errors, repetition of dangerous misinformation, and incomplete reporting” but it is still important and comprehensive and its conclusion valuable:

Because even this cautious, bipartisan, institutionalist report concludes the following (among other findings):

   Finding #1: U.S. forces, in many instances, used interrogation techniques on detainees that constitute torture. American personnel conducted an even larger number of interrogations that involved “cruel, inhuman, or degrading” treatment. Both categories of actions violate U.S. laws and international treaties. Such conduct was directly counter to values of the Constitution and our nation.

   Finding #2: The nation’s most senior officials, through some of their actions and failures to act in the months and years immediately following the September 11 attacks, bear ultimate responsibility for allowing and contributing to the spread of illegal and improper interrogation techniques used by some U.S. personnel on detainees in several theaters. Responsibility also falls on other government officials and certain military leaders.

   Finding #3: There is no firm or persuasive evidence that the widespread use of harsh interrogation techniques by U.S. forces produced significant information of value. There is substantial evidence that much of the information adduced from the use of such techniques was not useful or reliable.

   Finding #16: For detainee hunger strikers, DOD operating procedures called for practices and actions by medical professionals that were contrary to established medical and professional ethical standards, including improper coercive involuntary feedings early in the course of hunger strikes that, when resisted, were accomplished by physically forced nasogastric tube feedings of detainees who were completely restrained.

   Finding #19: The high level of secrecy surrounding the rendition and torture of detainees since September 11 cannot continue to be justified on the basis of national security.

   Finding #21: The Convention Against Torture requires each state party to “[c]riminalize all acts of torture, attempts to commit torture, or complicity or participation in torture,” and “proceed to a prompt and impartial investigation, wherever there is reasonable ground to believe that an act of torture has been committed in any territory under its jurisdiction.” The United States cannot be said to have complied with this requirement.

The panel was formed after Pres. Barack Obama decided in 2009 not to support a national commission to investigate the post-9/11 counterterrorism programs, as proposed by Senator Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) and others. “Look forward, not backward”, the president said. included former Senator Asa Hutchinson (R-AL), who served in President George W. Bush’s administration from 2003-2005 as the Under Secretary for Border and Transportation Security in the Department of Homeland Security, and former Representative James Jones (D-OK) who served as the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico from 1993-1997.  Among the other members were a three-star general and former president of the American Bar Association.

Significantly the New York Times article notes this:

The United States is a signatory to the International Convention Against Torture, which requires the prompt investigation of allegations of torture and the compensation of its victims. [..]

While the Constitution Project report covers mainly the Bush years, it is critical of some Obama administration policies, especially what it calls excessive secrecy. It says that keeping the details of rendition and torture from the public “cannot continue to be justified on the basis of national security” and urges the administration to stop citing state secrets to block lawsuits by former detainees. [..]

The core of the report, however, may be an appendix: a detailed 22-page legal and historical analysis that explains why the task force concluded that what the United States did was torture. It offers dozens of legal cases in which similar treatment was prosecuted in the United States or denounced as torture by American officials when used by other countries.

The report compares the torture of detainees to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. “What was once generally taken to be understandable and justifiable behavior,” the report says, “can later become a case of historical regret.”

Laura Pitter, counterterrorism adviser at Human Rights Watch, joined Democracy Now‘s Amy Goodman and Nermeen Shaikh to discuss the report,s “indisputable” evidence that the Bush administration tortured.

What Marcy said:

In short: it was torture, it was illegal, it was not valuable, and it still needs to be prosecuted.

Instead, The Justice Department instead chose to prosecute Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) whistleblower John Kiriakou, who refused to participate in torture and helped exposed the torture program. Mr. Kiriakou was sentenced to prison while the torturers he exposed walk free. Nice job, Barack.

Mar 21

They Weren’t Wrong; They Lied

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

On MSNBC’s the “Last Word, Lawrence O’Donnell looked back at many of the voices who where for and against the invasion of Iraq. He said that those who were advocating for the war got it “wrong.” Well, Lawrence O’Donnell got it wrong because Pres. George W. Bush, Vice Pres. Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Donald Rumsfeld, at the time National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice and Secretary of State Colin Powell weren’t “wrong,” they lied. They lied to Congress, the press, the world and us.

They knew they were lying. They knew there were no weapons of mass destruction, no nuclear program, no connection to 9/11, Osama bin Laden or Al Qaeda. They exposed a CIA agent and her operation that was tracking Iran’s nuclear program in order to discredit her husband who said there was no evidence of a nuclear program. We will never know what happened to the people who were working with her in that operation.

They have gotten away with the worst war crime of the 21st century and, perhaps, in the history of this country. Shame on them, shame on Congress and the Justice Department for not doing its due diligence and shame on us for not demanding they be held accountable.

I’m not ready to make nice

Mar 20

Just One Soldier . . . . . . as related to Chris Hedges!

Chris Hedges visited a soldier in his home.

I flew to Kansas City last week to see Tomas Young. Young was paralyzed in Iraq in 2004. He is now receiving hospice care at his home. I knew him by reputation and the movie documentary “Body of War.”  He was one of the first veterans to publicly oppose the war in Iraq.  He fought as long and as hard as he could against the war that crippled him, until his physical deterioration caught up with him. . . .

This “telling of a soldier” is very sensitive and I think should simply be read without “pieces” so to speak.

Here, then is his (Chris’) article:  “One of First Iraq Veterans to Publicly Oppose War Will Die for Our Sins” Monday, 11 March 2013 09:44  By Chris Hedges, Truthdig | Op-Ed

Chris’ article so gripped author, William River Pitts, that he responded in

“Waking From My Moral Coma,”
Wednesday, 13 March 2013 09:07, Truthout | Op-Ed

In this article, Pitts questions his own moral fibre:

I’ve been having trouble with mirrors lately. When I look these days, I see a bastard staring back, a stranger, a guy who should be ashamed of himself.

He is.

A long, long time ago, I wrote this: “America is an idea, a dream. You can take away our cities, our roads, our crops, our armies, you can take all of that away, and the idea that is America will still be there, as pure and great as anything conceived by the human mind.”

I still believe that, and therein lies the problem. I am a sucker for that dream, that idea, and for the last few years I allowed it to seduce me. . .. .

But Pitts takes it much further from there:

and when I look in the mirror, I cannot meet my own eyes. I spent all those years fighting against everything that is ending Tomas Young’s life, I made documenting their serial crimes my life’s work…and then I let it slide, because Bush was gone, and I couldn’t summon the necessary energy to remain outraged over the fact that they all got away with the crime of the millennium scot-free.

It is enough.

I am finished with the moral geometry that says this is better than that, which makes this good. This is not good; this is, in fact, intolerable. Allowing the perpetrators of war crimes – widely televised ones at that – to retain their good name and go on Sunday talk shows as if they had anything to offer besides their ideology of murder and carnage is intolerable. Entertaining the idea that the billions we spend preparing for war cannot be touched, and so the elderly and the infirm and the young and the weak and the voiceless must pay the freight instead, is intolerable.

Read the rest of Pitts’ article ‘here’!

Every single American should be compelled to read the foregoing article by Chris Hedges, as well as William Rivers Pitt commenting on the article and himself.  

Jan 04

Systemic Rot

President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) today despite his veto threat. The law now restricts detainee transfers out of military prisons in Afghanistan and Guant√°namo Bay. “Obama attached a signing statement claiming that he has the constitutional power to override the limits in the law,” the New York Times reports. “Despite his objections, Mr. Obama signed the bill, saying its other provisions on military programs were too important to jeopardize.”

Obama’s three page signing statement objected to many parts of the bill. For example, Obama objects to what I’m calling the “Romney battleship preservation” clause:

In a time when all public servants recognize the need to eliminate wasteful or duplicative spending, various sections in the Act limit the Defense Department’s ability to direct scarce resources towards the highest priorities for our national security. For example, restrictions on the Defense Department’s ability to retire unneeded ships and aircraft will divert scarce resources needed for readiness and result in future unfunded liabilities.

But, more troublesome to the president and those of us who want to see Gitmo closed, is the NDAA interferes with his ability to close military detention prisons. He writes:

Several provisions in the bill also raise constitutional concerns. Section 1025 places limits on the military’s authority to transfer third country nationals currently held at the detention facility in Parwan, Afghanistan… Decisions regarding the disposition of detainees captured on foreign battlefields have traditionally been based upon the judgment of experienced military commanders and national security professionals without unwarranted interference by Members of Congress. Section 1025 threatens to upend that tradition, and could interfere with my ability as Commander in Chief…

[…]

Section 1028 fundamentally maintains the unwarranted restrictions on the executive branch’s authority to transfer detainees to a foreign country. This provision hinders the Executive’s ability to carry out its military, national security, and foreign relations activities and would, under certain circumstances, violate constitutional separation of powers principles… The Congress designed these sections, and has here renewed them once more, in order to foreclose my ability to shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.

There has been much criticism of the 112th Congress as the worst Congress ever, but writing at Esquire today, Charlie Pierce observes that it is more than just Congress that is out-of-whack when it comes to governance. Presidential signing statements are another alarm warning us that our system of government is broken. Pierce writes:

Yes, Congress has partly tied his hands, and it has done so by making it harder for him to close Gitmo down. But, even against that, the president argues for the supremacy of the executive branch in such matters. That, coupled with a veto warning that was as empty as a toddler’s threat to run away from home, vitiates any case the president might choose to make that what he really wants to do is to protect the Bill Of Rights. The presidency has been allowed to become a dangerous beast over a number of decades, to the point where anyone who seeks it can rightly be presumed to have at least the spark of lawless authoritarianism in him. And, if that spark is there, the presidency will seek it out and bring it to flame. This president is no different.

Despite the conservatives’ deranged bluster, Obama is not acting differently from any other chief executive we’ve had since the end of World War II according to Pierce. For example, the Obama administration has refused to disclose which criteria are used to kill people with drone missile attacks. The legality of the strike that killed American-born Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen is debatable.

Yesterday, a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by ACLU and the New York Times was rejected by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. “Judge Colleen McMahon found that though she agrees that debate on the usage of drone strikes should be made in the open, she is unable to force the government to turn over the documents under FOIA”.

In her ruling, McMahon wrote:

However, this Court is constrained by law, and under the law, I can only conclude that the Government has not violated FOIA by refusing to turn over the documents sought in the FOIA requests, and so cannot be compelled by this court of law to explain in detail the reasons why its actions do not violate the Constitution and the laws of the United States. The Alice-in-Wonderland [sic] nature of this pronouncement is not lost on me; but after careful and extensive consideration, I find myself stuck in a paradoxical situation in which I cannot solve a problem because of contradictory constraints and rules – a veritable Catch-22. I can find no way around the thicket of laws and precedents that effectively allow the Executive Branch of our Government to proclaim as perfectly lawful certain actions that seem on their face incompatible with our Constitution and laws, while keeping the reason for their conclusion a secret.

From this Pierce concludes:

This is the way all presidents, most especially including this one, want it to be. This is the way the presidency has insisted on operating ever since the Cold War. This is what you get when you don’t listen to old Ike’s warning, when you let the Kennedys run amuck concerning Castro, when you let Lyndon fake an incident in the Tonkin Gulf, when you impeach Nixon over a burglary and not the illegal bombing of Cambodia, when you let everyone skate on Iran-Contra, when you impeach one president over a blowjob but let another one slide for lying the country into a war, for abrogating treaties and violating international law regarding torture, when you let a sociopath like Richard Cheney anywhere near the levers of power, and when you let a president decide which American lives or dies by standards he declines to share with the rest of us. This is what you get. Barack Obama didn’t sell out the Bill Of Rights today because he’s Barack Obama. Barack Obama sold out the Bill Of Rights today because he’s the president of the United States, and that’s now part of the damn job description.

If the job description for the President of the United States is to sell out the Bill of Rights, then America has more problems than just the worst Congress ever. The separation of powers, our whole system of checks and balances, are rotting away. This is the core of our Constitution.

While many of us on the left trust President Obama to do the right thing. The problem is that Obama will only be at the White House for four more years. Instead of having laws to protect us the abuse of power, we are left with having personalities to protect us from the abuse of power. What happens with the next president? Will he or she ignite that “spark”?

Presidents have proved to be unwilling to relinquish any power secured by their predecessors. For example, in 2008, soon-to-be former Vice President Cheney predicted then President-elect Obama would “appreciate” the expansion of presidential power that happened in the Bush administration. Cheney said:

Once they get here and they’re faced with the same problems we deal with every day, then they will appreciate some of the things we’ve put in place…

I believe very deeply, in a strong executive, and I think that’s essential in this day and age. And I think the Obama administration is not likely to cede that authority back to the Congress. I think they’ll find that given a challenge they face, they’ll need all the authority they can muster.

In turn, then-President-elect Obama said four years ago that he was reluctant to investigate Bush-era abuses of power, citing his “belief that we need to look forward as opposed to looking backwards.”

The inability of neither our partisan Congress nor our self-interested executive branch nor our law-twisted courts to investigate or limit or hold accountable the expansion of presidential power demonstrates a systemic flaw on our republic. This growing inability to hold accountable those serving in our nation’s highest offices allows for more potential abuses of power.

When presidents believe it is necessary to sign bills with caveats, because a veto means throwing needed legislation back to a dysfunctional lawmaking body; when the presidency collects more power and all that is needed for the person in the Oval Office to get a “spark” of authoritarianism to burst into flame; when our federal judges cannot find themselves in a “Catch-22” situation making it impossible to hold the executive branch accountable nor require them to explain their secrecy, then we have more problems than just the worst Congress ever. We’re getting closer to the worst government ever.

The nation’s constitutional core is rotting away.

Cross-posted from Daily Kos.

Sep 04

Obama’s War On American Values

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

In June of 2007, John A. Rizzo had been the C.I.A’s acting general counsel on and off for most of the past six years, including the period in 2002 when the Bush administration was constructing a legal foundation for the agency’s then secret detention and interrogation program. As acting council, it was Mr. Rizzo has guided many agency leaders on the legal labyrinth of clandestine operations and the often ensuing investigations.

During his confirmation hearing’s for the permanent post before the Democratic controlled Senate Intelligence Committee, Senate Democrats pressed Mr. Rizzo about whether he agreed with a 2002 Justice Department memorandum that gave legal guidance to the C.I.A. program. The memorandum argued that nothing short of the pain associated with organ failure constituted illegal torture. The memorandum had been issued at the request from the agency on the use of interrogation techniques, such as waterboarding, in secret detention centers overseas. While Mr, Rizzo testified that at the time he did not object to the memorandum, he told the Senators that he now felt that it was overly broad. In September, just before the was to vote to reject him for the position, the White House withdrew the nomination without explanation. Mr. Rizzo remained in his position until the Summer of 2009 when he retired after 30 years.

Now two years since his departure, Mr. Rizzo granted an interview to PBS’s Frontline, “Top Secret America” on September 6 and what he is saying further confirms that President Barack Obama has lied, and continues to lie, to the American people about the CIA’s secret programs and who knows what else.

   I was part of the transition briefings of the incoming Obama team, and they signaled fairly early on that the incoming president believed in a vigorous, aggressive, continuing counterterrorism effort. Although they never said it exactly, it was clear that the interrogation program was going away. We all knew that.

   But his people were signaling to us, I think partly to try to assure us that they weren’t going to come in and dismantle the place, that they were going to be just as tough, if not tougher, than the Bush people.

snip

With a notable exception of the enhanced interrogation program, the incoming Obama administration changed virtually nothing with respect to existing CIA programs and operations. Things continued. Authorities were continued that were originally granted by President Bush beginning shortly after 9/11. Those were all picked up, reviewed and endorsed by the Obama administration.

As a candidate, President Obama had promised “a top to bottom review of the threats we face and our abilities to confront them.” He pledged to overhaul of the Bush administration’s war on terror, which he criticized for compromising American values. He had also promised in 2008, that he would filibuster the reauthorization of FISA without major reforms. He lied then, too, voting for the act’s renewal and “promising”to say, to fix it later. Needless  FISA not been “fixed” nor has the Patriot Act which has been extended for four years, unamended, at the president’s request. For this Mr. Obama has garnered the approval of admitted war criminal and former Bush Vice President, Dick Cheney who proudly proclaimed in an interview with Politico’s Mike Allen

“[Obama] ultimately had to adopt many of the same policies that we had been pursuing because that was the most effective way to defend the nation.”

Obama has continues these core Bush/Cheney Terrorism policies, strengthening them and  converting them from right-wing dogma into bipartisan consensus. Dick Cheney must be so proud.

 

Aug 27

Confessions of a War Criminal

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Former Vice President Dick Cheney is back in the news with the release of his tell all autobiography, “In My Time“, a revealing “memoir” of his eight years as vice president, at the same time a self indictment that chronicles his abuse of power and total disregard for the Constitution and laws of the United States. It is also an indictment of President Barack Obama who has refused to prosecute him and President George W. Bush, instead choosing cover up the evidence by declaring it “state secrets” and to block any attempts to bring these war criminals to justice.

As Greenwald noted in his Salon article:

As he embarks on his massive publicity-generating media tour of interviews, Cheney faces no indictments or criminal juries, but rather reverent, rehabilitative tributes, illustrated by this, from Politico today:

Photobucket

That’s what happens when the Government — marching under the deceitful Orwellian banner of Look Forward, Not Backward — demands that its citizens avert their eyes from the crimes of their leaders so that all can be forgotten: the crimes become non-crimes, legitimate acts of political choice, and the criminals become instantly rehabilitated by the message that nothing they did warrants punishment.  That’s the same reason people like John Yoo and Alberto Gonzales are defending their torture and illegal spying actions not in a courtroom but in a lush conference of elites in Aspen.

Mar 09

The Law of War Criminals, Up Date

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Two years and two months ago the American people hailed a new President and an end to our national nightmare of the Bush reign of eight years of trampling the Constitution, the laws that govern  and the economy. Since then the reality that nothing has changed comes down with crashing reality. This President, Barack Hussein Obama, is as complicit as the last President in the war on the US Constitution, International laws and treaties and human rights. Today it became evidently clear that Obama is not Bush, he’s Cheney.

Today Obama issued an Executive Order (pdf) that not only will restart the Military Commissions at Guantanamo but also orders indefinite detention for forty seven detainees without any of them ever being charged with a crime. Why? Because Obama is covering up the war crimes of the previous administration which, according to the Nuremberg Principles, is a war crime. Claims that the evidence against these men would harm national security just rings hollow.

Marcy Wheeler at FDL explains that “the new and improved Military Detention Regime has two parts”. The first part relates to the indefinite detention polices without anything other than a claim of “because I say it’s justified”:

“Continued law of war detention is warranted for a detainee subject to the periodic review in section 3 of this order if it is necessary to protect against a significant threat to the security of the United States.

. . . .this doesn’t appear to tie to any wrong-doing on the detainee’s part. “It” here appears to refer to “continued law of war detention,” suggesting that “it” may be necessary regardless of any threat posed by the detainee himself.

Also note that the standard “significant threat to the security of the United States” doesn’t invoke the war (ostensibly, the war against Afghanistan) itself. This seems very very wrong. It also seems designed to authorized the continued detention of the Yemeni detainees who we admit aren’t themselves a threat, but must be detained, our government says, because they come from a dangerous country.

(all emphasis mine)

The EO also restarts the Military Commissions where evidence that has been attained through torture is admissible.

Dana Milbank, in his Op-Ed, remarked that the conference call with reporters and “some top-notch lawyers from across the executive branch” with “ground rules required that the officials not be identified”, sounded very much like what the Bush lawyers used to say:

It was another important moment in the education of Barack Obama.

He began his presidency with a pledge to close the military prison at Guantanamo Bay within a year. Within months, he realized that was impossible. And now he has essentially formalized George W. Bush’s detention policy.

Even the Tea Baggers, like newly minted Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Mike Lee(R-UT), are saying indefinite detention is wrong and calling for trials in civilian courts:

Fox News contributor Andrew Napolitano, subbing for Glenn Beck on his television show, hosted Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY) and Mike Lee (R-UT) to talk about a variety of issues. At one point, Napolitano mentioned Obama’s announcement and queried the two senators about their positions on indefinite detention. Lee and Paul both broke with the standard positions of their party, slamming the policy and endorsing trials for terrorism suspects instead. Paul said that he had met with a mother of a 9/11 victim who said that what she really wanted to see was justice, and that the best way to do that was to “have trials.” Lee said that detaining someone who “has been tried and found not guilty” is “particularly problematic”

Human Rights Watch points out that 47 of these men will never be tried. Those detainees will be able to “submit documentary evidence every six months, but will only go before the full panel once every three years”. However, as the press release states, “the use by the US of indefinite detention without trial still fails to meet the most basic elements of due process under international law”.

While Obama’s EO confirms the administration’s commitment to prosecuting  some cases in civilian courts

“Is added review an improvement? Yes. Does it make US detention policies lawful? No,”

said Andrea Prasow, senior counterterrorism counsel at Human Rights Watch. “Signing an executive order does not suddenly make it legal to lock people up and hold them forever without proving they have committed a crime.”

HRW further notes:

. . .compared to federal courts, military commissions have moved very slowly. During the nine years since the military commissions were first announced, military prosecutors have brought only six cases to completion, four of them by plea bargain. Federal courts, in contrast, have prosecuted hundreds of terrorism-related offenses during the same period, convicting, among others, 9/11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui and “shoe bomber” Richard Reid.

“Any trial in the military commission system carries the stigma of Guantanamo and will be tainted by a lack of due process,” Prasow said. “A verdict in the federal court system, in contrast, would be recognized internationally as legitimate.”

As I read through the executive order and news articles, all that I could think of was that surely, Dick Cheney will approve.

Jan 22

Damning Praise for Obama from “Dead Eye” Dick

Damning, indeed.

Cheney: Obama has learned that Bush policies were right

By Daniel Strauss

01/17/11 05:18 PM ET

President Obama has “learned from experience” that some of the Bush administration’s decisions on terrorism issues were necessary, according to former Vice President Dick Cheney.

In his first interview since undergoing major heart surgery last July, Cheney said he thinks Obama has been forced to rethink some of his national security positions now that he sits in the Oval Office.

“I think he’s learned that what we did was far more appropriate than he ever gave us credit for while he was a candidate. So I think he’s learned from experience. And part of that experience was the Democrats having a terrible showing last election.”

Cheney also asserted that Obama has learned that the prison at Guantanamo Bay simply cannot be closed, despite the promises he made while campaigning for the White House.

“I think he’s learned that he’s not going to be able to close Guantanamo,” Cheney said. “That it’s – if you didn’t have it, you’d have to create one like that. You’ve got to have some place to put terrorists who are combatants who are bound and determined to try to kill Americans.”

Cheney made the comments about Obama in an interview that is set to air Tuesday on NBC’s “Today.” The interview was Cheney’s first since before he underwent heart surgery in July. Doctors introduced a device into his heart that pumps blood from the ventricle chamber to his aorta.

From a “dead man walking”

Jan 19

Arrrrrghhh !!!

As Lieberman deliberated, the new chair of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), told HuffPost that the party would consider supporting Lieberman if he returned to the fold.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…

Joe Lieberman,Senator Joe Lieberman

Joe & George the President


The feeling of ill will is mutual: Lieberman said during the health care debate that one reason he opposed a Medicare buy-in compromise was that progressives were embracing it.

Joe Lieberman and John McCain

Joe & John the Presidential Candidate




March 20, 2003

” What we are doing here is not only in the interest of the safety of the American people. Believe me, Saddam Hussein would have used these weapons against us eventually or given them to terrorists who would have. But what we are doing here, in overthrowing Saddam and removing those weapons of mass destruction and taking them into our control, is good for the security of people all over the world, including the Iraqi people themselves.”

http://www.lobelog.com/lieberm…

John McCain Joe Lieberman,McCain,Lieberman

Joe and John in Iraq


September 29, 2011.    10 years and 18 days after 9-11 attacks on NYC



” It is time for us to take steps that make clear that if diplomatic and economic strategies continue to fail to change Iran’s nuclear policies, a military strike is not just a remote possibility in the abstract, but a real and credible alternative policy that we and our allies are ready to exercise.

It is time to retire our ambiguous mantra about all options remaining on the table. It is time for our message to our friends and enemies in the region to become clearer: namely, that we will prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability — by peaceful means if we possibly can, but with military force if we absolutely must. A military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities entails risks and costs, but I am convinced that the risks and costs of allowing Iran to obtain a nuclear weapons capability are much greater.

Some have suggested that we should simply learn to live with a nuclear Iran and pledge to contain it. In my judgment, that would be a grave mistake. As one Arab leader I recently spoke with pointed out, how could anyone count on the United States to go to war to defend them against a nuclear-armed Iran, if we were unwilling to go to war to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran? Having tried and failed to stop Iran’s nuclear breakout, our country would be a poor position to contain its consequences.

I also believe it would be a failure of U.S. leadership if this situation reaches the point where the Israelis decide to attempt a unilateral strike on Iran. If military action must come, the United States is in the strongest position to confront Iran and manage the regional consequences. This is not a responsibility we should outsource. We can and should coordinate with our many allies who share our interest in stopping a nuclear Iran, but we cannot delegate our global responsibilities to them.”

http://www.lobelog.com/lieberm…

http://lieberman.senate.gov/in…

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