Prosecution May Be A Slippery Slope

>> Monday, April 27, 2009

"Many that live deserve death. And some die that deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety. Even the wise cannot see all ends." ~ J. R. R. Tolkien

The reports that Obama has bowed to pressure from Liberals are true. He had promised America that he wouldn't seek prosecution against individuals responsible for what he perceives to be war crimes, that is, rather forceful, but effective interrogation techniques, meant to illicit vital information from enemy combatants that posses knowledge of potential future terrorist attacks on our country.

But now, he has recanted, due to pressure from outspoken America-hating, "blame America first" Liberals.

Now, he has suggested that his legal department may seek legal action against the Bush administration's legal department for certain memo's they wrote regarding the method by which interrogators received information that ultimately prevented many terrorist attacks on the American people and infrastructure. At least one of these prevented attacks (the flying of airplanes into a building in Los Angeles) would have been similar to the amount of death and destruction sustained in the infamous attacks of September 11, 2001.

For the record, I personally differ from my Conservative comrades on the subject of whether the practice known as "waterboarding" can be called "torture".

I understand the practice of waterboarding is part of the standard training of CIA and other covert operative trainees. I have heard (although I can't know for sure), that no one has ever withstood more than 2 minutes under this interrogation technique. Even hardened, battle tested veterans of the CIA have failed to last more than 2 minutes.

I am loathe to disagree with so many of my Conservative heroes, such as Mark Levin, Sean Hannity, and Rush Limbaugh etc, but in my humble opinion, any technique that will cause everyone, including all CIA operatives, trainees or experienced, to break in less than two minutes is definitely torture.

How can it not be?

That said, I have no qualms whatsoever in applying any technique, torture or not, to any enemy combatants and/or terrorists, if it will save human lives.

Flaming bamboo jammed underneath fingernails? Yep. Inserting glass rods into penises and then breaking them, resulting in excruciating pain the rest of their lives every time they urinate? You betcha! Hooking testicles up to battery leads? Go for it! Attaching a bag full of ravenous rats to the face? No problem!

Whatever it takes to save American lives. Damn the Geneva Convention. They want to play rough? I say, "oblige them".

But that is not my point. So, I digress.

Not that I care if Obama gets himself into trouble, but in my opinion, Barack Hussein Obama needs to be very, very careful in going this route. Prosecuting these attorneys on Bush's staff could well be the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

If he can successfully prosecute them, what's to stop him from then going after George W. Bush himself?

This is where I believe Obama would do himself a huge favor by not heading for this slippery slope.

(I feel safe giving him this free advice because I know this will never get back to him.)

I may be wrong, and if I am, any attorneys that read this will please correct me, but there is a little term called "Legal Precedence".

Unless I'm wrong, it is very hard to break new ground, jurisprudentially (is that even a word?) speaking, unless legal precedence can be established first.

Prosecuting a former President for war crimes, or even complicity in war crimes would be a devastatingly unprecedented groundbreaking legal maneuver. And, if Obama attempts it, and is, God forbid, successful, he would be establishing legal precedence, thereby making the prosecution of a former President much easier the next time.

Therefore, should Obama go that route, he could be putting his own future in serious jeopardy.

Obama is pretty brazen, as we have seen. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if he tries it. He certainly has the required arrogance.

I almost hope he tries to prosecute Bush.

It would almost be worth it to see Obama frog marched out of the courthouse in chains.

Of course, in my opinion, he doesn't have to do anything that outrageous. He already deserves prosecution for trying to mount a quiet revolution contrary to the Constitution, in his overt attempt to change the United States of America into the United Socialist States of America.

There is also another little thing called "providing aid and comfort" to the enemies of The United States of America.

And, attempting a [violent] overthrow of the United States of America.


BenT - the unbeliever,  April 27, 2009 at 1:44 PM  

What clinches the falsity of Thiessen's claim, however (and that of the memo he cites, and that of an unnamed Central Intelligence Agency spokesman who today seconded Thessen's argument) is chronology. In a White House press briefing, Bush's counterterrorism chief, Frances Fragos Townsend, told reporters that the cell leader was arrested in February 2002, and "at that point, the other members of the cell" (later arrested) "believed that the West Coast plot has been canceled, was not going forward" [italics mine]. A subsequent fact sheet released by the Bush White House states, "In 2002, we broke up [italics mine] a plot by KSM to hijack an airplane and fly it into the tallest building on the West Coast." These two statements make clear that however far the plot to attack the Library Tower ever got -- an unnamed senior FBI official would later tell the Los Angeles Times that Bush's characterization of it as a "disrupted plot" was "ludicrous" -- that plot was foiled in 2002. But Sheikh Mohammed wasn't captured until March 2003.

How could Sheikh Mohammed's water-boarded confession have prevented the Library Tower attack if the Bush administration "broke up" that attack during the previous year? It couldn't, of course. Conceivably the Bush administration, or at least parts of the Bush administration, didn't realize until Sheikh Mohammed confessed under torture that it had already broken up a plot to blow up the Library Tower about which it knew nothing. Stranger things have happened. But the plot was already a dead letter.

--SLATE:Al-Qaida's plot to bomb the Library Tower was not worth torturing anyone over.

Marshall Art April 27, 2009 at 2:53 PM  


I don't understand your point. One of the problems described in the early days of the war was the disjointed nature of the various branches of law enforcement and intelligence; no one knowing what the other was doing.

So then one group waterboards out info from a suspect about something that was already foiled. That would be something the interrogators wouldn't know until the intel was checked. That doesn't make them evil for having attempted to procure info and getting old news, nor does it make them worthy of prosecution.

The lack of communication between the various agencies was a situation already a problem when Bush took office, the extent of which might not have been realized had we not been attacked.

Jim April 28, 2009 at 7:04 PM  

So you are trying to say that one agency found out about and broke up a plot to fly planes into the largest building in LA, it wasn't that big a deal so they didn't tell the White House about it, it wasn't conveyed to the other agency in any NSC meeting or cabinet meeting or oval office meeting and so that agency tortured the same person in order to get information that they somehow hadn't heard about.

I don't think so, Tim.

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