Category Archives: The US tortures

Obama might create a new unit for interrogations

The Wall Street Journal reports this, via Jurist:

The Obama administration may create a special unit of interrogators to handle certain terror suspects, the Wall St. Journal reported Saturday, citing unidentified government officials. In creating the unit, the administration would reduce the role of the Central Intelligence Agency in interrogating suspects as the CIA has faced criticism for its interrogation techniques during the Bush administration. It is not clear which agencies the team would draw members from, but it is expected that members of both the CIA and the FBI would be included . The interrogation team would reportedly not use certain controversial interrogation techniques like waterboarding. A spokesperson for the White House refused to comment on the report.

It can’t be a bad thing…right? The WSJ got the exclusive… Wow wee.

Human Rights groups give Obama a piece of their collective minds..

Why shouldn’t they? He has flipped on several key issues lately. It was a private off the record meeting so there isn’t any news to report other than a few leaks or statements from attendee’s, like HuffPo’s piece or CBS new’s article and Michael Isikoff’s appearance on Rachel Maddow’s show this evening discussing the meeting:

From the HuffPo piece:

In an interview with the Huffington Post, Massimino detailed what she described as a “lively and detailed and serious” discussion on some of the days most vexing national security issues. Over the course of roughly an hour and fifteen minutes, Obama, along with Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, Attorney General Eric Holder, advisers Valerie Jarrett and David Axelrod, foreign policy hand Dennis McDonough, and counter-terrorism chief John Brennan, held court with a group of academics, as well as officials with the ACLU, Human Rights Watch, and the Center for Constitutional Rights.

As for whether the discussions got heated or Isikoff’s statement that Obama was compared to Bush, Massamino said:

“I think that many of us were disappointed by the announcement about the military commissions and wondered what the reasoning was behind that. And to be honest, I am still wondering having been in this meeting today. I don’t think that this fits the overall framework that the president had articulated about using our values to reinforce a counter terrorism strategy against al Qaeda.”

Isikoff was much more negative on Maddow’s show, stating Obama wasn’t pleased with the Bush/Obama reference. The NYT writeup of the meeting contained this:

The discussion, in a 90-minute meeting in the Cabinet Room that included Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. and other top administration officials, came on the eve of a much-anticipated speech Mr. Obama is to give Thursday on a number of thorny national security matters, including his promise to close the detention center at the naval base in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

Human rights advocates are growing deeply uneasy with Mr. Obama’s stance on these issues, especially his recent move to block the release of photographs showing abuse of detainees, and his announcement that he is willing to try terrorism suspects in military commissions — a concept he criticized bitterly as a presidential candidate.

The two participants, outsiders who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the session was intended to be off the record, said they left the meeting dismayed.


“He was almost ruminating over the need for statutory change to the laws so that we can deal with individuals who we can’t charge and detain,” one participant said. “We’ve known this is on the horizon for many years, but we were able to hold it off with George Bush. The idea that we might find ourselves fighting with the Obama administration over these powers is really stunning.” (emphasis mine)

Stunning? I would say it’s extremely friggin ironic..

Philip Zelikow testifies before Congress on torture.

Mr. Zelikow is the individual that wrote the memo outlining what was wrong with the BushCo shill’s logic, with regard to the torture memo’s Jay Bybee and John Yoo scripted.

Mr. Zelikow appeared again exclusively on Rachel Maddow’s show last night after his day on the stand in congress. That video is below.

Then watch the idiot known as Lindsey Graham badger the shit out of a witness yesterday. Sweet-friggin-jaysus-in-a-speedo, Graham is still trying to justify torture. There is never a justification for torture. Never, ever. Morally and legally there is no justification, I don’t give a rat’s ass what Lindsey Graham, The Big Dick Cheney™ or Jay Bybee say.

Et tu Obama?

Well, I couldn’t stay away from Countdown. Nope, and lemme tell was one helluva doozy. I learned all about the newly released torture memo’s (courtesy of TPM Muckraker) and how Obama has no interest what so evah in prosecuting those who tortured. I will look at the redacted memo’s shortly, but let me say this…

President Obama is going down the same road President Ford did, only Obama refuses to go after those who tortured. At least the underlings were prosecuted in the Nixon administration. No such luck with the Obama administration. So no one will be held accountable for one.

KO’s Special Comment follows, as does his interview with John Dean on the subject. I am horrified that Obama wants to take this route.

But I am not surprised. President Obama has signaled he would lean this way, you just had to pay attention to hear it.

There are people out there that will be able to justify this newest fresh hell brought to us by President Obama..but I am not one of them. I find Obama’s decision unconscionable and wrong on many levels. I salute him for releasing the memo’s, and allowing us to see into the black hearts of the Bush Administration.

But I damn him and curse him for wanting to walk away from doing the right thing.

Professor Turley on the Spanish Inquisition.

He also talks about the failure of torture as a method to gather evidence..and the Big Dick Cheney and how Obama and Holder might be protecting The Shrub and the Big Dick from prosecution.