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More CIA Torture Docs to be Made Public This Week and Next

More CIA Torture Docs to be Made Public This Week and Next

(Updated below the post)

Watching Barack Obama effectively evade having to deal with Bush era illegalities has been difficult for his progressive supporters.  The president’s commitment to “looking forward” at the expense of discovering the truth about the Bush administration interrogation policies has led many to question their support for Obama.  If you’re one of them, read on, and I’ll attempt to quiet your doubt.

You must view this clip from the June 10 broadcast of the Rachel Maddow Show.  Along with Newsweek‘s Michael Isikoff, Rachel discusses the anticipated release of sensitive and revealing documents pertinent to the torture issue.  The exchange between the two journalists is immediately preceded by excerpts of Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D – RI) speaking from the senate floor Wednesday morning.  Rachel described his speech as “long, indignant, impassioned speech…”

Read Whitehouse’s June 10 speech in its entirety HERE.  He eviscerates Dick Cheney’s much publicized explanation of the CIA interrogation tactics.

So, we’ve got a lot to look forward to over the next week.  The un-redacted statements from “high-level members of al Qaeda” will be released on Friday.  However, these won’t do much sway the opinions of Bush defenders.  The 2004 CIA Inspector General report, having been prepared while Bush was still in power, will be more difficult to deflect.  We can expect the CIA IG report to be released on June 19.  Let’s just hope the CIA doesn’t get carried away with the black marker.

While Obama’s efforts to remain at arm’s length from the torture controversy, his previous disclosure of Bush administration Office of Legal Council memos set events in motion that have led to the above mentioned releases.  From the NewYorkTimes, June 9, 2009:

Mr. Obama’s decision in April to release legal opinions from the Bush administration on interrogation, which were sought in a lawsuit, has opened the door to the disclosure of other documents…

The NYT article assigned the credit for the upcoming disclosures to the ACLU and their legal efforts to get these documents out in the open.  Indeed, more power to them, but don’t you think that a savvy politician like Obama would have anticipated this outcome?  The question remains, however, did he intend it?

I’m inclined to think that the president wants this information to be viewed by the public, and if I’m correct, we’re witnessing an incredibly wicked political rope-a-dope… but, I’m an optimist.

Update -11 June 2009:

Unbelievable!  The documents that were to be released today are, literally, in the mail.  Snail mail.  They should be delivered on Monday.  I’m surprised that the CIA couldn’t arrange for a secure e-mail connection. /s

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Image from Flickr user: journocan - by way of CreativeCommons.org

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36 comments

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8:39PM PDT on Jun 20, 2009

Rosanne G you fit the description of:
Ignorance is bliss but stupidity is forever.
go to: http://www.factcheck.org/elections-2008/born_in_the_usa.html
Bush and Cheney dragged the US through the mud and disgraced everyone of us. Including the founding fathers.
Bush let this country down it was under his watch that 9-11 happened. He did not keep us safe
Try to deal in reality and not neocon fantasy.
You are too blind to see, to ignorant to understand and too stupid to think straight.

1:15PM PDT on Jun 15, 2009

Cut off:
I’m choosing a battle & it sure isn’t this one. I would like to see Obama’s birth certificate. REALLY! Pelosi is as guilty as Bush, Cheney, Rumsfelt. Get her out of her position as Speaker of the House. She not only gives women a bad name, but her "ignorance is Bliss". She is truly in La La Land and a blithering idiot. She is the "pot calling the kettle black". Obama is the same. He needs to stop telling us what he inherited & make the world a better place by what he enacts. It's not happening & he is spending all of our money & our children's and grandchildren's & great grandchildren's money. He "moved on up" & I don't know how the US could be "taken in" by him & "his change". The only change I see is a "weaker" America & apologies & non-existent money being spent & jobs being lost & the economy being destroyed. Maybe Oprah, William Ayers & Tony Resko can help out & "Fix what is broken" instead of digging up insignificant "bones". Maybe they know where Obama's real birth certificiate is? Sorry, but I'm not a believer & I'm allowed to feel this way because I live in the great United States of American. Please don't drag the US through the mud anymore.

12:48PM PDT on Jun 15, 2009

Let's put Nancy Pelosi, her finger pointing & denial out in the open. Put ACORN in jail for signing people to vote more than once. Close GITMO-put those terrorists in a jail in YOUR city. Put Barney Frank & his gay partner in jail for leading the financial train down the wrong track. Then release photos that put our armed services at risk and see where any of YOUR efforts get the United States. Please stop accusing the Bush administration & crying for jail. The Obama admin. is not keeping us safe & is spending our great-grandchildren’s money. Democrats do “bad things” too, in the name of justice & secrets. This seems to be old "hurtful" information to our national security. I don't want to see our troops pay for this disclosure of "ever important criminalization" of the Bush administration. Get over it. I’m glad that someone like Bush was in office after September 11, 2001. Whoever would like the pictures shown should sit down with Obama in his office & look at some aborted baby photos first. Now there’s a crime that won’t get more troops killed by terrorists, but that isn't exposed or stopped. That’s home-grown terrorism & it hides behind “a woman’s right”. I don’t care about the “Gitmo gruesomeness”, especially if it puts our nation’s troops at risk. Terrorists don’t need more reasons to hate us. We are their enemy & we will appear more despicable. I’m choosing a

10:00AM PDT on Jun 15, 2009

...WOW!!...rt, perhaps you had better just relax and take a deep breath...your intentions sound pretty dead to me...sorry to read that you hate america, (360 degrees-100%)all the way around! like i said...WOW(!!)~and i am a conservative! some who read your comment may even tell you to leave the country but that's not to fair...is it???? i would suggest if i may though, beware of the "thought police" who may be knockin' on your door once the new internet czar gets all his/her ducks in a row. i am curious as to how you became so terribly terribly bitter, but perhaps that answer should be saved for another day, hmmm?? take care.

9:36AM PDT on Jun 15, 2009

I am 60 years old and I can tell you that America has been sick a very long, long time. AmeriKa is not the "land of the free" "home of the brave" that has been proclaimed, but the land of of mercenaries who sell their own children's future out for a few bucks and some temporary power over those around them. We exploit the earth, exploit our neighbors and family and export war, rape and murder; so that we can control other nation's resources and feel "powerful and mighty". America as it is, is not worth saving, it needs to be torn down to the ground and rebuilt based on sane policies, i.e.- sharing resources, permaculture and the death of the consumer society that is destroying the very eco-systems we depend on for the survival of future generations. That America tortures and rapes and commits genocide in a matter-of-fact way is self-evident and has been since I was a child. Our 'founding fathers' did not envision this monstrosity, they envisioned small businesses helping the communities they were in through cooperative efforts intended to benefit the community. America is an abomination, a blight upon humanity and is without a doubt the "sickest" most dysfunctional nation on the globe. I hope to live to see it all come crashing down, even if it means my own life and lifestyle comes crashing down with it. America is death, it is not the land of the living, it is the land of the dead! America is death! Let the new flesh rise and be reborn!!

8:37PM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

Obama is keeping his mouth closed on this issue because now that he is in charge and has full disclosure he understands what needs to be done to defend a nation. He also realizes he may have to make some tough choices like Bush had to and will want the same protections he offers now.

7:35PM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

The main purpose of torture is to demoralize the country of the torture victim. It is using an individual as an example. Anyone with half a brain knows that torture does not reveal facts. All you have to do is read on the history of the inquisition in the middle ages to see records of many who admitted to an alliance to with demons and devils just to end the torment.

In this case what this torture did was refortify the enemy by making more of them hate us that before. This was an excellent method of making sure that the war on terror never ends, thus providing the defense contracting industry with an unlimited flow of income and stability into the future.

6:46AM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

Torture only makes people reveal what their tormentor wants to hear. It dehumanizes all involved. When I first heard the term "homeland security", I thought they were discussing Nazi Germany. Now we are supposed to be blase about the horrific things we have done and are doing in the name of security? Outrageous. Torture is torture. People who say "oh, its just waterboarding" need to be waterboarded once themselves to understand. This is not a small thing, this is not a casual thing to toss off or overlook, this is a thing that drags all of us down into the mud.

6:03AM PDT on Jun 14, 2009

When is torture not ethical when it is being done to one of ours because we are their enemy? I find it mind boggling that we think it is okay to torture the enemy, and that they think its okay to torture (us) the enemy as well. They are our enemy and we are there enemy so where does it end? How can we defend humanitarian rights if we think its okay to torture the enemy after all the people being targeted are someone else's enemy. Heck lets take it further, why should we control gang violence after all they are each others enemy's so they should be allowed to shoot each other up. It can't be right on one hand and not the other it either is or it is not. When water boarding was being used in Cambodia in the 1970's (The Killing Fields) the world was horrified and these people were called every evil name in the book. When this was used in pow camps in Viet Nam we were outraged by the vile use of torture and shouted out about the Geneva Convention. This didn't change anything and our soldiers were abused and murdered in large numbers but now that "we" are doing it to get information from "our" enemy's that is okay. Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. (ourselves) Genocide has occurred so many times because these people were the enemy to someone, was that okay to? There is no excuse for torture there is no excuse for ignoring civil rights no matter how heinous because next time, you could be the enemy.

4:49PM PDT on Jun 13, 2009

A basic guiding principle of ethics is the greater good for the greater number.

This tenet is standard procedure within the military. During a troop movement, the life of the point man is jeopardized for the benefit of the main body of troops.

Water boarding an enemy for the purpose of gaining information that could save the lives of thousands of people is within ethical standards.

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