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Urge President Obama to Work With Congress to Declassify the Senate Torture Report. ACTION


US Politics & Gov't  (tags: usa, torture, post 9/11, CIA, government, cover-up )

Nancy
- 532 days ago - actions.humanrightsfirst.org
Remember the Academy Award-winning film Zero Dark Thirty? Well, last week news broke that the CIA edited the film's script to make sure that it didn't portray the "enhanced interrogation" program in a way that would make the agency look bad.



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Comments

Nancy C. (798)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 11:30 am
Arkansas (AR) Little Rock 72201 thru 72217
Indiana (IN) Indianapolis 46201 thru 46209
New Mexico (NM) Santa Fe 87500 thru 87506
Texas (TX) Austin 78701 thru 78705
New York (NY) New York 10001 thru 10048
 

Allan Yorkowitz (446)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 2:46 pm
letter sent
 

JL A. (275)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 4:32 pm
signed earlier, noted now
 

Bryna Pizzo (139)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 9:49 pm
Thank you! (s, n, p, t)
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 11:55 pm
why? so we can start torturing the ones that got us OBL?
if you don't hang out with guys that fly planes into skyscrapers or dudes that blow themselves up odds are you're not going to get tortured.
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday May 15, 2013, 11:57 pm
just a new yorker stating his opinion about people who destroy his landmarks and kill his neighbors.
 

Carol H. (229)
Friday May 17, 2013, 6:03 am
signed and noted
 

Emma S. (227)
Friday May 17, 2013, 7:13 am
Done! Thanks, Nancy.
 

Aaron Bouchard (129)
Friday May 17, 2013, 8:00 am
Signed and noted thanks
 

Gloria picchetti (297)
Friday May 17, 2013, 8:53 am
Yes, declassify! Signed.
 

Vicky P. (466)
Friday May 17, 2013, 10:26 am
noted and signed
 

Ludger W. (72)
Friday May 17, 2013, 1:39 pm
done
 

Lois Jordan (56)
Friday May 17, 2013, 2:06 pm
Gladly signed. Noted. Many thanks, Nancy.
 

. (0)
Friday May 17, 2013, 4:34 pm
Signed and Noted.
 

Birgit W. (147)
Friday May 17, 2013, 4:59 pm
Signed.
 

Darlene B. (290)
Friday May 17, 2013, 5:33 pm
Noted and signed. Thank you.
 

Barbara V. (51)
Friday May 17, 2013, 5:34 pm
Torture, whether it be inflicted on man or beast, is being sub-human. It is monstrous and something one wouldn't ordinarily expect to find in modern society. But no, it's alive and well and no doubt condoned by the government. How horriblly low mankind has fallen.
 

Dorothy N. (63)
Friday May 17, 2013, 6:11 pm
(continued from above)

Presidential Directive NSPD-51

In 2007, President Bush issued Presidential Directive NSPD-51, which purported to change Continuity of Government plans. I have argued elsewhere that issuance of NSPD-51 does not prove that Continuity of Government plans are not in effect currently.

However, even if COG plans are not currently in effect, and were somehow secretly rescinded between September 2001 and the present despite the continuing declaration of state of emergency, it is important to note the following:

NSPD51 was passed without Congressional input

Indeed, implementation of COG has been continuously hidden from Congress

Even the New York Times wrote in an editorial:

“Beyond cases of actual insurrection, the President may now use military troops as a domestic police force in response to a natural disaster, a disease outbreak, terrorist attack, or to any ‘other condition.’ Changes of this magnitude should be made only after a thorough public airing. But these new Presidential powers were slipped into the law without hearings or public debate.”

Everyone from "conservative activist Jerome Corsi [to] Marjorie Cohn of the [liberal] National Lawyer's Guild have interpreted [the COG plans contained in Presidential Directive NSPD-51] as a break from Constitutional law ...."

As a reporter for Slate concluded after analyzing NSPD-51:

"I see nothing in the [COG document entitled presidential directive NSPD51] to prevent even a "localized" forest fire or hurricane from giving the president the right to throw long-established constitutional government out the window"
White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe said that "because of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the American public needs no explanation of [Continuity of Government] plans"

Indeed, in the summer 2007, Congressman Peter DeFazio, on the Homeland Security Committee (and so with proper security access to be briefed on COG issues), inquired about continuity of government plans, and was refused access. Indeed, DeFazio told Congress that the entire Homeland Security Committee of the U.S. Congress has been denied access to the plans by the White House (video; or here is the transcript). The Homeland Security Committee has full clearance to view all information about COG plans. DeFazio concluded: "Maybe the people who think there’s a conspiracy out there are right”.

As University of California Berkeley Professor Emeritus Peter Dale Scott has warned:

"If members of the Homeland Security Committee cannot enforce their right to read secret plans of the Executive Branch, then the systems of checks and balances established by the U.S. Constitution would seem to be failing.

To put it another way, if the White House is successful in frustrating DeFazio, then Continuity of Government planning has arguably already superseded the Constitution as a higher authority."

Given the above, even under a best-case scenario -- that is, assuming that COG plans are not currently still in effect -- it is urgent that Congress and the public pay attention to this issue. Congress, the Courts, and the American people must demand that any and all COG plans be rescinded to the extent they:

(1) allow the plans to be unilaterally implemented without adequate justification by the White House (e.g. a local fire);

(2) do not have strict time limits, so that they are terminated the minute they are no longer absolutely necessary for the survival of our country;

(3) do not include Congress in the planning process; or

(4) unnecessarily destroy Constitutional protections, when our country could still be protected if such protections were respected.

What Should We Do Now?

Who will demand that the Constitution is respected? The hard reality is that the White House will not agree to follow the Constitution and the rule of law, or even to disclose whether or not the COG plans which were implemented on 9/11 are still in effect, unless the public demands it. It is up to us.

Professor Scott stresses the importance of public pressure in this regard:

"Will Congress insist on its right of review COG? The answer to this question will depend on discussion in the blogosphere, the degree of pressure exerted by the electorate on their representatives, and the questions asked the men and women who would be president."

And Congressman Kucinich - who is leading the charge for impeachment - says that the American people must pressure Congress every day to issue subpoenas to the White House to determine whether COG plans are in effect, and to get a copy of the plans.



Emrys M., it wasn't only those accused of terrorism who lost their most basic human rights in that fascist travesty - as always, when any group is held to be unequal and 'unworthy' of such rights, what happens to them can then happen to us all.

And once ruthless powers gain ascendency, it may take the concerted effort of the great bulk of those choking in - and too-often blinded by - the PR dust churned out by the chariot wheels of the mighty to topple them back to our level where they can be controlled by the interests of 'we, the people,' as democracy intends.


A lot of important bits were cut in the above, which is quite long enough as it stands - I'd strongly suggest reading each article in full.
 

Andre Yokers (6)
Friday May 17, 2013, 7:11 pm
Stop the torture!
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday May 18, 2013, 12:21 am
Signed.
 

Patricia H. (454)
Saturday May 18, 2013, 5:04 am
done
 
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