Wrong Again, Mr. Obama

Obama on prosecution of CIA torturers:

CIA "cargo" plane (read as "rendition")

CIA "cargo" plane (read as "rendition")

Mr Obama gave an assurance that “those who carried out their duties relying in good faith upon legal advice from the Department of Justice… will not be subject to prosecution”    BBC

Nuremberg Principle IV states:

The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him.

We all know by now that torture does not produce actionable intelligence of any kind.   We know that now but they knew that… then.  So the question is; why did they do it? Why did they risk prosecution, imprisonment, the loss of their careers… why did they torture people in the first place, if it wasn’t to gain intel?  What does torture really accomplish that was worth the risk?

If we understand the reason, then we begin to understand the likelihood that it will happen again. Especially now that the new administration is utilizing this ridiculous  “I was only obeying orders” defense to absolve those responsible.  Were they only obeying orders when they tortured children?

As Bruce Fein, a key participant in the efforts to impeach George W. Bush, puts it;  ‘… Obama has proven a political coward dangerous to the republic.”

A Lexicon of Disappointment

(I have been wondering what Naomi had been doing recently, then I ran across this reposted at WRH.  She published it at The Nation and Huffington Post,  the mainstays of Obama-ites and politically correct “Obama-speak”.  She certainly has guts.  You gotta give her that. I posted the pic because I have a school-boy crush on her, you won’t see a pic of Glenn Greenwald on this site.)

by Naomi Klein, Naomi Klein.org

I was a bit concerned about posting my latest column on Huffington Post, for obvious reasons. But I have decided to do it anyway, in the hopes that HuffPo readers will submit additions and modifications to the Lexicon of Disappointment. Or, alternatively, just yell about how wrong I am.

I await the verdict…

naomikleinAll is not well in Obamafanland. It’s not clear exactly what accounts for the change of mood. Maybe it was the rancid smell emanating from Treasury’s latest bank bailout. Or the news that the president’s chief economic adviser, Larry Summers, earned millions from the very Wall Street banks and hedge funds he is protecting from reregulation now. Or perhaps it began earlier, with Obama’s silence during Israel’s Gaza attack.

Whatever the last straw, a growing number of Obama enthusiasts are starting to entertain the possibility that their man is not, in fact, going to save the world if we all just hope really hard.

This is a good thing. If the superfan culture that brought Obama to power is going to transform itself into an independent political movement, one fierce enough to produce programs capable of meeting the current crises, we are all going to have to stop hoping and start demanding.

Continue reading