Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Dick Cheney has “formally requested” that the Dept. of Justice release more torture memos.

Cheney seems to think that waterboarding the mastermind of 9/11 182 times in a single month has really given us good information that “kept this country safe.” Most people are rightly asking, what could we POSSIBLY have gotten after the 182nd time that we didn’t have after the 163rd? Or event he 5th, if waterboarding is so damn effective (but isn’t torture)? Six times a day? And they think this guy wasn’t lying to them to get them to stop? And that was only a single month. How many times, overall, did this guy get waterboarded?

The question I would like someone to answer, however, is a bit different. Cheney “officially requested” that the DOJ release more memos, with the reason being that he believes that something out there will vindicate his position that torturing all these people (including over 100 that died due to these procedures) really produced information vital to the security of this country. So, how is Cheney able to request anything of the government? Other than having secret service protection for the rest of his life, how is this man, who did so much damage to this country, able to official request anything at all of the government? He is no longer in office. He has no power. He isn’t even an ex-president. He’s just an ex-vice president. Even George Bush is pretty much keeping quiet these days. Maybe Cheney is going the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request route. I kinda doubt it, though.

This guy is a monster.

I’ll have more to say later on President Obama’s decision to let everyone involved in this very dark chapter of this country to skate. No punishment for breaking the law. I am sick to my stomach and I am now no longer willing to give Obama much benefit of the doubt. I hope he rescues the economy of this country, but “unhappy” doesn’t even begin to describe how “unhappy” I am about this.

UPDATE via Washington Monthly. I guess I was not the only person who thought Cheney’s “request” very odd.

It's not all clear what "formal" request Cheney made to the CIA. He's a civilian with no authority at all, so what did he do, write Leon Panetta a nice letter? For that matter, what's the point of the declassification? Even if Cheney could produce instances in which torture led to reliable acquired intelligence, there's little chance that President Obama is going to say, "You know what? Cheney's right; committing war crimes isn't such a bad idea after all."

But Greg Sargent did a little digging today and found that the CIA apparently hasn't received any "formal" requests from Cheney.

"The agency has received no request from the former Vice President to release this information," [an intelligence source familiar with the situation] told me a few moments ago.

Last night, Cheney said he'd asked the CIA to release memos he had read containing all the intelligence that had been collected via torture. "I've now formally asked the CIA to take steps to declassify those memos so we can lay them out there and the American people have a chance to see what we obtained and what we learned and how good the intelligence was, as well as to see this debate over the legal opinions," Cheney said.

According to the source, there are several ways this could happen: Cheney could lodge a Freedom of Information Request (which is hard to imagine a former Veep doing); he could contact CIA officials; or he could submit the request via the White House. Cheney said he'd made the request to the CIA.

But at this point, the claim is at least suspect. And given Dick Cheney's record of breathtaking dishonesty, it seems safe to wonder if the former vice president just made this up out of whole cloth to impress the Fox News audience.

And then again, it could be that Cheney is just batshit crazy. As Wee Mousie suggests in the comments, it probably would be a good thing to get all these memos out there. "Sure, Dick. You want all these released? Sure thing." I seriously doubt that anything at this point would vindicate his position that torturing people really has kept this country safe. If anything, and many people have said this, all it has done is bring more people INTO the mob of people that hold a grudge toward the U.S. So, sure, let's get them all out there. I was just questioning how Cheney had any power to request anything like that. If he still DOES retain some sort of power within government, then this is yet one more thing that needs serious looking into.

No comments: