Wed Oct 3, 2012, 10:21 AM
DonViejo (17,336 posts)
Bush Lawyer: Proposed Romney Torture Policy Is ‘Indisputably Illegal’
Last week, New York Times reporter Charlie Savage unearthed an internal Romney campaign memo advising the candidate to bring back Bush-era “enhanced interrogation techniques” if elected. Though the memo notes that “it is difficult to point to concrete ways in which the Obama Administration’s renunciation of enhanced interrogation techniques has undermined America’s effort in the fight against terrorism,” it recommends a President Romney “pledge” to “rescind President Obama’s executive order restricting government interrogators” from torturing detainees.
This Wednesday, Jack Goldsmith, the head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) under President George W. Bush, concluded that any return to the use of torture or any other so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” would be both “indisputably illegal” and strongly opposed by the interrogators who would be tasked with the torturing. Goldsmith, a prominent right-wing legal mind who focuses on terrorism and the law, wrote that a Romney administration would likely not rescind Obama’s torture ban for these reasons (among others):
As a result of the many wrenching investigations (some still ongoing) and other consequences of its interrogation experiences during the last decade, I think the CIA (and DOD, and the rest of the intelligence community) would firmly resist any resumption of official responsibilities for interrogation techniques that departed a lot from the current settlement. Third, I think the likelihood of a return to waterboarding and other extreme interrogation techniques is — despite polls and Romney campaign statements – nill. There are many reasons for this, including bureaucratic resistance, but the main one is that such techniques are now indisputably illegal, and I do not believe that both Houses of Congress would vote to wind back the protections of the Detainee Treatment Act and common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention.
Since the central argument in the memo for rescinding Obama’s executive order is that Bush-era torture was effective (contra the expert consensus), Goldsmith’s analysis implies one of two things: Romney’s lawyers are advising him to condone “indisputably illegal” behavior or they don’t really mean what they say in the memo.
Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/security/2012/10/03/947211/goldsmith-romney-torture-illegal/
14 replies, 3622 views
Bush Lawyer: Proposed Romney Torture Policy Is ‘Indisputably Illegal’ (Original post)
|Nancy Waterman||Oct 2012||#1|
|Bette Noir||Oct 2012||#2|
|Kelvin Mace||Oct 2012||#8|
|Kelvin Mace||Oct 2012||#7|
|Kelvin Mace||Oct 2012||#6|
|Solly Mack||Oct 2012||#10|
Response to DonViejo (Original post)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 10:53 AM
Bette Noir (3,581 posts)
2. This is one of the ways the US has been degraded over my lifetime.
When I was a kid, no American would endorse torture. That was how we knew we were the Good Guys.
Response to yurbud (Reply #3)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 04:47 PM
harmonicon (12,007 posts)
13. You realize how fucked up that logic is, right?
So, it's better if we just kill accused criminals? It's quite possible that no one knew more about international terrorism than Osama Bin Laden. We didn't interrogate him at all - with torture or not. We just killed him. Is that what we should do with other accused criminals? Is murder better than torture?
Response to harmonicon (Reply #13)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 06:31 PM
yurbud (36,207 posts)
14. I'm thinking very short term, Romney vs. Obama
Obama hasn't truly forsaken torture anyway given the treatment of Bradley Manning.
Response to OnyxCollie (Reply #4)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 02:26 PM
Kelvin Mace (15,513 posts)
8. Yeah, that would be so "bi-partisan" of him
Besides, he's with them on everything except voter suppression.
Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #7)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 02:45 PM
Berlum (7,044 posts)
11. ...but, it comes in handy when you need to do Role Reversal
There you have it. In a nutshell.
Somebody (R) needs to GET OVER IT, and stop PROJECTING IT on others...
Response to DonViejo (Original post)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 02:23 PM
Kelvin Mace (15,513 posts)
6. Torture is now the norm and is legal
If it had ever been truly illegal, BushCo management would have been tried for war crimes. They were not, so no one will ever be, so torture is now legal, de facto.
Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #6)
Wed Oct 3, 2012, 03:31 PM
OnyxCollie (9,619 posts)
12. "And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you.
The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in—your nation, your people—is not the world you were born in at all. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves; when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. Now you live in a system which rules without responsibility even to God. The system itself could not have intended this in the beginning, but in order to sustain itself it was compelled to go all the way.
"You have gone almost all the way yourself. Life is a continuing process, a flow, not a succession of acts and events at all. It has flowed to a new level, carrying you with it, without any effort on your part. On this new level you live, you have been living more comfortably every day, with new morals, new principles. You have accepted things you would not have accepted five years ago, a year ago, things that your father, even in Germany, could not have imagined.
"Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven’t done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we do nothing). You remember those early meetings of your department in the university when, if one had stood, others would have stood, perhaps, but no one stood. A small matter, a matter of hiring this man or that, and you hired this one rather than that. You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair.
"What then? You must then shoot yourself. A few did. Or ‘adjust’ your principles. Many tried, and some, I suppose, succeeded; not I, however. Or learn to live the rest of your life with your shame. This last is the nearest there is, under the circumstances, to heroism: shame. Many Germans became this poor kind of hero, many more, I think, than the world knows or cares to know."
-Milton Mayer, They Thought They were Free: The Germans 1933-45