CIA coverup, take action

Manny says:
The head of the C.I.A., Michael Hayden, announced the agency destroyed tapes of what he called a "harsh interrogation" and what you and I would call torture. The reason? To protect agency operatives from legal consequences.

This is a cover-up of epic proportions. On the Senate floor, Senator Kennedy warned his colleagues, "We haven't seen anything like this since the 18-and-a-half-minute gap in the tapes of Richard Nixon."

So far the attorney general has responded by launching a "preliminary inquiry." But the Justice Department and the C.I.A. cannot be trusted to investigate themselves -- these are the very same agencies that authorized and carried out the government's torture program. Only an independent prosecutor can get at the truth.

The ACLU is planning to deliver a petition to Attorney General Mukasey and members of Congress demanding an independent prosecutor to investigate crimes that may have been committed by the CIA personnel or other top administration officials.

Link to sign petition


  1. Yeah… it’s always heartwarming to learn that a government agency is investigating itself, particularly under this administration.

    They’re “workin’ hard” 24/7 I guess.

  2. …and this information will in no way help single you out as a rabble-rouser, trouble maker, etc. to the government.

  3. I have very little faith that Mukasey will be of any use in this. The man is a gutless, partisan toad who can’t answer a simple yes or no question.

    “Is waterboarding torture?”
    “The US doesn’t torture.”

    lather, rinse, repeat…

  4. wait a minute, this is all hitting just a few news cycles after the old hands at the cia told a significant truth about iranian wmd, scuppering a major neocon foreign policy initiative.

    amazed that msm isn’t making the connection.


  5. “To protect agency operatives from legal consequences.”

    This is called Obstruction of Justice.

    Unless you work for the government, or for a party the opposition of which doesn’t have the sac to go after you: then it’s–maybe–a Contempt of Court citation. You know, like a parking ticket?

    The argument is that an intelligence agency must be able to keep some secrets. OK, fair enough. But from its own government?! When an investigation is being conducted?

  6. I wouldn’t call it torture, and we do need to protect those CIA agents. You guys need to remember that we are in a time of war and also consider the two people who were being questioned.

    Furthermore, it’s not obstruction of justice. Key members of Congress were notified before those tapes were destroyed. The record of the interrogation was not destroyed and there is NO legal basis for requiring video to be part of that record.

    The Democrats are going to do their best to make the most of this politically – they are going to talk tough and make demands. But in the end you will see how they truly feel about this issue based on their inaction. Whats more, with the presidential election nearing, it hill hurt Democrats if they appear to be more concerned the feeling of two Al Qaeda leaders than protecting the Nation. I can’t wait until this issue comes up in a debate.

  7. (#8) “Furthermore, it’s not obstruction of justice. Key members of Congress were notified before those tapes were destroyed. The record of the interrogation was not destroyed and there is NO legal basis for requiring video to be part of that record.”

    There WAS an investigation going on, and the members of Congress who were informed are thus open to the same accusations of obstruction or contempt, I would think. Whether it’s prosecutable is another matter. It’s ethically shady at the very least, it seems to me.

    And don’t try to make it a partisan issue. It’s not. That’s misdirection.

    As for “we are at war.” We aren’t. Not really. You have no idea what it’s like to be at war, and neither do I. The British who survived the Blitz do. The Germans who survived WWII do. We are watching others fight on TV. So don’t be so cavalier when talking about “being at war,” please.

    PS: if you’re saying that waterboarding isn’t torture, you are just flat out wrong.

  8. (#10) Why is a debate about transparency in a free democracy a partisan debate?

    You might argue that the actions being taken currently are politically motivated, but the issues raised are ones that have historically come up under both Democratic and Republican administrations.

    That’s why I say it’s not a partisan issue.

  9. OK, there’s a lot of “rah-rah!” and an additional lot of sabre rattling and we’ll probably never get the whole truth; but here’s what really bugs me: In short it’s the hypocrisy of it all.

    Remember that it was this administration (and people in very high places at that) that made sure that Miss Plame, a covert CIA operative, was outed. This was for no better reason then the fact that they didn’t like an op-ed, which her husband wrote for the New York times.

    Now you have the same folks argue that those tapes endangered the identity of the respective CIA operatives (read torturers).

    I’m scratching my head in mystification…

  10. Kevitivity, we’ve been over the whole waterboarding thing before. It’s torture.

    Claiming that something is a partisan issue is just a way to belittle it without addressing it. This is not a partisan issue. Or rather, if it is, the Republicans are in a state of treason.

  11. The CIA agent who led one of those taped sessions is going to be interviewed on ABC. He said himself that he considers waterboarding torture.

    He thought at the time that it was justified, but he’s not so sure now. But he considers the technique torture.

    Waterboarding is torture. Period. End of story.

  12. @ #12 The Bush administration wasn’t behind the outing of Plame. Richard Armitage, A Bush critic did it.

    And for the final time – water boarding IS NOT torture – that debate is over.

  13. The Bush Administration’s working definition of “Torture” several years ago (and on to today for all I know) was “anything that causes organ failure or death.” Anyone can plainly see that this definition is a bunch of horse shit, and they know it full well. So while waterboarding may not fit into the Official definition of torture, any reasonable person will point at it and say “That is the kind of stuff I don’t want you doing in my name.”

    The current executive administration would have a lot to account for, if anyone actually had the balls to hold them accountable.

  14. @ Kevitivity :

    If water boarding isn’t torture, I’m sure you’d be willing to demonstrate to us that it is not.

    Would you be willing to be water boarded, and then say that it isn’t torture? Everyone I know who’s actually been water boarded definitely considers it torture.

    What is your definition of torture Kevitivity? What does it include?

  15. @ #9:

    To quote a certain a certain bit of barracks graffiti in Ramadi:
    “America is not at war. The Marine Corps is at war; America is at the mall.”

  16. Setting the record straight, Spencer Ackerman has a more complete version of Nancy Pelosi’s statement about when she was briefed on torture techniques.

    “On one occasion, in the fall of 2002, I was briefed on interrogation techniques the Administration was considering using in the future. The Administration advised that legal counsel for the both the CIA and the Department of Justice had concluded that the techniques were legal.”

    Or in other words, the Bush admin lied and told Pelosi they were acting within the law. They just forgot to mention part where they hired John Yoo to tell them that the Geneva accords did not apply and that waterboarding was not torture (even though it has been for centuries).

    Then, when administration opponents in the CIA released the report that Iran had no nuclear program, the White House retaliated by dropping this bomb on the Dems hoping to alienate the leadership from its base. Which they have succeeded doing.

    Kevitivity is just another 23 percenter. “Instaputz” is not that reliable hun.

  17. Guys, what’s with all the hate towards Kevinity? It is as he says. Being held underwater in such a way that you can suffocate and lose consciousness, be revived right away, and put through it again, for as long as your interviewers want, doesn’t sound like torture to any sane person. It’s just like being dunked as a frat party prank. The only difference is that you can’t actually inhale any water and therefore can’t die!

    Totally not torture. That’s settled.

    Settled, I say!

  18. alex: you know people who have been waterboarded? you must have a much more exciting life than I have!

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