Saturday, May 16

Leave Nancy Pelosi (The FRACK) Alone!

Look, I can understand the desire to peek under every nook and cranny of the Torture issue and to no hold anyone, even prominent Democrats, above scrutiny - but being fair-minded and even handed is not what is going on here.

This is a Diversion!

Nancy Pelosi did not Torture Anyone.

Nancy Pelosi did not devise a series of polices designed to circumvent Geneva, the War Crimes Act and the Torture Act.

Nancy Pelosi did not agree that anyone should be tortured.

Nancy Pelosi is not now making the argument that Torture isn't Torture and that Water-boarding is legal.

Regardless of who told her what, and when she was told, all the above remains true. The people we should be focusing on are STILL Yoo, Bybee, Bradbury, Gonzales, Cheney, Bush and THIS GUY!

Q: And waterboarding is or is not torture?

HOEKSTRA: There is a wide range of waterboarding. I’m telling you, that I know waterboarding was used, Shep. I’m not mincing words. I’m saying that I believe the techniques used in 2002, in 2003, which included waterboarding in a specific format that I’m aware of how they used it, that I believe that was consistent with U.S. law.

Think about the Republican position as exposed here by Hoekstra and Cheney. They all say - "Waterboarding is Legal".

Worst case scenario then is that if Nancy was briefed on Water-boarding they also Told Her It Was Legal.

Also recall, at the time this briefing took place, Hoekstra Porter Goss was the Chairman of the Intellegence Committee, so he should have been told everything - and probably more - than Pelosi. If she's guilty of inaction for being told something was "Legal" - so is he.

The briefings of Congress are not done to gain their "approval", notifying Congress is done to allow them a better picture in which to handle current and future legislation.

If a member of Congress disagrees with something they hear in a classified briefing there are only two things they can do and not go to jail - write a letter to the Administration (which Jane Harmon did) and try and change the Law (which Nancy and the House did when they passed legislation to make the CIA abide by the Army Field Manual).

Bush Vetoed that Bill.

Republicans want to distract us from the truth, they want to go after Bill Clinton for Rendition in 1998, they want to Eric Holder for being in the DOJ under Clinton. They want to ignore the fact that the only thing that most people inside the Bush Administration who did "Stand Up" to oppose this policy did were write letters and memos - like William Howard Taft IV (pdf) and Phillip Zelikow at the State Dept and John Bellinger at NSA.

They don't want to admit that those letters were IGNORED - just like Harmon's - and in some cases they were systematically destroyed.

They want to pretend that capable interrogators who can actually get information quickly and within the law like Ali Soufan and Matthew Alexander - don't exist, but they do.

Nancy Pelosi is NOT the problem here. I do think that efforts should be taken to establish a method to handle Classified Crimes, but baring that - there really wasn't much more she could do no matter *WHAT* they told her.

Before we get lost in the weeds on this we need to first start with examining the people who knowingly committed falsehoods and lies (Yoo, Bybee, Bradbury, Cheney) - to implement an illegal policy. Those people are still at it, don't let them take our eyes off the ball.


P.S. No, I don't think the "Speech and Debate" clause would protect announcing this information on the floor since it has an exception for "Treason and Felonies" which is what revealing classified information is under 18 USC 798!.

Friday, May 15

Garofa-Gate : The Tea-Bagger Abush UN-CUT

Oh, what a difference a lack of editing makes!


Thursday, May 14

Cheney Ordered Waterboarding to Prove Saddam/9-11 Link

Most of this discussion with Charles Duelfer, the man who proved that Iraq DID NOT have WMD"s, shows that Dick Cheney despites all his claims that water-boarding "yielded valuable information" was attempting desperately to prove some type of operational link between Al Qaeada and Saddam.

All of thie needs to be looked at in context which shows that it wasn't a simple "mistake" it was a deliberate ruse perpetrated on the American people and the world., In late 2002 Colin Powell went before the UN armed with information gained from the torture of Ibn Sheik al-Libi claiming Al-Qaeda members had been trained in chemical weapons use by Iraq (which was a lie), and claims that they possessed mobile labs from Curveball (which was also a Lie).

His presentation led to the adoption of UN resolution 1441 which required Iraq to make a full and final declaration on their WMD status - which they DID.

That document said they Had No WMD, and in compliance with that resolution Saddam allowed the inspector back into Iraq where they found some al samoud missles, but no WMD. The Bushies ignored Saddam's declaration (which was the truth) partly because Saddam didn't explain where the "Yellow Cake from Niger" had gone, even though Joe Wilson had already debunked that claim and the State Dept. had shown it was based on a forgery.

In January, the same month Bush uttered the "16 words", the head of Iraqi Intelligence had already defected and TOLD US that Saddam had destroyed all his WMD's in 1992, which confirmed Saddam's declartion.

Suskind says he spoke on the record with U.S. intelligence officials who stated that Bush was informed unequivocally in January 2003 that Saddam had no weapons of mass destruction. Nonetheless, his book relates, Bush decided to invade Iraq three months later — with the forged letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam bolstering the U.S. rationale to go into war.

Every source up to this date except Ibn Shaik al-Libi had denied the existence of any connection between Saddam and Al Qaeda. So Bush instead of listening to Habbush, or the CIA that said the "Yellow Cake" story was bogus, or the State Dept, or the Energy Deptment that said the "aluminum tubes" were harmless, tried to manufacture a link by having the former Iraqi Intel head forge a letter falsely confessing that Saddam was in league with Osama Bin Laden and the 9-11 attacks.

Iraq having WMD is a potential problem (even though they didn't), but not as big a problem as them giving WMD to al Qaeda.

On page 371 of “The Way of the World,” Suskind describes >the White House’s concoction of a forged letter purportedly from the hand of Habbush to Saddam Hussein to justify the United States’ decision to go to war.

Suskind writes: “The White House had concocted a fake letter from Habbush to Saddam, backdated to July 1, 2001. It said that 9/11 ringleader Mohammed Atta had actually trained for his mission in Iraq — thus showing, finally, that there was an operation link between Saddam and al-Qaeda, something the Vice President's office had been pressing CIA to prove since 9/11 as a justification to invade.”

He continues: “A handwritten letter, with Habbush's name on it, would be fashioned by CIA and then hand-carried by a CIA agent to Baghdad for dissemination.”

The truths is they were enemies, as the CIA Al Qeada desk already knew well.

Should we really be surprised that Dick Cheney just couldn't take "Hell No!" for an answer and quickly pushed to use torture to support this pack of lies?



Pelosi Accusing CIA of Lying to Congress

Frankly, I thinking - expecting the Spies to tell the truth is like expecting a bear not to Crap in the Woods! - but maybe that's just me.


Hannity on the Garofafufffle!

This is the Hannity show version of the Janeane Garofalo Ambush-a-view I posted the other day.

It's interesting how Hannity has re-edited the footage and also interjected what the viewer is supposed to think about it before and after - while Greta just played it without her own comments.

Now, I've had some mixed feelings about her comments, but Hannity here claiming "I didn't see any racist signs - so there MUST NOT HAVE BEEN ANY" is just plain pathetic. Do the Google, it's not hard. Huffington Post has a ton of them.

The other thing is they're obsessing about how worried and frightened Janeane was of being confronted by angry Tea Party protesters, well you look at how they treated that CNN reporter you might see where she was a bit justified.

Also Griff's claim that he "just happened to see her a Starbuck's" is a load of Crap. She was STALKED. It was announced that they would be at this particular performance to "confront" her, she knew they were coming. I Knew they were Coming I even tweeted about it myself and predicted it would lead to EPIC FAIL - which it did.

Angry TeaPartiers are going to PAY to heckle a Professional Comediane? Oh That's gonna sting in the morning11:34 PM Apr 28th from web

Lastly, "Why are Liberals so Angry?"

Because they were fucking paying attention for the last 8 years. They were watching as our troops went into the pointless meat grinder of Iraq, because of LIES extracted via Torture. They were watching as our national infrastructure and our treasury was RAPED and Pillaged by greedy corporate clowns. They were listening as they were called "Coward", "Traitor", "Surrender Monkey", "French", "Socialist", "Homo", "Weak", "Lazy", "Needy", "Whiny" and "Anti-American".

Now the RNC is going to vote that were supposed to be the "Democrat Socialist" party. So do we get to vote to call Republicans the "Corporate Fascist Asshat" Party?

At least that name would be accurate.

I couldn't imagine why anyone might get angry about anti-freeze in our toothpaste, poison in our medicine, collapsing bridges, Enron, Madoff, AIG, Hillbilly Armor, our troops being electrocuted to death in the shower by a contractor who roofies and rapes their own female employees!! Or the corruption and malfeasance of Jack Abramoff, Brownie, Jean Schmidt, Michele Bachmann, Lorita Doan, Monica Goodling, Gonzo, Yoo, Bybee and Scooter.

Let me speak directly to the Tea Partiers here, and because I want them to actually listen for a moment I won't call them "Baggers', if I may.

The reason we don't take these "Tea Parties" seriously is because we've been way MORE PISSED at a lot of REAL SHIT that's been going on for a long, long time, including the Budget problems but... where the FUCK you were you guys?

What brought all this out of the woodwork all of us sudden? Is it wrong to note that the one thing that changed 3 months ago - is Obama in the White House?

I don't think so.

Is it wrong to note that it's not possible to fix all these problems this fast and therefore there are really only TWO possible reasons why Tea Partiers are so suddenly feining outrage and trapped in such crippling fear that they would rip-off Ron Paul's Idea - a) They Fear a BLACK President and b) They Fear a LIBERAL President.

Both attitudes are based on bigotry, either racial fear and hatred or ideological fear and hatred - neither is justified and both should be denounced.

If anything you guys should realize Obama is on your side, he wants to try and FIX all this crap, and admittedly he may not be perfect, but he's our - and your - Last Hope.

What say you Tea-People?


Wednesday, May 13

FBI Agent Soufan Testifies: Bush Told "Half Truth" on Torture

In this sequence from today's torture testimony Sen. Whitehouse asked FBI Agent Ali Soufan to confirm various public statements justifying the use of "Enhanced Interrogation" techniques on Abu Zubaydah.

Soufan: In my opinion, the President was told "half truth"..

Soufan confirms the Bush claim that Zubaydah was initially reluctant to cooperate when he was first captured, but it wasn't harsh tactics that changed his mind - it was Soufan who had worked hard to gain Zubaydah's trust.

Despite the claims of Bush, Cheney and their army of syncophants - the truth is that Abu Zubaydah did cooperate and provide valuable information before harsh techniques were employed. He gave up several members of the Saudi Royal family with connections to Al Qaeda, he even confirmed the ID of KSM.

When they used harsh tactics behind his back, Zubaydah completely shutdown, until Soufan was able to win his trust again - (that's when he gave up Padilla). Then Soufan was pulled from the investigation and the CiA consultants took over and waterboarded him. They got nothing worthwhile after that.

From Jesselyn Radack Live Blog.

11:31 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS: Whitehouse asks about interrogation of Abu Zubaydah and learning actionable information, including identification of Kalid S Mohammed as 911 mastermind. Then torture produced nothing. Then another approach of legal intelligent methods produced identity of Jose Padilla. Then again torture produced nothing. And once again Soufan's team was brought back in, but "contractor" insisted on torture and Soufan protested "borderline torture." At that point FBI Director Mueller asked team to cease participating. (This is an exchange between Whitehouse and Soufan, with Soufan affirming and adding to Whitehouse's points.) Soufan also confirms that Bush's public account of the interrogation was not in line with the facts.

Soufan completely blows CHENEY'S claims away, and disproved all this noise from Liz Cheney and Karl Rove.

I'm now watching MSNBC and the GOP shills are calling Soufan a "disgrunted ex-employee" and that even if harsh interrogation didn't work on Zubaydah, it must of have on "someone". They continue to claim "waterboarding saved hundreds of thousands of lives" - just like Lindsey Graham during the hearing. Oy!!

11:37 Senator Lindsay Graham is the lone Republican here, and in fact Whitehouse is the only Democrat still here. But the room is still packed with standing in the back and people STILL waiting in the hallway to get in. Graham claims, based on nothing, that OTHER interrogations using torture DID produce some good information. (Prove it, buddy. And then explain how you know legal methods couldn't have done the same. And then explain how you're justified in violating the law and how you deal with the recruting tool you've produced for terrorists and the ways you've weakend the State Department in now discouraging crimes by other nations.)

11:40 Graham asks Addicott to confirm that intelligence is central to this war, and he agrees and says that a police force could do the non-intelligence part of it. Graham then goes on to point out (admit) that other nations view terrorist acts as crimes rather than war. Graham intends this to avoid the Geneva Conventions, but he's also just delegitimized the invasion of Afghanistan without realizing it.

11:43 Whitehouse recounting contrast of results in Abu Zubaydah interrogations some more, comparing trained experienced FBI agents with amateurish contractors -- Whitehouse says FBI v CIA is not the right comparison, that in fact CIA professionals were with Souffan and agreed with him at the field level as opposed to the private contractors. Souffan agrees and says the chief forensic psychologist for the CIA and their top interrogator agreed with him and opposed the torture, that the psychologist left even before Souffan did.

On the issue of whether Cheney is correct about information coming from other detainees such as KSM - this has already been debunked. The Library Tower plot was foiled a year before KSM was even captured, so waterboarding him saved people who apparently had already been saved

Here's a good nugget: Sen Feingold has seen the "Holy Grail" memos and says there just Pyrite!

Feingold: let me be clear this so-called "enhanced interrogation" program was illegal. Nothing that I have seen, including the two memos referenced this weekend by Vice President Cheney, indicates taht the torture technique authorized by the last administration were neccessary. The former Vice President is misleading the American people when he says otherwise.

As Cenk Uyger likes to say -- Elbow from the SKYYYYYYYY!!! BOOMM!!


Tuesday, May 12

Liz Cheney vs Eugene Robinson on Torture

Sorry, but Eugene is absolutely correct. Getting a lawyer to write a memo saying that a War Crime isn't illegal, doesn't work. That CAN'T be allowed to work of the very existence of War Crimes and torture become meaningless. This isn't "Matter of Opinion" - the International Red Cross has already confirmed that it was torture, and not just the Waterboarding - All of it.

FBI Agent Ali Soufan who was the first person to talk to Zubaydah has Completely Debunked Liz's claims that they had to do what they did - they didn't.

As President Bush's top lawyer, Alberto Gonzales pressed counterterror officials to use brutal interrogation techniques on terror suspect Abu Zubaydah in 2002, even when those techniques hindered Zubaydah's cooperation, a former FBI agent who was present is expected to testify Wednesday before Congress.

In the first public testimony of anyone directly involved, former bureau agent Ali Soufan is expected to directly contradict assertions by CIA officials and former Vice President Cheney that the "enhanced interrogation techniques" were successful in prying information out of al Qaeda detainees.

Cheney has said that the CIA interrogation program that began in Thailand in 2002 "saved thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of lives."


Soufan will testify that within an hour of Abu Zubaydah's arrival at the secret prison, he was revealing parts of the 9/11 plot and had identified the mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Soufan has contended publicly that the FBI approach to interrogation had been so successful, George Tenet ordered that the gravely ill Zubaydah be kept alive.

According to a former intelligence operative at the scene, Zubaydah's confessions and intelligence collected by Soufan and Gaudin resulted in the CIA determining that "death was not an option" for the prisoner. Tenet wanted Zubaydah kept alive, and to continue talking. A top Johns Hopkins surgeon was flown in to treat Zubaydah, and the two FBI agents helped nurse the terrorist into good health. The former operative tells ABC News that the intelligence continued to flow, as Soufan interviewed Zubaydah in the hospital while tending to his recovery. But that all ended when the CIA's team of specialists and a contractor arrived to take over interrogations.

So if he was talking about the inner workings of Al Qeada within the first few hours - why did they really need to waterboard him 83 Times!

Maybe it wasn't because he was holding back the truth, maybe it was because he wouldn't admit to a LIE that Saddam Hussein had connections to 9-11?


Janeane Garofalo vs the "Tea Baggers"

In yet another example of Ambush Journalism Fox News sent one of their "Producers" Boston AM Radio guy Ken Pittman challenged Janeane Garofalo over her "Racist Redneck Tea Bagger" comments, and almost manage to make me think she might have had a point.

Now when she made her original comments on Countdown, there were a lot of Democrats - myself included - who thought she'd gone WAY over the top. Now my sentiment, for one, has changed.

This time she gets repeatedly asked if she'd apologize for her comments that "all the tea baggers were redneck racists" - and she just WON'T do it.

I don't agree with the blanket nature of her original statement, but she does manage to turn the interview they're trying to have with her, into an interview of them - and they kinda FAIL.

This is what happens when you try and ambush a person whose a faster thinker and better at media than YOU are.

Her main point, "Where was all this outrage while Bush was running record deficits?" Also I'd like to point out again, that the Bailout was Bush's plan, and the AIG bonuses were his mistake. Most of the massive up-tick in Obama's budget comes from not hiding the cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars anymore. Most of the complaint is about his stimulus plan, which so far, seems to be working. So where were the Bush=Hitler posters when he started robbing the poor to give to the rich 8 years ago? In fact, where are they now?

These are some of signs she's talking about.

It would be ridiculous to argue that this represents everyone involved, but the problem the Fox guys have is that these aren't a figment of Janeane's imagination, and when you stand next to the guy with the Obama-Hitler sign and refuse - REFUSE - to call him out for it, your silence indicates that you accept the premise - it means you essentially ENDORSE it.

I'm certain there are and were many people who have legitimate tax concerns who are willing to speak out against this stuff, but all I've heard them say is "I didn't do it!" Yeah, well, that's Not. Good. Enough.

You can't whine about Obama bowing to the Saudi King while you're bowing to the guy with the URKEL poster, by failing to call them out.

Earlier in the program Van Susteren talked to Karl Rove and he spent the one portion of the interview talking about how "Civil and polite" the Republicans are and how Mean and Vicious the Democrats are. Yes, Really!

They have an example of a CBS guy saying U.S. soldiers would shoot Nancy Pelosi and strangle Harry Reid before taking out Osama Bin Laden. A) So much for the "Liberal" Media and B) I think predicting and assassination of two national leaders is much worse than wishing health problems on a guy with a drug history - but maybe that's just me.

Look, again I don't agree with Sykes Kidney comments, but frankly I didn't see many fans of Limbaugh calling HIM out for his vicious LIE that Michael J. Fox was exaggerating his M.S. Parkinson's symptoms just to generate sympathy and greater support for Clair McCaskill. Fox had also support Arlen Specter while he was still a Republican so his endorsement was purely based on what he said it was - her support for Parkinson's research - period!

I didn't see many Republicans calling out George Allen for his Racial "Maccaca" slur.

I don't see people except for Colin Powell objecting when Limbaugh says he wants Obama to fail, all of them ignoring the fact that if he fails - America FAILS. They'd rather watch the country go down and flames out of partisan spite rather that try to support a "liberal" idea, even after 8 years of every one of their ideas falling flat on their face in FAIL. And Powell seems to be being repaid be being excommunicated from the Party via Cheney.


That's a real big PUP tent the GOPasauras are pitching these days.

During the Garofalo ambush they accuse her of being "Bigoted Ideologically" of being "Biased Against Conservatives" - a charge which Janeane counters with the fact that the current Republican party bares no resemblance to what Barry Goldwater the "father of Modern Conservatism" actually stood for. A point which is emphasized in more detail by John Dean's Book 'Conservatives without Conscience".

But I think the more interesting assertion is the idea of Conservatives as a Protected Class. This view explains why Conservatives feel they should have their own form of Affirmative Action and have a nominal representative everywhere in the media. They certainly act like they're in a perpetual state of victimhood, but consider this - if someone can be bigoted ideologically against conservatives then someone can be an anti-Liberal BIGOT too.

If that's true, then they pretty much just proved Janeane's point - because the reason so many people were willing to passively stand-by in solidarity with the element of racists who were there and lend them additional credibility is because they are IDEOLOGICAL BIGOTS themselves.

And that's something I completely agree with in the case of pretty much everyone involved in this Tea Party Effort, ideological intolerance isn't really all that much different from being racist itself. Either way it's still bigotry.

After this video I now feel that Garofalo should apologize when Anyone from the Tea Partier movement apologizes for those signs or failing that when Limbaugh, Coulter, O'Reilly or Michael Savage apologies for just a fraction of the anti-Liberal Hate Speech they've spewed over the years.

I would prefer that people generally calmed down and acted in a CIVIL manner with each other but yeah, I know...we're all going to be waiting a long, long time for that to happen.


Update: Here's Janeane's side of the story without Fox editing. More on this from Here w/Marc Maron.

Now if she could just explain why the hell she's on "24" - watching her get bullied by Jack and into violating FISA against her better judgment, then embarrassed by Chloe and turned into a yipping petty harpy when she finally figures out something Chloe can't is not Zesty.

Update 2: Great Comment Here. Emphasis mine.

I think she has a point, maybe it is possible that if ANY Democrat got into office, they would be protesting all the same. But there is no similar past effort to look back on to set the precedent. Instead what we see are a bunch of people who are afraid of what they view as an outsider taking office. Many think he is Muslim, they question his motives and there is a heightened level of fear in their irrational minds.

I think it is perfectly logic to believe that irrational fear is stemming from the fact that there is now a Black man in office with a Muslim sounding name. That is racism. Keep in mind that for the two or three years of the primaries (it went for ever it seemed), these were the Fox viewers being told that Obama is buddies with terrorists, that he is Muslim, that his birth records are suspect, and seeing news stories where he is often confused with Osama bin Laden.

So why is it so wrong and out of line to think that these people, who have been fed years of racist-based stories and misinformation, are racist.

And what I find hillarious is the line of questioning they give her. "The people I know who were protesting, and I only know super smart, informed, and fair and balanced people, truly believe they were being patriots." Lol. OMG that is classic. First of all, they fall for the typical BS that because you are friends with them, and agree with them, that must make you all smart, normal, nice and far people.

Second, well...if they really BELIEVE something, no matter how stupid, ignorant and misinformed and detached from reality...surely they can't possibly be criticized. Nope. Leave it to the crazy christian right to confuse their beliefs with actual reality.

Finally, they conclude by associating everything they do with patriotism. Once again proving the right has turned the word into a cliche and effectively made it a meaningless, worthless term. And Garafalo busts them for they aren't patriots. If they were patriots, they wouldn't have spent the last 8 years DEFENDING and rationalizing Bush's crippling spending habits. Hell, they actually condemned anyone who did criticize Bush's spending as being shrill, America hating, vitriol and nothing more than Bush hatred. Not long ago it was patriotic to support massive spending. It was patriotic to just accept that Bush/Cheney's buddies were robbing the tax payers blind and billions were disappears and soldiers were being poisoned, etc.

Patriotism? Please. These are the same people who thought criticizing the president during a time of war was equal to treason. Now they LOVE dissent and President bashing and calling the President Hitler. Gee...what ever happened to demoralizing the troops? Patriotism? What happened to all the demonizing of the Bush protests or the many other protests that occurred over the past 8 years...all of which were much much larger than these pathetic tea-bag parties? Suddenly they all love protesting and it is the act of great American?

Sorry, if you ask me, Garafalo didn't go over the line. She should have gone further and called them ignorant, confused, misinformed Fox puppets as well.

She probably will in a hot minute, give it time.

I disagreed with her initial statement because it was so overgeneralized and I feel that unfounded accusations of racism greatly diminish the power of addressing Real Racism, but then when you look at it in wider context - I'm now agreeing with her. Standing next to an ignorant racist without commenting or opposing them makes you a Racist Appeaser, an Aider and Abetter, and there's pretty much no excuse for that.

There's no first Amendment protection for Hate Speech, and for good reason.

Monday, May 11

Cheney wants to Testify about Torture? Let Him!

Dick - Mr. Cloak and Dagger/Man-sized Safe/Fourth-Branch - Cheney wants to go on record and "get the Truth Out" about the Bush program of detention and torture.

CHENEY: I think if you look at this intelligence program that when things are quieter, 20 or 30 years from now, you’ll be able to look back on this and say this is one of the great success stories of American intelligence.

I think this statement will go down in infamy right along side "greeted as liberators" and "there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein possesses weapons of mass destruction" and that 20 or 30 years from now most of the people involved will just be finishing their sentences for the commission of War Crimes.

But then, I always did try to look on the sunny side of things.

SCHIEFFER: Would you go back and talk to the Congress?

CHENEY: Certainly. I’ve made it very clear that I feel very strongly that what we did here was exactly the right thing to do. And if I don’t speak out, then where do we find ourselves, Bob? Then the critics have free run, and there isn’t anybody there on the other side to tell the truth. So it’s important — it’s important that we...

SCHIEFFER: Senator Leahy, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, was on this broadcast recently. And I said, do you intend to ask the former vice president to come up? And he said if he will testify under oath. Would you be willing to testify under oath?

CHENEY: I’d have to see what the circumstances are and what kind of precedent we were setting. But certainly I wouldn’t be out here today if I didn’t feel comfortable talking about what we’re doing publicly.

Cheney is current hanging his entire legacy on two current classified CIA memos, but already (possibly in direct response to his own pushing of this issues) reports are surfacing that - yet again - this claim is a pig in a poke. As has been pointed out in another rec'd Dkos diary the fact is that Cheney's "Holy Grail" is apparently made of pyrite, but I think there's even more to this story. I think we already know what that report is going to say, and that it's already been debunked.

That diary points to this previous released but redacted report by the CIA Inspector Generals Office.

Yet, other leaks of the redacted portion of this report have been springing up. via Thinkprogress.

Government officials familiar with the CIA’s early interrogations say the most powerful evidence of apparent excesses is contained in the “top secret” May 7, 2004, inspector general report, based on more than 100 interviews, a review of the videotapes and 38,000 pages of documents. The full report remains closely held, although White House officials have told political allies that they intend to declassify it for public release when the debate quiets over last month’s release of the Justice Department’s interrogation memos. [...]

Although some useful information was produced, the report concluded that “it is difficult to determine conclusively whether interrogations have provided information critical to interdicting specific imminent attacks,” according to the Justice Department’s declassified summary of it.

Oddly enough I've seen those words before. That's exactly the same thing that one of Cheney's "Little People" Stephen Bradbury wrote in his May 30, 2005 memo to CIA counsel John Rizzo, when quoting from the 2004 CIA Inspector Generals report.

Which in a section which has apparently not been included in the redacted PDF above, said according to McClatchy as quoted by Bradbury that :

"As the IG Report notes, it is difficult to determine conclusively whether interrogations provided information critical to interdicting specific imminent attacks. And because the CIA has used enhanced techniques sparingly, 'there is limited data on which to assess their individual effectiveness'," Bradbury wrote, quoting the IG report.

Yet Bradbury's memo also makes the following claim quoting from the famed "Effectiveness Memo":

before the CIA used enhanced techniques in its interrogation of KSM, KSM resisted giving any answers to questions about future attacks, simply noting, "Soon, you will know." Id. We understand that the use of enhanced techniques in the interrogations of KSM, Zubaydah, and others, by contrast, has yielded critical information. See IG Report at 86, 90-91 (describing increase in intelligence reports attributable to use of enhanced techniques). As Zubaydah himself explained with respect to enhanced techniques, "":"brothers who are captured and interrogated are permitted by Allah to provide information when they believe they have 'reached the limit of their ability to withhold ie in the face of psychological and physicaI hardships." Effectiveness Memo at 2. And,indeed, we understand that since the use of enhanced. techniques, "KSM and Abu Zubaydah have been pivotal sources because of their ability and willingness to provide their analysis and speculation about the capabilities, methodologies, and mindsets of terrorists,"

Some of the info Cheney is fishing for, and was alluded to by Bradbury may also have revealed by former Bush Speechwriter Marc Thiessen who claimed:

THIESSEN: The CIA developed these alternative interrogation techniques, and all of a sudden he started talking. Zubaydah’s information led us to Ramsey bin al Shibh, who was was one of the 9/11 hijackers. Together, they gave us the information that led the capture of KSM. Then, KSM gave us information about another al Qaeda operative, Majid Khan, who was in CIA custody. He told us that Majid Khan had been tasked to give $50,000 to an operative named Zubair, who was developing plots with a Southeast Asian group called JI.

These claims fly in the face of statements made by FBI Director Mueller denying any major plots were "foiled" by Enhanced Interrogation. As well as reports from FBI Interrogator Ali Soufan who categorically refutes Cheney's allegations since he's the one who actually did get good information from Zubaydah BEFORE he was Tortured.

There was no actionable intelligence gained from using enhanced interrogation techniques on Abu Zubaydah that wasn’t, or couldn’t have been, gained from regular tactics. In addition, I saw that using these alternative methods on other terrorists backfired on more than a few occasions — all of which are still classified. The short sightedness behind the use of these techniques ignored the unreliability of the methods, the nature of the threat, the mentality and modus operandi of the terrorists, and due process.

Defenders of these techniques have claimed that they got Abu Zubaydah to give up information leading to the capture of Ramzi bin al-Shibh, a top aide to Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, and Mr. Padilla. This is false. The information that led to Mr. Shibh’s capture came primarily from a different terrorist operative who was interviewed using traditional methods. As for Mr. Padilla, the dates just don’t add up: the harsh techniques were approved in the memo of August 2002, Mr. Padilla had been arrested that May.

Torturing Zubaydah did not lead to capturing al-Shibh or Padilla. The dates don't add up - just like the claim that KSM gave up information on the Library Tower plot - only that had also already been foiled a year previously.

Yet again, all we have here - iS EPIC FAIL. Just like Iraq and WMD, or Saddam's link to 9-11 and al Qaeada (a large portion of which was jinned-up as the result of the Torture of the late Ibn al-Shayhk al-Libi)

All they have to offer is Fail!

Cheney is desperate to believe, and desperate to promote the idea that the people who authorized and promoted these program are "Heroes" - but if so, why did they try to suppress the opinion papers of Phillip Zelikow? Why did they knowingly, and with clear consciensness of guilt, perpetrate a Criminal Coverup by attempting to hide "high-value" detainees from the Red Cross which has the international duty to determine if Torture and War Crimes have Occurred. Which, eventually, is exactly what they did.

If Cheney is desd-set on having this out in public - fine, then let's give him what he wants. Let's stack him and Yoo, Bybee and Bradbury (who are about to get sanctioned by Bush's own OPR Report) against the real-life experience (not made up "24"-o-phallic theory) of Soufan, Matthew Alexander, and the contrasting legal arguments from Zelikow, NSA Counsel John Bellinger, and Secretary of State Counsel William Howard Taft and see which view remains standing after a full analysis of the facts.

Better yet, since Cheney is so convinced of his righteousness, his innocence and so desperate to testify, let's do it in front of a JUDGE AND JURY.

Yep, nothing like a War Crimes Trial to help clear the air.

Let him talk, it does the soul good. (The soul of The Nation I mean, not Cheney's - since his was replaced with a Endless Black Pit of SUCK years ago)


Sunday, May 10

Real Time: GOP = Just a bunch of Dicks!

I gotta say it, Maher simply nailed it this time. In his ending riff he points how outside the curve Obama was for the common sense suggestion of "washing your hands" to help prevent the spread of disease, particularly while so many chicken-littles were running around with surgical masks that aren't design to protect you from getting an infection, and really only function as a sneeze and spit guard for your own microbes.

He goes on to point out that when Obama suggested that fight rising oil costs by ensuring our tires were inflated, he was SCOFFED AT.

"Oh, no - don't ask ME to do something, just get me more OIL!"

Rush Limbaugh is doing odes to coal fired power plants and Glenn Beck is running around praising people who chop down trees in the midst of rising CO2 emmissions - and it's not about an ideology - (except apparently for Michael Steel) they simply do it To Be A DICK!.

Freedom Fries.

Ex-GOPasaur Sammy-Joe the Unlicenced Plumber-Pundit.

Wanda Sykes at Nerdprom-Gate.

Torture works great, you just have to keep trying harder.

Obama's secret FEMA CAMP round-up plan.

Four Different Winger NutBalls have shooting or bombing attacks/plans against Liberals - and the Neo-ConArtists think they're getting "Politically Profiled" because Bush's Homeland Security accurately predicted them.

Bilbo Tea-Baggins!

Show your a true Patriot by threating petulantly to Secede from the Nation!, when they offer you money to help the people in your state!

Isn't it obvious these guys have got NUTHIN! NUTHIN!

It's just plain ole' fashion Dick-ishness.

And I'm thinking the time to put in a call to Lorena Bobbit is drawing close...

Short Diary - just for laughs - Happy Mother's Day. Don't kiss her with that mouth.


Michael Steel Showing some Class

Michael not getting all ButtHurt at the President's making fun of him at the White House Correspondents Dinner (aka #nerdprom).

I think it says something about his sense of self that he -unlike so many in the GOP- can take a licking and keep on ticking.

I almost he WAS the leader of the Republican Party now. Too bad - so sad, that he's not even the Class Secretary these days.