Cheney Briefs on Interrogation
Our Readers Who Comment are all fired up this morning about the report that former Vice President Richard B. Cheney "personally oversaw at least four briefings with senior members of Congress" about the CIA's post-9/11 interrogation program, which included waterboarding.
As Paul Kane and Joby Warrick write, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was not present at any of those briefings, an important point because Republicans contend that top Democrats were aware that waterboarding was being used on terrorism suspects.
Readers both attack and defend Cheney and ask how much Pelosi knew about the interrogation methods. There are renewed calls for a truth commission. There is both condemnation and praise for waterboarding. And there are several comments wanting to know again why The Washington Post uses the euphemism "harsh interrogation" for torture.
We'll start with Acierto, who wrote, "Every politician is hiding on torture and wiretapping briefings like a rabbit down a hole... the CIA... will now be correctly charged with attempting to hide important details that should have been revealed. Keeping secret CIA employee names, fine. Keeping politicians names secret, no. By mixing spycraft with politics, the CIA is setting itself up to be the fall guy..."
But billyrockville said, "America can be thankful we have such brave men as President Bush and Dick Cheney. They made the difficult decisions, and they kept us safe for eight years. It is interesting to note, that Obama condemned the harsh interrogations as torture, but reserved the right to use them in extraordinary situations, hmmmm.... like thwarting a possibly terrorist attack?"
algasema asked, "What is the real purpose of torture? It is not security, but dictatorship. Dick Cheney, even if he escapes prison, as a cowardly Obama administration is likely to let him do, will be remembered by history as the Vice-President for torture and fascism."
cattheanimal wrote, "[Cheney] should be indicted. a special prosecutor should be appointed, as the white house created a doj [Department of Justice] in its own image. though we already know what he approved. has he ever, at any point, came out against any form of torture, any vicious interrogation?"
medogsbstfrnd predicted that "Pelosi will be vindicated. That process can be expedited by indicting Cheney for war crimes and bringing him before the "truth commission" otherwise known as a court of law..."
And fishingriver said, "Until our leaders are brought to justice for their disregard of the law, I will have no respect for the US system of justice. It is a sham that only applies to citizens without advantage. It isn't really justice at all."
But lure1 wrote, "Keep banging your spoons on the trays of your hi-chairs. It's hilarious and pathetic. There will be no truth commission. No on will be prosecuted, let alone convicted. Book on it. The fact is if the memos proved that waterboarding didn't work, they'd already be released. Aloha."
lottaaction said, "Cheney, Cheney, Cheney, Cheney Cheney! More terrible one-sided reporting by the Post. Of the 40 meetings mentioned that Cheney was supposedly a part of, why not mention who these "senior members of Congress" were? You're telling me there were 40 meetings and Pelosi never attended one?... C'mon WashPost, your liberal leanings are so transparent it's funny."
And Bobby06 wrote, "...Nancy Pelosi became Speaker of the House in 2007. The Republicans ran the Congress until 2007. Who was Speaker before Nancy Pelosi? Hint: it was a Republican. Why didn't they stop the torture, the waterboarding, the war in Iraq, the failures at Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo Bay, etc., etc.?"
But TexanbygraceofGOD said, "No one ever said that she should have stopped it. Yes, I know she became the speaker in '07 but she was still present at the CIA briefings then lied about it! Thanks but no thanks."
lcarter0311 wrote, "This is nothing new... How many times does it have to be said that Cheney led the charge and ran roughshod over the U.S. Constitution and the Geneva Constitutions to torture Islamic detainees. The real question is, what is the U.S., Gov't going to do about it?..."
Bob22003 said, "Cheney isn't defending "enhanced interrogation" because of his concern for national security but rather because of his concern that he will be identified as America's cheerleader for torture..."
thebobbob wrote, "Cheney's actions were criminal. It doesn't matter if he believed they made America safe. It doesn't matter if he thinks that information they got was useful. It doesn't matter if they got an incompetent lawyer to 'advise' them that it was OK. Water boarding is Torture and against American Law and International Law. Prosecute."
george32 said, "it has always struck me as ironic that senator mccain, one of the few americans subject to torture by a hostile power, had concerns about the interrogation program, but a cowardly draft dodger and his non serving buddies thought it was just fine..."
frodot wrote, "Cheney has a forceful and persuasive presence, even when he is mistaken or lying... It has taken years for the majority of the public to realize that Cheney's passion is pathology, not insight."
But jeeemusna wrote, "Thank God for Dick Cheney!"
We'll close with this sarcastic summation from boyduenas, who said, "The defenders of the coward Cheney have only two words to say: Nancy Pelosi."
All comments on this article are here.
June 3, 2009; 8:04 AM ET
Categories: CIA , Cheney , Torture , Waterboarding | Tags: CIA, Cheney, Pelosi, Torture, Waterboarding
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