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Solly Mack

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Current location: Back of Beyond
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 76,887

About Me

Busy observing the group dynamics of dust bunnies.

Journal Archives

William Todd Akin: The company he keeps.

In a LBN post by Adenoid_Hynkel, from Think Progress, you can read about William Todd Akin's multiple arrests for physically blocking access to clinics that perform abortions. The articles ties him to Tim Dreste. This happened in the 1980's.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) — who came under fire after asserting that “legitimate rapes” don’t often result in pregnancy — was arrested multiple times in the 1980s for protesting outside of abortion clinics in St. Louis. Between 1985 and 1987, Akin worked with other anti-choice activists to physically block women’s access to reproductive health clinics in the city, during what RH Reality Check describes as a “hotbed of anti-choice violence and harassment” in St. Louis. At that time, Akin went by his given first name, William, rather than the middle name he currently uses.



(From Salon) Tim Dreste is linked to both Randall Terry and William Todd Akin.

At the time of Akin’s arrest, Pro-Life Direct Action was headed by a radical anti-abortion activist named John Ryan, who was accused of leading a “reign of terror” against abortion clinics nationwide and who bragged of being arrested almost 350 times. But after it came out later in 1987 that Ryan was having an extramarital affair, Tim Dreste pushed Ryan aside and took over the group. Shortly thereafter, Dreste started an even more radical new group affiliated with Randall Terry’s Operation Rescue called Whole Life Ministries. “Whole Life Ministries soon became the paramount anti-abortion activist group in St. Louis,” journalists James Risen and Judy Thomas wrote in their 1998 book about the pro-life movement, Wrath of Angels.

The next year, Akin addressed Dreste’s new group. In late October of 1988, Whole Life Ministries planned to blockade an abortion clinic as part of a national protest organized by Operation Rescue. Akin rallied Dreste’s troops in a church the night before. “As far as I am concerned, you are the freedom fighters of America… My hat is off to you,” Akin said, according to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch story. Dreste told the paper that night that he expected to get arrested, explaining, ”We will tell (police) we will obey God’s law before we obey man’s law.

In 1990, Akin endorsed a new, more mainstream pro-life initiative called Life Chain. Akin “religiously attended” its events until this year, BuzzFeed reported. Filings on record with the Missouri Secretary of State show that Dreste was the group’s longtime president and registered agent – the group was registered to his home address — until 2000.


(Also, note the ties of almost everyone involved to militia groups)





(also from Salon) Akin tied to domestic terrorist

New documents show Missouri GOP Senate candidate Todd Akin donated to the political campaign of a violent antiabortion activist named Tim Dreste, whose ties to Akin we reported on earlier this week.]



Tim Dreste, Michael Bray and the posting of the "Deadly Dozen" posters.

The so-called "Deadly Dozen" were posters of doctors who performed abortions and were targeted by anti-abortion groups. Those targeted include the late Dr George Tiller, who was murdered by Scott Roeder in 2009. Roeder was an acquaintance of Regina Dinwiddie. (Soldiers in the Army of God) Also, the cell phone number for Operation Rescue's senior policy advisor, Cheryl Sullenger, was found on the dashboard of Scott Roeder's car. Sullenger was convicted of plotting to bomb an abortion clinic.






Court case


I. The Threats

A. The "Deadly Dozen" Poster

1. The Deadly Dozen poster, trial exhibit 1, is a true threat to bodily harm, assault, or kill one or more of the plaintiffs.

2. The Deadly Dozen poster was created by the American Coalition of Life Activists ("ACLA" and first published in or around Washington, D.C. on January 22, 1995. (Ex. 1; Tr. 1352, 1385)

3. Defendants Michael Bray, Andrew Burnett, David Crane, Michael Dodds, Joseph Foreman, C. Roy McMillan, Bruce Murch, Catherine Ramey, Dawn Stover,� [*1132]� Donald Treshman and Charles Wysong attended the ACLA event where the Deadly Dozen poster was unveiled. (Answer of defendants American Coalition of Life Activists, Advocates for Life Ministries, Michael Bray, Andrew Burnett, David Crane, Timothy Dreste, C. Roy McMillan, Bruce Murch, Catherine Ramey, Dawn Stover and Charles Wysong ("ACLA Answer" P 40; Tr. 1254, 1356, 1493-94) Defendant [**5]� Dreste ratified the poster's release. (Tr. 1170, 2486) Defendant Advocates for Life Ministries ("ALM" republished the poster in its magazine Life Advocate. (Ex. 3) Defendant Murch republished the poster in his publication, Salt & Light. (Ex. 2) Defendants also republished the poster at later ACLA events.

10. The day after the Deadly Dozen poster was released, the Federal Bureau of Investigation contacted the doctors named on the list, notified them of their need to take safety measures and offered 24-hour personal protection of [**7]� the U.S. Marshal Service for the doctors and their families. (Tr. 568-69) Calls from the U.S. Marshals and other law enforcement followed. (Tr. 236, 624) Plaintiffs heeded these warnings.

B. The Poster of Dr. Robert Crist

11. The Poster of Dr. Robert Crist, trial exhibit 5, is a true threat to bodily harm, assault or kill one or more of the plaintiffs.

12. The Poster of Dr. Robert Crist displays a photograph of Dr. Crist, and his home and business addresses. (ACLA Answer P 48b; Ex. 5; Tr. 1257)

13. The Poster of Dr. Crist was created and first published by ACLA during its event in St. Louis, Missouri in August 1995. (ACLA Answer P 48b; Ex. 5; Tr. 608, 899, 1257)

14. Defendants Andrew Burnett, David Crane, Timothy Dreste, C. Roy McMillan, Catherine Ramey, Dawn Stover and Charles Wysong attended the ACLA event where the Poster of Dr. Crist was unveiled. The other defendants assisted in planning the event and the poster and/or� [*1133]� ratified its release. (ACLA Answer P 47c; Tr. 1228, 1257, 1494-95)

15. Immediately after the poster was released, Dr. Crist was informed by the St. Louis police that he should take additional security precautions. (Tr. 1104) Dr. Crist followed that advice.� [**8]� (Tr. 1110)


32. Soon after the January 1996 ACLA event, Neal Horsley received hard copy� [*1134]� Nuremberg Files from Paul deParrie. (Ex. 4; Tr. 424, 2245) Horsley received two shipments of at least 22 hard copy files to be posted on the Internet. (Tr. 2329) These files included the files of Dr. Prohaska and Ms. Hanzo. The defendants have not identified by name the other hard copy files that [**11]� existed but have since been destroyed.

33. The cover letter on the first shipment of files bore ACLA's name and P.O. box and summarized the Nuremberg Files project. (Tr. 2331) Horsley copied that information when he placed the Nuremberg Files on the Internet.

34. ACLA's name appeared on the Nuremberg Files Internet website in its initial format. (Ex. 7B)

35. The Nuremberg Files website makes it clear that any information kept by ACLA and/or Neal Horsley will be kept away from legal authorities. The website declares: "the evidence collected will be forwarded to several secure locations so that pro-abortion forces will not be able to destroy the evidence and prevent its future use." (Ex. 7B) This statement remained on later versions of the website. (Ex. 7A)

36. After Horsley published the ACLA Nuremberg Files on the Internet, Horsley shipped the hard copy files to an undisclosed location at the request of Paul deParrie. (Tr. 2371)

37. None of the defendants produced any Nuremberg Files during the course of discovery in this lawsuit, despite the fact that they were in defendants possession after this lawsuit was filed in October 1995 and were called for by discovery requests. Neither [**12]� Horsley nor deParrie produced any Nuremberg Files pursuant to the subpoenas served on them. (Tr. 2374, 2875-76)

II. Defendants Released Their Threats into a Known Atmosphere of Violence Against Abortion Providers

38. On March 10, 1993, Dr. David Gunn was shot and killed outside of the Pensacola, Florida clinic where he performed abortions. (ACLA Answer P 55a; Tr. 1258, 2474) Michael Griffin has been convicted of this murder.

39. Prior to his murder, Dr. Gunn's name, photograph and other personal identifying information appeared on WANTED posters. (ACLA Answer P 53; Exs. 11, 12, 13; Tr. 939, 1257, 1497)

40. By January 1995, plaintiffs were aware of this murder and the posters that preceded it. (Exs. 133, 144; Tr. 365, 1508)

41. By January 1995, defendants knew of the murder of Dr. David Gunn and of the posters that preceded his death. (Exs. 57, 133, 144; Tr. 1508)

42. Defendants Michael Bray, Andrew Burnett, David Crane, Michael Dodds, Joseph Foreman, C. Roy McMillan, Catherine Ramey and Dawn Stover signed a "Defensive Action" petition circulated by Paul Hill declaring the murder of Dr. Gunn justifiable and calling for Griffin's acquittal. (Ex. 41A-41D)


Dr. George Tiller was also listed. "Also listed on the Deadly Dozen poster is the name and address of Dr. George Tiller of Kansas. Dr. Tiller was shot in both arms in August 1993 by Shelley Shannon of Grants Pass, Oregon."


The Conviction of Tim Dreste

Long article that shows the various links of Dreste and other extremists.


Army of God and Michael Bray

Michael Bray - Bray has been called the Chaplain of the Army of God. He was the host of the annual White Rose Banquets. Bray is the author of a book called A Time to Kill, which attempts to give a biblical justification for the use of force against abortion providers. Bray frequently and publicly applauds the use of violence to stop abortion and has been jailed for bombing abortion clinics.

"Justifiable Homicide" petitions signed by:

Michael Bray - Bowie, MD, I and II
C. Roy McMillan - Jackson, MS, I and II
Andrew Burnett - Portland, OR, I and II
Cathy Ramey - Portland, OR, I and II
Matt Trewhella - Milwaukee, WI, I
Paul J. Hill - Pensacola, FL, I
Paul deParrie - Portland, OR, I and II
Regina Dinwiddie - MO, I and II
Michael Dodds - Wichita, KS, I
Henry Felisone - Queens, NY, I and II
Tony Piso - Forest Hill, NY, I
Jacob Miller - Tampa, FL, I
Dan Bray - Bowie, MD, I
David Crane - Norfolk, VA, I
Donald Spitz - Norfolk, VA, I and II
Michael Jarecki - Brushton, NY, I
Bill Koehler - North Bergen, NJ, I and II
Kenneth Arndt - Windham, NH, I
Dave Leach - Des Moines, IA, I and II
Mike Walker - AL, I
Thomas Carleton - Billerica, MA, I and II
Valerie Zvskowski - Pittsburgh, PA, I
Joseph F. O'Hara, Wilkes-Barre, PA, I and II
David Graham - Olathe, KS, I and II
David Trosch - Mobile, AL, I and II
Rev. Dr. Michael Colvin - Bowie, MD, II
Thomas G. Hammond - Senatobia, MS, II
Betty L. Hammond - Senatobia, MS, II
Dr. Ronald Graeser - Freemont, MI, II
Dawn Stover - Portland, OR, II
Fr. Robert Pearson - West Long Banch, NJ, II


(Note how the same names keep appearing together - in the court case, on the petition, and associated with those convicted of murder and clinic bombings)










Me: There is NO way Akin didn't know who he was associating with. There is NO way Akin didn't know about the violence. And from his own words, “As far as I am concerned, you are the freedom fighters of America… My hat is off to you,” Akin condoned it. And from his past arrests, we know he wasn't above engaging in harassment and physical assault. To physically prevent someone from entering a clinic you have to use your body or hands on another person - and that's assault.



Also:

Ashcroft and Anti-Abortion Extremism: Widow of Dr. Barnett Slepian and Others Question Whether Ashcroft Would Protect Abortion Providers

On Jan. 21 in Bowie, Maryland, the Army of God and other extremists who openly advocate violence against abortion providers held their annual national meeting. While FBI agents checked license plates outside, Ashcroft won praise inside. A participant at the meeting was Tim Dreste, a Missourian known for distributing \”Wanted\” posters and other materials threatening abortion providers. [See John Yewell\'s \"Guns and Roses\"] From 1996 until 1999, while Ashcroft was a leader of the Missouri Republican party, Dreste was a member of the Republican state central committee. In 1996, according to the Riverfront Times, Dreste proposed that a death penalty for abortion providers be added to the state\’s GOP platform. It wasn\’t until a court ordered Dreste and colleagues to pay $107 million in damages for unlawfully threatening abortion providers — and after local protests — that Dreste was removed from the party committee. At last week\’s meeting, Dreste told news photographer Jenny Warburg that he keeps a photo of Ashcroft on his wall.


More

Among the prominent anti-abortion extremists at the White Rose conference and banquet is Tim Dreste, a militia member from Ashcroft's home state of Missouri. Dreste was a member of the Republican State Central Committee while Ashcroft was in the U.S. Senate. He was also one of the defendants, along with Bray, found liable in 1999 in the ACLA suit brought by Planned Parenthood. Dreste was ousted from the Missouri Republican Central Committee after the $107 million judgment was handed down. Pro-choice activists have accused Ashcroft of being slow to oppose Dreste, who has a history of supporting the use of violence against abortion providers.

NY judge strikes down terror law scholars fear

An anti-terrorism law was struck down Wednesday by a federal judge who said she saw legitimate fears in claims by journalists, scholars and political activists that they could face indefinite detention for exercising First Amendment rights.

U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan said the government has softened its position toward those who filed suit challenging the law, but she said the "shifting view" could not erase the threat of indefinite military detention. She urged Congress to make the law more specific or consider whether it is needed at all.

"First Amendment rights are guaranteed by the Constitution and cannot be legislated away," Forrest wrote. "This Court rejects the Government's suggestion that American citizens can be placed in military detention indefinitely, for acts they could not predict might subject them to detention."



Judge Rules Against Law on Indefinite Detention

A federal judge on Wednesday blocked the government from enforcing a controversial statute about the indefinite detention without trial of terrorism suspects. Congress enacted the measure last year as part of the National Defense Authorization Act.


In the detention case, Judge Katherine B. Forrest of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York issued a permanent injunction barring the government from relying on the defense authorization law to hold people in indefinite military detention on suspicion that they “substantially supported” Al Qaeda or its allies — at least if they had no connection to the Sept. 11 attacks.

The United States has been detaining terrorism suspects indefinitely since 2001, relying on an authorization by Congress to use military force against perpetrators of the Sept. 11 attacks and those who helped them. Last year, Congress decided to create a federal statute that codified authority for such detentions.

Imma let you finish











Just one more...I couldn't resist.

ACLU to Argue Thursday at Guantánamo Tribunal Against Censorship of Torture Testimony

Thursday, a military commission judge at Guantánamo Bay will hear oral argument on the American Civil Liberties Union’s challenge to censorship of torture testimony at the trial of the 9/11 defendants. This will be the ACLU’s first appearance arguing before the tribunal.

In May, the ACLU filed a motion asking the commission to deny the government’s request to prevent the public from hearing all statements by the defendants about their torture and detention while in U.S. custody. On that basis, the motion asks the commission to bar a delayed audio feed of the proceedings, or, in the alternative, promptly release an uncensored transcript.


The government contends that any statements by the defendants’ concerning their “exposure” to the CIA’s detention and interrogation program are presumptively classified as “sources, methods and activities” of the U.S. and can be withheld from the public. A group of 14 press organizations will also be arguing Thursday for the media’s right to access all of the commission's proceedings.

Multiple failures revealed in Romania’s ‘whitewash’ Rendition Inquiry

The Inquiry concluded in 2008 with a flat denial of Romanian involvement in or knowledge of the black site network.

Reprieve investigators have now discovered multiple failures by the Inquiry, conducted by a Romanian Parliamentary Commission led by MEP Norica Nicolai, and have labelled its seven-page report a ‘whitewash’.

Despite reviewing 4000 documents over two years, the Inquiry mysteriously failed to notice key suspicious flights into and out of Romania. The flights have been identified by Reprieve in the course of its investigation into private renditions contractor Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC).

In December 2011, Associated Press and ARD Panorama revealed that former US intelligence officials had identified a secret CIA prison location in central Bucharest, “hiding in plain sight”. According to their report, the Romanian Inquiry had looked only for detention facilities “at or near” airports – another sign of its restricted and insufficient scope.





I'm still keeping up with the information flow regarding the war crimes committed by the US government and the complicit countries. In case anyone else wants it.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Lawyers Write To U.N. Asking For Torture Investigation

"Lawyers for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) revealed yesterday, the U.N.’s International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, that they had written to the U.N. special rapporteur on torture asking the world body to investigate KSM’s alleged torture at Guantanamo Bay. Agence-France Presse reports:"

“After subjecting Mr. Mohammed to torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment following his capture on March 1, 2003 in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, the US government has silenced him,” reads the letter, a copy of which was obtained by AFP. [...]

“The US government seeks to close this painful and dark chapter in our Nation’s history by killing Mr. Mohammed after a show trial,” it claims.

Army Capt. Jason Wright, one of Mohammad’s lawyers, said: “No human being should be tortured. In the period since 9/11, the US has misplaced its moral compass. Through accountability, we can hopefully find our way again, and pursue a path of rediscovery and redemption.”



ACLU's Torture Database - New collection point for documents relating to the war crimes committed by the U.S. government in the "war on terror".

Report: Appeals court chokes off Gitmo reviews

An academic analysis finds that the federal appeals court in Washington has effectively blunted a 2008 Supreme Court decision giving terrorist suspects held at the Guantanamo Bay naval brig the right to contest their confinement.


The study by Seton Hall University law professors says the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has largely blocked efforts by the detainees to win their freedom by ordering lower court judges to take a more accepting view of the government's evidence justifying their continued imprisonment.


The report says that since a key appeals court decision in 2010, only one of the dozen detainees whose cases were heard by federal trial court judges in Washington won a court order for his release. And that order was later overturned by appellate judges.


In the past two years, "a clear pattern has now emerged: Almost no detainees will prevail at the district court level, and if any do, the D.C. Circuit will likely reverse the decision to grant them relief," the report said.




Seton Hall Law Report Reveals Courts Deny GTMO Habeas Relief and Fail to Reject Government Allegations at Unusually High Rates Since Appeals Court Decision in 2010

Seton Hall University School of Law’s Center for Policy & Research has issued a report: “No Hearing Habeas: D.C. Circuit Restricts Meaningful Review.”

Within the context of the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 2008 decision in Boumediene v. Bush, which demanded a robust and “meaningful review” of the legality of the Guantanamo detainees’ detention, the report examines the stark differences of actual practice. The report finds that the promise of Boumediene has been effectively negated by decisions of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, beginning in 2010 with Al-Adahi v. Obama.

Seton Hall Law Professor and Director of the Center for Policy and Research, Mark P. Denbeaux, stated, “Since Al-Adahi, judges are effectively robo-signing denials and rubber-stamping government allegations. The Supreme Court gaveth and the Appeals Court taketh away.”

The report finds and documents a marked difference between the first 34 habeas decisions (before Al-Adahi) and the last 12 (after Al-Adahi) in both the number of times that detainees win habeas petitions and the frequency in which the trial court has deferred to the government’s factual allegations rather than reject them.






Report

An Analysis of the Proceedings of the Combatant Status Review Tribunals at Guantánamo

http://law.shu.edu/publications/guantanamoReports/final_no_hearing_hearings_report.pdf










Yoo, Latif, and the Rise of Secret Justice



by Scott Horton (Harper's)

One of the lasting challenges to America’s federal judiciary will be addressing American complicity in the tortures and disappearances of the past ten years. Two recent appeals-court decisions show us how judicial panels are tackling these issues: by shielding federal officials and their contractors from liability, and even by glorifying the fruits of their dark arts. In the process, legal prohibitions on torture are being destroyed through secrecy and legal sleight of hand, and our justice system is being distorted and undermined.

Last week, the Ninth Circuit reversed a district-court decision allowing a suit against torture-memo author John Yoo to go forward. The suit had been brought on behalf of José Padilla by his mother, who argued that Padilla was tortured while in U.S. custody as a result of Yoo’s advice—a claim that seems pretty much unassailable, and that had to be accepted as true for purposes of the preliminary rulings. In a decision that has left international-law scholars dumbstruck, the Ninth Circuit granted Yoo immunity, concluding that the law surrounding torture was so muddled when he dispensed his advice that he should be given the benefit of the doubt. The best authority the judges could muster for this outlandish perspective was a European Court of Human Rights decision from 1978, which found that a series of grim techniques used by Britain against Irish internees was not torture—rather it was “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.”

Hovering in the background of the Ninth Circuit’s opinion is a troubling fact: John Yoo had a co-author when he crafted his torture memoranda, Jay Bybee. And Bybee is now a judge on the Ninth Circuit. Had the court handed down any other ruling, it would have been exposing one of its own. The court’s twisted reasoning and distortions of legal precedent otherwise make very little sense. Indeed, the Ninth Circuit judges seemed to be uncomfortable with torture, issuing an opinion that was comparable to a surgical excision: do what is essential to shelter Yoo and Bybee, and not an iota more.

The D.C. Circuit, conversely, has developed a real hankering for torture. Exhibit A in its judicial immorality tale is the astonishing 2–1 decision handed down in October in the Latif case, in which two movement-conservative judges overruled a district court that had concluded that Latif—a thirty-six-year-old Yemeni who has spent the past ten years of his life in prison in Guantánamo without being charged and with only vague suspicions connecting him to terrorist groups—should be released because the record did not contain sufficient evidence to warrant a life sentence in the absence of charges. Judge Janice Rogers Brown, a George W. Bush appointee, wrote that the usual presumptions had to be reversed in cases involving Guantánamo detainees: the government’s secret conclusions had to be presumed correct unless they were contradicted by compelling evidence to the contrary. In Brown’s perspective, the analytical report on Latif prepared by CIA officers—who were under immense pressure to justify detentions even when the evidence plainly indicated very little to no basis for them, as Glenn Carle and other CIA case officers have openly acknowledged—was entitled to a “presumption of regularity.” Because key parts of this report were classified, it was not entirely accessible by the petitioner, denying him the ability to effectively rebut it.







Secret justice plans will put Government above the law ( UK,torture, MI5/6, CIA)

"The government has accelerated plans to expand secret hearings into civil courts. Rather than moving to the preparatory white paper stage, a justice and security bill will be put through parliament this session.

The government has come under severe pressure from MI5 and MI6 to draw up a law imposing a system of secret courts ever since it was disclosed that the security and intelligence agencies had been involved in the brutal treatment, and knew of the torture, of UK residents and citizens detained by the CIA.

So-called closed material procedures would allow sensitive evidence to be given in court but not seen by all the participants. Defendants or claimants and their courtroom representatives would be barred from the closed part of the hearing, removing the adversarial nature of the justice system.

Ken Clarke, the justice secretary, has said the powers are needed to reassure other countries, particularly the US, that they can continue to share intelligence without fear of it being exposed in British courts."




2011

"Intelligence gathered by MI5 and MI6, even if obtained by torture, will never be disclosed in court proceedings and more inquests would be heard in private under proposals announced by the justice secretary, Kenneth Clarke.

Under the government's plans, all "sensitive" information held by MI5 and MI6 would be discussed in secret court hearings. "Special advocates", security vetted and approved by the government, would see the information on behalf of individual defendants or claimants but not would not be able to reveal it to them.

"In many cases, the facts cannot … be used in open court … without risking serious damage to national security or international relations ," Clarke said."



Responding to the plans for 'secret justice' and closed courts set out in the Queen's Speech today, Reprieve's Executive Director, Clare Algar said:

“Closed courts will not strengthen oversight of the intelligence agencies – in fact, they will do precisely the opposite. They will put the Government above the law.

“The proposals for secret justice would massively skew courts in favour of ministers, and prevent the public from finding out the truth about serious wrongdoing.

“The reality is that these plans are designed to spare the intelligence agencies embarrassment. They are a recipe for unfair and unaccountable Government.”

Reprieve’s Legal Director, Cori Crider, said:

“If you think closed courts are a good idea, go talk to Khadidja al-Saadi, who Britain helped render to Gaddafi in 2004 when she was only twelve. This is a clear effort to cover up her case, the Belhadj case, and those like them – to stop the airing of the dirty laundry of the ‘War on Terror.’ The British public should not stand for it.”


Snort

The U.S. government committed war crimes. Said war crimes and war criminals have not been prosecuted and probably never will be as the U.S. government is too cowardly to do so.



"In his five-page memo, Zelikow wrote that the state department earlier had agreed with the justice department's view."

Translation - the State Department agreed with the Yoo/Bybee, etc. that torture wasn't torture and Zelikow is claiming the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 changed that agreement. So, he supported torture prior to the DTA? Somehow, that's when he knew torture was wrong? But not before. Seriously? BULLSHIT. I'm not saying his memo draft doesn't exist - I'm saying he's full of shit if it took the DTA to tell him torture was wrong or that he should question Bush's crimes.


McCain's DTA already gave war criminals an out by granting them a defense for committing torture, when there should NO legal defense passed by government for committing defense... a legal out for torture should never come from the government - unless they government wants to allow people to get away with torture...itself included. So let no one pretend McCain was some sort of hero or good guy. Congress passed a protective cover for war crimes. Such should never be forgotten. Providing a legal cover for torture makes you just as guilty as those who did the actual torturing...whether that cover is provided in a memo by the DOJ or by an act of Congress or the actions of the executive.

http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/gazette/2005/12/detainee-treatment-act-of-2005-white.php

"a) Protection of United States Government Personnel- In any civil action or criminal prosecution against an officer, employee, member of the Armed Forces, or other agent of the United States Government who is a United States person, arising out of the officer, employee, member of the Armed Forces, or other agent's engaging in specific operational practices, that involve detention and interrogation of aliens who the President or his designees have determined are believed to be engaged in or associated with international terrorist activity that poses a serious, continuing threat to the United States, its interests, or its allies, and that were officially authorized and determined to be lawful at the time that they were conducted, it shall be a defense that such officer, employee, member of the Armed Forces, or other agent did not know that the practices were unlawful and a person of ordinary sense and understanding would not know the practices were unlawful. Good faith reliance on advice of counsel should be an important factor, among others, to consider in assessing whether a person of ordinary sense and understanding would have known the practices to be unlawful. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit or extinguish any defense or protection otherwise available to any person or entity from suit, civil or criminal liability, or damages, or to provide immunity from prosecution for any criminal offense by the proper authorities."


There is absolutely no way anyone thought that torture or the cruel & inhumane was legal...not in "good faith" ...not in any manner. It's a bullshit cowardly get-out-of-jail-free clause.


http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/04/secret-torture-memo/

"In 2005, he wrote, both the Justice and State Departments had decided that international prohibitions against “acts of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment which do not amount to torture” do not “apply to CIA interrogations in foreign countries.” Those techniques included contorting a detainee’s body in painful positions, slamming a detainee’s head against a wall, restricting a detainee’s caloric intake, and waterboarding."



Waterboarding IS torture. It has ALWAYS been torture and absolutely anyone claiming otherwise is a liar. Anyone in government (or its agents or the military) pretending they didn't know better is a liar.


"Zelikow wrote that a law passed that year by Congress, restricting interrogation techniques, meant the “situation has now changed.”"



Seriously? Now it has changed? Because before torture was just so wonderful and the legal thing to do? Seriously?

What bullshit.

Fuck this shit.





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