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Forum Post: Obama Gives Final Immunity To Bush-Cheney Torturers

Posted 11 years ago on Sept. 4, 2012, 5:38 p.m. EST by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Just as President Barack Obama has refused to prosecute any of the bankers and swindlers responsible for the 2007-08 financial collapse, he has likewise refused to prosecute any of the Bush-Cheney Administration officials responsible for the torture and abuse of prisoners carried out in Iraq and Afghanistan—even though, in the past, the United States has always treated such practices as war crimes.

Columnist Glenn Greenwald, now writing in Britain's Guardian, notes that Obama's "aggressive, full-scale whitewashing of the 'war on terror' crimes committed by Bush officials is now complete" with Attorney General Eric Holder's announcement last week that the last two torture-death cases from the Bush-Cheney era have been closed without prosecution.

But Greenwald goes on to point out that Obama, in giving total immunity to Bush-era officials for war crimes, is also hoping that this will apply to him. Greenwald quotes from a New York Times article by Charlie Savage in December 2008, on the prospect of torture investigations aimed at Bush officials, who observed: "Because every President eventually leaves office, incoming chief executives have an incentive to quash investigations into their predecessor's tenure." Comments Greenwald: "In other words, Obama is motivated to shield Bush officials from accountability for their crimes in the hope that once Obama leaves office, he, too, will be gifted identical immunity from the rule of law."

The two cases closed by the Justice Department last week were the final two remaining from a review of over 100 cases of severe prisoner abuse undertaken by the Justice Department in the summer of 2009. Holder was under tremendous pressure to cover up all the Bush-Cheney crimes; the whitewash policy had been announced by Obama as soon as the 2008 elections were over: that he opposed any investigations or prosecutions, under the excuse that "we need to look forward as opposed to looking backwards" (that same policy that he has applied to Wall Street's and London's financial crimes). In announcing his policy of immunity, Obama declared: "[N]othing will be gained by spending our time and energy laying blame for the past ... we must resist the forces that divide us, and instead come together on behalf of our common future."

Greenwald pointed out that Obama's blocking of any prosecutions (he's even tried to do it in other countries such as Spain and Germany) is despite the findings of Gen. Antonio Taguba, who investigated the Abu Ghraib torture practices, and who said during the Bush-Cheney regime that "there is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes," and that "the only question that remains to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account." And, Greenwald adds, "it is done even in the face of General Barry McCaffrey's extraordinary observation that 'We tortured people unmercifully. We probably murdered dozens of them during the course of that, both the armed forces and the CIA.'"

The two cases that Obama and Holder closed last week involved Gul Rahman, who froze to death in a secret CIA prison in Afghanistan known as the "Salt Pit" in 2002, after he was beaten, stripped, and then shackled to a cement wall in freezing temperatures, and the 2003 death of Manadel al-Jamadi at Abu Ghraib, who died after he was beaten, stripped, had cold water poured on him, and then shackled to the wall. His ice-packed body was photographed and displayed as part of the infamous Abu Ghraib photos. Overall, more than 100 prisoners died in U.S. custody during the first years of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars — which is OK by that mass killer Barack Obama.



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[-] 4 points by TitusMoans (2451) from Boulder City, NV 11 years ago

Over the last four years, Americans have experienced repeated disappointments from a so-called "progressive" President, who turned out to be only a slight improvement over George W Bush.

If the partisans are right, and the end of the world comes if Mitt Romney is elected, it will only come slightly sooner than if Obama is re-elected.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

Could be a real game changer if we had all or at least more ( solid majority ) good people in the Senate and Congress.

[-] 0 points by TitusMoans (2451) from Boulder City, NV 11 years ago

That's where the battle should be. Unfortunately, the same duopoly controls both Houses of Congress, except for, perhaps, Bernie Sanders.

[-] 4 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

We really should clone him.

[-] 0 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 11 years ago

that must be why they banned cloning. They knew the real plan was to clone real representatives.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

Nah - it was due to the fact of some sanity that prevailed at the time recognizing that the technology would be abused by CorpoRAT psycho/sociopaths.

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 11 years ago

for sure. I was just joking.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

I know.

[-] 0 points by TitusMoans (2451) from Boulder City, NV 11 years ago

Let's ask for a good few cells with the right DNA.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

Gotta map the mind and store every single bit for reuse.

[-] -1 points by brudlo (-454) 11 years ago

after the election, you will, there will be more republicans.

[-] 3 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 11 years ago

Good post Arturo. We need to keep injustice in the news no matter who is responsible.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 11 years ago

Thank you.

[-] 2 points by trashyharry (3084) from Waterville, NY 11 years ago

The people who created and implemented the Iran/Contra conspiracy were not prosecuted,and Reagan was not impeached and removed from office.The conspirators came back with a vengeance with the Patriot act,legalized torture,illegal wars,criminally negligent deregulation of banking-they even succeeded in setting aside habeus corpus along with the rest of the Bill of Rights.Now they don't have to worry about being prosecuted for even their most heinous crimes of illegal surveillance,illegal detentions,torture,wars of conquest and mass murder.We can expect their crimes to continue and increase by orders of magnitude in both sheer number and degrees of egregiousness.This is the hideous face of Impunity.

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 11 years ago

corruption in the DOJ

just like when they let off Goldman

[-] 1 points by Cocreator (306) 11 years ago

Peoples Tribunal.. No Diplomatic Immunity..We Are All Elected..

[-] 1 points by mserfas (652) from Ashland, PA 11 years ago

There is still a difference between failing to punish crimes, and actively committing them. I hear where you're coming from, but can we afford to be so high and mighty about Obama's myriad failures to get past Republican resistance that we forget that our inaction could let these atrocities actually start up again?

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 11 years ago

The best way that I can see to prevent atrocities, is to impeach Obama, so that we can get Joe Biden, who is a sane person that other sane people can work with.

With Biden as a contender, Romney would surely be defeated, since his only good point is that he is an alternative to Obama, so with Biden, an alternative would not be necessary.

It would also set an example that presidents do get impeached for treason, war crimes or gross negligence, hopefully guiding the policies of which ever party's future candidates that get elected.

I know this sounds extreme, but our situation is extreme. Just like during the previous historical economic crisis, the great depression, we're on the verge of World War 3 now, which could get kicked off in Syria or Iran.

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 11 years ago

And in typical D/R fashion, they do the damaging signatures when the sheep are distracted with some media bullshit....like the DNC.

[-] 1 points by richardkentgates (3269) 11 years ago

Good post

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 11 years ago

Thanks, glad you like it.

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 11 years ago

This is just helping to cement his reelection with the powers that be.

No real banking reform. Bombs still dropping. And now everyone from the Bush era is safe. Looks like he is a freakin lock for a repeat to me.