Mike wrote about the release of those torture memo’s earlier today and described the pandora’s box he has now opened. To go along with that post is a great interview of former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson by Hugh Hewitt. A few portions that spell out the s&*tstorm Obama is brewing up, including the danger he is putting this country in are below:
HH: What do you…I think this is an enormous error. I think this is the launching of a witch hunt. What do you think?
MG: I think it’s a terrible error for a couple of reasons. One of them is that I think that the release of these memos, and now the talk of these prosecutions, is creating an atmosphere in which people in our intelligence services, people in our government, are going to be very timid about pursuing absolutely essential elements in the war on terror. This is creating an atmosphere that’s more like the pre-9/11 atmosphere when people were complacent and afraid to confront these problems. And I’m afraid that we’ve returned to that attitude, that we’re going to return to some of those outcomes eventually. And so I think it’s a serious challenge. Now let me make one more point here, which is if there are going to be investigations of people who knew about these things, and who approved of them, then that’s going to have to include Nancy Pelosi and Senator Rockefeller, who were both briefed, along with other members of the Intelligence community in Congress about thirty times on all of these techniques beginning in 2002. The fact of the matter is that this represents what was happening in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. the intelligence community had no idea if there were going to be further attacks, how large the al Qaeda network was in the United States. And they were pursuing by their best lights, according to their best legal interpretation, matters that they thought were essential to American security. You can’t criminalize that.
And he makes a very good point here:
MG: Well, I haven’t been presented with that, and I hope not to. I mean, it’s one of the real concerns here. And this is true of people that were in the Clinton administration, it’s true of people in the Bush administration. I think it’s a real mistake to try to criminalize policy disagreements. You know, we can disagree with some of the things that the Clinton people did. You know, people disagree with things that people in the Bush administration did. But people were involved, for example, at the Justice Department, were making their best legal judgments. It’s very hard under those circumstances to try to impose a mindset, a kind of witch hunt mindset to people that thought they were doing their duty.
Obama opens up this box and it may very well come back to bite him in the ass….Gerson tells us how:
MG: Well, it is stunning certainly in one way, which is every member of the Obama administration could imagine circumstances where they might be forced to use such methods, okay? In fact, Leon Panetta, entering his own hearing, seemed to indicate that that was the case. If you face a circumstance with a nuclear or biological attack on an American city, you know, you may well employ sleep depravation to try to get information.
Meanwhile the CIA isn’t backing down:
The Central Intelligence Agency told CNSNews.com today that it stands by the assertion made in a May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that the use of “enhanced techniques” of interrogation on al Qaeda leader Khalid Sheik Mohammed (KSM) — including the use of waterboarding — caused KSM to reveal information that allowed the U.S. government to thwart a planned attack on Los Angeles.
Before he was waterboarded, when KSM was asked about planned attacks on the United States, he ominously told his CIA interrogators, “Soon, you will know.”
According to the previously classified May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that was released by President Barack Obama last week, the thwarted attack — which KSM called the “Second Wave”– planned “ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.”
We now know that building was the Liberty Tower and the use of waterboarding saved thousands of lives. Even the AP has to acknowledge that fact:
Intelligence from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah, two detainees who were waterboarded, led to the discovery of a terrorist cell, the capture of other suspected terrorists and an understanding of the terrorist network, the documents say.
In my opinion I don’t think this will go very far. There are MANY skeletons in the closets of Democrats and they do not want them out in the open. It’s so obvious, except to the most partisan lefty, that they changed their opinions on the use of waterboarding and the war on terror only in hindsight once the moonbats came out screaming.
We all know that if the waterboarding had not been done and the attacks had been allowed to occur these same people shrieking like little babies would be asking why more wasn’t done.