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July 27, 2005


The depressing nature of Niger makes me wonder why recent Rove apologists believe that Mrs. Wilson's suggestion that her husband go to Niger was some sort of illicit pleasurable bonanza. Like, I wouldn't go to Niger for eight days if they paid me. (And they didn't pay him.)

"Families are roaming the parched desert looking for help". And somehow we manage to get Rove into the act. Starvation,and yet we get back to Rove. Joe "the noose" Wilson wasn't roaming the desert,and if he was he was driving a Jaguar. Rather he sat on his fat ass somewhere sipping green tea and casually asking people if they,or anybody they knew,were breaking international sanctions. Damm,I'm sorry I don't measure up to the standards of this site,what's that word again,"contemptible"?

Damm,I'm sorry I don't measure up to the standards of this site,what's that word again,"contemptible"?

maybe "troll" ?

JAG vs Bushco

Sorry. OT. Mustread.

Damm,I'm sorry I don't measure up to the standards of this site

The only "standards" are the posting rules.

"4. It was Yoo who suggested that the Report recommend a written presidential directive that would grant immunity from criminal culpability for interrogators who would be acting in a manner prohibited by federal law."

Jag Memo #1

"2. (U) Several of the more extreme interrogation techniques, on their face, amount to violations of domestic criminal law and the UCMJ (e.g., assault). Applying the more extreme techniques during the interrogation of detainees places the interrogators and the chain of command at risk of criminal accusations domestically. Although a wide range of defenses to these accusations theoretically apply, it is impossible to be certain that any defense will be successful at trial; our domestic courts may well disagree with DoJ/OLC's interpretation of the law. Further, while the current administration is not likely to pursue prosecution, it is impossible to predict how future administrations will view the use of such techniques.

3. (U) Additionally, other nations are unlikely to agree with DoJ/OLC's interpretation of the law in some instances. Other nations may disagree with the President's status determination regarding the Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF) detainees; they may conclude that the detainees are POWs entitled to all of the protections of the Geneva Conventions. Treating OEF detainees inconsistently with the Conventions arguably "lowers the bar" for the treatment of U.S. POWs in future conflicts. Even where nations agree with the President's status determination, many would view the more extreme interrogation techniques as violative of other international law (other treaties or customary international law) and perhaps violative of their own domestic law. This puts the interrogators and the chain of command at risk of criminal accusations abroad, either in foreign domestic courts or in international fora, to include the ICC."

Major General, USAF,
Deputy Judge Advocate General.
I think every educated person in the world understands that Milosevic can't tell his goons that he can take the full criminal liability upon himself. Nor can Bush. And obviously JAG understands it as well.

Now unless Yoo & Gonzalez and Bush are total brain-dead idiots....no, that is ridiculous. Bush has to understand that he cannot pre-emptively or even thru pardons absolve his agents of criminal liability, either domestically or internationally.

So why did Bush deliberately implicate dozens to hundreds of people in criminal activity that will put then at risk of imprisonment for the rest of their lives? What would his motivation be?

It's terrible. I don't understand why it's not in the US news more, like the tsunami was.
Here's a thought experiment. Look at one of the pictures of starving kids in Niger (BBC News shows them). Then imagine they were white kids. Tell me that wouldn't be all over the news.

"I don't understand why it's not in the U.S. news more, like the tsunami was."

There is a reality show in here somewhere.

White American bride is kidnapped. Somehow is transported into the Niger desert. We spend an hour with her each week as her nails break, her lips blister and she forages for bugs. Her wedding gown, shimmering like a virginal white flag in the desert heat, now yellows with wear in the third week. Satellite images pick up her 20-foot bridal train amid the sea of misery. Like a sand-blasted Miss Havisham, she wishes she had eaten cake when the time was right. Rape, for sweeps week, hovers like a djinn on the horizon.

Sweeps week 30 Days episode?

Thanks for posting this, hilzoy. I may have to wait a few weeks before donating, but I'll remember.

Bob, I think the President does have the power to pardon servicemen and women for any violations of the UCMJ.

As for why the Pres and his immediate staff would go for this, I have two guesses: fear and frustration. I don't excuse his conduct, but think I understand it.

What is absolutely inexcusable, though, is the classification of these memos through 2004, and the concealment -- during what Prof. Yoo has called the accountability moment -- that the ideologues in charge of policy had deliberately ignored the advice of the people who worry about these issues for a living. Just like the gamble that Iraq would have WMDs -- despite the findings of the Blix group -- the Admin bet that the flag officers writing these memos were wrong about what would happen when our interrogation techniques became public knowledge.

Just when it seems like I couldn't think less of the Pres and his senior advisors, some new truth is revealed.

D'oh. Doctors Without Borders says in a few weeks is too late. OK, I'll see what I can do now.

"Bob, I think the President does have the power to pardon servicemen and women for any violations of the UCMJ."

As Milosevic had the power to pardon the goons for mass rape and murder. Somehow I doubt, after Milosevic lost power, that his successors would be able to console the victims with legal niceties.

Suppose Bush had ordered the SS....Secret Service...to shoot Kerry, and then pardoned the shooters and himself. Somehow I don't believe everyone would simply say "Darn it, they gotta walk."

And the international community has no requirement to recognize pardons at all. All the torturers and their enablers are liable.

The JAG had the reponsibility to determine the criminality for himself, and then refuse the order, and ensure it became public. As does every soldier.

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