Balkinization  

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas an impeachable offense

JB

There is now some but not conclusive evidence that the President himself authorized abuse of prisoners by Executive Order. This from Asia Times:
McClellan also insisted there is "no executive order relating to interrogation techniques. When it comes to military detainees and interrogation methods, those are determinations made by the Department of Defense."

However the ACLU released copies late Monday of a two-page FBI e-mail message dated May 22 that refers repeatedly to an executive order signed by Bush.

The message "states that the president directly authorized interrogation techniques including sleep deprivation, stress positions, the use of military dogs, and 'sensory deprivation through the use of hoods, etc.'," but [it] bars [FBI] agents from employing those techniques, the ACLU said in a statement.


You can find the ACLU memos here. This memo is particularly interesting.

Again, there is no smoking gun, just lots of interesting questions. We should not prejudge what the President did nor did not do until there is further proof. But my view can be stated fairly simply: If the President did authorize inhumane treatment of prisoners, whether or not his lawyers could claim that this was not technically in violation of various international agreements to which the United States made numerous reservations, these acts are morally unconscionable. He has shamed the country and should be removed from office.


Comments:

Did George W learn interrogation techniques while at Yale with Skull & Bones?

McClellan's statement that "When it comes to military detainees and interrogation methods, those are determinations made by the Department of Defense" may suggest George W's retention of Rumsfeld at DOD. Similarly, George Tenet was retained at CIA for a long period of time after his "slam dunk" was debunked. The Seargent Schulz ("I know nothing") defense is become the President's defense. Where are those cheerleaders: "Give me an I, give me an M, give me a P ...."
 

"High crimes and misdemeanors" = "morally unconscionable"?

Why wait for the proof in this case? I mean, can't we impeach for a "morally unconsionable" decision to go to war in Iraq?

How about the "morally unconscionable" tax cuts?

Shouldn't we expect a showing of treason or abuse of office, and shouldn't we insist that mere policy disagreements aren't sufficient to demonstrate those?
 

I don't understand.

The guy expressly witholds judgment, though not suspicion: "We should not prejudge what the President did nor did not do until there is further proof."

He also doesn't speak of "mere policy differences," but the possibility that the law (including treaties) was violated.

So, what exactly is your point?
 

i, for one, would shed no tears if w. were to be impeached. i would note, however, that you must be careful what you wish for. remember, if you impeach and convict w., cheney becomes president, unless you are going to impeach and convict him as well. is that what you want???
 

Man there is alot of comment spam I have noticed. Is there any way to remove it from the blogs?
 

Man there is alot of comment spam I have noticed. Is there any way to remove it from the blogs?
 

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