Glorious Leader recently approved the release of a number of memorandums from the CIA along with a comment that they were evidence that “We have lost our moral way” or words to that effect. I downloaded the memos and read them. They are attached…read them.
I am at somewhat of a loss as to how to describe my reaction here…..to say the least, it is rather disturbing…..to say the most, this is a disaster and a politically inspired betrayal of our nation and the folks who defend it.
We live in a nation run by laws and as such we have laws related to crimes. In the law, there are precise definitions of these crimes and one of these crimes is torture. So, there is a definition of what constitutes torture…..It is precise as to what actions qualify as torture and the motivations that are a part of the crime. Both are important. If you run over a person in a car, that may or may not be a crime, depending upon the circumstances and your motives. Comparable rules apply to what is defined as torture.
What the memos make clear is that the CIA made every effort to insure that its actions were in compliance with the letter and intent of the law. They went out of their way to get clearance and approval for their tactics before they used them and then came back again and requested confirmation of these approvals as they moved to use them. The memos also make clear that the tactics were used with success when it was clear to all involved that nothing else would work. This saved lives.
The real damage done by the release of these papers is the knowledge it gives to our enemies as to what they might expect if they were interrogated. The memos lay out in great detail exactly what happens to a person taken into custody from the point of capture onward. It is clear that the procedures are well thought out and practiced with precision. In addition, they state exactly what is to be gained or what is to be achieved at each step of the process. All these procedures just lost all their effectiveness.
One of the key findings of the report of the 9/11 Commission is just how close the intelligence community came to breaking into the conspiracy. There was a computer owned by one of the conspirators, who is termed the 20th terrorist which we had but were unable to examine because a judge would not approve its examination and the FBI was unable to contest the ruling. Then there was the meeting in a hotel in New York where all agencies were present and in that room was: knowledge of the backgrounds of a number of suspects, knowledge of their contacts with Al Qaeda, knowledge that they were illegals in the country, knowledge of the training with explosives and finally, knowledge that some of them were training to fly airplanes. Because the law at the time prevented their sharing knowledge with each other, they were unable to “connect the dots”. That law is known as “The Wall”. One of the key authors of that “Wall” is now the Attorney General of the US, appointed to that position by Glorious Leader. And he is the one who pushed to get these memos released.
As I write this, I’m listening to Merle haggard sing “The Fighting Side Of Me”….part of which contains the lyrics:
I read about some squirrelly guy
Who claims he just don’t believe in fighting
And I wonder just how long
The rest of us can count on being free
They love our milk and honey
But they preach about some other way of living
When they’re running down my country hoss
They’re walking on the fighting side of me
I’m so fucking disgusted by this I can’t continue. The memos are attached…..read them.
And now – we have photographs to look forward to.
The language I hear and read sounds a lot like what we were told in the 60’s – the idea that the aberrant behavior of a few is extrapolated to all the rest of the soldiers who were there.