Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Nixon's Lawyer: Are We Civilized Enough To Prosecute For Torture?

Top international lawyer Philippe Sands QC speaks before the House Judiciary Constitution, Civil Rights & Civil Liberties Subcmte. in May last year, states without reservation that war crimes were committed by the most senior members of the Bush administration.

See the video here.

Via AlterNet comes a remarkable piece from John W. Dean, fomer White House counsel to Nixon, who writes that Obama must prosecute bush administration officials and that, if he doesn't, other nations are very likely too. Read the whole thing, but he concludes:

My question is how can the Obama Administration not investigate, and, if appropriate, prosecute given the world is watching, because if they do not, other may do so? How could there be "change we can believe in" if the new administration harbors war criminals – which is the way that Philippe Sands and the rest of the world, familiar with the facts which have surfaced even without an investigation, view those who facilitated or engaged in torture?

One would think that people like Cheney, Rumsfeld, Addington, Gonzales, Yoo, Haynes and others, who claim to have done nothing wrong, would call for investigations to clear themselves if they really believed that to be the case. Only they, however, seem to believe in their innocence – the entire gutless and cowardly group of them, who have shamed themselves and the nation by committing crimes against humanity in the name of the United States.

We must all hope that the Obama Administration does the right thing, rather than forcing another country to clean up the mess and seek to erase the dangerous precedent these people have created for our country.

Great stuff.

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