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09.24 Unlocking secrets of sea level rise in Greenland [15 minute video]
09.24 What are public lands?
09.24 Americans: the next climate migrants 'We're moving to higher ground': America's era of climate mass migration is here [estimates do not include migrants from other nations even more affected]
09.24 Opec predicts massive rise in oil production over next five years [wonderful for fossil fuel investors; terrible for all plants and animals]
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09.24 Brett Kavanaugh faces second allegation of sexual misconduct09.23 MARYLAND GOVERNOR REBUFFS CALL FOR CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION INTO BRETT KAVANAUGH ATTEMPTED RAPE ALLEGATIONS [Republicans above the law...]
09.19 'Killing a generation': one million more children at risk from famine in Yemen [Does America's government have empathy? Does it understand the concept of morality? The Saudi Air Force would be ineffective without U.S. military assistance...]
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09.18 Racist rioting in Chemnitz has reopened Germany’s east-west split [After 10,000 generations, we are all mixed-race. So let's become friends with our cousins instead!]
Getting the Goat: A Bipartisan Proposal on Torture
Accepting Torture as “U.S. Policy” Will Not Absolve U.S. Participants of International War Crimes
Friday, 13 February 2009
Jason Leopold has the low-down on some more smoking guns proving the highest level involvement in some of the basest tortures in the American gulag. In this case, we have more documentary evidence, gathered by the Pentagon's own investigators, linking former Pentagon honcho Donald Rumsfeld – the preppy pipsqueak who nosed his way through blood and filth for decades at the center of the American power structure – to the criminal abuse and murder of several prisoners by government goons who were following Rummy's "Special Interrogation Plan." As Leopold reports, those documents which span thousands of pages include:
“Research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals don’t stop there—many of them move on to their fellow humans.”
But Rumsfeld did not confine himself to general principles of torture. He sometimes took a keenly personal interest as well:
The most that any Democrat with even a modicum of influence – Sen. Patrick Leahy – is willing to do is to suggest setting up a "truth commission" that will punish no one for their base crimes. A shameful situation all around.
We know that President Obama and leading Democrats believe that no one should be prosecuted for these putrid atrocities. As the progressive president himself reminded us just the other day, his "general orientation" is to "move forward," not look back at such unseemly matters as a widespread system of torture and murder created by the top officials of the government which he now heads. And the most that any Democrat with even a modicum of influence – Sen. Patrick Leahy – is willing to do is to suggest setting up a "truth commission" that will punish no one for their base crimes. A shameful situation all around.
But in keeping with the spirit of comity and cooperation that exemplifies our new era – an era whose motto, also stated by the president, is "do not let the perfect be the enemy of the good" – we would like to suggest a compromise. It is obvious that there is no political will amongst our great and good to launch a wide-ranging criminal prosecution of the atrocities that have been so well documented. It's just not going to happen. Yet it is also clear that a majority of the American people do want to see some sort of investigation and redress of these high crimes, as USA Today reports. So why don't we split the difference, in the good-old fashioned time-honored tradition of the Beltway's beloved centrists? Let's take one high-level fall guy and put him through the legal meat-grinder: investigate him, try him, and put him in prison for the rest of his life, as a symbol that "no one is above the law."
Sure, it will be a sham; all kinds of powerful people will continue to get away, literally, with murder, because they are, literally, above the law. But the folks at home can go back to believing they are living in the last best greatest whizbang God-blessed happy valley homeland on earth, and stop pestering their betters with all this sissy handwringing about torture. The Republicans can claim they got rid of their "bad apple," and the Democrats can claim they have "restored American honor." Most importantly, at least one of these bloodstained putzes will get what's coming to him. As the Scarlet Pimpernel would say: Odd's fish, that's something, isn't it? It's certainly better than no justice at all – which is precisely what we will get if our "forward-looking" president and our toothless "truth commissioners" have their way.
So I hereby nominate Donald Henry Rumsfeld to be the designated sacrifice of the American elite to expiate the blood guilt of the United States government (at least for a few news cycles). It is an honor that he richly deserves; why, one might say that he made love to this employment.
We wait with bated breath for the White House to act upon this bold, bipartisan compromise.
Chris Floyd has been a writer and editor for more than 25 years, working in the United States, Great Britain and Russia for various newspapers, magazines, the U.S. government and Oxford University. Floyd co-founded the blog Empire Burlesque, and is also chief editor of Atlantic Free Press. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This column is republished here with the permission of the author.
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This story was published on February 14, 2009.
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