What does it take for our House and Senate members, or our new Attorney General and DOJ, to finally launch a real investigation into the CIA enhanced interrogation techniques and DOJ torture memos? To say the revelations of recent weeks are shocking is an incredible under statement. To say the revelations are torture, War Crimes, and should be investigated and possibly prosecuted, should now be mandatory for all Washington officials regardless of political party affiliation. There seems to no longer be any debate that water boarding is and always was, torture, illegal, and a War Crime. No debate that certain detainees were indeed water boarded, with one of them water boarded up to 183 times in a one month period, and the other over 100 times in one month.
According to statements made by the interrogators themselves, the water boarding of detainees was more concerned with coerced confessions from detainees that would provide links between Saddam Hussein and Iraq, with Al Qaeda and the 9-11-01 attacks, than it was with preventing future attacks here in America. To justify the exaggerated threats that were the basis of the unnecessary invasion of Iraq. This violates even the ridiculous DOJ memo guidelines that attempted to justify the torture!
Recently the Obama administration refused to release to the public video tapes of the interrogations. Refused to release them on the grounds that it would be bad for the U.S. image world wide, bad for the safety of our troops, and very beneficial for Al Qaeda recruitment purposes. (What happened to transparency from the new Obama administration?) There may also be other reasons Obama, the CIA, and the new DOJ have for not wanting these tapes released. There are now allegations that these tapes may also show brutal beatings, and even rapes, of both male and female Iraqi detainees at Abu Gharib! I say allegations, because without transparency we have no way of knowing the truth. Were beatings and rapes authorized by the White House too? Would that too not be worthy of investigating? As a nation, we need to know the truth here.
I've watched with amazement how many Republican members of the House and Senate have defended the torture of detainees in recent weeks. I want to know if these allegations of beatings and rapes prove to be true, will Republicans also defend this? Where is the line where they are taking loyalty to the party way too far? Violations of our Constitution, Geneva Conventions, and even violations of our own U.S. Military Code Of Justice, which clearly states water boarding as torture, illegal, and a War Crime, seem to have crossed that line long ago.
It's way past time for an investigation into all this. It's time for the Obama administration to stop being afraid of dealing with this. Let partisan Republicans defend torture, beatings, rapes....if they are dumb enough and immoral enough to continue to. I know Pres Obama is trying to get bi-partisan support for his programs and proposed legislation, but that's no excuse for turning a blind eye to the rule of law and the continuation of the Obstruction Of Justice and attempted cover up here.
Besides, Obama's attempt at bi partisanship has produced nothing from Republicans. He's gotten his hand slapped or bitten every time he's extended the olive branch to them. Obama is displaying inexperience and a sense of naivete in understanding the partisan ways of Washington. He may also be demonstrating an exaggerated sense of self importance if he truly believes he's going to be the one who erases 30 plus years of the partisan poison and how Washington operates.
If you want to be our nations leader, then you must lead. Sometimes the right decision isn't easy. But a true leader doesn't compromise his principles, and makes the correct decision to do the right thing. It's time for you to do just that Mr. President. This is not going away, and the entire world is watching and waiting to see what you will do about all this.
Jeff Morris-Saugerties, N.Y.- DeJaVu57