Former US Vice President Dick Cheney acknowledged for the first time on Sunday that some of the men and boys detained as terrorism suspects after 9/11 were in fact innocent – Orrazz

Former US Vice President Dick Cheney acknowledged for the first time on Sunday that some of the men and boys detained as terrorism suspects after 9/11 were in fact innocent.

Appearing on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, Cheney, a staunch proponent of the ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ used during US questioning of terror suspects but considered torture under domestic and international law, said that a “few” detainees were wrongfully held. However, Cheney expressed no remorse and little concern that these people were imprisoned for long periods and sometimes tortured — even to death.

via Former US Vice President Dick Cheney acknowledged for the first time on Sunday that some of the men and boys detained as terrorism suspects after 9/11 were in fact innocent – Orrazz.

My Last Words to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

by TOMAS YOUNG

Editor’s Note: News came yesterday that Tomas Young, an Iraq war vet turned anti-war activist, had passed away in Seattle at the age of 34. Tomas enlisted in the Army just two days after the 9/11 attacks. Following his training at Ft. Hood, Texas he was deployed to Iraq and paralyzed after being shot through his spinal cord just five days into his first tour. Many CounterPunchers may remember Tomas from the excellent Body of War, a documentary film by Phil Donahue about Tomas’ struggles following his return from Iraq. Below is a letter Tomas wrote to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in June 2013. RIP Tomas Young. We promise to carry on your fight. – Joshua Frank

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I write this letter on the 10th anniversary of the Iraq War on behalf of my fellow Iraq War veterans. I write this letter on behalf of the 4,488 soldiers and Marines who died in Iraq. I write this letter on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of veterans who have been wounded and on behalf of those whose wounds, physical and psychological, have destroyed their lives. I am one of those gravely wounded. I was paralyzed in an insurgent ambush in 2004 in Sadr City. My life is coming to an end. I am living under hospice care.

I write this letter on behalf of husbands and wives who have lost spouses, on behalf of children who have lost a parent, on behalf of the fathers and mothers who have lost sons and daughters and on behalf of those who care for the many thousands of my fellow veterans who have brain injuries. I write this letter on behalf of those veterans whose trauma and self-revulsion for what they have witnessed, endured and done in Iraq have led to suicide and on behalf of the active-duty soldiers and Marines who commit, on average, a suicide a day. I write this letter on behalf of the some 1 million Iraqi dead and on behalf of the countless Iraqi wounded. I write this letter on behalf of us all—the human detritus your war has left behind, those who will spend their lives in unending pain and grief.

I write this letter, my last letter, to you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney. I write not because I think you grasp the terrible human and moral consequences of your lies, manipulation and thirst for wealth and power. I write this letter because, before my own death, I want to make it clear that I, and hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans, along with millions of my fellow citizens, along with hundreds of millions more in Iraq and the Middle East, know fully who you are and what you have done. You may evade justice but in our eyes you are each guilty of egregious war crimes, of plunder and, finally, of murder, including the murder of thousands of young Americans—my fellow veterans—whose future you stole.

Your positions of authority, your millions of dollars of personal wealth, your public relations consultants, your privilege and your power cannot mask the hollowness of your character. You sent us to fight and die in Iraq after you, Mr. Cheney, dodged the draft in Vietnam, and you, Mr. Bush, went AWOL from your National Guard unit. Your cowardice and selfishness were established decades ago. You were not willing to risk yourselves for our nation but you sent hundreds of thousands of young men and women to be sacrificed in a senseless war with no more thought than it takes to put out the garbage.

I joined the Army two days after the 9/11 attacks. I joined the Army because our country had been attacked. I wanted to strike back at those who had killed some 3,000 of my fellow citizens. I did not join the Army to go to Iraq, a country that had no part in the September 2001 attacks and did not pose a threat to its neighbors, much less to the United States. I did not join the Army to “liberate” Iraqis or to shut down mythical weapons-of-mass-destruction facilities or to implant what you cynically called “democracy” in Baghdad and the Middle East. I did not join the Army to rebuild Iraq, which at the time you told us could be paid for by Iraq’s oil revenues. Instead, this war has cost the United States over $3 trillion. I especially did not join the Army to carry out pre-emptive war. Pre-emptive war is illegal under international law. And as a soldier in Iraq I was, I now know, abetting your idiocy and your crimes. The Iraq War is the largest strategic blunder in U.S. history. It obliterated the balance of power in the Middle East. It installed a corrupt and brutal pro-Iranian government in Baghdad, one cemented in power through the use of torture, death squads and terror. And it has left Iran as the dominant force in the region. On every level—moral, strategic, military and economic—Iraq was a failure. And it was you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney, who started this war. It is you who should pay the consequences.

I would not be writing this letter if I had been wounded fighting in Afghanistan against those forces that carried out the attacks of 9/11. Had I been wounded there I would still be miserable because of my physical deterioration and imminent death, but I would at least have the comfort of knowing that my injuries were a consequence of my own decision to defend the country I love. I would not have to lie in my bed, my body filled with painkillers, my life ebbing away, and deal with the fact that hundreds of thousands of human beings, including children, including myself, were sacrificed by you for little more than the greed of oil companies, for your alliance with the oil sheiks in Saudi Arabia, and your insane visions of empire.

I have, like many other disabled veterans, suffered from the inadequate and often inept care provided by the Veterans Administration. I have, like many other disabled veterans, come to realize that our mental and physical wounds are of no interest to you, perhaps of no interest to any politician. We were used. We were betrayed. And we have been abandoned. You, Mr. Bush, make much pretense of being a Christian. But isn’t lying a sin? Isn’t murder a sin? Aren’t theft and selfish ambition sins? I am not a Christian. But I believe in the Christian ideal. I believe that what you do to the least of your brothers you finally do to yourself, to your own soul.

My day of reckoning is upon me. Yours will come. I hope you will be put on trial. But mostly I hope, for your sakes, that you find the moral courage to face what you have done to me and to many, many others who deserved to live. I hope that before your time on earth ends, as mine is now ending, you will find the strength of character to stand before the American public and the world, and in particular the Iraqi people, and beg for forgiveness.

-Tomas Young

via My Last Words to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names.

Former Bush counterterrorism czar admits that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld all committed ‘war crimes’, but hedges by questioning if it would be ‘productive’ – 12160

David Edwards

Richard Clarke President George W. Bush’s former top counterterrorism official said this week that he is convinced that Bush, former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld all committed war crimes during the Iraq war.

In an interview that will air in full next week, Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman asked former National Coordinator for Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Counter-terrorism Richard Clarke if “President Bush should be brought up on war crimes [charges], and Vice President Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, for the attack on Iraq.”

“I think things that they authorized probably fall within the area of war crimes,” Clarke agreed. “Whether that would be productive or not, I think, is a discussion we could all have.”

via Former Bush counterterrorism czar admits that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld all committed ‘war crimes’, but hedges by questioning if it would be ‘productive’ – 12160.

Dick Cheney, War Criminal and Chicken Hawk Deluxe

By Les Visible

I’m fairly competent in the use of words but I am rendered speechless in my attempts to reach a definition or describe you. All I can come up with are things like, “you vicious, evil sonofabitch” and “you monstrous low to the ground, blood sucking, shit-weasel” These don’t get the job done, Dick. These could certainly be applied to lesser men, whose works resemble your own, on a smaller scale, but they just can’t approach the dimension of your vile escapades on this tormented planet.

Your intellectual progeny now seek to destroy fresh nations, whose leaders are like Jesus Christ in comparison to you. I won’t attempt to list the extent of your accomplishments, there are too many of them and there are, no doubt, many more that we are unfamiliar with. I can list some of the highlights; Your direct involvement in the commission of the 9/11 attacks, your concerted efforts to bring about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, under false pretenses, based on acts committed by you and your Zio-Nazi, super swine in arms, who, like yourself, were conceived in some dark recess of Hell; some laboratory of the damned that bears a striking similarity to The Island of Dr. Moreau on steroids. You and your partners in crime are Klingons in the Devil’s anus; animate shit golems, with hands and hearts of fire and ice.

via Dick Cheney, War Criminal and Chicken Hawk Deluxe. Profiles in Evil.

America Through The Looking Glass

This article from 2002 is uncanny in its analysis of the US administration…

by David McGowan

April 8, 2002

In the immortal words of Lewis Carroll, things are getting curiouser and curiouser. If there has ever been a more bizarre presidential team in place at the White House at any other time in U.S. history, it doesn’t immediately come to mind.

Consider, if you will, that we have a vice-president (and I use that term rather loosely) who has all but disappeared from public view without any kind of credible explanation having been given to the American people. It appeared at first as though Cheney’s vanishing act was a temporary and cynical ploy that would allow George the Younger to appear as though he were actually running the show.

But six months have now passed and Dick has only been whipped out for a few passing photo-ops (and to do some arm-twisting in the Middle-East). Never before, even during times of World or Civil War, has such secrecy and security ever been deemed necessary. What possible explanation can there be for this? What credible threats is the vice-president facing?

The only possible danger that Cheney could find himself in would be facing impeachment proceedings for, among other things, his involvement in the Enron scandal and his questionable dealings with Iraq. (1) But that of course could only happen if we had a Congress that wasn’t as fully corrupt as the White House team that they are supposed to provide checks and balances on.

via Swans Commentary: America Through The Looking Glass, by David McGowan – dmg001.

BROKEN ARROW, THE MOST DANGEROUS WEAPONS OF ALL

By GORDON DUFF

There are nuclear weapons out there, maybe in terrorists hands, two or five, as many as seven or more. Iran and North Korea didn’t build them. North Korea’s nuclear program is a sham and Iran may simply be a scapegoat. Iran is not building nuclear weapons, they don’t possess the necessary centrifuges to enrich uranium. Using their available technology, a nuclear weapon could not be produced in a century.

However, the threat of nuclear terrorism is very real, the facts are there but America is sitting on the truth. Remember three names, Valerie Plame and Dr. David Kelly and Mordechai Vanunu. Plame was “burned” as an American spy, burned by the Bush administration. Vice President Cheney’s Chief of Staff, “Scooter” Libby (Liebowitz) was convicted of the crime but received a pardon from President Bush.

Plame wasn’t looking for “yellow cake” uranium from Niger, she was looking for lost nuclear weapons. When she got close, she was destroyed and then silenced by the Justice Department. Dr. David Kelly was a weapons scientist in Britain until his very unexpected suicide while trying to report wrongdoing tied to missing nuclear weapons, wrongdoing he attributed directly to Prime Minister Tony Blair. A secret investigation currently being conducted has ruled his death a murder and top members of government, from Blair downward are being grilled about, not only this, but missing nuclear weapons, a subject newspapers are being threatened to stay silent on daily.

via GORDON DUFF: BROKEN ARROW, THE MOST DANGEROUS WEAPONS OF ALL | My Catbird Seat.

Making Their Bones: The American Elite’s Bi-Partisan Murder Racket

By Chris Floyd

July 16, 2009

You want to climb to the top of this seething pit,
You got to walk and talk real nice.
But the secret price of power here is
Human sacrifice.

Yesterday we wrote about the sudden-onset amnesia of our media-political class concerning the officially confirmed operations of American death squads. As we noted, official Washington is in a minor flutter at the moment over reports that Dick Cheney ordered and then concealed the existence of a planned program of targeted assassinations — a program which was supposedly never implemented and was then supposedly cancelled by Obama CIA chief Leon Panetta. We merely pointed out the well-known fact — supported by copious reportage in mainstream journals in the past eight years, not to mention proud public admissions by top government officials, including the president — that the CIA (and other agents of the United States government) had indeed been murdering people in “extrajudicial assassinations” throughout the Bush Administration.

I concentrated on state murder during the Bush years because that is the ostensible focus of the current, manufactured controversy over the alleged existence of one allegedly non-operational program. However, as Jeremy Scahill points out, the Bush-Cheney murder racket was not created ex nihilo, but was a continuation and refinement of murder programs initiated by Bill Clinton. Scahill also makes the pertinent observation that “extrajudicial assassination” — known quaintly in the old days as murder most foul — is continuing unabated under Barack Obama.

More here