Oh my: Obama won’t prosecute CIA agents for waterboarding jihadists

posted at 3:55 pm on April 16, 2009 by Allahpundit

You’re a young leftist president whose chances of reelection in an age of terror depend in no small part on the effectiveness of the CIA. Do you (a) choose to alienate the agency less than three months into your term by prosecuting members for loyally acting on the former president’s orders or (b) choose to alienate your nutroots base, who have near-zero influence in national elections and will end up voting for you anyway after they observe the mandatory 24-hour mourning period for this “betrayal”?

A fait accompli.

Attorney General Eric Holder says the government won’t prosecute CIA officials for using waterboarding and other harsh interrogation tactics on terror suspects…

Holder said in a statement Thursday it would be unfair to prosecute CIA employees for following the legal advice given at the time. And he says the government will defend any CIA employee in any court action brought in the U.S. or overseas.

“This is a time for reflection, not retribution,” President Barack Obama said in a statement.

It’s also a time for releasing Bush-era memos on enhanced interrogation, per a federal court’s ruling, and the CIA is none too pleased about that. Think The One was going to compound the problem by putting their guys in the dock for belly slaps? What choice did he have here realistically, lefty commenters?


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Good for our President.

gwelf on April 16, 2009 at 5:18 PM

He needs the CIA and alienating them is not a good political move, and every move he makes is politically motivated.

thomasaur on April 16, 2009 at 4:05 PM

So he can throw right-wing extremists at tea parties into secret prisons in Poland.

Vee have vays to make you do vut vee vant!

Steve Z on April 16, 2009 at 5:23 PM

Good for our President.

gwelf on April 16, 2009 at 5:18 PM

If gwelf means Obama I agree.
Those agents were following orders as the release of the TS memos has proved.
Prosecute Bush and Cheney if you need to prosecute someone.

strangelet on April 16, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Prosecute Bush and Cheney if you need to prosecute someone.

strangelet on April 16, 2009 at 5:24 PM

That would get ugly on an epic scale. Don’t even think about trying that.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 5:35 PM

Prosecute Bush and Cheney if you need to prosecute someone.
Tell us, genius, on what grounds?

Towash on April 16, 2009 at 5:35 PM

In future, they’ll just show detainees photographs of Janet Napolitano.

That will be torture enough.

Dhuka on April 16, 2009 at 5:37 PM

In future, they’ll just show detainees photographs of Janet Napolitano.

Like the one up on Drudge now?
Big Sister is watching you!

Towash on April 16, 2009 at 5:38 PM

I’d rather see Bush or Cheney face a trial, but even some of the agents were better than this. But what did you think he was going to do? Obama would never hold those in power accountable, because he wants to get away with the same things Bush did.

The Dean on April 16, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Prosecute Bush and Cheney if you need to prosecute someone.

Of course they were advised by the Office of Legal Counsel that the techniques were not illegal.

If the Obama Administration is saying that the agents can’t be prosecuted for engaging in behavior they were told was legal, how can Cheney and Bush be prosecuted for approving behavior that they too were told was not illegal?

According to the AP report on the OLC memos:
The memos show that Justice Department lawyers authorized the Central Intelligence Agency to use such techniques as sleep deprivation, facial slaps and placing one high-ranking al-Qaeda suspect in a cramped box with what he was told was a stinging insect.

Yeah, shocking.

SteveMG on April 16, 2009 at 5:39 PM

It doesnt much interest me to prosecute the “Lynndie Englands” of torture. I’d rather that they got justice, but I can overlook them getting a pass.

It’s the people who wrote these memos and authorized the torture who really need to get what’s coming to them.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 5:39 PM

Lets give them amnesty.

Okay?

getalife on April 16, 2009 at 5:11 PM

Sure.

But give me a night or two to come up with a few of the laws in this great country that I don’t particularly like that I intend on ignoring also. I could just throw some out there, but hey, if we’re going down this road, it’s like getting three wishes from a genie. It’ll require some thought.

The first one that comes to mind is not paying my taxes.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Didn’t think he was that smart! Surprised.

jeanie on April 16, 2009 at 5:44 PM

I’d rather see Bush or Cheney face a trial, but even some of the agents were better than this. But what did you think he was going to do? Obama would never hold those in power accountable, because he wants to get away with the same things Bush did.

The Dean on April 16, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Try it. Careful what you wish for. Like I said, it’ll get ugly.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 5:45 PM

nutroots base, who have near-zero influence in national elections and will end up voting for you anyway

Yeah, people on the left have never influenced a national election and always vote for the Democrat.

As long as your memory doesnt go back to the 2000 elections and Nader, that holds up.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 5:45 PM

The first one that comes to mind is not paying my taxes.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Nah, lets legalize the weed and open up the prisons.

They did not torture or spy on anybody .

Illegals did not torture or spy on anybody.

getalife on April 16, 2009 at 5:46 PM

orange on April 16, 2009 at 5:39 PM

What Lyndie England and the other members of the 800th MP Brigade did at Abu Ghraib was in clear violation of the UCMJ (several articles) and the Geneva Convention. They were prosecuted. And rightly so.

You are not the least bit interested in the law, in Constitutionality, or any other rational thought. You are still out to get Bush. BDS remains alive and well in America, it appears.

coldwarrior on April 16, 2009 at 5:47 PM

If you’re going to give Bush/Cheney administration amnesty for their crimes, that’s no better than giving illegal immigrant amnesty. Either way people are getting away with crimes when they shouldn’t.

The Dean on April 16, 2009 at 5:48 PM

I’m giving the idiot a brownie point for making a rare rational decision, even though there is probably some evil purpose behind it.

notagool on April 16, 2009 at 5:50 PM

Nah, lets legalize the weed and open up the prisons.
getalife on April 16, 2009 at 5:46 PM

Finally, we have an explanation for your comments.

carbon_footprint on April 16, 2009 at 5:51 PM

In future, they’ll just show detainees photographs of Janet Napolitano.

That will be torture enough.

Dhuka on April 16, 2009 at 5:37 PM

On O’Reilly last night, Dennis Miller had a good zing on Napolitano’s hair, comparing her to Frank Luntz! But seriously, I think it’d be a toss-up between her and Janet Reno.

conservative pilgrim on April 16, 2009 at 5:56 PM

Nah, lets legalize the weed and open up the prisons.

They did not torture or spy on anybody .

Illegals did not torture or spy on anybody.

getalife on April 16, 2009 at 5:46 PM

Screw you! This ignoring of the laws appears to be a personal decision thing. I can decide which benefit me the most.

The Dean on April 16, 2009 at 5:48 PM

What crimes? You know what. It must be nice. It must be nice to be an American like you. You don’t have to sacrifice. You don’t have to make a decision that required any fear of life or death consequences. Who do you think you are presuming to judge someone like George Bush or Dick Cheney? You’re not worth the debris they’ve had to collective scrap off their shoes from time to time. Do you know why you’re still able you sit safe behind your keyboard and spout off with your inane tripe? Because men and women made hard decisions to keep you safe.

You make me sick.

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 5:59 PM

Let us know when you hear the approach of muffled rotor blades, Del.

OhioCoastie on April 16, 2009 at 4:10 PM

LOL, that’s why I closed with “I know, I know”.

Semper Paratus, btw.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:00 PM

If Obama won’t prosecute – it means these people DID NOT torture – plain and simple … nuff said.

It’s not too much for us to ask the Left – when they say Bush and his boys “TORTURED” – to ask them also to put their floppin’ money where their mouth is when they get into power. If you don’t think the crimes were serious enough to prosecute – then that’s as good as an admission that …

YOU LIED WHEN YOU SAID WE WERE TORTURING.

Thank you very much – and Goodnight. The show ended splendedly here methinks.

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 6:01 PM

If you’re going to give Bush/Cheney administration amnesty for their crimes, that’s no better than giving illegal immigrant amnesty. Either way people are getting away with crimes when they shouldn’t.

The Dean on April 16, 2009 at 5:48 PM

A few years ago the Left filed war crimes charges against Chimpy, Captain Halliburton, Condi Rice and several other Bushco villians.

However, when one of those villians decided to endorse O’bama, the Left immediately canonoized him. And forgave him for his alleged crimes.

That would be Colin Powell.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:03 PM

Semper Paratus, btw.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:00 PM

coasties

hawkdriver on April 16, 2009 at 6:03 PM

If you’re going to give Bush/Cheney administration amnesty for their crimes, that’s no better than giving illegal immigrant amnesty. Either way people are getting away with crimes when they shouldn’t.

Dean Wormer on April 16, 2009 at 5:48 PM

See my 6:03 post.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:04 PM

A few years ago the Left filed war crimes charges against Chimpy, Captain Halliburton, Condi Rice and several other Bushco villians.

However, when one of those villians decided to endorse O’bama, the Left immediately canonoized him. And forgave him for his alleged crimes.

That would be Colin Powell.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:03 PM

Dead wrong. Plenty on the left still remember who gave that bogus presentation to the UN. I’d be very pleased for Powell to be punished for what he’s done.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:09 PM

If you’re going to give Bush/Cheney administration amnesty for their crimes, that’s no better than giving illegal immigrant amnesty. Either way people are getting away with crimes when they shouldn’t.

Dean Wormer on April 16, 2009 at 5:48 PM

No crimes were committed – because Obama is bound by his oath to uphold the Constitution – which includes prosecuting law breakers. He’s not prosecuting anyone ergo no laws were violated. There was no torture.

There was no amnesty either. A President has a specific procedure to give “amnesty” to criminals. That wasn’t done here.

Nope Obambi knows no laws were broken – and like a District Attorney that has no case – he’s throwing it out – because he’d look foolish trying to prosecute people who broke no law.

The torture was all Democratic rhetoric folks – and this announcement proves it. Nothing to see here. Another Democratic lie exposed. Throw another log on the fire Mandy!

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 6:12 PM

You are not the least bit interested in the law, in Constitutionality, or any other rational thought. You are still out to get Bush. BDS remains alive and well in America, it appears.

coldwarrior on April 16, 2009 at 5:47 PM

Well, when someone commits war crimes and remains free, then yeah – I’m still out to get them.

This post is all about how Obama said he wouldnt pursue charges against CIA agents. However, it should be about the OLC memos that were just released, since that’s what motivated Obama’s pronouncement.

Check this out: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_MnYI3_FRbbQ/SeeXtKpDOYI/AAAAAAAABx4/_akx896tKBI/s1600-h/bradbury2.png

So the Bush OLC specifically says that it’s okay for the US to call certain techniques torture when other countries use them, but to go ahead and use them ourselves.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:13 PM

Dead wrong. Plenty on the left still remember who gave that bogus presentation to the UN. I’d be very pleased for Powell to be punished for what he’s done.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:09 PM

So g’head and punish him … you’re boys are in power. Republicans can’t stop you.

G’head … do it. If he broke the law and committed a crime – don’t you have an OBLIGATION to prosecute?

Hehe … you don’t have a case. That’s your problem.

Now let’s see you throw that chest out for us.

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 6:14 PM

Thank God we have such an open president!

crash72 on April 16, 2009 at 6:15 PM

Hehe … you don’t have a case. That’s your problem.

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 6:14 PM

I dont have a case against the Secretary of State for torture? Well, no, I dont. There’s a clear case against some other folks in the Bush Admin, but I’ve never really heard that Powell was involved. Maybe I’m wrong and he was; not sure.

I’ve heard some today calling for Rove to be among those prosecuted. Since I dont think Rove had much to do with creating torture policy, I dont see the logic. I hope he gets what’s coming to him for his other misdeeds, like Powell, but I’m not aware that either man was involved with torture.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

Anybody hear that sound in the distance? Kinda sounds like screams of aged hippies as their heads go splodey.

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

Misdeeds? Prosecuted for “misdeeds”? We don’t prosecute ?misdeeds”. We prosecute crimes.

What crimes did Rove commit?

This should be entertaining.

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 6:33 PM

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 6:33 PM

You and I and a few others can remember when this Nation was a nation of laws and the rule of law. Now, it seems, that this Nation is now a nation of feelings, and the rule of law has been replaced by the rule of validation.

coldwarrior on April 16, 2009 at 6:39 PM

The release of these documents is aiding and abetting. Plain and simple.

progressoverpeace on April 16, 2009 at 6:46 PM

As long as your memory doesnt go back to the 2000 elections and Nader, that holds up.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 5:45 PM

LOL, the only reason Gore lost to Bush in 2000 wasn’t because of Nader. It was because he was rejected by the voters of his own home state. Had he won Tennessee, he’d not have needed to win Florida.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:47 PM

I dont have a case against the Secretary of State for torture? Well, no, I dont. There’s a clear case against some other folks in the Bush Admin, but I’ve never really heard that Powell was involved. Maybe I’m wrong and he was; not sure.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

Here are the “charges” filed against Powell, et al at The Hague.

http://deoxy.org/wc/wc-index.htm

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:49 PM

Dead wrong. Plenty on the left still remember who gave that bogus presentation to the UN. I’d be very pleased for Powell to be punished for what he’s done.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:09 PM

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/10/19/9111/3403/407/635220

With eloquence and humility, Former Secretary of State and retired General Colin Powell just provided a ringing endosement of Barack Obama as President for the United States. Among the many reasons he mentioned for his support were that Obama has reached out ‘across the nation,’ and ‘has both the style and substance to be an exceptional President.’ He ended by stating “I’ll be voting for Barack Obama.”

Some of the 900+ comments:

Can we finally put the Who’s A Real American to rest now?

I think Powell has the sufficient gravitas to do that.

I do have qualms with the Iraq war stuff, but this endorsement is the ultimate mea culpa and slap in the face of Republicans who betrayed him.

And the majority of the other comments give Powell a pass.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:57 PM

coldwarrior on April 16, 2009 at 6:39 PM

Zackly CW. Understanding the Liberal mind and how they “feel” their way through situations and problems instead of calulating using logic and the past as guides to move forward without any foundational bedrock like Conservatism has, the Liberal is all over the place shooting in all directions cause “it feels good”.

And then we’re left to deal with their unintended consequences.

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 6:57 PM

Snippage!!

Some of the 900+ comments:

Can we finally put the Who’s A Real American to rest now?

I think Powell has the sufficient gravitas to do that.
I do have qualms with the Iraq war stuff, but this endorsement is the ultimate mea culpa and slap in the face of Republicans who betrayed him.
And the majority of the other comments give Powell a pass.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 6:57 PM

Del, Ain’t it great to have principles? LMMFAO!

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 7:01 PM

Zackly CW. Understanding the Liberal mind and how they “feel” their way through situations and problems instead of calulating using logic and the past as guides to move forward without any foundational bedrock like Conservatism has, the Liberal is all over the place shooting in all directions cause “it feels good”.

And then we’re left to deal with their unintended consequences.

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 6:57 PM

This is really off topic, but since you bring up an opening … I saw this comment from one of the articles on Drudge, now, and it’s just hysterical:

For those who slept through World History 101…… here is a condensed version.

Humans originally existed as members of small bands of nomadic hunters/gatherers. They lived on deer in the mountains during the summer and would go to the coast and live on fish and lobster in the winter.

The two most important events in all of history were:
1. The invention of beer, and
2. The invention of the wheel. The wheel was invented to get man to the beer, and the beer to the man.
These facts formed the foundation of modern civilization and together were the catalyst for the splitting of humanity into two distinct subgroups:

1. Liberals
2. Conservatives.

Once beer was discovered, it required grain and that was the beginning of agriculture. Neither the glass bottle nor aluminum can were invented yet, so while our early humans were sitting around waiting for them to be invented, they just stayed close to the brewery. That’s how villages were formed.

Some men spent their days tracking and killing animals to BBQ at night while they were drinking beer. This was the beginning of what is known as the Conservative movement.
Other men who were weaker and less skilled at hunting learned to live off the conservatives by showing up for the nightly BBQ’s and doing the sewing, fetching, and hair dressing. This was the beginning of the Liberal movement.
Some of these liberal men eventually evolved into women. The rest became known as girlie-men.
Some noteworthy liberal achievements include the domestication of cats, the invention of group therapy and group hugs, the evolution of the Hollywood actor, and the concept of Democratic voting to decide how to divide all the meat and beer that conservatives provided.

Over the years, Conservatives came to be symbolized by the largest, most powerful land animal on earth, the elephant. Liberals are symbolized by the jackass.

Modern liberals like imported beer (with lime added), but most prefer white wine or imported bottled water. They eat raw fish but like their beef well done. Sushi, tofu, and French food are standard liberal fare. Another interesting evolutionary side note: most of liberal women have higher testosterone levels than their men. Most social workers, personal injury attorneys, journalists, dreamers in Hollywood and group therapists are liberals. Liberals invented the designated hitter rule because it wasn’t fair to make the pitcher also bat.

Conservatives drink domestic beer. They eat red meat and still provide for their women. Conservatives are big-game hunters, rodeo cowboys, lumberjacks, construction workers, firemen, medical doctors, police officers, corporate executives, athletes, Marines, and generally anyone who works productively. Conservatives who own companies hire other conservatives who want to work for a living.

Liberals produce little or nothing. They like to govern the producers and decide what to do with the production. Liberals believe Europeans are more enlightened than Americans. That is why most of the liberals remained in Europe when conservatives were coming to America They crept in after the Wild West was tamed and created a business of trying to get more for nothing.

Here ends today’s lesson in world history…….
It should be noted that a liberal may have a momentary urge to angrily respond to the above before forwarding it.

A conservative will simply laugh and be so convinced of the absolute truth of this history that it will be forwarded immediately to other true believers, and to more liberals…just to **** them off.

Have a great day

floopy, Santa Fe, Land of Entrapment (Sent Thursday, April 16, 2009 5:24 PM)

progressoverpeace on April 16, 2009 at 7:09 PM

Ain’t it great to have principles? LMMFAO!

44Magnum on April 16, 2009 at 7:01 PM

My favorite example: the Left, especially the National Organization for Women, happily gave a pass to a middle-aged white guy who engaged in an exploitationesque sexual relationship with a female workplace subordinate. He engaged in this relationship with her in the workplace to boot. And then asked her and others to lie about it under oath.

Because this guy had a D after his name, they had absolutely no problem with his behavior. But if the same guy had an R after his name, they would have taken him out back and shot him, preferably in the nether regions.

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 7:14 PM

Those agents were following orders as the release of the TS memos has proved.
Prosecute Bush and Cheney if you need to prosecute someone.

strangelet on April 16, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Obama is now even more complicit. He will not prosecute those who torture. He has continued these illegal wars./sarc

Ask the World Court if orders relieve you of guilt …psst it does not.

your stupidity is only eclipsed by your willingness to shill in face of overwhelming evidence to the counter.

Jamson64 on April 16, 2009 at 7:18 PM

I dont have a case against the Secretary of State for torture? Well, no, I dont. There’s a clear case against some other folks in the Bush Admin,

No there’s not – if there were a case – it would be prosecuted. Obama owns the Executive, and both houses of Congress. Obama controls the Department of Justice. If there were laws violated – he should be prosecuting. Newsflash – he’s not prosecuting. No laws were violated. So all of this hulabalu is Democratic lies and rhetoric. If I’m wrong – prove me wrong – and bring a case against the Bush administration. I double dog dare you. You control all the strings – we can’t stop you guys – so do it if you have the nerve.

But you don’t – because you have no case.

I’ve heard some today calling for Rove to be among those prosecuted. Since I dont think Rove had much to do with creating torture policy, I dont see the logic. I hope he gets what’s coming to him for his other misdeeds, like Powell, but I’m not aware that either man was involved with torture.

orange on April 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

You “hope” he gets punished. My dear fellow – you missed something – YOU HAVE “HOPE” INCARNATE IN THE WHITE HOUSE. Your guy won. Your folks took the Congress. You WON. So punish him – who is stopping you? It’s not Conservatives … we’re irrelevant – remember? It’s not the Republican party or Christians – they’re dead – remember?

What are you afraid of. With so many on your side spewing all this piss and vinegar for so many years about Bush’s Boy’s and their war crimes. Why don’t you have the gumption and nerve to punish the lawbreakers? You made such a big deal out of it and all. Where’s the trials?

I conclude there are no trials because you know there were no crimes. If I’m wrong – prove me wrong – and press charges. Otherwise quit whining about Bush War Crimes because Bush is gone and the only people you have to blame for not punishing him is yourselves. This is a topic for Huffpo – not HotAir – I suggest you take the issue there to your friends who hate Bush.

WE GIVE YOU PERMISSION TO PUT GEORGE BUSH ON TRIAL. WE DOUBLE DOG DARE YOU!!

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 7:19 PM

I still strongly disagree with the release of any documentation. It has nothing to do with transparency; its secrecy. In case you libs didn’t notice: THERE’S A WAR ON. You do not divulge secrets. You do not “leak” to the press. The public does not have a need to know.

Virus-X on April 16, 2009 at 7:49 PM

And always twirling. Twirling. Twirling towards freedom.

lorien1973 on April 16, 2009 at 4:17 PM

I was thinking the exact same thing. And then I found this. Hilarious.

landshark on April 16, 2009 at 7:57 PM

You really think the mourning period will be 24 hours? I’m sure they’ve forgotten it already.

Speedwagon82 on April 16, 2009 at 8:24 PM

You really think the mourning period will be 24 hours? I’m sure they’ve forgotten it already.

Speedwagon82 on April 16, 2009 at 8:24 PM

Don’t let them forget it … remind them they are full of it each and every time they call Bush a War Criminal. This proves he’s not. If he were – there should be charges. Since there aren’t – he’s innocent and the Democrats lied …

again.

HondaV65 on April 16, 2009 at 8:37 PM

Obama is now War Criminal Numer One!

profitsbeard on April 16, 2009 at 9:59 PM

Holder will release the names. The prick. The Church Committee returns. Look to another thirty years of crp.

davod on April 17, 2009 at 6:36 AM

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2009 at 7:14 PM

My favorite example: the Left, especially the National Organization for Women, happily gave a pass to a middle-aged white guy who engaged in an exploitationesque sexual relationship with a female workplace subordinate. He engaged in this relationship with her in the workplace to boot. And then asked her and others to lie about it under oath.

Del, Liberals and Al Queada/Muslims have one thing in common that I can say with total confidence.

To the Islamist, it is in their holy book that it is OK to lie to an infadel basicly just because its an infadel.

Liberals believe its ok to lie to themselves and everyone else because if its a D misbehaving, its because some R is responsible.

44Magnum on April 17, 2009 at 10:30 AM

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