Prosecute Bush and Cheney for their crimes
We urge Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a non-partisan independent Special Counsel to immediately commence a prosecutorial investigation into the most serious alleged crimes of former President George W. Bush, former Vice President Richard B. Cheney, the attorneys formerly employed by the Department of Justice whose memos sought to justify torture, and other former top officials of the Bush Administration.
Our laws, and treaties that under Article VI of our Constitution are the supreme law of the land, require the prosecution of crimes that strong evidence suggests these individuals have committed. Both the former president and the former vice president have confessed to authorizing a torture procedure that is illegal under our law and treaty obligations. The former president has confessed to violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
We see no need for these prosecutions to be extraordinarily lengthy or costly, and no need to wait for the recommendations of a panel or "truth" commission when substantial evidence of the crimes is already in the public domain. We believe the most effective investigation can be conducted by a prosecutor, and we believe such an investigation should begin immediately.
Signed by a collection of organizations I admire greatly, led by the Center for Constitutional Rights.
More kudos for CCR's timely pushback to Admiral Walsh's misleadingly reassuring report on conditions at Guantanamo, criticism effective enought to generate actual coverage. Though I'm puzzled by this bit from the NY Times story:
Rear Adm. Frank Thorp IV, the Navy’s chief of information, said the criticism of Admiral Walsh’s report did not take note of its detailed nature or the fact that it had been made public.
Maybe printed copies of the report were distributed to reporters, but it's not available online anywhere I can find. As a result, it's difficult for most of us to appreciate its "detailed nature." (Will link the report if I find it.)
At any rate, the time for pussyfooting around with the new administration is over.
Update: 6:40 pm, 25 Feb - Sometimes you just can't muster enough cynicism to do the politicians justice. This morning, I made a snarky prediction in the comments to a post by Avedon that noted Sen. Leahy being quoted by Scott Shane in the Sunday NY Times saying the proposed Truth Commission's work should include the role of Democrats in Congress in approving the Bush policies. Great, if so, I said, because it would quickly move the Democratic "leadership" over to support for prosecution -- something only contemplated (even by fire-breathing lefties) against Bush administration officials.
Today, Speaker Nancy "Impeachment is off the table" Pelosi was on Rachel Maddow's show criticizing Leahy's commission idea and favoring prosecutions instead. Hmmmmmmm...