Republicans Use bin Laden’s Death to Justify Torture

Jay S. Bybee, Steven G. Bradbury and John C. Yoo, the authors of the torture memorandums

Jay S. Bybee, Steven G. Bradbury and John C. Yoo, the authors of the torture memorandums

It was inevitable, wasn’t it? Give it a couple of days for the news of Osama bin Laden‘s death to die down a bit, and here come the Republicans wanting to grab a bit of the kudos for the death of bin Laden that rightly belongs to President Obama. To accomplish this, they revive the old torture debate, trying to convince us that it was their torture policy that gave Obama the intelligence needed to find Osama bin Laden.

John Yoo was one of the chief architects of the torture program. He wrote legal memorandums that justified torture as a means of interrogation. On Monday in the National Review, John Yoo writes, “President Obama can take credit, rightfully, for the success today, but he owes it to the tough decisions taken by the Bush administration.”

Guess again. The Republican and Conservative advocates for torture fail to mention that Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who was waterboarded 183 times and another prisoner who was tortured, repeatedly made misleading statements about the courier’s identity. If torture was so effective, then Bush would have been the gotcha guy instead of President Obama. Instead of pursuing Osama bin Laden, President Bush lied to Americans about weapons of mass destruction and invaded Iraq. Was Osama bin Laden hiding out in Iraq? No. Was Saddam Hussein the architect of 9/11 who killed 3,000 Americans on US soil? No. Saddam Hussein was allegedly the one who tried to kill President Bush’s daddy.

Bush didn't get Osama bin Laden

From the New York Times: Glenn L. Carle, a retired C.I.A. officer who oversaw the interrogation of a high-level detainee in 2002, said in a phone interview Tuesday, that coercive techniques “didn’t provide useful, meaningful, trustworthy information.” He said that while some of his colleagues defended the measures, “everyone was deeply concerned and most felt it was un-American and did not work.”

“The bottom line is this: If we had some kind of smoking-gun intelligence from waterboarding in 2003, we would have taken out Osama bin Laden in 2003,” said Tommy Vietor, spokesman for the National Security Council. “It took years of collection and analysis from many different sources to develop the case that enabled us to identify this compound, and reach a judgment that Bin Laden was likely to be living there.”

In addition, John Yoo wrote in “War by Other Means,” his opinion that the Constitution gives the President unhindered executive power and “the leading role in foreign affairs.” A week after 9/11, Congress passed The Authorization for Use of Military Force, which pretty much gave the President the power to do anything he wants to in regards to the war on terror. Funny how that crap flies when Bush was in office, but with Obama as President, the Republicans whine and cry foul that President Obama did not consult them and get their approval first before conducting air strikes in Libya.

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