Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Walk softly, carry a level balance? 

A month back (Wednesday, January 28, 2009 tree swing with unidentified hanging object) I mentioned in the comment thread that I thought that:

In the case of the DOJ which was totally politicized and turned into some kind of supralegal xtra-constitutional party apparatus under the Bushmen; that has to be detoxified and depoliticized. If any of the crimes of the Bush admin are going to be prosecuted (and I'm not convinced they won't be) it can't happen in an environment that is perceived as just another politicized DOJ operating as Obama's legal hit team. The Repubs and the Village media whelps will simply squawk that Obamas DOJ is just a political activist mirror of the Bush/Cheney gestapo and blah blah blah (i'm surprised they haven't tried to do that already). So, if an Obama admin wants to dismantle and even prosecute past crimes its important that the public understands that it isn't just another political party waging a revenge war on the previous admin

This is what I meant by that:

Investigating Bush's Crimes, By Scott Horton (The Nation):
Obama has been careful to avoid any suggestion that he or his senior officers are directing a criminal investigation or prosecution of the Bush-era torture enablers. He is right to do so. The criminal justice system of a democratic state should not operate like a well-oiled military machine taking its cue from the commander in chief. It requires professional prosecutors who operate with critical detachment from political officials when they pursue criminal investigations. Moreover, the painful circumstances of the torture and surveillance programs, particularly the fact that senior Justice Department officials were complicit in their implementation at almost every step, make it an ethically doubtful proposition for the Justice Department even to take up the matter.

Horton concludes:
Though the wheels of justice grind slowly, they grind exceeding small. One year from today, it is likely that a large number of the secret documents that form the backbone of Bush detention policy will be public and many of their authors will have been publicly interrogated about them. We will have a better sense of how torture crept into the American interrogations system and whose authority was invoked to ram it through in the face of legal hurdles once thought insurmountable. And one year from today, we will probably still be asking whether any of the authors of this national tragedy will or should be prosecuted. That outcome is not likely to satisfy either side of the debate. But it may well be consistent with the interests of justice, which demands a complete exploration of the facts before anyone is held to account. That outcome fully reflects the Obama style.

Let's hope so. This should not be allowed to turn into some kind of decades long search for answers and justice as has been the case with the prosecutions of those responsible for the renditions, tortures, murders, disappearances, and extra-legal detentions which define Argentina's Dirty War, covert multi-state government sponsored domestic terror operations such as Condor, or the military sanctioned death squads of Guatemala. To name three examples; all of which also implicate the U.S. for either it's direct involvement or it's knowledge of such supra-legal state sponsored "oppressive law" enterprises. All of which were rationalized, btw, under the bloody all-purpose cloak of waging a so-called virtuous "war on terror".

These kind of demons and hauntings must no longer be allowed to go unexorcised and need to come to a just conclusion swiftly and fairly with "a complete exploration of the facts" as well as the prosecution and punishment of those responsible for the "implementation" of such crimes. Not only as a matter of restorative justice on a national and international level but as a matter of criminal justice. And if that means turning George W. Bush and Dick Cheney's foul little nest upside down and poking through the parasites and pointy sticks and plucked feathers that insulated that rotten cletch then that is what must be done. But it can't be done without unprejudiced judicature; and a sound foundation of trust, both politically and institutionally, in the certainty that any redress is the effectual outcome of the "rule of law".

corrente SBL - New Location
~ Since April 2010 ~

~ Since 2003 ~

The Washington Chestnut
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