Archive for December 14th, 2007

Justice Dept. Blocks House Inquiry Into CIA Torture Tapes

By- Suzie-Q @ 10:15 PM MST

Only two days after the House intelligence committee inaugurated its inquiry into the CIA’s torture tapes by hosting CIA Director Mike Hayden on Wednesday, the Justice Department instructed key CIA officials not to cooperate. The panel’s leaders, Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) and Pete Hoekstra (R-MI), vowed not to back off in a just-released joint statement:

“Just two days ago, CIA Director Michael Hayden appeared before our Committee to address the CIA’s destruction of videotapes. In that hearing, he committed to providing materials relevant to our investigation. Earlier today, our staff was notified that the Department of Justice has advised CIA not cooperate with our investigation.”We are stunned that the Justice Department would move to block our investigation. Parallel investigations occur all of the time, and there is no basis upon which the Attorney General can stand in the way of our work.

“We strongly urge General Hayden to comply with our Committee’s bipartisan request to produce documents and to make available John Rizzo and Jose Rodriguez for testimony next week. We will use all the tools available to Congress, including subpoenas, to obtain this information and this testimony.

“It’s clear that there’s more to this story than we have been told, and it is unfortunate that we are being prevented from learning the facts. The Executive Branch can’t be trusted to oversee itself. Congress must conduct its own investigation.”

A big part of the story here is how angry the news of the tape destruction has made Hoekstra. Usually the administration can count Hoekstra as an ally. But in a recent interview with TPMm homie Eli Lake of the New York Sun, Hoekstra came this close to straight-up calling Hayden a liar. Michael Mukasey, fresh from pissing off the Senate Judiciary Committee, just threw gasoline on Hoekstra’s fire. This might just become a genuinely bipartisan outrage.

DOJ’s national security spokesman, Dean Boyd, tells us he’ll have a reaction to Reyes and Hoekstra imminently.


Read Full Post »

Evening Jukebox… I’ll Be Waiting

By- Suzie-Q @ 9:55 PM MST

Lenny Kravitz- I’ll Be Waiting

Read Full Post »

Senate GOPers Block Anti-Torture Bill

By- Suzie-Q @ 9:30 PM MST

By Spencer Ackerman – December 14, 2007, 4:54PM

Just when you thought the GOP couldn’t back torture any more.

From the AP:

Senate Republicans blocked a bill Friday that would restrict the interrogation methods the CIA can use against terrorism suspects.The legislation, part of a measure authorizing the government’s intelligence activities for 2008, had been approved a day earlier by the House and sent to the Senate for what was supposed to be final action. The bill would require the CIA to adhere to the Army’s field manual on interrogation, which bans waterboarding, mock executions and other harsh interrogation methods.

Senate opponents of that provision, however, discovered a potentially fatal parliamentary flaw: The ban on harsh questioning tactics had not been in the original versions of the intelligence bill passed by the House and Senate. Instead, it was a last-minute addition during negotiations between the two sides to write a compromise bill, a move that could violate Senate rules. The rule is intended to protect legislation from last-minute amendments that neither house of Congress has had time to fully consider.

The culprit? One-time torture opponent Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). Graham: “I think quite frankly applying the Army field manual to the CIA would be ill-advised and would destroy a program that I think is lawful and helps the country.” So torture is counterproductive for the military but valuable for the CIA?

Update: Yeah, yeah, I misspelled Lindsey Graham’s name initially. Sorry, senator.


Read Full Post »

Rudy Giuliani is into some really illegal stuff!

GEF @ 10:20 AM MST

Countdown: Rudy Giuliani Made Millions Lobbying For Data Mining Company

By: Logan Murphy @ 7:01 PM – PST


Keith Olbermann talked with The Huffington Post’s Arianna Huffington on Thursday’s Countdown about the latest in a string of scandals surrounding Rudy Giuliani. Apparently, Rudy’s law firm made millions of dollars, possibly illegally, lobbying on behalf of a software company that developed data mining programs that kept huge databases on millions of Americans, getting the company’s owners in front of Vice President Cheney, the FBI and other high ranking White House officials just one month after being hired.

The meetings led to millions of dollars in federal and state contracts for Giuliani’s client, but after privacy concerns were raised, the contracts were all dropped — but not before the company could be sold for huge money — and thanks to stock options in the contract, Rudy’s firm pocketed millions of dollars, which is illegal. If any of you wondered if Rudy Giuliani would continue President Bush’s intrusive and illegal spying programs, you now have your answer. Rudy’s already a big player in the game…

We can add illegally spying on Americans and data mining to his long list of criminal activity and shady dealings… That’s why I keep asking myself: Who’s idiotic enough to vote for Tutti Fruity Rudy ??

Read Full Post »

UN rights envoy suspects CIA of Guantanamo torture

Sudhan @hotmail.com

By Stephanie Nebehay 

12/13/07 — – GENEVA, Dec 13 (Reuters) – A United Nations investigator said on Thursday he strongly suspected the CIA of using torture on terrorism suspects at Guantanamo Bay, suggesting many were not being prosecuted to keep the abuse from emerging at trial.

On a visit to the U.S. detention centre in Cuba last week, Martin Scheinin, U.N. special rapporteur on protecting human rights while countering terrorism, attended a pre-trial hearing of Salim Ahmed Hamdan, Osama bin Laden’s former driver.

Scheinin said U.S. officials had told him that of the roughly 300 detainees currently held at Guantanamo, 80 were expected to face military trials for suspected crimes. Another 80 inmates had been cleared for release, he said.

No decision had been made to either prosecute or release the remaining 150, including many so-called “high value” detainees, he said. Some have been held six years without trial.

“There is not enough evidence that could be presented, even to a military commission chaired by a military judge. Partly there may not be evidence and partly the risk of issues of torture being raised is too high,” Sheinin told a news briefing.

“Bringing them to court would bring to the court’s attention the method through which the evidence, including the confessions, were obtained. So this is one further affirmation of the conclusion that the CIA or others have been involved in methods of interrogation that are incompatible with international law,” he said.

Keep reading . . . 

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: