When Fear, Not Law, Is King
This is so repugnant to me as a Christian, I don’t know how to categorize it. Today, my own Congressman, the illustrious Peter King, the ranking GOP member on the House Committee on Homeland Security and member of the Select Committee on Intelligence, was interviewed by Politico’s Ben Smith about Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to investigate CIA interrogators. “”It’s bull****,” blasted King in that measured, professional way that so becomes his office. “It’s disgraceful. You wonder which side they’re on.”
For those who wish to read the full interview
For those who don’t (and I don’t blame you), I’ll give a few oh so quotable excerpts:
“It’s a total breach of faith, and either the president is intentionally caving to the left wing of his party or he’s lost control of his administration.” I find it fascinating that Mr. King has been in Washington for so long and yet seems totally unaware that the office of Attorney General is not a political tool. It is to be free of political pressures. But that’s okay. Seems Messrs. Bush and Obama forgot that too.
“You’re talking about threatening to kill a guy, threatening to attack his family, threatening to use an electric drill on him — but never doing it….When Holder was talking about being ‘shocked’ [before the report’s release], I thought they were going to have cutting guys’ fingers off or something — or that they actually used the power drill.” Uhh… I guess these quotes stand by themselves.
”Why is it OK to waterboard someone, which causes physical pain, but not threaten someone and not cause pain?” Psst! Actually, Congressman, both are torture and both are illegal.
When asked if interrogators had violated the law, King said he didn’t believe the Geneva Convention “applies to terrorists.” Really? Then could you please explain to the Supreme Court why they were wrong in their 2006 decision in Hamdam v. Rumsfeld, ruling that Common Article 3 of Geneva applies as a matter of treaty obligation to the conflict against Al Qaeda? Or why the U.S. War Crimes Act is incorrect in making it a felony to inflict “prolonged mental harm caused by or resulting from . . . the threat of imminent death; or the threat that another person will imminently be subjected to death, severe physical pain or suffering. . . .”?
King added that the line between permitted and outlawed interrogation policies in the Bush years was “a distinction without a difference.” Now, Mr. King, that’s the first truthful thing you’ve said!
In conclusion, Congressman, let me quote one of your own heroes:
The core provisions of the Convention establish a regime for international cooperation in the criminal prosecution of torturers relying on so-called “universal jurisdiction.” Each State Party is required either to prosecute torturers who are found in its territory or to extradite them to other countries for prosecution. –Ronald Reagan, May 20, 1988 (submitting the Convention Against Torture to the Senate for ratification)
No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat or war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture. . . Each State Party shall ensure that all acts of torture are offenses under its criminal law. –Convention Against Torture, Article II/IV, signed by President Ronald Reagan
Wow, by King’s definition, Reagan must have been a closet tool of the radical Left.
(Thanks again to Mr. Greenwald for his Aug 24 & 25 blogs.)