Friday, May 29, 2009

Obama and Cheney Speeches Not the End of Torture Discussion

When President Obama and former Vice-president Cheney gave what the press called "dueling speeches" about Bush era war crimes I posted a comment where I said that I'd talk about my reaction to the speeches at a later date. Since that post there have been a lot of people who have commented about the speech so I'm not going to rehash what was said and not said other than to say my overall impression of both speeches and the media coverage was one of disappointment.  The Cheney speech was so full of distortions and lies that it doesn't even merit a response except to say that in my view former V.P. Cheney is a thoroughly dishonorable man. The media coverage was typical establishment media coverage. They stuck to their narrative and ignored any facts that didn't fit the narrative. The one response about Obama's speech that was closest to my own response was this one from Rachel Maddow

Because of the importance of this issue I know the two speeches given by Obama and Cheney will not be the last word on what happened in the Bush era. In fact, we already have descriptions leaking out about what appeared in the photos that the Obama administration failed to release. The administration is of course denying the reporting.

We also continue to have Cheney's daughter, Liz Cheney, appearing on one political talk show after another claiming waterboarding and other "enhanced interrogation" techniques were not torture. We also have President Bush  publicly defending torture again and we have Alberto Gonzales trying to deny his involvement in torture. 

The American people deserve answers, not spin and until that happens this subject will not go away and should not go away. Contrary to what President Obama and others believe, we can't move forward as a country while we still have people who think what was done in the past is appropriate for use in the future. We can't afford to have people like Liz Cheney encouraged to run for office when she is out there actively promoting the use of torture. 

Until we drive a stake through the heart of the idea that torture is a viable option to be used by the U.S. we can't move forward or we risk having the use of torture come back like some vampire in a horror movie comes back to feed on it's victims again and again. 

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