Barack Obama

Nancy Pelosi on CIA Torture? – NO. Except…

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Political Cartoon by Michael Ramirez

What did Democrat Speaker of the House know about CIA Enhanced Interrogation Techniques and when did she know it?

It is unclear from her public pronouncements.

Judging by Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress who were informed at the time, the answer seems to be yes. In December 2007, after a report in The Post that she had knowledge of these procedures and did not object, she admitted that she’d been “briefed on interrogation techniques the administration was considering using in the future.”

Today Pelosi protests “we were not — I repeat — were not told that waterboarding or any other of these other enhanced interrogation methods were used.” She imagines that this distinction between past and present, Clintonian in its parsing, is exonerating.

On the contrary. It is self-indicting. If you are told about torture that has already occurred, you might justify silence on the grounds that what’s done is done and you are simply being used in a post-facto exercise to cover the CIA’s rear end. The time to protest torture, if you really are as outraged as you now pretend to be, is when the CIA tells you what it is planning to do “in the future.”

But Pelosi did nothing. No protest. No move to cut off funding. No letter to the president or the CIA chief or anyone else saying “Don’t do it.”

On the contrary, notes Porter Goss, then chairman of the House intelligence committee: The members briefed on these techniques did not just refrain from objecting, “on a bipartisan basis, we asked if the CIA needed more support from Congress to carry out its mission against al-Qaeda.”

More support, mind you. Which makes the current spectacle of self-righteous condemnation not just cowardly but hollow. It is one thing to have disagreed at the time and said so. It is utterly contemptible, however, to have been silent then and to rise now “on a bright, sunny, safe day in April 2009” (the words are Blair’s) to excoriate those who kept us safe these harrowing last eight years.

There is little doubt that the evidence clearly indicates Speaker Pelosi and other high ranking Democrats in supporting the CIA and its enhanced interrogation techniques, including waterboarding against high value Al Qaeda detainees.

Why do they continue to LIE?

And, why President Obama will never support a “Truth Commission” to have public hearings regarding the CIA, Enhanced Techniques and Waterboarding in particular.

Political cowardice and self-preservation.


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Barack Obama

Poll Watch: Majority Say CIA Harsh Interrogations Justified

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Yet, a slim majority also say that they favor a government investigation into the use of harsh interrogation techniques used on terrorism suspects.

A new Gallup Poll finds 51% of Americans in favor and 42% opposed to an investigation into the use of harsh interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects during the Bush administration. At the same time, 55% of Americans believe in retrospect that the use of the interrogation techniques was justified, while only 36% say it was not. Notably, a majority of those following the news about this matter “very closely” oppose an investigation and think the methods were justified.

The fact is that President Obama has NOT declassified all of the CIA memos that describe the CIA enhanced interrogation techniques and their success, if any.

Obviously, the Left’s and President’s argument that the techniques were not justified has not been accepted by a majority of Americans.


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Barack Obama

Poll Watch: 58 Per Cent Say Obama Release of CIA Memos Endangers National Security

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The latest polling in unfavorable to the Obama Administration recently releasing previously classified CIA memos regarding enhanced interrogation techniques used during the Bush Administration.

Fifty-eight percent (58%) believe the Obama administration’s recent release of CIA memos about the harsh interrogation methods used on terrorism suspects endangers the national security of the United States. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 28% believe the release of the memos helps America’s image abroad.

Sizable majorities of Republicans and unaffiliated voters say the release of the CIA memos about the interrogations hurts national security. Democrats are evenly divided on whether the release hurt national security or helped the image of the United States abroad.

Seventy-seven percent (77%) of all voters say they have followed news reports about the release of the CIA memos detailing Bush administration interrogation techniques at least somewhat closely. Only six percent (6%) say they have not followed the reports at all.

On the subject of torture which underlines the issue of the CIA memos:

Among all voters, 42% say terrorism suspects were tortured by the United States, but 37% disagree. The number who believe America used torture is unchanged from October 2007.

Most Democrats (54%) and a plurality of unaffiliated voters (46%) believe the United States did torture terrorism suspects. Fifty-five percent (55%) of GOP voters do not believe torture was used.

Only 28% of U.S. voters think the Obama administration should do any further investigating of how the Bush administration treated terrorism suspects.

There appears to be considerable risk to the Obama Administration by releasing the CIA Memos. And, now, former Vice President Cheney and others are calling for a full declassification and release of CIA memos that show the success of the enhanced interrrogation methods.

A full and thorough public investigtion of the issues raised by the enhanced interrogation program would be the most appropriate here as well as an investigation as to whether President Obama has further endangered Americans national security during his Presidency.


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