“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Could American Scum Sucking Lawyers Be This Low?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Ex-CIA lawyer: Gitmo IDs graver than Plame leak

Eli Lake and Bill Gertz THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Covertly taken photos of CIA interrogators that were shown by defense attorneys to al Qaeda inmates at the Guantanamo Bay prison represent a more serious security breach than the 2003 outing of CIA officer Valerie Plame, the agency's former general counsel said Wednesday.

John Rizzo, who was the agency's top attorney until December, said in an interview that he initially requested the Justice Department and CIA investigation into the compromise of CIA interrogators' identities after photographs of the officers were found in the cell of one al Qaeda terrorist in Cuba.

"Well I think this is far more serious than Valerie Plame," Mr. Rizzo said after a breakfast speech. "That was clearly illegal, outing a covert officer. I am not downplaying that. But this is far more serious."

"This was not leaked to a columnist," he added. "These were pictures of undercover people who were involved in the interrogations program given for identification purposes to the 9/11 [terrorists]."

Mr. Rizzo's remarks are the first public comments by someone who was involved in the probe on the still-secret investigation.

On Capitol Hill, Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon, a California Republican who was briefed recently on the investigation, agreed with Mr. Rizzo that the ongoing probe of the John Adams Project is very serious.

Mr. McKeon, ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, said he has been pushing the Obama administration to brief the full committee on the investigation, which will now take place next week.

"The published reports indicate that there have been things that have happened, information passed back and forth to the detainees possibly through their attorneys," he said.

"My greatest concern is that [the information supplied to the detainees] put our people at risk," Mr. McKeon said in an interview with The Washington Times.

An indication of the seriousness was the fact that the investigation has been going for a year and the Justice Department recent appointment of U.S. Attorney for Northern Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald as "special prosecutor," Mr. McKeon said.

Mr. McKeon said the CIA also "is very concerned" about the safety of its officers because of the compromise.

Mr. Rizzo, who was the CIA's acting general counsel from 2004 until December 2009 when he left, said the Guantanamo case is a graver matter than the scandal over Mrs. Plame, a former CIA undercover officer whose name was leaked to the press after her husband accused the Bush administration of lying about prewar intelligence in Iraq.

The Plame scandal ended up ensnaring the Bush administration in an unauthorized disclosure probe from 2004 and 2007, after the Justice Department appointed Mr. Fitzgerald to investigate that case.

Mr. Fitzgerald has been asked to investigate the military lawyers in charge of representing some high-value detainees in Guantanamo Bay, along with outside attorneys who were helping them.

U.S. officials close to the CIA-Justice probe said photographs of the CIA officers were found last year in the cell of Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi, an alleged financier of the Sept. 11 plot. Officials said the photographs appeared to have been taken by private investigators for the John Adams Project, which is jointly backed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

The ACLU on Wednesday said, "The members of the John Adams Project at all times adhered to the law and fulfilled their ethical obligations while representing their clients."

"In addition, the members of the John Adams Project complied with every requirement of the Joint Task Force and every protective order of the military commissions," the group said in a statement. The joint task force is the governing body that runs the Guantanamo Bay prison.

Mr. Rizzo said the photos "were pictures of agency people, some of which were captured paparazzi-style, clearly taken in a kind of surveillance mode."

In recent years, nongovernmental organizations have compiled dossiers on CIA officers involved in the enhanced interrogation program that have included waterboarding, stress positions and sleep deprivation — practices considered by human rights groups to be torture.

Mr. Rizzo said when he was nominated to be the CIA's general counsel he agreed with the interpretation of the Bush administration's Justice Department that torture was defined as harm to someone's internal organs and not the enhanced techniques used by the CIA.

"These were undercover people, the pictures taken surreptitiously found in the cell of one of the 9/11 suspects. I think they found it under the guy's blanket," he said.

Mr. Rizzo said the case was first brought to his attention by military officials at Guantanamo. "When we do referrals, we don't necessarily have to cite a particular provision of the law that has been violated," he said.

But he said that he could think of two types of crimes that may have been committed by the attorneys giving the photos to the detainees.

One possible crime would be the "disclosure of classified information, being the faces of these people, to an enemy foreign power," Mr. Rizzo said.

Mr. Rizzo said the other possible law the pro-bono attorneys may have violated would be the 1982 Intelligence Identities Protection Act (IIPA), the same law Mr. Fitzgerald initially investigated in Mrs. Plame's case. No one in the Plame case was prosecuted under that statute. A former aide to Vice President Dick Cheney, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby Jr., was convicted of lying to investigators and later partially pardoned.

The IIPA requires the prosecutor to prove that the leaker knowingly disclosed the identity of a CIA covert officer. Victoria Toensing, a former chief counsel to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence who helped co-author the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, said the government never proved that Bush administration officials knew beforehand that Mrs. Plame was a covert CIA officer.

By contrast, she said from what she could gather with regard to the current investigation into the detainee attorneys, the law she helped write would apply.

"In this case, these were exactly the kind of people we were trying to protect under the act," Mrs. Toensing said, referring to the CIA interrogators.

Mr. Rizzo in the past has been criticized by civil liberties groups for being the top agency lawyer when 92 videotapes alleged to have shown the waterboarding of Abu Zubaydah and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri were destroyed.

Mr. Rizzo in the interview said he had no knowledge that those tapes were going to be destroyed in 2004. He said he did not, however, believe the destruction of the tapes constituted a crime.

"It would have been a crime if it was being done to obstruct an investigation," he said. "There are court cases ongoing, but there was no ongoing congressional investigations at that time. There were court cases, but as best as we can tell, those tapes were never part of a protective order."

Mr. Rizzo did, however, say that Jose Rodriguez, the CIA clandestine officer who ordered the destruction of the tapes, "shouldn't have done it."

The CIA declined to comment for this article.


  1. The Defense Department is holding off on a full committee briefing on the CIA-Justice Department probe into lawyers who provided photographs of CIA interrogators to terrorism suspects held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, congressional aides said.

    Now why would that be?

  2. Do any of these pro bonofucker lawyers now work for the Eric Holder, Barack Obama Justice Department?

  3. Looks like Rufus is hittin' the hay unless you can find a shot of Plame's titties.

  4. A shot of them titties, and I might be hittin the hay even quicker. :)

  5. Holder Stonewall Continues - Effort to Shield Lefty Al-Qaeda Defense Bar
    Administration's anti-American Streak Runs Deep

    April 12, 2010 - San Francisco, CA - - Front and center in this simmering controversy is the disingenuously named John Adams Project, an arm of the leftist ACLU.

    Through the efforts of attorneys from this group, CIA personnel have been outed with, unbelievably, their identities having been revealed to GITMO terrorists. In response to this effort we find the Attorney General of the United States, Eric Holder, doing everything in his official capacity to prevent additional disclosure of this serious breach of national security protocols - a classic stonewall.

    As terror authority Andy McCarthy [the former federal prosecutor who busted the "Blind Sheikh" Omar Abdel Rahman, implicated in a plot connected with the first bombing of the World Trade Center] characterizes it:

    "...we now know a good deal about several of these volunteer lawyers. To take just a few examples, they provided al Qaeda detainees with a brochure that instructed them on how to claim falsely that they had been tortured; fomented a detainee hunger strike that disrupted security and precipitated fabricated reports that prisoners had been tortured and force-fed; provided the detainees with other virulently anti-American propaganda (for example, informing them about the Abu Ghraib scandal, comparing U.S. military physicians to Josef Mengele, and labeling DOJ lawyers "desk torturers"); gave the enemy-combatant terrorists a hand-drawn map of Gitmo's layout, including guard towers; helped the enemy combatants communicate messages to the outside world; informed the detainees of the identities of other detainees in U.S. custody; and posted photos of Guantanamo security badges on the Internet in a transparent effort to identify U.S. security personnel." [source, Representing al-Qaeda,]

  6. That's it; I'm through.


  7. Why would Holder apparently countenance such reprehensible actions?

    Easy, he is in full ideological agreement with these attorneys who have as a group become known as the "al-Qaeda defense bar." Witness a speech he made during the summer of 2008 when he was a top advisor to then candidate Obama:

    "Our government authorized the use of torture, approved of secret electronic surveillance against American citizens, secretly detained American citizens without due process of law, denied the writ of habeas corpus to hundreds of accused enemy combatants and authorized the use of procedures that violate both international law and the United States Constitution." [source, Nadler Again Calls on Holder to Appoint a Special Counsel to Probe Torture,]

  8. It is no longer a secret that members of the al-Qaeda bar are now working in top positions at the Obama/Holder DOJ. Mr. Holder is their boss, consider the following March 3 piece:

    "Team Obama was hit hard this afternoon by a major revelation by Fox News [see,] which has determined the identity of 7 of the attorneys currently working for DOJ who either represented accused terrorists, filed amicus briefs on their behalf or worked for firms who represented these clients, usually pro-bono.
    Two DOJ attorneys had already been identified. The seven are: Jonathan Cedarbaum - Office of Legal Counsel, Karl Thompson - Office of Legal Counsel, Joseph Guerra - Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General at the Justice Department, Tali Farhadian - Office of the Attorney General, Beth Brinkmann - Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Justice Department's Civil Division, Tony West - Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Civil Division, Eric Columbus - Sr. Counsel, Office of the Deputy Attorney General.

    Previously outed include: Neal Katyal - Principal Deputy Solicitor General and Jennifer Daskal - National Security Division Attorney The stonewalling DOJ has admitted the information is correct, but refuses to identify anyone else in the department who is linked to terrorist defense and refuses to say whether or not any of the above individuals are currently working on matters which might be a conflict of interest.." [source, Terror Soft Eric Holder Busted - Identity of Al-Qaeda 7 Revealed by Fox News ]

  9. Are Gitmo detainees allowed to have cellphones? about computers, flat-screen HDTV, sex between consenting adults?

    While not wishing to give the impression of covering the President's back on this, systemic abuse by attorneys (several active duty military) has gone on for years at Gitmo without so much as a reprimand to my knowledge.

    If I have not stated it previously (and I believe I have), the Gitmo prisoners should have received tribunal hearings and been disposed immediately. Indeed, the trials should have taken place off shore as close to the place of offense as possible. The failure by the Bush administration to act on this matter early on is the cause of on going woe.

    While holding no respect for Mr. Holder or his jolly mates at DoJ, to place the blame for this on him and this Administration is wrong.

    O, Oh, When were the photos taken?

    The greatest outrage of this crew to date is the attempted cover up of the Fort Hood massacre. I don't hear much about that here. One would think our hearty band of brothers at the EB (and the Big Red One, of course) would be all over that...Hmm

  10. Q's link:
    Article 1, Section 9 of the Constitution which states explicitly:

    "No bill of attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed."

    Over the years, the courts have ruled against some ex post facto laws but have allowed others to stand.

    Menendez notes that the 30-year-old Superfund law retroactively imposed enormous liabilities on companies to clean up hazardous waste sites.

    Constitutional law Prof. Jonathan Turley of George Washington University says ex post facto laws are "always controversial" and "raise serious questions," but might pass Supreme Court scrutiny.

    "It runs against the grain," said Turley in a telephone interview with CBS News, "but on the other hand, the Court has upheld retroactive taxes."

    "There have been precedents," he said, "so it would give Congress an edge in retroactively increasing BP's liability.

    If the Constitution as a written document was meant to be meaningful with designated rights and responsibilities where does the document give the right to federal judges to change it, through bizarre interpretations and the Orwellian use of precedent?

    The word itself does not appear in the Constitution.

    That aside, how much money has the federal government extracted from taxes and fees on gulf oil over the last 40 years? How much of that should have been responsibly put aside to protect from the occurrence of spills and pay for inevitable consequences of them?

    Of course the Democrats are going to go after BP because of the damage done. They went after Fannie and Freddy didn't they?

  11. BP = British Petroleum, right?

    Fannie and Fraudie, those were Federals in the revolving door.

    To expect the same Standard, from the Federals for each, the British oil men and the revolving door Federals, that's counter-revolutionary, don't you know.

  12. Now, if I read this thread, correctly, it is telling US that the Obama Administration has already appointed a Special Prosecutor to this outrage.

    That the same fella that went after Mr Libby, failing to prosecute him for the outing of Ms Plame, who was not a covert operative, for perjury before the Grand Jury.

    Obviously, a hungry prosecutor.

    Mr. Fitzgerald has been asked to investigate the military lawyers in charge of representing some high-value detainees in Guantanamo Bay, along with outside attorneys who were helping them

    So, the only complaint that could be leveled, that the Obama Administration is not trumpeting this news.
    But the facts remain constant, there is no cover up, there is no stonewall, there is a Special Prosecutor of high esteem on the case.

  13. The reason that DoD would demur from Congressional testimony, the Special Prosecutor is on the case.

    They do not want to muck it up, with public pronouncements.

    That's how the satellite phone intercepts became public knowledge, back in the Bush days, testimony before Congress and the loose lips, there.

  14. I believe Mr Murtha was briefed by the Commandant of the Marine Corps and others of high rank, concerning the 'Haditha' Marines.

    He then went public with the information provided, which did not carry the day, at the subsequent Courts Martial.

    A disservice to both the Corps and justice, by Mr Bush's Marines.

  15. Allen,

    No surprise about the Islamic Jihadic murders at Foot Hood...

    Major Hassan actually carried a business card with the title of "Soldier of Allah", of course the Rat found it reasonable...

  16. WiO,

    Naturally, I concur with your view on the Fort Hood matter.

    That said, I tend to support DR's view of the "Scum Sucking Lawyers". Clearly, the idiotic handling of the Gitmo detainees is bipartisan and has gone on since 2001. We will see soon enough which way the wind blows at Justice when the Special Prosecutor starts making the same sorts of demands the Senate is now making with reference to the Fort Hood commissioned murderer.

  17. "...the Big Red One, of course..."

    It's your hobby horse, allen. And Mr. Lieberman's. Not mine.

    And I'd no more listen to Mr. Lieberman than I would Andy McCarthy.

  18. trish said...
    "...the Big Red One, of course..."

    It's your hobby horse, allen. And Mr. Lieberman's. Not mine.

    And I'd no more listen to Mr. Lieberman than I would Andy McCarthy.

    Thu May 06, 10:43:00 AM EDT

    "hobby horse"...

    both amazing in its callous, selfish thoughtlessness and lack of esprit des corps...

    I really am not interested in what Messrs. Lieberman or McCarthy have to say. The witnesses and evidence will certainly catch my attention.

    What goes round comes around.

  19. Let me be perfectly frank, allen.

    I find your regular return to the subject - along with your selective, everyday emphasis of some institutional fault or other - actually creepy.

    Actually creepy, allen.

  20. trish said...
    Let me be perfectly frank, allen.

    I find your regular return to the subject - along with your selective, everyday emphasis of some institutional fault or other - actually creepy.

    Actually creepy, allen.

    Well, my dear lady, allow me to allay your feelings of discomfort with facts. Do keep in mind that your feelings are not necessarily facts.

    During the past thirty (30) days, I have written one hundred five (105) comments at the EB. Of those, eight (8) dealt directly or in passing with United States Army Major Hasan. So, by definition Major Hasan is far from being my "hobby horse".

    As the matter of fact, I posted more and lengthier comments on the bungled F-22 program and DR's obsession with my life. I find the latter creepy but comprehend the cause. Anonymity also shelters me.

    During this thirty day period, you have used the word "fuck" or some derivative thereof on at least a score of occasions. One might, therefore, infer that "fucking" is your "hobby horse" - not that there's anything wrong with that, unless you’re doing sailors at Newport News in an alley.

    Clearly, then, "hobby horse" is in the eye of the beholder.

    As to my finding suicidal flaws in American institutions, particularly as those flaws address Islam, I make no apology to you. I don't have a problem with Major Hasan, USA; you and the Army do.

    Major Hasan is nothing more than another symptom of the institutional pathologies that have prevented the US from winning a war decisively since WWII.

    As an aside, over the same period Israel has managed to win several wars, facing much worse odds and constant interference from the USA.

    Maybe if Army careerists spent more time thinking about winning and less about fat porky appropriations, R&R and pensions and benefits, the world would be a better place and the taxpayer’s money better spent.

    O...92.4% of my opinions were free of Major Hasan. Indeed, I give Major Hasan about the same amount of attention as DoD and the USA.

    Although I may be mistaken, blogs exist because of selectivity. Deuce selects topics with remarkable regularity. Possibly I could fill my day with publishing yummy kosher recipes. Instead, I find criminally and idiotically motivated negligence, such as allowing a terrorist to board a plane, following his escape from the watchful eye of the Feds preferable The incompetence of this government and its predecessor provide a daily carnival. Were it not for the fact that the citizens of this Republic have spent trillions on homeland security and the military and that comical failures are going to lead to a terrorist attack of biblical proportions by Muslims because of PC, I would have no complaint.

    You should most assuredly be creeped out, just not by me.

    Now that I’ve had my vent, it is only fair to invite your defense of the policies that have led to the Executive’s and DoD’s stonewalling the Senate on the Fort Hood massacre. Surely, there must be some mitigation that would cast the problem in a whole new light. Given your access to people in the know, you are the ideal candidate to make the argument in favor of the Army and the Administration.

  21. "Now that I’ve had my vent..."

    Fuck, allen. I'll say it again: Actually creeps me out.

    You've got an agenda. Or an ax to grind. Pick whichever.

    I'll be no part of it.

  22. trish said,

    I'll be no part of it.

    Thu May 06, 06:25:00 PM EDT

    Like you are a part of anything other than Trish LLC. Give me a break! You cannot come up with a cogent, rational argument, so you resort to “fuck”. Wow! What a piece of work.

    Both Doug and Linear had your range long ago: You've got yours, let the peons eat cake. Moreover, you really don't have anything to add. You know less about the Fort Hood Muslim murderer than my Pakistani cabdriver.

    You have an agenda: covering the hindquarters of your betters, even if that means making asinine statements about 13 murdered service members and support personnel at Fort Hood by a Muslim Major in your Army. I would say shame, but that would be a waste of ink and you would have to consult the Chaplain to understand its meaning.

    And, yes, Trish, I do have an agenda: I'd like to see my country survive the current crop of military and Federal careerists and avoid another 9-11.

    Islam is the problem and PC Army narcissists like you are the enablers.

    "Fuck", by the way, is what you people are doing to my country.

  23. The more sand that has escaped from the hourglass of our way of life, the clearer we should glom from one end to the other it.

  24. The Defense Department is holding off on a full committee briefing on the CIA-Justice Department probe into lawyers who provided photographs of CIA interrogators to terrorism suspects held at