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Obama is Helping Spanish Inquisition Against Bush Officials

Wednesday I wrote a post about how Attorney General Eric Holder said that he was willing to cooperate with Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon's investigation into "crimes" committed by Bush officials regarding enhanced interrogation techniques. Yesterday Daffydd addressed this as well and discussed the consequences and implications this would have on American sovereignty. It's a must read. Here's a portion:

If the Attorney General of the United States once accepts the absurdity that a Spanish court and Spanish judge, Baltasar Garzón, sitting in Spain and operating under Spanish law, actually have jurisdiction over American officials making official policy decisions inside the United States about how American military and intelligence agents can interrogate detainees at an American Marine Corps base inside Cuba... then how can Holder later limit such jurisdiction to "evidentiary requests?"

If Garzón has legal authority to demand we hand over evidence, he also has legal authority to demand we hand over "war criminals," from American military personnel, to John Yoo, to Jay Bybee, to William Haynes, to Douglas Feith, to Alberto Gonzales, to Richard Myers, to Dick Cheney -- even to former President George W. Bush himself.

This is even more outrageous than the suggestion that we prosecute any of these individuals ourselves, or that we form a "truth commission" and haul them before it for public show trials. This is, in essence, outsourcing the prosecution of the previous administration to foreign courts. Call it "extraordinary judicion."

If we ever once accept that a European court -- and not even a recognized "international" one! -- has jurisdiction over actions committed by American officials here in the United States, and can prosecute them for "crimes" that are not even recognized here, then we have crossed a line from which we can never retreat: The United States will cease to be a sovereign power.

If Eric Holder and Barack Obama accept this idea, they will actually have brought about what used to be a paranoid fantasy among the John Birch Society and other lunatics -- "one-world government," run according to European, not American rules.

Even if we do not actually arrest and extradite suspects in a European crimes-against-humanity witch hunt, by acquiescing and even cooperating with such unconstitutional probes of American citizens, we could make it impossible for former Bush-administration officials ever to travel outside the United States: By accepting the jurisdiction of such "world courts" and blessing their proceedings, President Obama signals that he will stand by and do nothing if, say, Dick Cheney or George Bush is seized abroad and sent to some star-chamber tribunal for prosecution. (What would the former president's Secret Service contingent do -- shoot it out with Italian or German police?)

So why would the Obama administration do such a thing? Quid pro quo perhaps? Daffydd wonders too:

The juxtaposition of Holder's offer of "cooperation" (complicity) and the hoped-for acceptance of Gitmo detainees strongly suggests that a grand bargain may be in the works: European countries may accept releasees in exchange for American recognition of the "universal jurisdiction" of individual courts of "human rights."

Barack Obama opened this can of worms all by himself by releasing the EIT memos as the Washington Post points out:

Judge Baltasar Garzón said his probe was based largely on complaints filed by four former prisoners at Guantanamo who were transferred to Spain. But in court papers, he also said his investigation was prompted by the release of secret U.S. legal opinions authorizing the CIA to subject terrorism suspects to waterboarding and other tactics.

While George W. Bush remains silent regarding Obama's actions out of respect as a former President of the United States, Barack Obama may very well sell out Bush to a foreign court. Unconscionable.


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Comments (40)

Is it too early to impeach ... (Below threshold)

Is it too early to impeach Obama yet?

Should we really be surpris... (Below threshold)

Should we really be surprised?
They are so over the top it's beyond belief.
File this amateur's (TOTUS) abilities under
I they wonder why we wont support him?

this is beyond belief...or ... (Below threshold)

this is beyond belief...or would be if it were any other administration than the current one.

if Holder & Obama allow this then I sure as hell hope Texas secedes soon...'cause I will definately move there!

"I they wonder why we wont ... (Below threshold)

"I they wonder why we wont support him?"
sorry I meant
And they wonder why we wont support him.

This is what happens when a... (Below threshold)

This is what happens when an empty suit gets elected. He pandering to the left sure has us as a country in a pickle. ww

next --- Vatican to ... (Below threshold)

next --- Vatican to Obama adminstration for abortions???????

Ratification of the ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Ratification of the Convention by the United States will clearly express United States opposition to torture, an abhorrent practice unfortunately still prevalent in the world today.

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

This is another attempt by ... (Below threshold)

This is another attempt by Obama to avoid responsibility and vote 'Present', or not making decisions 'Above his pay grade'.

By trying to wash his hands clean and avoid responsibility he has allowed any citizen of this country to be 'tried' by any 'court' for any 'crime'.

The man is not only a coward, but he is dangerous to freedom everywhere.

This might really make some... (Below threshold)

This might really make some on the far left happy, but it's going to really piss off the right and middle.

However you might see the justification of this - it sets a terribly bad precedent about the soveriegnty of the US... or of ANY country, for that matter. I really can't believe that Obama doesn't see that, or that he doesn't understand the ramifications of it.

Whether he CARES about it is another matter. I don't think he's looking beyond what he thinks will make the folks overseas like him.

The core provision... (Below threshold)
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.

Water boarding isn't torture. You can call it that all you want, but it won't make it true.

Your comments on the other hand...

"Water boarding isn't tortu... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

"Water boarding isn't torture."
~Kim Priestap, May 1, 2009

Hmm, that's an interesting ... (Below threshold)

Hmm, that's an interesting quote, Adrian. If waterboarding is torture, then it would seem that St. Ronny is to blame for any extraditions that might occur as a result of post-9/11 interrogations.

hyperbolist:Here i... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:


Here is the source of the quote:


This is from the treaty itself:

"any State Party in whose territory a person alleged to have committed any offence referred to in article 4 is present shall take him into custody or take other legal measures to ensure his presence. The custody and other legal measures shall be as provided in the law of that State but may be continued only for such time as is necessary to enable any criminal or extradition proceedings to be instituted."

Step 1: Allow foreign power... (Below threshold)

Step 1: Allow foreign powers to define the word "Torture" to include anything they wish (loud music, sleep deprivation, catepillars, etc)
Step 2: Grant those powers to extradite, prosecute and punish American citizens under THEIR laws and definitions
Step 3: Abolish the United States

IF the Bush Administration was running ACTUAL torture rooms like Saddam was (meat hooks in the ceilings, rape rooms, etc), then I wouldn't care WHAT was done to them...by US!

We are a sovereign...for now. Not only is water-boarding the way WE did it (very careful medical conditions, and strict guidelines) NOT torture. but Americans have a right to answer to AMERICAN justice...not those of every or ANY tin-pot nation on earth!


"Water boarding isn't tortu... (Below threshold)

"Water boarding isn't torture."

Yes, it is. You can deny it all you want, but that doesn't change the truth.

max: "Water boarding is tor... (Below threshold)

max: "Water boarding is torture."

No, it's not. You can claim it is all you want, but that doesn't change the truth.

There...that's better.

So when are we prosecuting ... (Below threshold)

So when are we prosecuting the producers of "Fear Factor"?

Dateline: Somalia, Augus... (Below threshold)

Dateline: Somalia, August 8, 2013

Ex-President Obama was indicted today by a Somalian court for the murder of three Somalian fishermen during the alleged piracy event of early 2009. Somalian investigators have developed evidence they say proves that the three men shot and killed under DIRECT order from then President Obama were in fact innocent sailors, whose murder was ordered to further America's terroritorial ambitions!

Somallia is demanding the immediate extradition of Barak Obama, Eric Holder and Hillary Clinton. Former Vice-President Biden was not charged, as the Somalian's felt it was unlikely he ever knew what was going on about anything.

Is waterboarding, as done b... (Below threshold)

Is waterboarding, as done by our interrogators, officially and legally considered to be torture in the United States?

The answer to that is, without qualification, a resounding "no." It is not, nor has it ever been considered to rise to the level of being legally or officially "torture", per any of our national agreements. None of our laws, none of the international treaties we are signatory to, specifically have defined any of our aggressive "enhanced" interrogation techniques as torture.

What we've signed up to are agreements where torture is defined as causing "severe physical or mental pain or suffering." That means that it lies within our own determination where that line between harsh interrogation and torture lies. Not Spain. Not the UN. Not the "international community". But we ourselves.

That's why clarification was requested - because it had not been previously decided. So a fairly painstaking and deep-dive review of techniques was done and they were considered against all our laws and treaties, and the lawyers, in good faith, drafted legal memos about where the line was.

That means, logically, that what was done was therefore completely and utterly LEGAL. Because we had legally determined they did not rise to the level of being torture.

To claim otherwise is to engage in fantasy and falsehood. You should be ashamed of your intellectual dishonesty.

Now, if Obama and the Democrats want to officially define these techniques as torture, that is their right. But they cannot retroactively define it as such, simply to advance their agenda of criminalizing political differences.

And it is disgusting and politically poisonous for the Democrats to even suggest or intimate they would do such a heinous thing.

First, the non-argument arg... (Below threshold)

First, the non-argument argument. [Yes it is, No it isn't]

Then, the Spanish Inquisition [which nobody ever expects].

What's next? Perhaps:

What's brown and sounds like a bell?

[Its sure to hit the fan soon.]

Justrand,Exactly. Ex... (Below threshold)

Exactly. Except they did not request extradition for Biden because they felt he didn't know anything. In actual fact they didn't request it because the judges didn't want to sit through his testimony - which brings us back to the torture issue.

DaveD : "In actual fact ... (Below threshold)

DaveD : "In actual fact they didn't request it because the judges didn't want to sit through his testimony - which brings us back to the torture issue."


Here's a sample of that future testimony of Joe Biden:
"Well, your honor, when I first heard about the whole boat thingee involving Blackbeard, I had just gotten off the train and, after wandering by Katy's diner for some coffee I headed over to the Home Depot to talk to some regular folks. Now don't get me wrong, I loved that Johnnie Depp movie, and I think the Pirates of the Carribean ride is fun, but this here isn't the Carribean...is it? Anyway, I told them it was just like when President Roosevelt went on television when the stock market crashed in 1929..."

[by now, those still awake in the courtroom would be considering suicide!!]

I believe that would be con... (Below threshold)

I believe that would be considered under the Netherlands' Assisted Suicide Laws, and thus would be exempt from the torture designation.

If Rumsfeld or any other gh... (Below threshold)

If Rumsfeld or any other ghouls are extradited and tried for authorizing the practice of torture, then you all can thank Ronald Reagan for providing those eeeevil Spaniards the legal means with which to do so.


Now as to whether or not waterboarding is torture, precedent would suggest that the United States government's position is that yes, in fact, it is torture to simulate drowning.

hyperbolist, thx for re-sta... (Below threshold)

hyperbolist, thx for re-stating your wrong position...again.

Water boarding is... (Below threshold)
Water boarding isn't torture. You can call it that all you want, but it won't make it true.

"In contrast to submerging the head face-forward in water, waterboarding precipitates a gag reflex almost immediately. The technique does not inevitably cause lasting physical damage. It can cause extreme pain, dry drowning, damage to lungs, brain damage from oxygen deprivation, other physical injuries including broken bones due to struggling against restraints, lasting psychological damage"

One day, maybe you'll give it a try Kim? Maybe you can volunteer your kids, make it a day the beach. After all it's only a dunk in the water.
noitz=Over the line jvc, leave families out of this.

jvc: "It can cause extre... (Below threshold)

jvc: "It can cause extreme pain, dry drowning, damage to lungs, brain damage from oxygen deprivation, other physical injuries including broken bones due to struggling against restraints, lasting psychological damage"

hell, those sound like the side-effects of half of the medications sold on TV!

Of course, there are NO side-effects of flying an airplane into, say, the Library Tower in downtown Los Angeles. Nope, folks just don't tend to live long enough to HAVE side-effects!

jvc, and you other advocate... (Below threshold)

jvc, and you other advocates of the terrorists; why are you so committed to calling this torture? Don't five me the "it makes us as bad as them" line. I ain't biting. I think you want to call it that so you can continue to go after GW. That is what I would call a hateful obsession. ww

Very clever, justrand. Did ... (Below threshold)

Very clever, justrand. Did you think that one up all by yourself, or did your mommy help you?

max (having gotten his ass ... (Below threshold)

max (having gotten his ass thoroughly kicked): "Very clever, justrand. Did you think that one up all by yourself, or did your mommy help you?"

I have to tell ya, max, the FIRST time I heard that particular playground taunt: "Did you think that one up all by yourself, or did your mommy help you?" your mommy hadn't turned her first trick yet!
So next time ya wanna taunt somebody at least refresh your repertoire by a decade or two!

s'bedtime, boyo...nightie night

Has anyone on this site see... (Below threshold)

Has anyone on this site seen the killing fields?

"...why are you so committe... (Below threshold)

"...why are you so committed to calling this torture?"- ww

Waterboarding was considered torture by the English crown which refused to turn over "heretics" to the Office of Inquisition, of which the Spanish Inquisition was a small part.

From English law the USA has outlawed all cruel and unusual punishments with the Inquisition in mind (since English (protestant) law is against Church investure over the State).

Unlike the "tradition" tradition of Rome, the scriptural-based laws of the protestant nations abjures the concept of "the ends justify the means".

bryanD: "Waterboarding w... (Below threshold)

bryanD: "Waterboarding was considered torture by the English crown which refused to turn over "heretics" to the Office of Inquisition, of which the Spanish Inquisition was a small part."


Astounding irrelevance! Bravo!!

Comparing what WE did in re. "water-boarding" to what was done during the Spanish Inquisition is, well, ASTOUNDING!!

the "water-boarding" of the Spanish Inquisition involved DROWNING someone! If they DIED then they were declared INNOCENT...and if they LIVED they were GUILTY (i.e. they had demons keeping tme alive).

This is like comparing being a prisoner in an American prison to being a prisoner on Devil's Island. Yes, in both cases you are a prisoner...but the comparison ends THERE!

Sweet Jesus...can we get a better quality of TROLL in here??????

To sum up:1. Tort... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

To sum up:

1. Torture never happened
2. It happened a little bit but that was because of "bad apples"
3. It happened a lot but why not!
4. It happened but it was *somehow* legal (I'll get back to you on that Charlie)
5. Oh sure it happened but it didn't "happen"
6. Something indistinguishable from torture happened but why not
7. Well, perhaps omething indistinguishable from torture almost sorta kinda happened . . . maybe . . . just maybe but really no one knows for sure I think . . . we lost the video anyway
8. It happened but we're calling it something different today
9. Waterboarding isn't torture
10. It happened but there was a doctor there
11. Your eyes are lying to you
12. It was Bill Clinton's fault
13. Shut up that's why

Adrian Browne: "To sum u... (Below threshold)

Adrian Browne: "To sum up"

nah. shoulda been:
"To MAKE SHIT up" ...and then allow a Foreign power to prosecute Americans for it.

Do crimes occur in this country...in the military and out of the military? Yes. And we PROSECUTE those crimes.

Now, either Eric Kolder and Barak Hussein Obama are:
(a) LYING about no crimes having been committed (because THEY have said they will not prosecute)
(b) SHIRKING their responsibility even though they believe crimes WERE committed (because THEY have said they will not prosecute)
(c) TELLING THE TRUTH that no crimes were committed (because THEY have said they will not prosecute)

There's no (D). And since there is NO (D), allowing the Spanish to prosecute American citizens even though A, B, or C must be true would be a violation of the oath those two men took!

Those are the facts...SUMMED UP!

The debate on waterboarding... (Below threshold)
John Irving:

The debate on waterboarding ending when two Democratic Underground guys set out to prove it was torture by waterboarding each other.

The both agreed it was bad, called it torture, then proceeded to do it over and over to try and improve their times.

Not torture.

John Irving, I'm guessing t... (Below threshold)

John Irving, I'm guessing they wouldn't have repeatedly ripped their fingernails out of their fingers, or pulled strips of skins off with pliers (two alQueda favorites!) :)

Was John McCain "tortured"?... (Below threshold)
gocart mozart:

Was John McCain "tortured"? Arguably if you are a liberal but I am sure an intellectually honest conservative (hah!) would have to conclude it was only enhanced interrogation. If he provided useful information that may have possibly saved one life, certainly all can agree that it was justified.

John McCain was certainly t... (Below threshold)
John Irving:

John McCain was certainly tortured, he still retains injuries to this day, "gocart."

Meanwhile, literally thouasands of people who have been waterboarded live normal healthy lives.

Does your ilk ever think before you drop one of these random comments, or is that too much to ask?

McCain's permanent injuries... (Below threshold)
gocart mozart:

McCain's permanent injuries were the result of his plane crash by his own admission.






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