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Monday, September 18, 2006

SIC SEMPER TYRANNIS


Is former Texas Governor George W. Bush a war criminal? Many would argue you don’t have to do a whole lot of in-depth research to affirm that question. I would argue Bush has committed crimes against humanity and war crimes by his own admission, and is, by his own admission, a war criminal. Even a cursory review of Bush’s policies provides ample evidence of an agenda predicated upon the narrowly-focused and dangerous ambitions of the ultra- neo-liberal Project for the New American Century (PNAC) as described in Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century, and not on his public declarations of fostering democratic principles around the globe. It is Bush’s commitment to bankrolling (using the US Treasury) and effectuating (using the US Military) the PNAC decree to isolate and destroy China that has brought him into conflict with well-established and time-honored international law, and that has garnered him the dubious sobriquet of “war criminal.”

1. PNACled: Rebuilding America’s Defenses.

PNAC’s overarching focus is on the necessity of the United States to curtail and eliminate, by force if necessary, any entity posing a threat to America’s preeminence in political, economic, and military puissance. Rebuilding America’s Defenses pays special homage to China in that PNAC proposes China is the greatest threat to America in all three of these areas, and that the immediacy of the situation requires prompt and effective action – before it’s too late.

Rebuilding America’s Defenses spells out in meticulous detail exactly how to isolate China:

- Re-think our military paradigms – revamp current manpower models – adopt a policy of preemption – replace tactical and strategic military planning with asymmetric war plans –redefine missions based upon functional vice geographical planning – reduce the size of the Active Duty force while relying heavily upon “temporary” Guard/Reserve troops – enforce COT (commercial off-the-shelf) materiel recapitalization programs – exponentially increase defense spending – this isn’t your father’s world!
- Move our military bases out of Western Europe toward the southwest – to vistas like Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Jordan, Afghanistan, the Subcontinent, the former Central Asian Soviet Republics, and the Philippines (by force if necessary) – project military might and “threat of presence” around the globe.
- Augment our military presence in Japan, Korea, Australia, Thailand, and Singapore.
- Redefine laws that “interfere” with America’s international interests; abrogate those laws and treaty obligations that cannot be adapted (to include the US Constitution itself).
- Downplay the importance and the role of the United Nations.
- Play the “History is Bunk” card.
- Expand the powers of the President and rein in the “influence” of the Judiciary.

At first analysis, all of these (and others I did not mention) are seemingly typical considerations in policy planning, implementation, and sustainment; however, what the PNAC document fails to elucidate is that not one of these “reinventing” America initiatives is aimed at improving the lives of the American people or making them safer. The PNAC agenda is expressly designed to ensure the long-term survivability of the world’s America/PNAC-friendly billionaires and their international mega-corporations at the expense of poor and middle class Americans. There is not one shred of evidence that today’s China has “evil” designs on the American people. I would argue that the PNACle Club’s fear of a Sino-dominated world order is actually a gimmick meant to mask PNAC’s true stratagem from the American people – an agenda calling for the mass transfer of wealth to the likes of Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, William Kristol and the whole PNACle gang (click here for a listing of prominent Bush Administration officials and confidants wallowing in the PNAC limelight); to sap every last cent of wealth from the American people and leave them groveling for jobs, food, medical care, shelter and dignity while the rest of the world remains prepped for the slaughter in the name of American national security. A comparison of Bush’s speeches over the past 5 years and the text of Rebuilding America’s Defenses reveals direct quotes (although not referenced) and a litany of talking points common to both.

George W. Bush is the hand-selected stooge PNAC chose to ensure the efficacy of its agenda, and it is Bush’s complacency to promulgate the PNAC design for world domination that started him down the slippery slope of war crimes, namely unilaterally invading Iraq without provocation, intentionally bombing civilians, and violating the Geneva Conventions ban on torture, maltreatment of POWs, and crimes against humanity to include the use of white phosphorus and the pollution of the environment with depleted uranium. And, somewhat ironically, it is Bush’s relentless effort to conceal his crimes that divulges just how precarious his perch really is! And with election 2008 on the horizon and Bush slated to become a lame-duck come the November 2006 elections, PNAC will undoubtedly refocus on selecting a new stooge to represent its interests in Washington, and abandon the floundering GW to drown in his own cesspool.

2. Torture is Legal/Legal. Circle Only One.

In August 2002, Bush gave the CIA the green light to torture POWs. The DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel, Dick Cheney’s legal counsel David S. Addington, and with then White House counsel Alberto R. Gonzales acting as chairman of their meetings, collaborated to conclude and advise Bush that interrogation techniques such as "waterboarding," a torture tactic used to give detainees the sensation of drowning, were perfectly legal under the Geneva Conventions, under other international laws, and under American laws expressly forbidding torture under the pain of harsh penalties. Gonzales moved ahead without soliciting military and State Department expert opinions concerning the laws of torture and war, and approved an August 2002 memo that extended to CIA interrogators the legal sanction to torture other human beings in direct contradiction of US law and US treaty obligations.

The United Nations defines torture as the “intentional infliction of severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, upon a person in the custody or under the control of the accused except that torture shall not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to, lawful sanctions” and “without prejudice to any international instrument or national legislation which does or may contain provisions of wider application.”(1) There is no doubt that now Attorney General Gonzales’ flawed interpretation of what constitutes torture defies convention, and anyone looking would be hard-pressed to wring an iota of concurrence from any serious scholar or practitioner of international law that his counsel to Bush enjoys legal sufficiency.

3. Maltreatment of POWs.

On September 6, 2006, Bush announced to the world that he ordered the transfer of 14 “high-value” POWs from secret CIA interrogation centers located outside the United States to the DoD at Guantanamo Bay. This announcement was significant in two ways: (1) Bush admitted the US held POWs in secret overseas CIA bases – a claim he vehemently denied when questioned about them previously, and (2) Bush is beginning to fear the long arm of international law and is succumbing to the realization that many of his policies and actions are, indeed, illegal, and that he, as the leader, can be held culpable as a war criminal under international jurisprudence.

It is only logical to conclude that if Bush gave two thumbs-up for the CIA to commence torturing POWs, that the CIA would have torture facilities someplace outside the US (unless you want to count Laura Bush’s Whips, Chains, and Handcuffs Room – formerly the Lincoln Bedroom – as a torture chamber). Bush’s confirmation of torture facilities has drawn harsh criticism from European lawmakers, who have renewed their demands to know the locations of the secret detention centers. Bush categorically refuses to say where the torture bases are located, although my military mind tells me most likely in Kyrgyzstan and/or Kazakhstan, and perhaps in Bulgaria. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said there must be no "trade between the effective fight against terrorism and protection of civil liberties." Secretary Annan, in his own way, has not only thrown down the gauntlet, but has smacked Bush across his smirking mug with it; the Secretary tossed Bush’s oft quoted and more oft touted “we will not negotiate with terrorists” declaration right back at him: when you sacrifice civil rights to fight terrorism – you are, indeed, negotiating with terrorists. The fact of the matter is Bush shows little interest in protecting the rights of the nation he claims to represent; his sentiments towards protecting the rights of citizens of other nations must be altogether non-existent. Bush has demonstrated to the world he is just as much the terrorist as Osama Bin Laden; only the former has a rapidly diminishing following.

We should all be eagerly waiting with baited breath the International Red Cross report following that agency’s meetings with the 14 POWs recently released from “Bushwitz” and “Bushenwald.” I just wonder if Bush will order his CIA or FBI goons to snatch up that report before it is made public – you know – in much the same way he ordered the theft of the report Saddam Hussein sent to the UN in December 2002 concerning WMDs (and the lack thereof). Bush is worried, and his recent “requests” to the Legislature support that fact.

4. Pass Me The Laws, Please!!

On September 15, 2006, George Bush went to Capitol Hill to do a little arm-twisting. His laborsome petitions were nothing less than astonishing and probably the most uncivilized and undemocratic requests ever made before the Senate. The man who claims to be the leader of the free world; the man who pretends to bring democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan; the man who swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States (which he refers to as a “goddamn piece of paper) – George W. Bush – asked the Senate to (scroll down to JCs post THE ROAD TO PERDITION for an excellent synopsis):

- Pass laws retroactively exempting civilian employees in the CIA/FBI/DoD from criminal prosecution in the conduct of war crimes to include the President of the United States.
- Pass laws retroactively redefining the Geneva Conventions definition of torture to mean the “unjustified” use of torture.
- Pass laws to retroactively permit detention of POWs in secret concentration camps.
- Pass laws that allow prosecution of POWs with confessions and evidence obtained under torture.
- Pass laws that allow prosecution of POWs while denying them the right to hear and/or see the evidence against them.
- Pass laws retroactively granting the President of the United States the authority to, at his or her discretion, redefine the laws and bylaws of any treaty to which the United States is party.

Bush’s trip to the Capitol was simply a desperate measure made by a desperate man – a man desperate to shed the coil of his own languishing leadership; of his own impropriety; of his own intellectual levity. Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Olympia Snow (R-ME), and John Warner (R-VA) are on record in staunch opposition to Bush’s patently ridiculous requests, and have produced an alternative bill – a bill which prompted our has-a-lot-to-fear leader to hold a rather feisty Rose Garden press conference – where he announce he would hold America’s national security hostage if the Senate passes John Warner’s bill without his biddings intact. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell summed Bush’s despondency up like this:

The world is beginning to doubt the moral basis of our fight against terrorism. To redefine Common Article 3 would add to those doubts. Furthermore, it would put our own troops at risk.”

You have to ask yourself this question in light of Mr. Bush’s trip to the Capitol – why? Why would he need to take leave of his senses and make such a ludicrous demand on our Senators? It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that Bush’s emphasis on “retroactive” is the key word in this most reprehensible of appearances before the Senate; Bush is seeking enactment of laws that will protect him from prosecution by some international body! So we see, Bush has admitted to committing war crimes and now seeks the good counsel of the people and their representatives – the good counsel he should have solicited long ago rather than that foisted by warmongers, yes men and tunnel-visioned billionaires. Such is the lonely paranoia of despotism!

One only needs to examine Bush from the “whole person” perspective to see that America empowered its first run-of-the-mill tyrant, and we, even through the filter of our venerable democratic process join the Catholic Church, the USSR, Saddam’s Iraq, Nazi Germany, Cambodia, Imperial Japan, Red China, and a host of other nations and peoples in the shameful parade of blood-thirsty sociopaths who, like disease-bearing insects, have periodically plagued the globe.

If the Dictator Bush’s fate lies in the hands of those who prosecute war criminals, let it be so. Sic Semper Tyrannis!

Vac

2 comments:

Facetious Muse said...

Vac, this was an awesome read, thank you so very much. There is one other thing I have found in the Geneva treaties that forbid the transferring of detainees to another coutry that might apply torture, which is exactly how Bush tried to 'sneak' his illegal actions by those that truly do care about freedoms and protection.

I can't for the life of me see how anyone can agree torture is even useful, as McCain has said (and he shold know he was POW for 5 years, being tortured all of those years) when someone is tortured, they will say anything to get the torture to stop.

Lately I have heard people say waterboarding isn't really torture, to them I suggest they loook up the FBI and CIA agents and their responces to how waterboarding is wehn they once had to subject themself to it, for training (something they no longer have to do).

Again Vac thank you, I just wish more people could truly see what is going on and how much at risk Bush's illegal actions are putting ALL at.

~~~~~Forever A Facetious Pain~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~Smiles~~~~~~~~

Michelle said...

Definately Bush is coming off very desperate. He has alot of people to protect against prosecution.

Rove is working overtime with the Swift Boat repubs and Diebold is still in charge. I think I am having a Deja Vu. I think as November nears, this desperation is going to become very much more apparent, violent and ugly.

Great article va. It tells it like it is. Too bad those that defend Bush cannot be held accountable for their actions. I do not think the American people can take much more treason from this government and Bush appeasers (grinz) They better not underestimate the power of the people with this election. :)

Some articles I think are important for people to pay attention. This article about the AP journalist being imprisoned is nothing new. Many journalists have been imprisoned by the U.S. coalition in Iraq. Many journalists have died in Iraq. Are they trying to keep the truth from us? It is interesting that this journalists was a witness in Fallujah. Story here..

History of an Interrogation Technique: Water Boarding

Could Bush Be Prosecuted for War Crimes?

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