Carl Levin on Torture Investigation

As I reported earlier, when Senator Reid spoke at Progressive Media Summit, he stated that he supported investigations of BushCo wrong-doing, even stating he was increasing the budget for such investigations. He specifically mentioned that Senator Levin would be doing some such investigation.

Here’s Senator Levin’s response. It sounds like Levin’s investigation is primarily his SASC investigation on torture. 

In good news, though, Levin’s committee should be releasing the full report in short order.

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  1. MadDog says:

    So, Reid and Levin are only investigating/reporting on DoD torture. Reid is not saying anything about the more egregious Intel Community torture program(s).

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Still, the words increasing the budget for such investigations
      have a pragmatic, businesslike ring to them. More, please.

      • MadDog says:

        Hopefully Reid wasn’t speaking about the horrid Senate Intelligence Committee.

        Even now with Feinstein as Chair in place of Jello Jay, there ain’t much intelligence to speak of.

        I’d be more hopeful if a Special Prosecutor/Counsel were appointed.

        Even with Democratic majorities in both the House and Senate, running investigations via committees comprised of both Democrats and Repugs is a recipe for failure.

            • bobschacht says:

              Looks like we might need a case of Champagne and an extra large box of popcorn.

              Conyers is sounding like he has some unfinished business he wants to deal with.

              Um, anyone hear from the Waxman lately? I know he’s got a new assignment, but doesn’t he have some unfinished business too??

              And what does Leahy have planned?

              What’s on the docket for CREW, EFF, and the ACLU?

              I want to feel like the Constitution is being defended.

              Let us act “to form a more perfect Union”– a phrase originating in the preamble to the Constitution, used as title for a book by Jesse Jackson, Jr. in 2001, and by Barack Obama in a speech on March 18, 2008.

              “Keeping” our Republic (h/t Ben Franklin) is an ongoing task.

              Bob in HI

              speech Obama gave as a presidential candidate

  2. Valtin says:

    The full report will have some real bombshells in it. One will have to know what to look for. I believe the Dec. 2001 timeline issue I pushed is very important. When we get the declassified look at WHO approached JPRA for help on interrogations in 12/01, we will find something very important. The document remained classified, but why? Because of who sent it? Or because of what it says? Or both?

    I know from my weblogs that my work on the early timeline issue generated a ton of hits from Senate servers. Nothing else I ever wrote did that. They were very interested. You’ll notice when Levin liveblogged here he took the trouble to make sure my questions on that were answered. He could have ignored me and chosen other questions. Sources I have confirm my thoughts on this. The full SASC document will be eye-opening, much more than we know now.

      • Valtin says:

        My guess, somewhat informed… it will not just be DoD that is involved. If anything, it’s individuals within DoD that have gotten us even to this point (though not, of course, DoD as a whole).

  3. scribe says:

    Going a little off-topic: someone needs to remind Lindsay Graham (among other Rethugs) that the harder he pushes to have Holder disavow any torture prosecutions in return for getting his nomination through, the more he makes clear that he, Graham, is being an accessory after the fact and did aid and abet the torturers.

    As to those who think Holder has boxed himself in on declaring waterboarding torture and then not committing to whether he will or will not prosecute past torture, they need to remember that (AFAIK) Holder was not “read in” on everyting that DoJ knew, did, or did not do in that, or other fields. Holder can finesse the Rethugs by reminding them (a) DoJ publicity guidelines on whether or not to prosecute are pretty stringent against saying what they want to hear (or answering anything), (b) even if he could comment publicly he could not comment now on whether he would prosecute absent having had a full briefing and full information on what was done and what the legalities are/were and (c) the Rethugs should not be covering for Bush so blatantly lest they rope themselves into the category of “defendant”.

    Ok. As to (c) I’m going a little over the top. But you get my point.

    • freepatriot says:

      As to those who think Holder has boxed himself in …

      I don’t see it that way

      george led the repuglitards into the snake pit

      now they gotta defend the snake pit, while it bites them in the ass

      if the repuglitards are so ready to head off an investigation, they must have figured the probable outcomes

      at the end of the day, IT’S TORTURE

      ya can’t defend that

      have a nice life, mr repuglitard

  4. skdadl says:

    Thanks very much for this, EW. Levin’s 8-hr 3-panel hearing last year, however incomplete, was to me the hearing of the year — I’ve gone back and watched it again at the C-SPAN archives, just to fix characters and details in my mind. I know that we even knew a good many of the facts beforehand, but there was something in the dramatic presentation of that hearing, rising to Haynes testifying by himself, that made it a great educational tool.

    Plus that’s how I learned about Valtin, in the FDL session that followed.

    I’m really looking forward to your follow-up. And to everyone else’s follow-up too.

  5. JohnLopresti says:

    Sounds worthwhile, I am glad the redacted ‘full’ report is planned for publishing. It should help with the ongoing analysis of how to insulate executive departments from compromise in future administrations, but also aid a reflective congress the next time it opts to address its current configuration of communications in similar matters. I always thought the celerity of the shift to largescale programs overloaded the controls in place, and even thought I read initial resistance from DoD, as anticipated, given its corpus of employees becomes exposed in many ways as the experiments deployed. The FBI IG reported as much. That is one side of the river. I wonder, OT, if there might be some rapproachement over the original intent of the gitmo lease as a fuel stop; relations with the country may be weak and oppositional, but even the ‘rent’ payment voucher have remained uncashed.

  6. bonkers says:

    …even stating he was increasing the budget for such investigations.

    The sternly worded letters will now be TWO pages. Watch Repubs, yer gonna git it now!

  7. bluebutterfly says:

    Much of what DOJ officials are currently reviewing and considering with regard to investigating the Bush administration’s torture practices comes from a proposal by House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers. Last week, Conyers published a 487-page report that called for the creation of a blue-ribbon panel and criminal probes into the Bush administration’s most controversial policies.

    The report, “Reining in the Imperial Presidency: Lessons and Recommendations Relating to the Presidency of George W. Bush”, said Holder “should appoint a Special Counsel, or expand the scope of the present investigation into CIA tape destruction, to determine whether there were criminal violations committed pursuant to Bush Administration policies that were undertaken under unreviewable war powers, including enhanced interrogation, extraordinary rendition, and warrantless domestic surveillance.”

    http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/node/39197

  8. MadDog says:

    OT – CNN shows that President Obama re-took the oath of office, again from Justice Roberts.

    So there you fookin’ wingnuts! Spit!

  9. tangodaddy says:

    any and all investigations must start with the truth from 9/11 forward anything less is just a whitewash.

  10. MsAnnaNOLA says:

    Ok so did anyone see Olbermann with the whistleblower on about NSA spying on Journalists.

    I am not surprised. I just hope this is the beginning of a deluge of whistleblowers.

    Here is hoping.

    • BillE says:

      I always figured they went after law makers, judges, and the media. I wonder what they had on people like D Gregory.

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Well, they’re no longer busily well-paid on no-bid contracts, DoJ positions, or other cushy GOP**er welfare, so here they are to snatch our freedom fries. Pathetic.

      **GOPer as in ‘Grand Old Petty’, a recent Maddowism