Cheney Interview: The New Jon Stewart-Worthy Excuses

As I mentioned, DOJ did one crappy-ass job of trying to give Emmet Sullivan a better reason they can’t turn over Dick Cheney’s interview materials than that Jon Stewart would embarrass poor Dick. They trot out the same canard about needing cooperation from high level officials in the future. But there two big problems with their argument.

The Release of a Late-Investigation Interview of the Target of that Investigation Will Hurt Early Investigative Cooperation

First, they’re basically forced to argue that they won’t be able to get information early in an investigation if VPs and the like worry that their interviews with Special Counsels will eventually be made public.

For example, obtaining information through interviews early in an investigation “often assists law enforcement agents in obtaining important background information,” “help[s] law enforcement investigators determine where to concentrate or focus the investigation,” and may “obviate the need to convene a grand jury at all or circumscribe the focus of the grand jury’s inquiry.” Breuer Decl. ¶ 6. “A law enforcement investigation based upon interviews subject to an expectation of confidentiality also benefits from senior officials more inclined to provide identifiable leads, name percipient witnesses, offer credibility assessments of the accuser or other witnesses, and even articulate inferences, insight or hunches that can be invaluable to a law enforcement investigator.”

But of course this interview wasn’t about "obtaining important background information" about "where to concentrate or focus the investigation" that might "obviate the need to convene a grand jury." Neither Bush nor Cheney gave an interview at that early stage of the process. Rather, this was an interview conducted while there was an active grand jury, at a time when all major witnesses save journalists had already been interviewed.

This was an interview of the ultimate target of the investigation, not a mere bystander.

Meanwhile, the DOJ wants to pretend that a grand jury investigation of top White House officials might thwart an investigation.

Additionally, if a senior White House official were to require the investigators to go through the grand jury process, “[s]uch a decision could impose considerable practical difficulties and burdens upon investigators and prosecutors that at best could prolong investigations and at worst thwart investigations.”

Tell that to Karl Rove and his five grand jury appearances. Turdblossom couldn’t get enough of the grand jury (and he’s been before a grand jury since). Which, in turn, makes this claim all the more laughable.

Mr. Breuer also expresses a concern about politicization of law enforcement investigations: “In addition, forcing White House officials to be brought before grand juries could have the effect of injecting the law enforcement investigation itself into the political process, which could intrude upon government operations at the highest level of government, and which could risk the perception that the investigation itself was political, thus undermining public faith in the impartiality of the judicial system. Baseless, partisan allegations that easily could be investigated and dismissed through voluntary interviews now may have to be investigated through the specter of the grand jury process.

Aside from the obvious fact–which played out in this case–that White Houses are going to go to some lengths to avoid an investigation getting to the grand jury stage because it implies a seriousness that an FBI interview does not, again, Cheney’s interview happened after everyone had been before the grand jury already. Which makes the argument pretty nonsensical.

Here’s Evidence from a Library of Public Reports Proving We Can’t Release This Information Publicly

And then there’s the other big problem with their investigation. Judge Sullivan asked for a list of the other White House officials who have been interviewed in the past. And to make that list, DOJ referred to a whole slew of public reports basically revealing the contents of the interviews that–DOJ reports–were never released in FBI 302 form. The list of those reports includes:

  • Final Report of the Independent Counsel for Iran/Contra Matters
  • Final Report of the Independent Counsel In Re: Janet G. Mullins 
  • Report of the Independent Counsel In Re: Vincent W. Foster, Jr.
  • Report of the Independent Counsel In Re: David Watkins
  • Final Report of the Independent Counsel In Re: Madison Guaranty Savings & Loan Ass’n
  • Tenth Report by the Committee on Government Reform

DOJ also erroneously claims that Fitzgerald interviewed a slew of people in this investigation (they’re mistaking the earlier fall 2003 FBI interviews with Fitzgerald’s later interviews before the grand jury) and admits that Reagan’s interview transcript from Iran-Contra is public.

In other words, to support their argument that if interviews with top White House officials were to be made public, no one would cooperate, they name a bunch of interviews that–because there was a final public report for the investigation–were made public (though not the 302s)!

Not only that, but they list the five grossly political investigations of Clinton, and claim–with a straight filing-face!–that anything they could do would politicize investigations.

We Can’t Reveal Info Publicly That’s Already Been Released

And then, finally, there’s the fact that DOJ is basically claiming a bunch of things already released in the Libby trial to be exempt from FOIA. For example, here’s the list of things that DOJ says is exempt–with either the name, or a document showing very closely related evidence:

  • Vice President’s discussion of his requests for information from the CIA relating to reported efforts by Iraqi officials to purchase uranium from Niger. Faxes, memo, and CIA’s version of VP request all released at trial or subsequent to trial.
  • Vice President’s description of government deliberations, including discussions between the Vice President and the Deputy National Security Advisor, in preparation of a statement by the Director of CIA regarding the accuracy of a statement in the President’s 2003 State of the Union Address. Libby’s notes–with Cheney’s statements–introduced at trial.
  • Vice President’s recollection of discussions with Lewis Libby, the White House Communications Director, and the White House Chief of Staff regarding the appropriate response to media inquiries about the source of the disclosure of Valerie Plame Wilson’s identity as a CIA employee. Cheney’s own note introduced at trial–with additional testimony from David Addington and in Libby’s Grand Jury testimony.
  • Vice President’s description of government deliberations involving senior officials regarding whether to declassify portions of the October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate. Described in Scooter Libby’s Grand Jury Testimony.
  • Description of a confidential conversation between the Vice President and the President, and description of an apparent communication between the Vice President and the President. Described in Scooter Libby’s Grand Jury testimony.
  • Names of non-governmental third-parties and details of their extraneous interactions with the Vice President. Andrea Mitchell, possibly Bob Novak.
  • Name of a CIA briefer. Probably Craig Schmall.
  • Names of FBI agents. Jack Eckenrode and Deb Bond.
  • Names of foreign government and liaison services. Italy, the UK, and Niger.
  • The name of a covert CIA employee. Valerie Plame Wilson.
  • The methods CIA uses to assess and evaluate intelligence and inform policy makers. Sending Joe Wilson to Niger.

 As noted in that post, this information is all that is new:

  • Vice President’s discussion of the substance of a conversation he had with the Director of the CIA concerning the decision to send Ambassador Wilson on a fact-finding mission to Niger in 2002.
  • Vice President’s recollection of the substance of his discussions with the National Security Advisor while she was on a trip to Africa.
  • Vice President’s description of his role in resolving disputes about whether to declassify certain information.

So DOJ is basically saying that a bunch of information released in one of the most publicized trials of the last several years cannot not be re-released because it is tied to the Vice President who was willing to testify at that trial about precisely these things and–partly because he didn’t testify, has had a cloud over his head ever since.

And, if I’m right that the covert CIA op that Cheney talked to Tenet about is Plame–as Libby claimed in his Grand Jury appearances–then it means DOJ says it can’t reveal Plame’s real name even though Cheney was instrumental in revealing Plame’s real name. Which is all the more problematic since in Cheney’s devious little mind, he was preparing to claim that he had insta-declassified Plame’s ID so Libby could leak it to Judy Miller.

You know? DOJ was making a less ridiculous argument back when they were arguing Cheney’s interview materials couldn’t be released because Jon Stewart would make fun of him.

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  1. MadDog says:

    This must be the DOJ’s audition to get their own program on Comedy Central.

    It is surely “comedy”, but just as surely, “not funny”.

  2. LabDancer says:

    Any bets fearless leader’s post here finds itself re-worked into a segment on The Daily Show?

  3. FrankProbst says:

    Which is all the more problematic since in Cheney’s devious little mind, he was preparing to claim that he had insta-declassified Plame’s ID so Libby could leak it to Judy Miller.

    I still think that he went one step further–I think he claimed he insta-REclassified her ID to deliberately impede the investigation. (Remember when Fitz said he wouldn’t touch Plame’s status with a ten-foot pole? Why not?)

    Also, note that one of the things on your list–Vice President’s recollection of the substance of his discussions with the National Security Advisor while she was on a trip to Africa–brings us awfully close to Hadley (was he on that trip?), and I’ve never really gotten a good feel for why he thought he was going to be indicted.

  4. MadDog says:

    As I read this, and all the other government filings in the numerous cases we’ve discussed here over the years, a clearer picture comes to my mind as to just who the government thinks it represents.

    And it ain’t the public!

    The government thinks its client is the government, and only the government!

    They do not represent us. They represent them!

    The public is always the adversary; never the ally.

    And another thing that has crept into my mind is the thought that the bureaucratic civil servant weenies, who form the vast majority of government employees, have taken their measure of the Obama Administration leadership, and have found them lacking.

    In other words, the bureaucratic civil servant weenies typically go to ground when the leadership of a new administration comes onboard, biding their time while scoping out just how strong or weak their new leaders are.

    And after seeing the lay of the Obama Administration land, the bureaucratic civil servant weenies, in particular the National Security and Law Enforcement weenies, have come to the conclusion that they can roll their political appointee leadership.

    You can easily make the obvious judgment that the National Security and Law Enforcement Principals of the Obama Administration (CIA Director Panetta, DOJ AG Holder, DNI Blair, National Security Advisor Jones) are not cracking the whip in exerting their authority on their civil servant weenie underlings, but instead are being overwhelmed from below.

    The only other alternative to my scenario would be that the National Security and Law Enforcement Principals of the Obama Administration; yea even the final arbiter himself, President Obama, are themselves without moral compass or principle, and if that is the case…well, even I don’t want to go there.

    • sbvpav says:

      this is becoming too depressing; frankly not what i worked so hard for to get president obama elected.

  5. alabama says:

    Are there any known “stay behinds” in DOJ (and if so, it would good to know who they are), or is this reluctance really just Holder’s and Obama’s reluctance?

  6. timbo says:

    If the top dogs have lap dogs at the DoJ, then who is to stop them from barking up all our trees except their own? Again, the branches of government need to get back to the first principles of the Constitution or…the slide into irrelevancy of the Bill of Rights and the rule of law will continue unchecked.

    • emptywheel says:

      Smith extrapolates in a way that I suspect is erroneous, when he says:

      The declaration also said Cheney had helped resolve disputes about “whether to declassify certain information,” including portions of a National Intelligence Estimate related to Iraqi weapons programs that Libby leaked to then-New York Times reporter Judith Miller.

      That’s not what the filing says. He’s assuming that it pertained exclusively to Judy and NIE, when that may not be the case.

      • Mary says:

        I agree with you that Cheney likely also went beyond the NIE in what he “pseudodeclassified” to Libby and authorized Libby to “pseudodeclassify” to Miller, but I don’t really believe that Cheney would have told Fitzgerald in the interview that he (Cheney) declassified Plame’s status. I think that’s definitely an issue, but I don’t believe that Cheney would have fessed up to it in the interview – do you think he would have gone that far into admission?

  7. BoxTurtle says:

    This is a losing position, the only thing they’re buying is time. What is SO important about a few more months?

    Boxturtle (They’re gonna annoy yet another judge)

    • FrankProbst says:

      This is a losing position, the only thing they’re buying is time. What is SO important about a few more months?

      Boxturtle (They’re gonna annoy yet another judge)

      I don’t think there’s anything important about the next few months. I just think this is standard operating procedure, at least for Team Cheney. Not sure if the DOJ people who are in charge of this are holdovers or if they’re Obama’s people, but I would guess it’s the former. Team Obama has shown a depressing tendency to let the holdovers continue to make really shitty legal arguments in ongoing cases (the DOMA brief being the worst example), and I’d guess this is just more of the same.

  8. emptywheel says:

    Also, he’s an idiot who apparently missed the whole meat-grinder note from the trial.

    Fair enough–he didn’t cover it. BUt still an idiot.

    • FrankProbst says:

      Also, he’s an idiot who apparently missed the whole meat-grinder note from the trial.

      Fair enough–he didn’t cover it. BUt still an idiot.

      You know, I can never tell which reporters in the MSM are idiots (i.e. they have no idea what happened in this case, even though it was made abundantly clear at the Libby trial) and which are bullshitters (i.e. they know exactly what happened, they enabled it all, and now they’re trying to minimize it to cover their own asses). I don’t recognize this particular reporter, so he may be “fresh eyes” assigned to this story. (Unsolicited advice: Avoid cocktails and anonymous sources.) I’m willing to cut him some slack, since he may not have been able to read Fitz’s closing statement before his deadline.

  9. JasonLeopold says:

    [email protected]…thanks for setting the record straight on that! I’ve been searching for what Smith claimed in the filing wondering where the heck he spotted that. I think it’s safe to say that Smith needs to read Anatomy of Deceit

  10. MadDog says:

    More OT – From the NYT:

    Grand Jury Hears From Top C.I.A. Officers on Destruction of Tapes

    …The witnesses recently called by the special prosecutor, former government officials said, include the agency’s top officer in London and Porter J. Goss, who was C.I.A. director when the tapes were destroyed in November 2005…

    …One top C.I.A. officer who recently appeared before Mr. Durham’s grand jury is the agency’s station chief in London, who had worked with Mr. Rodriguez when he led the agency’s Counterterrorism Center and who eventually became his chief of staff at the clandestine branch.

    Because she remains undercover, The New York Times is not publishing her name. She is said by former agency officers to have helped carry out Mr. Rodriguez’s order to destroy the tapes…

    • bobschacht says:

      So the tapes were destroyed in London? No doubt the DOJ will encounter all kinds of problems filing extradition papers for the agent’s obstruction of justice trial. /s

      Bob from HI currently in CA

      • phred says:

        So the tapes were destroyed in London?

        I think you may be misreading the quote that MadDog at 15 gave us:

        One top C.I.A. officer who recently appeared before Mr. Durham’s grand jury is the agency’s station chief in London, who had worked with Mr. Rodriguez when he led the agency’s Counterterrorism Center and who eventually became his chief of staff at the clandestine branch.

        She is the London station chief now, but she may have been elsewhere when the tapes were destroyed (i.e., at CTC with Rodriguez?). I don’t know, but I wouldn’t make the leap to suggest the tapes were destroyed in London.

        • Mary says:

          I wouldn’t be at all surprised to find out that the normal crew in Thailand didn’t want to be the ones to actually destroy the tapes. So Rodriguez had to send someone over to have it accomplished. Someone who appeared on the tapes would probably not have the same compunction about destroying them, or someone who had other liabilities on torture and ordering torture.

          • phred says:

            Agreed. I think there is still a lot to learn about the tape destruction. I am really hoping that Durham is thorough, honest, and devoted to the rule of law…

    • Mary says:

      What are the odds she’s the same chickie who ordered up the el-Masri kidnap and abuse and who took the public dime trip because she wanted to watch torture up close (and might even have been in one of the tapes since she specifically watched waterboarding) and who was made covert to protect her from investigation? She and her boss seemed to have been supertight. I mean, how many bosses give a girl their own human beings to do with what they will?

  11. Watson says:

    OT: An American soldier has apparently been captured in Afghanistan.

    His Commander-in-Chief owes that trooper a clear, forceful public statement establishing what standard of incarcerational care he demands of the Taliban, and specifically, what types of duress, if any, are legitimate to employ in his interrogation.

    • bobschacht says:

      And how does he do that without sounding like a hypocrite?
      Or will he say that “torture is absolutely forbidden, but if you torture him, hey, we’re looking forward, not backwards, and we won’t prosecute.”
      Try that out for size, mr. c.i.c. How does it feel?

      Bob from HI, wandering around the bewildering state of Southern CA.

      • Watson says:

        Precisely.

        It’s time for Obama, with Gen. McChrystal by his side, to take a stand against abuse of prisoners. No exceptions.

        • james says:

          And that would be shown to be more than just rhetoric how exactly?

          By commencing prosecutions of those who ordered, supervised, and gave legal cover for torture. or by simply standing in front of the stenographers of the media and sounding oh so sincere while doing absolutely nothing to reestablish the rule of law here?

          • Watson says:

            The former, unless Obama intends to abandon that trooper, and officially lower the bar on treatment of prisoners.

            It’s time for the US establishment to admit its errors and impose accountability.

  12. MrWhy says:

    The way I read the memoranda, DoJ is saying, we would be bothered no end by agreeing that the public has a right to this information, so unless you pry it out of our hands, we’re going to claim privilege, even though our logic amounts to, “We don’t want to tell you, so we don’t have to”.

  13. cinnamonape says:

    Not necessarily destroyed in London. It says the tapes WERE kept “safely” in Thailand “where the interrogations took place”. Perhaps the officer took part in the destruction in Thailand or made arrangements to get Rodriguez there.? Or she contrived some documents or authorities for him? Or perhaps he simply related why he was doing it to her…she did serve as his aide at one time. Perhaps he was used to “confiding” in her?

    But if the tapes were moved to London…why? Why not bring them all the way to the US? Easier to make a digital b’cast on secure lines from there? Legal issues if the evidence entered US territory?

    • skdadl says:

      I think the detail that she is now in London is a distraction; I read the report to mean that she was Rodriguez’ COS at the time — the London posting presumably postdates all this, no? And she’s a American and a government employee, so there’s no need to be extraditing — if she’s summoned from wherever she is, she has to show up.

  14. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Can’t get no cooperation?

    Being a public official does not mean giving up Fifth Amendment rights to self-incrimination – unless you’re a terror suspect at Gitmo, then all the gloves are off. But apart from such constitutional protections, which apply to all of us, a public official has a duty to cooperate. The idea that disclosing past cooperation (or prior wrongdoing) will deter cooperation – rather than deter future wrongdoing – has me in a tizzy.

    This argument seems to be more about institutionalizing the Villager’s immunity from the rule of law than it is about the obligations of high public officials to do their duty, which includes enforcing the law and preserving, protecting and defending the Constitution.

    Thugs like Dick Cheney and Karl Rove won’t cooperate regardless. Which means their cooperation has to be compelled and their actions disclosed. That will deter some of their excesses and evoke some small measure of consequence for these would be Masters of the Universe.

    • bmaz says:

      Exactly the right take. Fderal officials should be presumed to cooperate in criminal investigations unless they have to take the 5th.

  15. alinaustex says:

    Is it possible that the Durham investigation is tying up all of these apparent ‘loose threads ‘ regarding torure and the use of torture to try to coerce a ‘confession ” from any or all high value detainees that would be the ‘holy grail ‘ that operationally links al Qaida to Saddam . Is it possibel that Team Durham cpuld show criminal wrong doing for a whole bunch of these miscreants – the common thread being the Geneva Convention violations. Could it be that Durham is for all practically purposes become the Special Prosecutor regarding torture .
    Its my belief that there is a whole lot more going on behind the scenes then we know and given Durham’s sterling track record of busting corrupt officials of all stripes -he could very well emerge out of this as one of the Good Guys . ( Who else has the Durham grand jury called in to give testimony ?)

    • BayStateLibrul says:

      You give me hope…
      The government is involved in the biggest cover-up and lies since
      Roger Clemens took the stand…

    • bmaz says:

      No, there is no way Bull Durham is ranging that wide.

      Sorry BSL, Clemens is still the top of that mountain I guess!

  16. TarheelDem says:

    Step 1 on this. Pressure Reid, now that he has 60 votes to push through confirmation of Obama’s appointees, who have been languishing for six months. It was interesting to see that this brief was filed by an “Acting Assistant Attorney General”.

    Step 2. Put together a public advocacy campaign to begin on November 1. Healthcare and Climate Change bills and the budget will be settled somewhere around then. There are then no excuses for moving forward. The political environment will be as good as it gets. As part of this campaign, pull together a complete brief of what is known at that time; a number of the court cases will have released more documents or been dismissed. Have the brief cover all of the relevant actions of the Bush administration that require criminal investigation.

    Step 3. Move the brief through the blogosphere and into media coverage. And mobilize grassroots activities in response to the brief. Carry the issue into 2010 if necessary, making it clear that we are holding both the Bush administration accountable for its actions and the Obama administration accountable for walking back on its campaign promise of transparency.

  17. 1boringoldman says:

    By the standards of this decision and the C.I.A.’s stalling on the I.G. Report, Bernie Madoff is an honorable man. He got away with his crime for a long time, but when he saw the writing on the wall, he turned himself in, plead guilty, and went to jail quietly. Oh yeah, he said he was sorry:

    There is nothing I can do that will make anyone feel better for the pain and suffering I caused them, but I will live with this pain, with this torment for the rest of my life. I apologize to my victims. I will turn and face you. I am sorry. I know that doesn’t help you.

  18. alinaustex says:

    Bmaz @ 33
    US Attorney John Durham will be the one to unwind all of this torture hoohah -check his conviction record -hope does spring eternal ..

    • bmaz says:

      I am curious why you think Durham is going to do that considering the limited scope of his inquiry jurisdiction? Lots of prosecutors have great conviction records, and it is mostly because they do not prosecute the really tough cases where convictions are not slam dunks. Why do you think Durham is so different? Especially since he was in the process of walking away from this case not that long ago until the Dusty Foggo bit rose its curiously odd ugly head.

      So what gives, why all the enthusiasm?

  19. DLoerke says:

    Folks, give it up already. The Vice President does not need to talk, WILL not talk to a grand jury and cannot be indicted because of sovereign immunity. In the words of your own organization, Move ON already…

    • Petrocelli says:

      You heard the man, folks … time to shut up and let admins, past or present do whatever the hell they want without opposition !

      Oh wait … this is still a Democracy … Never Mind !

  20. rainshadow says:

    Who would have thought that AG Holder would be the only administration official that recieves no Rebublican critism. Justice is supposed to be blind, but not in that way.

  21. Mary says:

    On the first argument you highlight, EW, there is even a simpler response. Over and over DOJ says that they do from time to time give confidentiality representations and certifications. Dick Cheney is a big boy, with *brain trust, scarey smart* Addington as his lawyer. So the easy answer is that since the DOJ can give confidentiality reps, and does, it will not discourage future cooperation bc the interviewee can always ask for that kind of confidentiality.

    DOJ spins in circles to give incompetent (from a legal competence standard, the standard of who has knowledge on which to base the declaration) declarations instead of going to Fitzgerald to give a declaration that he gave confidentiality. They can’t bc he didn’t – and you know what, I’d lay a lot of money on the fact that he has from time to time in his career made confidentiality agreements or reps with interviewees. So why didn’t he with Cheney? Did Cheney not ask – iow, he waived? Did Fitzgerald hold out no confidentiality as the price of someone who was likely not just a background info guy, but a possible target, squirming out of under-oath statements?

    I like how they tried to reference obliquely the multiple Rove GJ appearances as somethign that the Exec shouldn’t be forced to endure, but their Ophelia lacked the pathos of Kermit in a dress from the Muppet rendition of Hamlet.

    What a waste of trees to say over and over – we give confidentiality all the time, but you can’t turn over the interview where we didn’t give confidentiality bc that means in the future no one will ever remember to ask for confidentiality that we CAN give when we want to, and so they just won’t talk to us.

  22. Mary says:

    On the “public reports” front, they skip over the issue of how an Independent Counsel worked, as opposed to special in-house prosecutors. Independent Counsels were required to make reports to Congress, so releasing statements that are not GJ and not made under confidentiality wouldn’t be as much an issue as there would be a Congressional report filed summarizing info. Congress asked for and did not receive such a report from the DOJ and Special Counsel, so the publication of information summaries(if not actual statements) present in an Independent Counsel proceeding (whereby the need for the underlying statements is at least partially mooted by the reports that are being made) make for a different case entirely.

    Also, where the statements are coming from someone who might well have been involved in the criminal activity and who is NOT asking for confidentiality, you have a different situation and that would in large part account for the different handling of statements like Reagan’s vs “background” information from a staffer.

  23. Mary says:

    I guess we now know, too, that the tapes were in actual CIA control (their safe) and not just constructive control (possession held by foreign interests, even if subject to CIA’s command)

    I like how Radsan is trying to spin the CIA lawyers out of trouble. When you have court orders on production and/or preservation of evidence and you have litigation proceedings where you have duties under Federal Rules and ethical obligations even if no orders are outstanding, then you do not have a situation where *incompetence isn’t the same as obstruction*

    If your client is involved (directly or as a witness) in criminal litigation and you know of incriminating evidence and you don’t tell them to preserve, you are already over the line. When you know about their destruction (even if you didn’t tell them to) and you allow your colleagues to sign off on discovery and court filings that don’t disclose that destruction and actively misrepresent that all relevant information is being turned over, you are way past incompetence and well into obstruction.

  24. alinaustex says:

    Bmaz @ 468 ,
    Sorry cannot reveal sources & methods-but my full faith and confidence is in US Attorney Durham – One thing you might go google on the “internet tubes ‘ is how Durham was given an extension on his efforts back in March 2009. But I guess you and I will just have to wait and see if I am right – however it might be good to remember that Foggo leads to MZM , which leads to the OVP /and backroom deals with not only OSD Rumsfeld , but also the special forces pukes that perpetrated Camp Nama & other atrocities -also we might better keep an eye on Cambone & Feith as this unfolds…
    bMAZ ,at this time regarding Durham patience is a virtue & again without revealing sources and methods -this is going to be fun to watch in the next year or so,
    And can anyone verify after the two public meltdown former Sec State Condilezza Rice had that she too had been to see the Durham grand jury ?
    “Time will tell who has failed and whose been left behind when you go your way and I go mine ” Bob Dylan

    • bmaz says:

      Oh, I am more than familiar with that episode, Foggo, Goss, MZM, Mitchell Wade, and Brent Wilkes/ADCS etc. Quite frankly, I have always been a little suspicious of Durham because he was pushed so hard for by Kevin O’connor, who was more than willing to be a lackey for Alberto Gonzales. Not a very admirable genesis in my book. Never heard of Rice being actually summoned to the GJ, I do not believe there is any evidence of that whatsoever, other than the speculation that she and Cheney “might be” called when Durham was first appointed. Keep in mind that Durham appears to have done squat, and was going to put the case to bed, before Foggo spurred him back to action.

      I sincerely hope you are right, but I will have to see it to believe it.

    • MaryCh says:

      UR such a TEEZ!

      I’m hopin’ you’re right, since I didn’t remotely get what I wanted for Fitzmas ;(

  25. TheOracle says:

    It is looking more and more like Attorney General Holder, no matter what he may believe or has said previously, was selected a) to be a suitable replacement for Mukasey and b) to obey the political operatives in the White House (with Rove just being replaced by Emanuel and Axelrod).

    Any independent DOJ Attorney General would have ordered his subordinates at the DOJ to launch investigations, appoint special prosecutors, seat grand juries, subpoena witnesses to testify and conduct a thorough/transparent housecleaning of the Bush/Cheney years…no excuses, no hiding behind executive privilege or states secrets…otherwise, we’re just seeing a repeat of the Bush/Cheney years and the continuing conservative politicization of the Justice Department.

  26. alinaustex says:

    bmaz @49 , mary @ 50 ,
    I repeat to you both patience is a virtue regarding the” destruction of the CIA torture tapes” investigation . And Bmaz don’t understand your pessimistic outlook regarding US Attorney Durham -law enforcement of all jurisdictions up and down the Northeast swear by his work . And how pray tell do we know that Durham has not done squat -has there been any reporting to that effect -is not the investigation ongoing ? And I do believe Durham and his team have been given a broader mandate to investigate any individuals that would have been helped by the said destruction of the torture media -clearly the horrorific practices that migrated from the OVP to Langley then to the OSD -and then to Camp Nama could very well fall under Durham’s expanded mandate -(Clearly I can’t proof this -but its what I hope and have a modicum of reasons to believe is going on even as we blog today ..)
    Bmaz perhaps you should ask Whitey Bulgher just how good a prosecutor US Attorney Durham is once the investigation is completely finalized.
    And this is probably all I will comment regarding this matter -and remain cheerfully optimistic about my somewhat eludicated guesses until proven wrong .
    “The pessimist may be right in the end – but the optimist has a better time getting there ” Samuel Clemons

    • bmaz says:

      Well, like I said, I do not trust the man who pushed him hard for the job, Kevin O’Connor. Secondly, I do not trust anybody out of the Bush DOJ. Thirdly, I heard reports from within and without the DOJ that he was fully prepared to wrap up his investigation, with no resultant implications for anybody, prior to the Foggo bit breaking it open. I am not naive on this stuff, this is what we do here, and I have seen no indication that his jurisdiction was expanded.

      I sincerely hope you are right.