Torture? Obviously, But What About Litany Of Other Crimes?

So, just a quick thought here, and with a little prompting by Jon Turley, obviously there is torture, and outright homicide thereon, spelled out and specified by the SSCI Torture Report. As I have said on Twitter, there are many things covered in the SSCI Torture Report and, yet, many things left out.

There are too many instances in the SSCI Torture Report to catalogue individually, but let’s be perfectly clear, the failure to prosecute the guilty in this cock up is NOT restricted to what is still far too euphemistically referred to as “torture”.

No, the criminality of US Government officials goes far beyond that. And, no, it is NOT “partisan” to point out that the underlying facts occurred under the Cheney/Bush regime (so stated in their relative order of power and significance on this particular issue).

As you read through the report, if you have any mood and mind for actual criminal law at all, please consider the following offenses:

18 U.S.C. §1001 False Statements

18 U.S.C. §1621 Perjury

18 U.S.C. §1505 Obstruction of Justice

These are but a few of the, normally, favorite things the DOJ leverages and kills defendants with in any remotely normal situation. I know my clients would love to have the self serving, toxically ignorant and duplicitous, work of John Yoo and Jay Bybee behind them. But, then, even if it were so, no judge, court, nor sentient human, would ever buy off on that bullshit.

So, here we are. As you read through the SSCI Torture Report, keep in mind that it is NOT just about “torture” and “homicide”. No, there is oh so much more there in the way of normally prosecuted, and leveraged, federal crimes. Recognize it and report it.

Bmaz is a rather large saguaro cactus in the Southwestern Sonoran desert. A lover of the Constitution, law, family, sports, food and spirits. As you might imagine, a bit prickly occasionally. Bmaz has attended all three state universities in Arizona, with both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Arizona State University, and with significant post-graduate work (in physics and organic chemistry, go figure) at both the University of Colorado in Boulder and the University of Arizona. Married, with both a lovely child and a giant Sasquatch dog. Bmaz has been a participant on the internet since the early 2000’s, including active participation in the precursor to Emptywheel, The Next Hurrah. Formally joined the Emptywheel blog as an original contributing member at its founding in 2007. Bmaz grew up around politics, education, sports and, most significantly, cars; notably around Formula One racing and Concours de Elegance automobile restoration and showing. Currently lives in the Cactus Patch with his lovely wife and beast of a dog, and practices both criminal and civil trial law.

29 replies
  1. scribe says:

    Your omitting DoJ’s lately-much-beloved crime, 18 USC 4 (I think): Misprision of felony.
    .
    In other words, failure to report someone else’s crime.
    .
    And that rolls over into 18 USC 371 (IIRC) – conspiracy.
    .
    Another of DoJ’s faves….

    • wallace says:

      Bingo!! Misprison of Felony. Notwithstanding bmaz’s list, I can’t count on both hands the number of times I’ve mentioned Misprison of Felony on various comment sections. Every time I did, someone would scoff. Seems to me though.. it would put 90% of WDC behind bars. Which would actually be a good thing. :)

  2. anon says:

    In addition to the above, the medically unnecessary and involuntary “rectal rehydration” and “rectal feeding” procedures could constitute rape, sexual assault, sodomy, or a lesser included offense.

    • qweryous says:

      “In addition to the above, the medically unnecessary and involuntary “rectal rehydration” and “rectal feeding” procedures could constitute rape, sexual assault, sodomy, or a lesser included offense.”

      Perhaps Edwin Meese could be consulted wrt possibly prosecuting any persons involved in recording these patently obscene acts and distributing such obscene materials? He’s quite familiar with special prosecutors too.

    • bmaz says:

      Saw it.
      .
      Wanted to puke. That is about a $350 tie Rizzo is wearing while criminally covering for abject torture he helped orchestrate.

  3. chetnolian says:

    It’s strange. So much of this is simply boring, because anyone who spent time on emptywheel and firedoglake all those years ago knew the important parts of it all already.

    And just watching BBC coverage of it makes me sick to my stomach. Where’s the outrage! The USA under Bush and particularly Cheney trashed everything we were supposed to believe in, all the things drummed into us by the Nuremberg Trials, and we can still let shills for the system whinge on about whether useful intelligence was garnered. As if it matters!

    When I was growing up “We have ways of making you talk!” (in a cod German accent of course ) was shorthand for bad evil nasty people. But no longer.

  4. ArizonaBumblebee says:

    The next time I hear President Obama talk about the rule of law I am going to puke. He protects the powerful and prosecutes only those who want to tell us the truth. While Edward Snowden is living in exile to avoid imprisonment, John Kiriakou is rotting in jail, and James Risen is facing jail for contempt. Meanwhile, the torturers and Wall Street criminals stay free. Apparently, murder, torture, perjury, and fraud are not as important to President Obama as the unauthorized disclosure of classified documents. On a related matter, would someone here please tell me if the torture report could be used to arrest and charge some of these thugs for war crimes if they ever visited, say, a European country? I’m thinking of the precedent of General Pinochet.

  5. ess emm says:

    mark mazzetti’s article in the NYT is a disgrace. For example:

    The Intelligence Committee’s report tries to refute each of these claims, using the C.I.A.’s internal records

    I mean, wtf. Then Mazzetti’s gives the CIA version of hacking Senate computers. And in his conclusion lets the DOJ assholes off the hook.

    I regret giving money directly to Mazzetti’s by buying his book.

  6. Simplify says:

    What’s the statute on the CIA not propagandizing domestically? Or is there one? Seems like this report summary would make for pretty substantial evidence that it happened.

  7. Kevin T. Wirsing says:

    what do folks think about a qui tam action against the shrinks who thought up this stuff? they got $81 million…for advising violation of domestic and international law…if nothing else I’d like my money back

    • Kevin T. Wirsing says:

      that is probably true, but am wondering if you could attack the indemnity agreement as ultra vires part of the criminal conspiracy? bit of stretch I realize, but would like to see the shrinks sweat

    • burnt says:

      But isn’t this what Floyd Landis is doing to Lance Armstrong? Of course, in the case of Landis the feds joined the lawsuit. I can’t see that happening here. I guess the best we can hope for is a number of people can’t leave the US for fear of arrest and prosecution.

        • burnt says:

          I’ll try not to make your lovely readers’ eyes glaze over because they are rightly more concerned about more pressing matters… Latest I read is Landis/Team Fed are arguing with Tom Weisel’s lawyers about which emails Weisel would have to disclose. The reason this is important is Weisel owned US Postal and clearly Landis/Team Fed believe there are emails between Lance Armstrong and Weisel about doping. If so they will have gone a long ways to making their case. It’s entertaining but only if one is as into bicycle racing as you are into F1.

    • wallace says:

      quote”Problem is, I think they are indemnified by….the US Government.”unquote

      The label “US Government” is only the latest trademark of Legal Imperilaism masquerading as the enforcer of rule of law. Indemnified by a monopoly of the most nuclear weapons and the power to use them while lying through their teeth. After all..Legal Imperialism has been around 10k yrs. Ask the British Empire.

  8. Kevin T. Wirsing says:

    …also not at all sure that government can provide indemnity for criminal acts or fraud on itself

    • bmaz says:

      That certainly should be the case, but of course the government itself will never take position it was illegal, conspiracy etc. Also, obviously would assert state secrets over anything not specifically disclosed.
      .
      I love the thought though. Anything that hurts these pricks is a net positive in my book. I was saddened that med boards didn’t do anything significant. It is just rotten in every regard.
      .
      By the way, thought I remembered this, but the government separately gave Mitchell and Jessen $1 million “to protect the company from legal liability.” Not sure what that means, but assume was used for premiums on some kind of risk coverage.

  9. What Constitution? says:

    So glad to see that John Yoo has a forum in Time today. Because, well, there just isn’t enough disgusting shit happening over the past 48 hours.

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