With president Obama releasing secret CIA memos about interrogation techniques of terror detainees, he now has said that he will leave it up to attorney general Eric Holder to consider prosecuting Bush administration officials who may have legally suggested or been complicit in waterboarding, the primary technique that is being called “torture” by Democrats.
Many say waterboarding is not in any way torture and that the term politicizes terrorist detentions. To liberals, of course, raising one’s voice at an enemy combatant is “torture’. Anything to get Bush.
If Holder goes ahead with any prosecution – which Obama may allow after pressure from the far left – it will be a bizarre spectacle. Because there are many Clinton administration officials, including Holder himself, who contributed to an infinitely more serious atmosphere of laxity that ultimately led to 9/11.
Here are some of the Clinton people whom Bush easily could have prosecuted under Obama’s way of thinking:
Eric Holder: Holder was Clinton’s deputy attorney general from 1997 to 2001. Holder was the driving force behind Bill Clinton’s pardon of 16 members of the communist FALN Puerto Rican terrorist group which executed an estimated 146 bombings and a string of armed robberies in the US and Puerto Rico between 1974 and 1983, killing six and wounding many.
Clinton issued a pardon on August 11, 1999 for a total of 16 terrorists. He did this for one reason alone: To please New York City’s big Puerto Rican electorate in anticipation of Hillary’s first run for US senate in 2000 from New York state.
As deputy attorney general at the time of the pardons, Holder had to sign off on all clemency pleas that went to Clinton. And he recommended for the FALN 16 despite opposition from the FBI and Clinton’s own Justice Department. FBI director Louis Freeh wrote that clemency “would likely return committed, experienced sophisticated and hardened terrorists to the clandestine movement.”
Comment: Holder was part of the Clinton administration’s soft-on-terrorists mindset – including Gorelick’s “wall” (see below) – that led to laxity and to the ability of the 9/11 hijackers to organize for several years in the late 1990s. If Holder had been a conservative like John Ashcroft or Condoleezza Rice, he would have been prosecuted years ago for his negligence not only in the FALN case, but for being lax on terrorism after the first World Trade Center attack in 1993 (discussed below).
Jamie Gorelick: Deputy attorney general from 1994 to 1997 under Clinton, Gorelick built the “wall” of separation so that CIA and FBI could not cooperate on terrorism. The “wall” is said to have made it difficult for anti-terror investigators to rapidly access the computer of Zacarias Moussaoui, the radical Islamist and so-called “20th hijacker” who was arrested less than a month before 9/11. The information on that computer could have been used to prevent 9/11.
Gorelick’s “wall” came on the heels of the civil prosecution of the first World Trade Center terrorist bombers by the Clinton administration. On February 26, 1993 those terrorists parked a truck laden with explosive in the parking garage underneath the North tower of the World Trade Center and detonated it, hoping to bring the building down. It failed. The perpetrators were treated as mere American criminals and not international terrorists. The trial’s open nature denied CIA and FBI the opportunity to share information and publicly revealed large amounts of classified information on terrorist activities worldwide, tipping off terrorists all over, including Osama bin Laden who learned that his satellite phone was being tapped. He stopped using it.
Gorelick also was involved in one of the biggest financial failures in American history. As a vice chairman at Fannie Mae from 1997 to 2003, Gorelick made millions in salary and bonuses as Fannie Mae was collapsing. Gorelick left Fannie Mae in 2003 after receiving a bonus alone of $911,250 in 2002. In 1998, Gorelick received a bonus of $779,625.
Fannie Mae, a Democrat-run government-sponsored agency, collapsed in 2008 after cooking its books for years, reporting inflated profits and revenues in a $9 billion accounting scandal. In 2002, Gorelick said Fannie Mae was just fine when in fact it was not. She said: “We believe we are managed safely. We are very pleased that Moody’s gave us an A-minus in the area of bank financial strength — without a reference to the government in any way. Fannie Mae is among the handful of top-quality institutions.”
Gorelick also became part of the Duke University defense team that sought to convict several white male lacrosse team members over a rape charged by a black stripper. Ultimately the case was dismissed as phony. Yet no charges were brought against any Duke faculty for signing a public newspaper ad essentially saying the lacrosse players were guilty. Imagine the outcry if a Bush official had joined a false prosecution by a white woman against a bunch of black football players? Obama would be pursuing for civil rights violations.
Comment: Why has Gorelick not been charged with fraud over Fannie Mae? Why was she allowed to participate in the kangaroo court at Duke without any repercussions? And why has she not been charged with malpractice for repeatedly blocking the CIA and FBI from cooperating on terrorism during the 1990s, leading to 9/11?
Janet Reno: Reno was attorney general at the time of the April 1993 Waco invasion in which federal troops launched an assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, leading to a fire and the deaths of 76 innocent Christians. Only one of those people, leader David Koresh, was wanted by police, allegedly for making illegal weapons. Reno took the blame for Waco to take the pressure off of Clinton, and the media gave both a pass.
Throughout her tenure – Reno was Clinton’s only AG – Reno presided over an administration that attacked and killed innocent Americas on our own soil, allowed nuclear weapons secrets to be stolen by communist China and failed to surveille, track and prosecute people intending a major terrorist attack on the United States, the assault of September 11, 2001.
Comment: Under the thinking of Obama, Bush easily could have prosecuted Reno for murder for the Branch Davidian siege. Under the Obama way of thinking, Bush also could have charged Reno with failing to protect state secrets in the China nuclear case by failing to look into the case or prosecuting anyone involved. Thinking like Obama, the Bush justice department could have charged Reno with failure to perform her duties in charging the 2/26/93 bombers as American criminals rather than as international terrorists, and for failing to track the 9/11 hijackers as they plotted their deed throughout the late 1990s.
Sandy Berger: This Clinton national security adviser from 1997 to 2001 was apprehended in 2003 stealing sensitive Clinton-era documents from the National Archives in order to prevent scrutiny of Clinton’s role in 9/11. In April 2005, Berger pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material from the Archives, which are located in Washington, DC.
In 1999, Berger was criticized for failing to promptly inform president Clinton of his knowledge that China had clandestinely acquired the designs of a number of US nuclear warheads in an ongoing theft of US military technology throughout the Clinton years. Berger was originally briefed about the espionage by the Department of Energy in April 1996, but did not inform Clinton until July 1997.
Comment: Isn’t failing to inform the president about nuclear warhead design theft infinitely a more grave crime than waterboarding three terrorists? This is dangerous stuff. And stealing those National Archive documents is the type of security breach that could prevent us from finding out what really happened on 9/11. Clinton knows that he was lax about terrorism in the 1990s and he certainly put Berger up to this. Clinton then handed Bush an empty briefing book about terrorism, leaving Bush blind to the 9/11 hijackers.
John Deutch: A former MIT provost, Deutch was Clinton’s CIA director from 1995 to 1996. Soon after Deutch’s departure from CIA it was discovered that during his tenure that several of Deutch’s laptop computers had held classified information on them, which is contrary to agency policy. CIA probed the lapse but declined to pursue it. The matter finally was referred to the Justice Department where attorney general Reno declined to prosecute.
Comment: Clinton actually had to pardon his own former CIA director for this lapse. The important question is: What happened to all that classified information? Was it leaked to China or to Chinese functionaries here in the US? After all, Deutch is a far-left liberal operative. Isn’t this infinitely more serious than waterboarding three terrorist detainees? Why did Bush not prosecute Deutch for failing to enforce the national security interests of the United States?
Bill Clinton: The big fish of the 1990s was responsible for lax oversight of terrorism and national security. CIA director James Woolsey (1993-1995) said that Clinton never had a single one-on-one meeting with him and that even semi-private meetings were rare. This showed Clinton to be disengaged about the threats facing the nation. Comment: The rap against Clinton is huge. In the very same years that Clinton was chasing Monica Lewinsky around his desk, the Middle Eastern terrorists were infiltrating into the United State to plot 9/11, while China was making off with our military secrets.
Under Obama’s way of thinking, many Clinton officials should have been prosecuted by Bush for infinitely worse and more dangerous activity than Holder is considering. If the Obama administration goes ahead with show trials over the minor charge of waterboarding, it will be a huge injustice to a nation that still is paying a price for Clinton administration negligence in protecting the security interests of the United States.
Ron Kessler, author of The Terrorist Watch, says that Obama’s release of the memos has “paralyzed” CIA. This is a repeat of the 1990s. Will president Romney hold Obama criminally accountable for the terrorist attack that is certainly coming?
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