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Breathtaking — And Not In A Good Way

Let me bring your attention to the following exchange between Bush DoJ lawyer John Yoo and a questioner .

Q: I guess the question I’s raising is, does this particular law really affect the President’s war-making abilities….
Yoo: Yes, certainly.
Q. What is your authority for that?
Yoo: Because this is an option the President might use in war.
Q: What about ordering a village of resistants to be massacred? … Is that a power that the president could legally-
Yoo: Yeah. Although, let me say this. So, certainly, that would fall within the commander-in-chief’s power over tactical decisions.
Q: To order a village of civilians to be [exterminated]?
Yoo: Sure.

Let me direct your attention to the last time a “commander and chief” and political leader of a country acted on that theory.  It was in Czechoslovakia, and every one in the village was killed as retribution for the killing of SS commander Reinhard Heydrich by Czech partisans.  If you aren’t familiar with Heydrich he was one of the most terrifying members of Hitler’s inner circle.  He is the man along with Himmler who was directly responsible for “the Final Solution”.  Adolf Hitler ordered Heydrich successor to “wade through blood” to find the people responsible.

Yoo is also the man who defended the use of a prisoner’s children to force them to talk.  The act in question was crushing the testicles of a male child in front of his father.

Every time I think I’ve reached the limit of rage regarding the Bush administration something like this emerges.  It is terrifying how close this country came to becoming a totalitarian regime — secret wire taps on American citizens, arrest without due process, and torture that _was done in my name_!

And the Obama DoJ whitewashed the lawyers who gave legal cover to these thugs and torturers because of a political calculation.

I’m still enormously grateful that Obama is president and not McCain, but there are things he has done that have disappointed me.  This is the big one.


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