Monday, August 3, 2015

Inquirer op-ed columnist says OK for president to order civilians "massacred"

Inquirer op-ed columnist says OK for president to order civilians "massacred"

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Not Rick Santorum, surprisingly:

At the core of the legal arguments were the views of [John] Yoo, strongly backed by David Addington, Vice President Dick Cheney's legal counsel, that the president's wartime powers were essentially unlimited and included the authority to override laws passed by Congress, such as a statute banning the use of torture. Pressed on his views in an interview with OPR investigators, Yoo was asked:

"What about ordering a village of resistants to be massacred? ... Is that a power that the president could legally -"

"Yeah," Yoo replied, according to a partial transcript included in the report. "Although, let me say this: So, certainly, that would fall within the commander-in-chief's power over tactical decisions."

"To order a village of civilians to be [exterminated]?" the OPR investigator asked again.

"Sure," said Yoo.

Sure, John. Meanwhile, people wonder why I don't use the awesome power of the Attytood to criticize the current president more often. Point taken. Shame on you, Barack Obama administration, for failing to hold American citizens like Yoo accountable in any way for the war crimes of waterboarding and other forms of torture. Your actions guarantee that from now on, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and environs will be an accountability-free zone. That is almost as unconscionable as torture itself.

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Will Bunch
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