In an interview with BBC, President Bush said waterboarding was not torture. “To the critics, I ask them this: when we, within the law, interrogate and get information that protects ourselves and possibly others in other nations to prevent attacks, which attack would they have hoped that we wouldn’t have prevented? And so, the United Stsates will act within the law. We’ll make sure professionals have the tools necessary to do their job within the law.” Even as he spoke, Steven Bradbury of the Justice Department was saying: “There has been no detmination by the Justic eDepartment that the use of waterboading, under any circumstances, would be lawful under current law.” Perhaps, the president has seen too many episodes of the TV program, “24” in which ticking bombs allow use of torture.
The President said America was a defender of human rights and had established the Guantanamo Bay prison as part of its moral crusade to spread democracy to the world. “Now, there’s great concern …that these people be given rights. They’re not willing to grant the same rights to others. They’ll murder. but, you gotta understand, they’re getting their rights. And, I’m comfortable with the decisons we’ve made.” His comments on Guantanamo undoubtedly will earn him a page in history for the most distorted anti-legal expression by an American president about the nature of our judicial process. To hold people for years without charging them with anything and to refuse them a day in court is NOT the American constitutional manner of conducting trials.
President Bush boasted about “being the first president to propose a two-state solution on Israel and Palestine.” He apparently forgot that President Clinton, shortly before leaving office, had been working with Arafat and Israel leaders on a proposal to create two states. As always, the Bush conception of freedom, democracy and morality would most readily be accepted by al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations as an expression of their own distorted view of the world.
Given the Justice Department has publicly stated waterboarding is illegal and the President has publicly stated it can be used, will the Justice Department institute criminal prosecution proceedings against George Bush for violating the law?