WASHINGTON — President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney both signed off on using harsh interrogation techniques against suspected terrorists after asking the Justice Department to endorse their legality, news agencies have learned.
The Associated Press reported earlier that senior Bush administration officials took care to insulate President Bush from a series of meetings where CIA interrogation methods, including waterboarding, which simulates drowning, were discussed and ultimately approved.
However, ABC News is now reporting that President Bush himself was aware of the discussions and approved the controversial interrogation tactics himself.
“Well, we started to connect the dots, in order to protect the American people.” Bush told ABC News. “And, yes, I’m aware our national security team met on this issue. And I approved.”
“Al-Qaeda, in its haven in western Pakistan, is training operatives who are ‘western’ in appearance, making it easier for them to get past U.S. airport security, Central Intelligence Director Michael Hayden said,” reports Bloomberg.
Does anybody who looks “western” have an easy time getting past airport security? Mr. Hayden needs to visit an airport and see for himself — just about everybody, from grandmothers to toddlers, are under suspicion, even if they look Scandinavian. It has nothing to do with actual suspicion. It has to do with sending a message: you live in a police state now, get used to it, and if you don’t want to end up dead in a holding cell like Carol Ann Gotbaum, you’ll submit and not complain.
Of course, Mr. Hayden, as the head honcho of the CIA, is “catapulting the propaganda,” as Bush might call it. Now that al-Qaeda operatives look like stock brokers and cashiers at the local Stop ‘n Gas, we need to push ahead with the control grid, now only partially in place. Our rulers think we need to hear this kind of nonsense every few weeks, just to remind us and get us accustomed to those CCTV cameras everywhere and the NSA vacuuming up our telephone conversations and emails. It’s all to protect us from the white boy al-Qaeda.
An employee looking to steal confidential information from his employer sneaks into what should be a secure back room after hours. He pulls charts and files from a top-level financial meeting and slides them into his briefcase before heading back out.What the insider doesn’t know is that his shoes picked up hundreds of tiny radio frequency identification (RFID) chips that had been scattered across the floor. As he passes by an RFID reader near the front door of his office building, security will be alerted that he had accessed a secure area. The evidence is all over the soles of his shoes.
Sound a little like a scene from a James Bond movie? It’s not.
Nox Defense, an arm of SimplyRFID Inc., said it has created an invisible perimeter-defense system designed to track things and people in real time — all without their knowledge. The system that is made up of several technological pieces — RFID chips the size of grains of sand and an RFID and video camera surveillance system.
MANCHESTER, England (AP) – A city police chief who led an investigation into charges that Britain cooperated with secret CIA flights to transport terrorism suspects without formal proceedings has been found dead, his deputy said Tuesday.
Manchester Chief Constable Michael Todd, 50, was found dead in Snowdonia, about 240 miles northwest of London, Deputy Chief Constable Dave Whatton said. He had been missing since going out for a walk Monday during his day off.
Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Michael Todd, left, with Britain's
Prime Minister Gordon Brown is seen outside Greenheys Police station in Manchester,
England, in this Nov. 16, 2007 file photo.
Todd, one of Britain's leading police chiefs who led an investigation into charges
that Britain cooperated with the CIA's secret renditions has been found dead,
in Snowdonia, about 240 miles (380 kilometers) northwest of London, according to
Deputy Chief Constable Dave Whatton.
He had gone missing after going for a walk Monday during his day off, Whatton said.
His body was found the following afternoon on a mountain trail. He added that the
body had not yet been formally identified but that he believed it was Todd.
(AP Photo/Dave Thompson/PA/file)
In the absence of anyone else owning up to yesterday’s crimes, we will be subjected to a spate of articles analysing the threat of militant Islam. Ironically they will fall in the same week that we recall the tenth anniversary of the massacre at Srebrenica, when the powerful nations of Europe failed to protect 8,000 Muslims from being annihilated in the worst terrorist act in Europe of the past generation.Osama bin Laden is no more a true representative of Islam than General Mladic, who commanded the Serbian forces, could be held up as an example of Christianity. After all, it is written in the Qur’an that we were made into different peoples not that we might despise each other, but that we might understand each other.
Bin Laden was, though, a product of a monumental miscalculation by western security agencies. Throughout the 80s he was armed by the CIA and funded by the Saudis to wage jihad against the Russian occupation of Afghanistan. Al-Qaida, literally “the database”, was originally the computer file of the thousands of mujahideen who were recruited and trained with help from the CIA to defeat the Russians. Inexplicably, and with disastrous consequences, it never appears to have occurred to Washington that once Russia was out of the way, Bin Laden’s organisation would turn its attention to the west.
The danger now is that the west’s current response to the terrorist threat compounds that original error. So long as the struggle against terrorism is conceived as a war that can be won by military means, it is doomed to fail. The more the west emphasises confrontation, the more it silences moderate voices in the Muslim world who want to speak up for cooperation. Success will only come from isolating the terrorists and denying them support, funds and recruits, which means focusing more on our common ground with the Muslim world than on what divides us.
More on Al-CIAda:
“The truth is, there is no Islamic army or terrorist group called Al Qaeda. And any informed intelligence officer knows this. But there is a propaganda campaign to make the public believe in the presence of an identified entity representing the ‘devil’ only in order to drive the TV watcher to accept a unified international leadership for a war against terrorism. The country behind this propaganda is the US.” – Robin Cook, Former British Foreign Secretary