It appears that other countries are not as eager as we are to sweep the war crimes of the previous administration under the rug:

Spain’s national newspapers, El País and Público reported that the Spanish national security court has opened a criminal probe focusing on Bush Administration lawyers who pioneered the descent into torture at the prison in Guantánamo. The criminal complaint can be examined here. Público identifies the targets as University of California law professor John Yoo, former Department of Defense general counsel William J. Haynes II (now a lawyer working for Chevron), former vice presidential chief-of-staff David Addington, former attorney general and White House counsel Alberto Gonzales, former Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee, now a judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and former Undersecretary of Defense Doug Feith.

To underscore the serious of this action, Andrew Sullivan writes:

More ominous for Yoo and Addington et al is that the judge involved is the one who nailed Pinochet. That dude doesn’t mess around. Spain’s action means these war criminals are vulnerable in 24 European countries for arrest and prosecution for enabling torture.

Update: Here’s Glenn Greenwald on Britain opening an inquiry into the British government’s possible war crimes:

Wouldn’t it be nice if our government leaders could make a similar, extremely uncontroversial statement — credible allegations of lawbreaking by our highest political leaders must be investigated and, if warranted, prosecuted? In a country with a minimally healthy political culture, that ought to be about as uncontroversial as it gets. Instead, what we have are political leaders and media stars virtually across the board spouting lawless Orwellian phrases about being “more interested in looking forward than in looking backwards” and not wanting to “criminalize public service.” These apologist manuevers continue despite the fact that, as even conservative Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum recently acknowledged in light of newly disclosed detailed ICRC Reports, “that crimes were committed is no longer in doubt.”

Update 2: As dday points out, it appears that former Attorney General Michael Mukasey supports the extra-jurisdictional application of domestic anti-torture laws:

The United States for the first time this year used a law that allows for the prosecution in the United States of torture in other countries. On Jan. 10, a Miami court sentenced Charles Taylor, the former Liberian leader, to 97 years in a federal prison for torture, even though the crimes were committed in Liberia.

Last October, when the Miami court handed down the conviction, Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey applauded the ruling and said: “This is the first case in the United States to charge an individual with criminal torture. I hope this case will serve as a model to future prosecutions of this type.”

  1. Gherald L says:

    Additionally I recommend Unreligious Right's take for your daily dose of crazy

  2. Metavirus says:

    oh christ, why did you make me read that! :) peak wingut is here! I especially loved this bit: "It is also worth noting that according to Amnesty International, police torture is a"pervasive" problem in Spain." Classic wingnut ad hominem false equivalence — "HA! You do it too so that means I am justified in doing it myself. NYA NYA!"

  3. Kevin says:

    no wingnuts allowed… but why did you say christ? I thought you were atheist? :P (I am)

    I really hope more countries do this, so Bush and Co cant travel anywhere…

    and btw Metavirus let me know if you ever get on the twitter computer pages :P

  4. Kevin says:

    oh crap just noticed the sidebar, nevermind! :P

  5. vjack says:

    Good news indeed. I just submitted to Reddit/politics.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Your Vintners