Gee, this is definitely not going to provide a sterling precedent for future sociopathic American regimes that feel like torturing people:

As a practical matter, Holder is consciously establishing as the legal baseline — he’s vesting with sterling legal authority — those warped, torture-justifying DOJ memos. Worse, his pledge of immunity today for those who complied with those memos went beyond mere interrogators and includes everyone, policymakers and lawyers alike: “the Department of Justice will not prosecute anyone who acted in good faith and within the scope of the legal guidance given by the Office of Legal Counsel regarding the interrogation of detainees.” Thus, as long as, say, a White House official shows that (a) the only torture methods they ordered were approved by the OLC and (b) they did not know those methods were criminal, then they would be entitled to full-scale immunity under the standard Holder announced today.

This quite likely sets up, at most, a process where a few low-level sacrificial lambs — some extra-sadistic intelligence versions of Lynndie Englands — might be investigated and prosecuted where they tortured people the wrong way. Those who tortured “the right way” — meaning the way the OLC directed — will receive full-scale immunity.

If this is the most justice that comes out the rampant lawlessness and inhumanity of the last eight years, our republic will be permanently and irretrievably doomed.

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  1. schu says:

    Or they are setting up someone big for the fall, which is why a former VP is scrambling like a bug when the lights come on. However, so many politicians signed off on the torture aspects that it very hard to move on the topic. Plus whoever does get their ass burned will be made a martyr for the wingnuts to worship.

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