When Cheneys Attack

The Cheney family has formed a father-daughter tag team to take turns body slamming the far left agenda and ineptitude of the Obama administration’s policies. Okay, so it’s like shooting big fish in a small barrel but, hey, someone’s got to bring it and these two can hit where it hurts and inflict the excruciating political pain.

Cheney: Stop the ‘dithering’ as troops face danger

Former Vice President Dick Cheney on Wednesday night accused the White House of dithering over the strategy for the war in Afghanistan and urged President Barack Obama to “do what it takes to win.”

“Make no mistake. Signals of indecision out of Washington hurt our allies and embolden our adversaries,” Cheney said while accepting an award from a conservative national security group, the Center for Security Policy.

Cheney disputed remarks by White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel that the Bush administration had been adrift concerning the war in Afghanistan and that the Obama administration had to start from the beginning to develop a strategy for the 8-year-old war.

To the contrary, Cheney said, the Bush administration undertook its own review of the war before leaving office and presented its findings to Obama’s transition team.

“They asked us not to announce our findings publicly, and we agreed, giving them the benefit of our work and the benefit of the doubt,” Cheney said. The strategy Obama announced in March bore a “striking resemblance” to what the Bush administration review had found, the vice president said.

. . .

Cheney said the Obama administration seems to be pulling back and blaming others for its own failure to implement the strategy it had embraced earlier in the year.

“The White House must stop dithering while America’s armed forces are in danger,” the former vice president said. “It’s time for President Obama to do what it takes to win a war he has repeatedly and rightly called a war of necessity.”

Cheney criticized Obama’s decision to drop plans begun in the Bush administration for missile defense interceptors in Poland and a radar site in the Czech Republic, calling the move “a strategic blunder and a breach of good faith.” The administration said it will instead pursue a higher-tech system that is also more cost-effective.

“Our Polish and Czech friends are entitled to wonder how strategic plans and promises years in the making could be dissolved just like that with apparently little if any consultation,” he said. “President Obama’s cancellation of America’s agreements with the Polish and Czech governments is a serious blow to the hopes and aspirations of millions of Europeans.”

Cheney said those who try to placate Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and accede to his wishes will get nothing in return but trouble.

Cheney accuses Obama of ‘libel’ against CIA interrogators

Maintaining his stature as one of the most forceful defenders of the Bush Administration’s defense policies former Vice President Dick Cheney accused President Obama of committing “libel” against CIA interrorgators on Wednesday

Mr. Cheney’s criticized the Obama White House in a wide-ranging address on foreign policy matters for abandoning commitments to allies in Poland and the Czech Republic in favor of the Russians, sacrificing American intelligence officials to satisfy the political left and “dithering” on taking action in Afghanistan, among other things.

. . .

In the speech, Mr. Cheney charged that President Obama has “filled the air with vague and useless platitude” when talking about torture and by calling enhanced interrogation technigques “torture” he has committed “libel” against CIA interrogators whom Mr. Cheney described as “dedicated professionals who acted honorably and well, in our country’s name and in our country’s cause.”

“What’s more, to completely rule out enhanced interrogation in the future, in favor of half-measures, is unwise in the extreme. In the fight against terrorism, there is no middle ground, and half-measures keep you half exposed,” he said.

Liz Cheney Launches Group to “Keep America Safe”

Like her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, Elizabeth Cheney doesn’t think highly of President Obama’s policies. And now she has a new organization, Keep America Safe, dedicated to pressing her argument.

“Like a lot of Americans, we have watched with concern and dismay as the Obama administration has cut defense spending, wavered on the war in Afghanistan, and launched investigations into Americans serving on the front lines of the war on terror, while at the same time expanding legal protections for the terrorists that plot to attack this country,” Cheney writes in an opening statement, which is also signed by fellow board members Debra Burlingame and William Kristol. “These policies, along with President Obama’s abandonment of America’s allies and attempts to appease our adversaries are weakening the nation.”

The group vows to “make the case for an unapologetic approach to fighting terrorism around the world, for victory in the wars this country fights, for democracy, freedom and human rights, and for a strong American military that is needed in the dangerous world in which we live.”

See also:
Cheney’s Speech Tonight
Keep America Safe
Cheney: Stop the ‘dithering’ as troops face danger
Cheney Slams Obama For ‘Dithering’ War Policy
Cheney: Obama’s Afghan War Strategy ‘Bears Striking Resemblance’ to Bush’s
At Bush Administration Reunion, Cheney Attacks Obama … Again
Time for Obama to act on Afghanistan – Cheney
Liz Cheney forms group to take on Obama’s foreign policy
Cheney’s Daughter Launches Group Against Obama’s “Weak” Foreign Policy
Liz Cheney’s group ‘Keep America Safe’ takes on ‘radical’ White House
Liz Cheney Fighting ‘Radical’ White House
Liz Cheney Launches ‘Keep America Safe;’ Video Skewers Obama
Liz Cheney and Bill Kristol Start ‘Keep America Safe’
New Cheney Taking Stage for the G.O.P.
Liz Cheney, ‘Red State Rock Star’
The Media’s War Against Liz Cheney

The Cheneys, tag teaming truth to feckless Obama power.

/when Dick and Liz tag off to Lynne, standing on the top rope, you’ll know that Obama and liberals everywhere are going down for the ten count

Another Major Campaign Promise Goes Under The Bus

Remember this widely hyped photo op?

Closing Guantanamo was one of Obama’s major campaign promises, along with making the war in Afghanistan a top priority, yet another major campaign promise he seems to be reneging on. Well, well, well, looky here, Obama says not so fast on that closing Guantanamo within a year promise.

Guantanamo prison not likely to close in January, officials say

The U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is unlikely to close by the Obama administration’s deadline of January 2010, two senior administration officials said late Friday.

U.S. military personnel walk a road at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in July.

They cited legal complications for the delay, but said they were still optimistic about shutting the detention facility for terrorism suspects soon.

The announcement represents a blow to the president, who signed an executive order and set the deadline with great fanfare during his first week in office.

During a signing ceremony at the White House on January 22, Obama reaffirmed his inauguration pledge that the United States does not have “to continue with a false choice between our safety and our ideals.”

The president said he was issuing the order to close the prison camp in order to “restore the standards of due process and the core constitutional values that have made this country great even in the midst of war, even in dealing with terrorism.”

The delay may provide fodder for Republicans such as former Vice President Dick Cheney, who has argued that shutting the Guantanamo prison would make the United States less safe. He said Obama should have had a detailed plan in place before signing the order.

“Even White House officials are now acknowledging that there is still no alternative that will keep Americans as safe as housing detainees at that secure facility off our shores,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, said in a written statement.

“Americans and a bipartisan majority in Congress will continue to reject any effort to close Guantanamo until there is a plan that keeps Americans as safe or safer than keeping detainees in the secure detention center,” McConnell’s statement said.

See also:
AP sources: Guantanamo might not close by January
White House Regroups on Guantanamo
Guantanamo closure uncertain four months from deadline
Security issues set to thwart Obama’s bid to close Guantanamo by January
White House acknowledges it probably won’t meet self-imposed deadline to close Guantanamo Bay

Gee, maybe they should have actually had a plan before Obama shot his mouth off and set a deadline. But hey, it’s much easier to just blame Bush and the Republicans.

Even before the inauguration, President Obama’s top advisers settled on a course of action they were counseled against: announcing that they would close the facility within one year. Today, officials are acknowledging that they will be hard-pressed to meet that goal.

The White House has faltered in part because of the legal, political and diplomatic complexities involved in determining what to do with more than 200 terrorism suspects at the prison. But senior advisers privately acknowledge not devising a concrete plan for where to move the detainees and mishandling Congress.

To address these setbacks, the administration has shifted its leadership team on the issue. White House Counsel Gregory B. Craig, who initially guided the effort to close the prison and who was an advocate of setting the deadline, is no longer in charge of the project, two senior administration officials said this week.

Craig said Thursday that some of his early assumptions were based on miscalculations, in part because Bush administration officials and senior Republicans in Congress had spoken publicly about closing the facility. “I thought there was, in fact, and I may have been wrong, a broad consensus about the importance to our national security objectives to close Guantanamo and how keeping Guantanamo open actually did damage to our national security objectives,” he said.

. . .

Senior administration officials said the central roadblock during those early months was the condition of the detainee files, which had been left in disarray by the previous administration.

See? It’s Bush’s fault, the universal Obama excuse for everything! Nevermind the obvious fact that we’re still stuck with 225 of the world’s worst terrorists because we can’t find any other country, in their right mind, that will agree to take them, not even their home countries.

But don’t worry, the country is in the very best of hands, the arrogant Democrat children are in charge.

/is it just me or does Obama make a lot of bold promises that he can’t keep or has no intention of keeping?

Since When Did Killing Al Qaeda Become A Bad Thing?

So, they latest “controversy” that the Democrats have their knickers in a twist about is a secret CIA program to kill Al Qaeda leaders. A plan that was never implemented.

C.I.A. Had Plan to Assassinate Qaeda Leaders

Since 2001, the Central Intelligence Agency has developed plans to dispatch small teams overseas to kill senior Qaeda terrorists, according to current and former government officials.

The plans remained vague and were never carried out, the officials said, and Leon E. Panetta, the C.I.A. director, canceled the program last month.

Officials at the spy agency over the years ran into myriad logistical, legal and diplomatic obstacles. How could the role of the United States be masked? Should allies be informed and might they block the access of the C.I.A. teams to their targets? What if American officers or their foreign surrogates were caught in the midst of an operation? Would such activities violate international law or American restrictions on assassinations overseas?

Yet year after year, according to officials briefed on the program, the plans were never completely shelved because the Bush administration sought an alternative to killing terror suspects with missiles fired from drone aircraft or seizing them overseas and imprisoning them in secret C.I.A. jails.

Mr. Panetta scuttled the program, which would have relied on paramilitary teams, shortly after the C.I.A.’s counterterrorism center recently informed him of its existence. The next day, June 24, he told Congressional Intelligence Committees that the plan had been hidden from lawmakers, initially at the instruction of former Vice President Dick Cheney.

. . .

Because the program never carried out any missions and because Congress had already signed off on the agency’s broad authorities after the Sept. 11 attacks, the officials and some Republican legislators said that the C.I.A. was not required to brief lawmakers on specifics about the program.

But Congressional Democrats were furious that the program had not been shared with the committees. The Senate and House oversight committees were created by law in the 1970s as a direct response to disclosures of C.I.A. abuses, notably including assassination plots against Patrice Lumumba of the Congo, Fidel Castro in Cuba and other foreign politicians. President Gerald R. Ford in 1976 issued an executive order banning assassinations.

That ban does not apply to the killing of enemies in a war, government officials say. The Bush administration took the position that killing members of Al Qaeda, a terrorist group that has attacked the United States and stated that its goal is to attack again, is no different than shooting enemy soldiers on the battlefield. The Obama administration, which has continued to fire missiles from Predator drones on suspected Qaeda members in Pakistan, has taken the same view.

See also:
Secret Program Fuels CIA-Congress Dispute
AP sources: House lays groundwork for CIA probe
Cheney Role in CIA Secrecy Questioned
With Pelosi’s blessing, Dems push CIA probe ahead
CIA inquiry raises stakes for Nancy Pelosi
Democrats must act on their claims
Want To Get Away?
Someone’s Lying

The CIA is out in the field risking American lives, trying to kill the enemy and keep us safe and Nancy Pelosi, to cover her ass for previously accusing the CIA of lying, along with the rest of the Democrat chukleheads, are now going to pick a fight with the CIA and waste their time with an investigation into a program that never even got beyond the planning stage!

/who’s side are Democrats on anyway, do they even have a clue who the enemy is?

He’s Melting!

Ever since Obama won the Democrat nomination, the mainstream media has been totally in the tank for him and working hard day to day to prop him up as the best U.S. President of all time. Here’s the latest tongue bath.

Newsweek’s Evan Thomas: Obama Is ‘Sort of God’

Newsweek editor Evan Thomas brought adulation over President Obama’s Cairo speech to a whole new level on Friday, declaring on MSNBC: “I mean in a way Obama’s standing above the country, above – above the world, he’s sort of God.”

Thomas, appearing on Hardball with Chris Matthews, was reacting to a preceding monologue in which Matthews praised Obama’s speech: “I think the President’s speech yesterday was the reason we Americans elected him. It was grand. It was positive. Hopeful…But what I liked about the President’s speech in Cairo was that it showed a complete humility…The question now is whether the President we elected and spoke for us so grandly yesterday can carry out the great vision he gave us and to the world.”

Barf.

See also:
Newsweek Editor Evan Thomas: Obama Is “Sort Of God”

Well, the American public has a decidedly different opinion of the Obama god. The more they see of him, the less they are liking him and his policies. That new president smell is wearing off. He’s losing ground every week.

Daily Presidential Tracking Poll

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Friday shows that 34% of the nation’s voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-four percent (34%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of 0. That’s the highest level of strong disapproval and the lowest overall rating yet recorded (see trends).

The President’s ratings have slipped since General Motors filed for bankruptcy to initiate a new government bailout and takeover. Just 26% of Americans believe the GM bailout was a good idea and nearly as many support a boycott of GM products. It remains to be seen whether the dip in the President’s numbers is a temporary reaction to recent news or something more substantive.

The Presidential Approval Index is calculated by subtracting the number who Strongly Disapprove from the number who Strongly Approve. It is updated daily at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily e-mail update). Updates also available on Twitter.

Overall, 54% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the President’s performance so far. Forty-six percent (46%) disapprove. For more Presidential barometers, see Obama By the Numbers and recent demographic highlights.

See also:
Obama’s approval index hits zero

And Obama’s not the only prominent Democrat who’s popularity is flagging.

Cheney is More Popular with Public Then Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi has to hate these new numbers from Gallup. The Speaker of the House is less popular with the American people then one of her biggest enemies and political rivals: Dick Cheney. Gallup shows that 37% of Americans have a positive opinion of of Cheney, while only 34% have a positive opinion of Speaker Pelosi.

The former Vice President has been an active voice for the past administration and their anti-terror policies lately, calling many of the moves that Obama has made dangerous to our country’s safety. Cheney’s chief complaint has been Obama’s criticism of the Bush administration’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques, tactics which Cheney asserts, kept our country safe over the last seven years of their administration. Pelosi has been an ardent opponent of the enhanced interrogation techniques, recently being at the heart of a scandal over her accusations that the CIA lied to Congress about the use of these techniques even though proof from the intelligence organization and other committee members says otherwise.

Vice President Cheney does still have slightly higher unfavorable ratings then the Speaker, but his popularity is treading up and hers is trending down in recent months, a sign that Pelosi’s harsh style of management, and recent scandals may be wearing on the American public. Republicans may and should use Pelosi as a campaign lightning rod in 2010 just as Democrats used Cheney and Bush as motivators for their voters in the 2006 and 2008 election cycles. In fact, her greatest contribution in the next two years may not be her work on Capitol Hill but her use as a central punching bag for the GOP to focus Americans attention on the perils of one party rule in our nation’s capital.

That’s gotta hurt!

See also:
Cheney and Pelosi Have Poor Ratings in Common
A race to the bottom – Cheney versus Pelosi
Cheney, Pelosi, Obama: A Tale of Three Ratings

Of course, to break through the pervasive media bias and Democrat talking points working in tandem to label Republicans as the “Party of No“, the GOP is going to have to work hard to advance alternatives and make sure the American people are aware of their efforts. It won’t be easy because the Democrats and the media are working against them. Remember when Obama and the Democrats taunted Republicans to offer an alternative to Obama’s obscene budget? Well, the Republicans did offer an alternative budget proposal, even though, as the minority party, it wasn’t their responsibility to do so.

See also:
The GOP’s Alternative Budget
Two Budgets: A Comparison
Graphs and Charts on the Republican Alternative

So, after having their bluff called, did the Democrats seriously consider the Republican alternative? Hell no, the same day the Republicans proposed their alternative, the Democrats totally ignored it, gave it no consideration, and proceeded to ram the abomination that is Obama’s budget through Congress unchanged, without a single Republican vote. So much for bipartisanship.

However, to their credit, the Republicans aren’t giving up.

House Republicans offer up a $23 billion list of spending cuts

Responding to a challenge from President Barack Obama, House GOP leaders are offering up a roster of more than $23 billion in specific spending cuts over the next five years.

The proposed cuts, which were to be sent to the White House on Thursday, bear little resemblance to the dramatic proposals Republicans unfurled when they took over Congress 14 years ago.

Rather than proposing, for example, the elimination of the Education Department, as they have in the past, Republicans are suggesting killing a program that pays for building sidewalks, bike paths and crossing guards as part of the Safe Routes to Schools program. That would save $183 million a year.

The Associated Press was provided a look at the plan, which flows from a White House tiff between Obama and House GOP Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia.

In April, Cantor praised Obama for instructing Cabinet secretaries to produce $100 million worth of commonsense cuts this year. Obama’s cuts were met with a lot of derision for being merely a drop in the bucket as the government faces extraordinarily large deficits, and Cantor said the president could do a lot better. Obama told him to come up with suggestions.

The result is a list of 37 specific program cuts that would save taxpayers more than $23 billion over the next five years and more than $5 billion in the first year alone.

Granted, $23 billion in specific spending cuts isn’t going to save us from Obama’s $3.6 trillion “Bankrupt America” budget, but at least it’s a substantial savings compared to Obama’s laughable $100 million in cost cuts. In any case it’s a start, the “Party of No” is at least trying to save the taxpayers some money.

Will the mainstream media report on this new Republican proposal to reduce spending, will Obama and the Democrats ignore it and sweep it under the rug, like the Republican budget alternative?

/stay tuned, hopefully, between Obama’s weak foreign policy and his out of control deficit spending, the American electorate will eventually figure out that they made a mistake, it seems the polls are already starting to point in that direction

Be Careful What You Wish For

So, does Eric Holder want to open this can of worms? Is giving a legal opinion now a criminal offense? Really?

Holder: Justice Department Will ‘Follow the Law’ in Probing Interrogation Tactics

The Justice Department will “follow the law” in investigating the Bush administration officials who cleared harsh interrogation techniques, Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday.

Holder reiterated his position a day after President Obama opened the door for potential prosecution against the lawyers who drafted memos that justified harsh interrogation tactics.

Obama has said the CIA operatives who employed those tactics using the legal guidance provided will be safe from criminal charges, but offered no such assurances to Bush administration lawyers.

“We’re going to follow the evidence wherever it takes us. We’re going to follow the law wherever that takes us,” Holder told reporters.

“No one is above the law,” Holder said.

Critics have said trying to prosecute lawyers for offering legal advice is a slippery slope toward criminalizing opinions.

“Will Democrats also investigate the members of Congress who were briefed on interrogation tactics in 2002 and raised no objection? If the lawyers are threatened with an investigation, why not the politicians who approved their actions?” asked Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas.

What about Congress?

Congress Debates Fresh Investigation Of Interrogations

Obama had hoped to put the whole matter behind him, first by banning those interrogation methods early in his presidency and then by releasing the memos last week with the proviso that no CIA official who carried out interrogations should be prosecuted.

Instead, the latest decision has stirred controversy on the right and the left. Obama has drawn sharp criticism from former vice president Richard B. Cheney, former CIA directors and Republican elected officials for releasing the memos. Those critics see softness in the commander in chief. He faces equally strong reaction from the left, where there is a desire to punish Bush administration officials for their actions and to conduct a more thorough investigation of what happened.

The controversy moved to Capitol Hill yesterday as lawmakers debated the wisdom of launching a fresh investigation into the Bush-era practices. Several top Democrats, including Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) and Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.), withheld judgment, noting that the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has begun an inquiry.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), however, endorsed the idea and said witnesses should not be immune from prosecution.

Even Speaker Pelosi is on the bandwagon.

Pelosi backs anti-terror ‘truth commission’

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi endorsed today the establishment of a formal “truth commission” to investigate Bush administration anti-terrorism policies, including an examination of former top Justice Department lawyers who crafted the legal justifications for what critics say was torture.

Such a probe could target UC Berkeley law professor John Yoo, a former deputy assistant attorney general in the Bush Justice Department who was instrumental in crafting the interrogation memoranda, and his former boss, Jay Bybee, now a judge on the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

Pelosi’s endorsement follows President Obama’s signal Tuesday that he was open to the idea. Obama’s shift, in tandem with last week’s release by the administration of past memos describing brutal interrogation techniques on terror suspects, has touched a match to the seething controversy over whether there should be a public or legal accounting for Bush administration policies on torture and detention.

But wait Nancy, didn’t you approve of these interrogation techniques, are you going to investigate yourself?

Top legislators knew of interrogations

The CIA briefed top Democrats and Republicans on the congressional intelligence committees on enhanced interrogation techniques more than 30 times, according to intelligence sources, who said those members tacitly approved the techniques which some Democrats in Congress now say should land Bush administration officials in prison.

Between 2002 and 2006, the top Republicans and Democrats on the House and Senate intelligence committees “each got complete, benchmark briefings on the program,” said one of the intelligence sources who is familiar with the briefings.

“If Congress wanted to kill this program, all it had to do was withhold funding,” said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk about the closed-door briefings.

Those who were briefed included current House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV of West Virginia and Rep. Jane Harman of California, all Democrats, and Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas, Sen. Richard C. Shelby of Alabama and Rep. Peter Hoekstra of Michigan, all Republicans.

See also:
Holding Pelosi Accountable For Torture
Opinion: Nancy Pelosi encouraged CIA water boarding

Oops! Hey Obama, still think opening this Pandora’s box was a good idea? If this gets any real traction, it will surely scuttle your presidency and you’ll never be reelected. Emotions are that strong on this issue.

Presidential Poison

Mark down the date. Tuesday, April 21, 2009, is the moment that any chance of a new era of bipartisan respect in Washington ended. By inviting the prosecution of Bush officials for their antiterror legal advice, President Obama has injected a poison into our politics that he and the country will live to regret.

Elections settle those battles, at least for a time, and Mr. Obama’s victory in November has given him the right to change policies on interrogations, Guantanamo, or anything on which he can muster enough support. But at least until now, the U.S. political system has avoided the spectacle of a new Administration prosecuting its predecessor for policy disagreements. This is what happens in Argentina, Malaysia or Peru, countries where the law is treated merely as an extension of political power.

If this analogy seems excessive, consider how Mr. Obama has framed the issue. He has absolved CIA operatives of any legal jeopardy, no doubt because his intelligence advisers told him how damaging that would be to CIA morale when Mr. Obama needs the agency to protect the country. But he has pointedly invited investigations against Republican legal advisers who offered their best advice at the request of CIA officials.

“Your intelligence indicates that there is currently a level of ‘chatter’ equal to that which preceded the September 11 attacks,” wrote Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee, in his August 1, 2002 memo. “In light of the information you believe [detainee Abu] Zubaydah has and the high level of threat you believe now exists, you wish to move the interrogations into what you have described as an ‘increased pressure phase.'”

So the CIA requests a legal review at a moment of heightened danger, the Justice Department obliges with an exceedingly detailed analysis of the law and interrogation practices — and, seven years later, Mr. Obama says only the legal advisers who are no longer in government should be investigated. The political convenience of this distinction for Mr. Obama betrays its basic injustice. And by the way, everyone agrees that senior officials, including President Bush, approved these interrogations. Is this President going to put his predecessor in the dock too?

Mr. Obama seemed to understand the peril of such an exercise when he said, before his inauguration, that he wanted to “look forward” and beyond the antiterror debates of the Bush years. As recently as Sunday, Rahm Emanuel said no prosecutions were contemplated and now is not a time for “anger and retribution.” Two days later the President disavowed his own chief of staff. Yet nothing had changed except that Mr. Obama’s decision last week to release the interrogation memos unleashed a revenge lust on the political left that he refuses to resist.

Just as with the AIG bonuses, he is trying to co-opt his left-wing base by playing to it — only to encourage it more. Within hours of Mr. Obama’s Tuesday comments, Senator Carl Levin piled on with his own accusatory Intelligence Committee report. The demands for a “special counsel” at Justice and a Congressional show trial are louder than ever, and both Europe’s left and the U.N. are signaling their desire to file their own charges against former U.S. officials.

Those officials won’t be the only ones who suffer if all of this goes forward. Congress will face questions about what the Members knew and when, especially Nancy Pelosi when she was on the House Intelligence Committee in 2002. The Speaker now says she remembers hearing about waterboarding, though not that it would actually be used. Does anyone believe that? Porter Goss, her GOP counterpart at the time, says he knew exactly what he was hearing and that, if anything, Ms. Pelosi worried the CIA wasn’t doing enough to stop another attack. By all means, put her under oath.

Mr. Obama may think he can soar above all of this, but he’ll soon learn otherwise. The Beltway’s political energy will focus more on the spectacle of revenge, and less on his agenda. The CIA will have its reputation smeared, and its agents second-guessing themselves. And if there is another terror attack against Americans, Mr. Obama will have set himself up for the argument that his campaign against the Bush policies is partly to blame.

Above all, the exercise will only embitter Republicans, including the moderates and national-security hawks Mr. Obama may need in the next four years. As patriotic officials who acted in good faith are indicted, smeared, impeached from judgeships or stripped of their academic tenure, the partisan anger and backlash will grow. And speaking of which, when will the GOP Members of Congress begin to denounce this partisan scapegoating? Senior Republicans like Mitch McConnell, Richard Lugar, John McCain, Orrin Hatch, Pat Roberts and have hardly been profiles in courage.

Mr. Obama is more popular than his policies, due in part to his personal charm and his seeming goodwill. By indulging his party’s desire to criminalize policy advice, he has unleashed furies that will haunt his Presidency.

See also:
Obama’s torture memo two-step
Obama pressed to back torture investigation
Torture Cases Would Face Legal Hurdles
Prosecuting Heroes

And hey, what about our extraordinary rendition programs? You know, where we send bad people to countries like Egypt to undergo real torture. Are we going to investigate that too?

/wasn’t Bill Clinton the one who first authorized extraordinary rendition, are we going to persecute the Clinton administration too, as long as we’re at it?

Pop Quiz

RFK Jr.: Hog farms bigger threat than Osama
Cheney Dunk Tank Raises $800 Billion For Nation
Nancy Pelosi: We’re Losing 500,000,000 Jobs Every Month!

/which headline is from The Onion?