Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cheney Confessed on Purpose

During Dick Cheney's interview with ABC's Jonathan Karl, the vice president admitted to authorizing waterboarding. Cheney said that he supported the process of getting it cleared. He called waterboarding, "a remarkably successful effort", and said, "I think the results speak for themselves."

Actually, the results don't speak at all. We have no idea what information waterboarded detainees have provided. If Cheney can come forward and admit that he committed a war crime without fear of prosecution, then he can damn sure tell us if tortured detainees gave us information that saved American lives.

As for the gravity of Cheney's admission, Rachel Maddow breaks it down:

Nice use of Ron Suskind by Rachel in this segment.

Over at the HP, David Latt says that Cheney's admission is a signal to Bush for a pardon.
There are those who see the vice president's admission as part of a strategy to force the president to pardon him and all those named in the Senate Report: Rumsfeld, Meyers, and Rice. If Bush doesn't pardon them, they will certainly be pursued by those in the new administration who will not let-bygones-be-bygone.

Since Bush has been famously reticent to grant pardons both as governor and president, then Cheney's ABC interview with Jonathan Karl is a way of provoking Bush to act while he still can. If Cheney is pardoned then he'll have it both ways: maintaining that what was done was legal and being protected from prosecution.
Latt is onto something. Cheney didn't accidentally confess.

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