The more telling news last week was yet another suggestion about Cheneyâ€™s reverse-engineering the Iraq war. Robert Windrem, a former NBC News investigative producer, reported on The Daily Beast that in April 2003, after the invasion of Baghdad, the U.S. arrested a top officer in Saddamâ€™s security force. Even though this man was an old-fashioned P.O.W., someone in Viceâ€™s orbit reportedly suggested that the interrogations were too gentle and that waterboarding might elicit information about the fantasized connection between Osama and Saddam.
In The Washington Note, a political and foreign policy blog, Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powellâ€™s former chief of staff at State, wrote that the â€œharsh interrogation in April and May of 2002 … was not aimed at pre-empting another terrorist attack on the U.S. but discovering a smoking gun linking Iraq and Al Qaeda.â€
More and more the timeline is raising the question of why, if the torture was to prevent terrorist attacks, it seemed to happen mainly during the period when the Bush crowd was looking for what was essentially political information to justify the invasion of Iraq.
I used to agree with President Obama, that it was better to keep moving and focus on our myriad problems than wallow in the darkness of the past. But now I want a full accounting. I want to know every awful act committed in the name of self-defense and patriotism. Even if it only makes one ambitious congresswoman pay more attention in some future briefing about some future secret technique that is â€œuniquelyâ€ designed to protect us, it will be worth it.
Maureen DowdÂ | NYTimes.com