Sunday, July 12, 2009

Chaingang's Historical Contribution...

Cheney Is Linked to Concealment of C.I.A. Project -

The Central Intelligence Agency withheld information about a secret counterterrorism program from Congress for eight years on direct orders from former Vice President Dick Cheney, the agency’s director, Leon E. Panetta, has told the Senate and House intelligence committees, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said Saturday. [...]
The law requires the president to make sure the intelligence committees “are kept fully and currently informed of the intelligence activities of the United States, including any significant anticipated intelligence activity.” But the language of the statute, the amended National Security Act of 1947, leaves some leeway for judgment, saying such briefings should be done “to the extent consistent with due regard for the protection from unauthorized disclosure of classified information relating to sensitive intelligence sources and methods or other exceptionally sensitive matters.”
In addition, for covert action programs, a particularly secret category in which the role of the United States is hidden, the law says that briefings can be limited to the so-called Gang of Eight, consisting of the Republican and Democratic leaders of both houses of Congress and of their intelligence committees. [...]
In the eight years of his vice presidency, Mr. Cheney was the Bush administration’s most vehement defender of the secrecy of government activities, particularly in the intelligence arena. He went to the Supreme Court to keep secret the advisers to his task force on energy, and won.

Sadly I must say that I am not in the least suprised. It would better serve the interests of the US in particular and of democracy and justice in general if all these matters were finally handled in court for assessment of responsibility, wrong-doing, guilt, and necessary punishment. Substantial action must be taken to ensure that such is never again possible in a "free and democratic" country with "justice for all".

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