Monday, April 14, 2008

Bush confesses to approving torture

Impeach Bush and Cheney for Torture

On 4/11/08, George Bush told ABC News he personally approved of the approval of torture—including waterboarding—by Dick Cheney, Condoleeza Rice, Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell and George Tenet.

"Yes, I'm aware our national security team met on this issue. And I approved."

In the wake of this shocking and appalling confession, we've come to a historic moment where every American—and every Member of Congress—must take a stand.

Either you're for torture or you're against it. And if you're against it, you must support the only Constitutional remedy: impeachment.

We don't need a Special Prosecutor when the President has publicly admitted to approving war crimes!

It's no excuse to say, "We can't impeach Bush because President Cheney would be worse." We know that Cheney directly approved torture, so they must be impeached together. If they were convicted by the Senate (or resigned to avoid impeachment), Speaker Pelosi would become President, as prescribed by the Constitution.

It's no excuse to say, "We don't have the votes to impeach Bush and Cheney." Democrats didn't have the votes to impeach Nixon when they started, but when the House Judiciary Committee reluctantly adopted Articles of Impeachment, Nixon resigned rather than face impeachment.

Nor is it an excuse to say, "We don't have time to impeach Bush and Cheney." Bush admitted both his own and Cheney's guilt, and Condoleeza Rice, Donald Rumsfeld, Colin Powell and George Tenet are witnesses. There's no need for impeachment hearings—an impeachment resolution based on Bush's confession could go straight to the floor for a vote, just as it did on 11/6/07 when Dennis Kucinich introduced H.Res. 799, Articles of Impeachment for Vice President Cheney.

And finally, it is utterly immoral for Democrats to say, "We shouldn't impeach Bush and Cheney because it would hurt the chances of electing a Democrat in November." Simply stated, politics should never come before the prosecution of torture.

Dr. Martin Luther King famously said, "A time comes when silence is betrayal. That time has come for us in relation to Vietnam."

Thanks to Bush's confession that he approved torture, that time has come for us in relation to Iraq.

My email to Congressman Schiff:

I don't consider valid the comparison of impeachment proceedings for Clinton and for Bush. Clinton's proceedings were divisive because they were purely partisan. Bush's impeachment hearings, because they would be initiated by allegations of actual war crimes which resulted in thousands of deaths, would be non-partisan by nature, except for the extreme right wing, a minority of the American people.

Impeachment proceedings would not necessarily result in impeachment. They would simply examine the evidence and make it clear to the people what happened and why. And if no impeachable crimes were committed, the people would be shown clearly why what appeared to be war crimes actually weren't. The proceedings would be extremely informative for people regarding how their government operates and how it is structured and balanced.

As a voter who approves and appreciates your activity in Congress, I urge you to change your mind regarding the impeachment of the President and Vice President. I urge you to represent me and the many voters in your district who want to see the right thing done. I would actually accept Bush being exonerated, fairly, of wrongdoing, because I would have learned from the hearings that my impressions had been wrong, that what actions were taken by the Administration leading up to and during the war in Iraq were acceptable in the context of Constitutional and international law.

Impeachment hearings would be cathartic for me and for a lot of Americans. The nation is already divided. Examining the evidence carefully and publicly would provide healing.

Thanks very much.

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