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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Bush administration goes unpunished for Iraq war crimes, Obama Gives Bush "Absolute Immunity" For Everything

by Abby Zimet - 08.26.13 - 1:20 PM - CommonDreams.org

Days before Bradley - now Chelsea - Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for helping expose U.S. war crimes in Iraq, the Obama Department of Justice filed a petition in federal court arguing that the perpetrators of those crimes - Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al - enjoy “absolute immunity” against criminal charges or civil liability. The filing came in a suit brought by Sundus Shaker Saleh, an Iraqi single mother and refugee now living in Jordan, whoalleges that the planning and waging of the Iraq war under false pretenses constituted a "crime of aggression" under a law used in the Nuremberg trials. With neither Congress nor Obama willing to hold Bush & Co. accountable for the Iraq catastrophe, supporters see the suit as a last-chance tactic to force the issue back into the public eye - an effort the Obama adminstration clearly opposes. More, all dispiriting, on the increasingly flawed Bush-Obama-lesser-of-two-evils thesis, and the current culture of impunity. 
Bush administration sites Nuremberg Defense during Iraq war crimes suit

August 22, 2013 - Examiner.com

Bitter ironies emerged Tuesday when attorneys for Bush-43 and gang used virtually the same general argument many Nazis used, during the Nuremberg trials, to defend their horrific actions.
You don’t have to be all that old to have already heard many of the horrific stories of human tragedy and suffering that occurred during World War II and to have some understanding of how those atrocities helped shape the world we live in today.
Although the establishment’s history re-writers would like us to concentrate primarily on those happening to the people that also happened to have been of Jewish ancestry or faith, tens of millions from all over the world and from many different backgrounds suffered an immeasurable mountain of untold human hardship and anguish, at the blood-soaked hands of multiple dictators and tyrants of the era.
Some estimates have up to as many as 20 million Russians and 15 million Chinese people perishing as a result of military activity and crimes against humanityduring WWII.
Because of the Western powers-that-be and their insatiable appetite to establish the world-government-legitimizing UN they’d been clamoring for and the nation of Israel in occupied Palestine however, the atrocities committed by the Germans against the Jews specifically was used primarily by the media, both during and after WWII, as the propaganda for a means to that end. While, on the other hand, virtually ignoring the atrocities committed in the communist countries, many see as far surpassing even the horror inflicted on the Jews during WWII.
This led to the capture of almost the entire NAZI political hierarchy and what’s now known as the “Nuremberg Trials.”
Still being historically regarded as the most publicized, advertised and propagandized trial in the history of mankind, it would eventually lead to virtually the entire NAZI hierarchy being sentenced to death by public hanging. At least those, according to the history books, that didn’t “commit suicide,” prior to either being captured, or convicted.
But not until after routinely making the argument they should all be spared their lives and freedom, because they were only doing “what they were ordered to do” by superior officers and doing what everyone else was doing. In other words, acting within the scope of their federal office or employment at the time of the incidents, or atrocities, in question.
An argument that was rightfully seen by the world and subsequently the small panel of international judges overseeing the trial as an unreasonable defense. Committing atrocities and crimes against humanity was seen back then and will likely always be seen as indefensible.
Defending your country or protecting it from an imminent threat is one thing, but it was obvious there was no rightful justification for committing atrocities such a genocide, torture, eugenics and other crimes against humanity, and the public deaths of every single government official in the NAZI regime was to set a precedent for the rest of the world to take heed.
Thus, the long-standing practice of pretending war crimes can be somehow justified by making arguments such as “orders are orders,” or because everyone else was doing it, or it seemed like the right thing to do at the time, or any of the other excuses used by evil governments and their puppets throughout the ages to justify subverting the God-given rights of others, was no longer going to be tolerated as acceptable. Whether those actions were committed by the common soldier taking orders from a commanding officer, all the way up to the highest levels of government.
Fast forward however to the beginning of the 21st-century and the weeks and months leading up to the War on “Terror,” as one example.
It's now widely understood that the American people and subsequently the rest of the world were lied to during the process of initiating the war on terror and the ultimate invasion of Iraq, especially. Anyone trusting the Western establishment and its media was led to believe Saddam Hussein was harboring some of the very al Qaeda terrorists that were said to have been responsible for the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and, among other things, continued to possess “stockpiles” of weapons of mass destruction.
The desperate and clear message was that if he wasn’t stopped, they said, the results could be catastrophic.
The Bush administration sold the American people a bill of goods, with seamless support by the Western media. With grandiose presentations and speeches filled with spectacular exhibits and images. Complete with artificial representations of things like enemy “mobile weapons labs” and “elaborate underground cities and tunnel systems, complete with electricity and the internet.” All aiming to scare the American people and citizens of the West into using the American military and its allies to attack multiple countries. All of which having very little, if nothing, to do with the reason for the aggressive action in the first place.
If "preemptive" attacks weren't carried out on the "axis of evil" (aka, the war-crime of attacking a nation not posing an imminent threat), according to the Bush administration, even the American people could end up seeing the repercussions of not taking action, "in the form of a mushroom cloud," or other forms of WMDs. Fooling the American people and the West into believing the ridiculous notion that Saddam Hussein and/or al Qaeda not only had the ability to acquire nuclear weapons, but also potentially possessing the capability of using them.
But even if the invasion of Iraq was only to "finish what his father, Bush-41, was unable to finish," as many contended was the real reason for the invasion of Iraq, or for the oil, natural gas and other resources in the area, as many others argued, it's what happened after the invasion and the way the people of Iraq and Afghanistan were treated, both individually and as a people, that has the international community and many of the war’s surviving victims up in arms.
In addition to both Bush, Jr. and Dick Cheney themselves coming right out and admitting to authorizing the torture of prisoners of war, another war crime and violation of the Geneva Conventions (as detailed in the saga of Iraq’s US-controlled Abu Grahib prison), the common use of violence and dehumanization against POW's and against innocent civilians in both Iraq and Afghanistan and the culmination of over one million innocent Iraqi civilians killed, not only constitutes war crimes of the highest order, can only been seen as mirroring the type of policies and actions taken by the NAZI regime itself.
In fact, considering how both played out, if one were to be given the details of either story, without being given the names, it may be hard for even the most historically versed to distinguish any meaningful difference between the two.
Both governments not only fooled their citizens into believing they were attacked by someone who had nothing to do with it (the Reichstag Fire in Germany and the 9/11 terror attacks in the US), they also both enacted heat-of-the-moment legislation, in the name of “national security,” which included policies such as spying on its own citizens and setting up domestic federal police forces (The “Enabling” Act in NAZI Germany and the “Patriot” act in the US). In addition to attacking countries that had nothing to do with it.
After attacking those countries (Poland by Germany and Iraq and Afghanistan by the US), both governments and militaries would also institute policies that would end up being war-crimes, include the use of torturing prisoners of war and the propagandizing for the dehumanization and degradation of a people and their culture.
And now that some of the victims have begun to come forward to demand justice for themselves and the millions of innocents that have been brutalized by another world tyrant and his band of thugs, using a country’s military to cause havoc on a nation, outside of the rule of law and with disregard to humanity and the countless lives they destroyed along the way, it should be of no surprise they would also use the very same type of argument the Nazis used in defense of their actions, while being convicted and punished to death for the crimes they committed.
In what is likely to go down in the annals as one of the low points in US and maybe even world history, with regard to seeing justice for the crimes tyrants commit against innocent people, attorneys for Obama’s Department of Justice, on behalf of the Bush-43 administration, including named defendants Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Powell and Wolfowitz, in the class-action case of SUNDUS SHAKER SALEH vs. THE BUSH-43 ADMINISTRATION, filed March 13, 2013 in a California district court, had the gall to argue in defense of those allegations in an August 14, 2013 filing, by making the shocking statement that each of the defendants “were acting within the scope of their federal office or employment at the time of the incidents out of which Counts I and II of the Complaint in this matter arose.”
Which, according to the complaint, are the war-crimes of conspiring and committing the crime of aggression against the people of Iraq without cause or the acceptance of the invasion within the international community and crimes against humanity.
In other words, according to the Bush administration, just as the NAZIs had tried to argue almost 70 years earlier to no avail, the excuse for committing these war-crimes and sticking a knife through the very heart of the Geneva Conventions, with almost open enthusiasm, in addition to rebuking the wishes of the very UN they created out of the ashes of an almost identical situation, is because for some, all they were doing is following orders and for others, because it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.
The problem this time however is that the establishment and media behind the persecution of the NAZIs is generally the same one now being accused of doing those very things in Iraq and elsewhere. How can anyone truly expect any real justice to be served under those circumstances?
The simple answer… They can’t.
“I cannot recognize the verdict of guilty. . . . It was my misfortune to become entangled in these atrocities. But these misdeeds did not happen according to my wishes. It was not my wish to slay people. . . . Once again I would stress that I am guilty of having been obedient, having subordinated myself to my official duties and the obligations of war service and my oath of allegiance and my oath of office, and in addition, once the war started, there was also martial law. . . . I did not persecute Jews with avidity and passion. That is what the government did. . . . At that time obedience was demanded, just as in the future it will also be demanded of the subordinate.” –Adolph Eichmann, Nuremberg Trials 

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