Dick Cheney- Corporate Criminal
Details the myriad illegal, immoral, and unethical activities of Dick Cheney when CEO of Halliburton, his obstruction of justice, and lies to the American public since his appointment as Vice President. For information on an equally corrupt politician, see link to Tom DeLay-Corporate Whore. Be sure to visit our cavernous vault of archives.
Shreddin' with Dick
Spotted on 10/19, by an eagle-eyed Wonkette reader: The Mid-Atlantic Shredding Services truck making its way up to the Cheney compound at the Naval Observatory.
Fun fact: Mid-Atlantic Shredding Services has been contracted by the Secret Service for our Executive Branch’s record-not-keeping needs.
The present contractor providing Pickup & Destruction of Sensitive Waste Material services is Mid Atlantic Shredding Services and the current rate is $0.095 cents per lbs.You better get crackin’, Dick — that evidence won’t destroy itself!
Cheney confirms that detainees were subjected to water-boarding
By Jonathan S. Landay
WASHINGTON - Vice President Dick Cheney has confirmed that U.S. interrogators subjected captured senior al-Qaida suspects to a controversial interrogation technique called "water-boarding," which creates a sensation of drowning.
Cheney indicated that the Bush administration doesn't regard water-boarding as torture and allows the CIA to use it. "It's a no-brainer for me," Cheney said at one point in an interview.
Cheney's comments, in a White House interview on Tuesday with a conservative radio talk show host, appeared to reflect the Bush administration's view that the president has the constitutional power to do whatever he deems necessary to fight terrorism.
The U.S. Army, senior Republican lawmakers, human rights experts and many experts on the laws of war, however, consider water-boarding cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment that's banned by U.S. law and by international treaties that prohibit torture. Some intelligence professionals argue that it often provides false or misleading information because many subjects will tell their interrogators what they think they want to hear to make the water-boarding stop.
Republican Sens. John Warner of Virginia, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina have said that a law Bush signed last month prohibits water-boarding. The three are the sponsors of the Military Commissions Act, which authorized the administration to continue its interrogations of enemy combatants.
The radio interview Tuesday was the first time that a senior Bush administration official has confirmed that U.S. interrogators used water-boarding against important al-Qaida suspects, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged chief architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Mohammad was captured in Pakistan on March 1, 2003, and turned over to the CIA.
Water-boarding means holding a person's head under water or pouring water on cloth or cellophane placed over the nose and mouth to simulate drowning until the subject agrees to talk or confess.
Lee Ann McBride, a spokeswoman for Cheney, denied that Cheney confirmed that U.S. interrogators used water-boarding or endorsed the technique.
"What the vice president was referring to was an interrogation program without torture," she said. "The vice president never goes into what may or may not be techniques or methods of questioning."
In the interview on Tuesday, Scott Hennen of WDAY Radio in Fargo, N.D., told Cheney that listeners had asked him to "let the vice president know that if it takes dunking a terrorist in water, we're all for it, if it saves American lives."
"Again, this debate seems a little silly given the threat we face, would you agree?" Hennen said.
"I do agree," Cheney replied, according to a transcript of the interview released Wednesday. "And I think the terrorist threat, for example, with respect to our ability to interrogate high-value detainees like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, that's been a very important tool that we've had to be able to secure the nation."
Cheney added that Mohammed had provided "enormously valuable information about how many (al-Qaida members) there are, about how they plan, what their training processes are and so forth. We've learned a lot. We need to be able to continue that."
"Would you agree that a dunk in water is a no-brainer if it can save lives?" asked Hennen.
"It's a no-brainer for me, but for a while there, I was criticized as being the vice president `for torture.' We don't torture. That's not what we're involved in," Cheney replied. "We live up to our obligations in international treaties that we're party to and so forth. But the fact is, you can have a fairly robust interrogation program without torture, and we need to be able to do that."
The interview transcript was posted on the White House Web site. Interview of the Vice President by Scott Hennen, WDAY.
CIA spokeswoman Michelle Neff said, "While we do not discuss specific interrogation methods, the techniques we use have been reviewed by the Department of Justice and are in keeping with our laws and treaty obligations. We neither conduct nor condone torture."
What's Bad for America is Good for Halliburton: Just ask the Vice President
In the same month that we lost a record number of American soldiers and Iraqi citizens lost many more, Vice President Dick Cheney told Rush Limbaugh that "if you look at the overall situation they're doing remarkably well."
Now we know that the Darth was speaking about Halliburton.
This week the Halliburton's third-quarter net income rose 22 percent with third-quarter revenue rising 19 percent to $5.8 billion.
But even more indecent was that the VP's talking point was dittoed by Halliburton officials.
"Iraq was better than expected," said Jeff Tillery, analyst (who does research for Halliburton) at Pickering Energy Partners Inc. "Overall, there is nothing really to question or be skeptical about. I think the results are very good."
"Overall, there is nothing to question or be skeptical about." Dost that not soar far off the puke-ability chart?
More than glaring is that both Cheney and Tillery both believe that the "overall" situation in Iraq has not to do with American soldiers dying or Iraqi citizens losing everything or civil war exploding, but with profit..."overall."
Still think Cheney is not deeply connected with Halliburton?
"This was an exceptional quarter for Halliburton," said Dave Lesar, Halliburton's chairman, president and CEO.
Do we need any more proof that, "overall," what's good for Halliburton is, overall, bad for the rest of us?
And you thought Dick Cheney was kidding when he said, "We also have to work, though, sort of the dark side, if you will."
Or is that Halliburton's company policy.
Don’t Bother to Send in the Clowns: They are Already Here
Submitted by BuzzFlash on Tue, 10/17/2006 - 7:08am. Editorials
A BUZZFLASH EDITORIAL
BuzzFlash recently ran a series of commentaries on the contempt that the Busheviks have for democracy.
We traced this back to the "masters of the universe" outlook of the Kissinger era, in which Cheney and Rumsfeld were molded. It also can be attributed to the Straussian school of thought that influenced so many Neo-Cons.
In both cases, the basic attitude of the Busheviks is that democracy is too important to be left to the voters. In short, democracy isn’t worth a damn unless you own it and predetermine the outcome of an election.
That is why Bush is openly considering "changing" the so-called "democratically-elected" regime in Iraq. That is why Kissinger declared that the issues in Chile were too important to be left to the voters in the ‘70s. That is why Antonin Scalia led the theft of the 2000 presidency by declaring that if all the votes were counted it might sully the reputation of Bush, because -- it follows -- that if all the votes had been counted, Bush would have lost.
As we pointed out in our editorial series, Straussians believe that it is fully justified – and even necessary – to deceive the masses in order to achieve goals that only the "masters of the universe" can fully understand. In short, it is arrogant elitism, not the ideals of our founding fathers, that underlies the political theater of the Busheviks.
This is, of course, a betrayal of our Constitution, our tenets of democracy, and of the ideals of the American Revolution. That is enough to make one both rage and weep at the same time.
What is even more galling and unacceptable, however, is that these particular self-styled "masters of the universe" are utter failures. They are like the clowns that used to endlessly emerge out of a small Volkswagen Beetle.
They have succeeded at virtually nothing but failure.
Then they use their latest failure to justify the next failure.
If any of these clowns had to do a yearly job review based on the goals that they stated that they were going to achieve, they would be summarily fired.
The lack of accountability for "masters of the universe" is dumbfounding in a nation that prides itself on productivity, defined outcomes, service and delivering a successful product to the consumer.
On all these accounts of what supposedly makes America a financial powerhouse, this administration has failed on a level of governmental and foreign policy implementation.
And it hasn’t just failed in a run of the mill way; it has failed spectacularly.
Just yesterday, Cheney told a captive audience of soldiers in Kentucky that our military is building "bonds of friendship" with average Iraqis and winning the war.
A short while back, the Washington Post reported on a poll that indicated 60% of Iraqis support insurgent attacks on U.S. GIs! It also published a story that indicated polls showed that the vast majority of Iraqis wanted the American military to leave the country. Now, that’s a spectacular failure. The majority of people we are supposed to be liberating are essentially in support of killing our own soldiers.
But Cheney, born of the era of Kissinger’s worldview of rule by the elite, will not bother acknowledging the truth.
Better to spoon feed the masses reassuring pablum than to save the lives of our Gis, the Iraqis and billions upon billions of dollars that could be used for the common good of Americans.
Don’t bother sending in the clowns to the White House.
They are already there.
American Prison Camps Are on the Way
By Marjorie Cohn, AlterNet
Posted on October 9, 2006
The Military Commissions Act of 2006 governing the treatment of detainees is the culmination of relentless fear-mongering by the Bush administration since the September 11 terrorist attacks.
Because the bill was adopted with lightning speed, barely anyone noticed that it empowers Bush to declare not just aliens, but also U.S. citizens, "unlawful enemy combatants."
Bush & Co. has portrayed the bill as a tough way to deal with aliens to protect us against terrorism. Frightened they might lose their majority in Congress in the November elections, the Republicans rammed the bill through Congress with little substantive debate.
Anyone who donates money to a charity that turns up on Bush's list of "terrorist" organizations, or who speaks out against the government's policies could be declared an "unlawful enemy combatant" and imprisoned indefinitely. That includes American citizens.
The bill also strips habeas corpus rights from detained aliens who have been declared enemy combatants. Congress has the constitutional power to suspend habeas corpus only in times of rebellion or invasion. The habeas-stripping provision in the new bill is unconstitutional and the Supreme Court will likely say so when the issue comes before it.
Although more insidious, this law follows in the footsteps of other unnecessarily repressive legislation. In times of war and national crisis, the government has targeted immigrants and dissidents.
In 1798, the Federalist-led Congress, capitalizing on the fear of war, passed the four Alien and Sedition Acts to stifle dissent against the Federalist Party's political agenda. The Naturalization Act extended the time necessary for immigrants to reside in the U.S. because most immigrants sympathized with the Republicans.
The Alien Enemies Act provided for the arrest, detention and deportation of male citizens of any foreign nation at war with the United States. Many of the 25,000 French citizens living in the U.S. could have been expelled had France and America gone to war, but this law was never used. The Alien Friends Act authorized the deportation of any non-citizen suspected of endangering the security of the U.S. government; the law lasted only two years and no one was deported under it.
The Sedition Act provided criminal penalties for any person who wrote, printed, published, or spoke anything "false, scandalous and malicious" with the intent to hold the government in "contempt or disrepute." The Federalists argued it was necessary to suppress criticism of the government in time of war. The Republicans objected that the Sedition Act violated the First Amendment, which had become part of the Constitution seven years earlier. Employed exclusively against Republicans, the Sedition Act was used to target congressmen and newspaper editors who criticized President John Adams.
Subsequent examples of laws passed and actions taken as a result of fear-mongering during periods of xenophobia are the Espionage Act of 1917, the Sedition Act of 1918, the Red Scare following World War I, the forcible internment of people of Japanese descent during World War II, and the Alien Registration Act of 1940 (the Smith Act).
During the McCarthy period of the 1950s, in an effort to eradicate the perceived threat of communism, the government engaged in widespread illegal surveillance to threaten and silence anyone who had an unorthodox political viewpoint. Many people were jailed, blacklisted and lost their jobs. Thousands of lives were shattered as the FBI engaged in "red-baiting." One month after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, United States Attorney General John Ashcroft rushed the U.S.A. Patriot Act through a timid Congress. The Patriot Act created a crime of domestic terrorism aimed at political activists who protest government policies, and set forth an ideological test for entry into the United States.
In 1944, the Supreme Court upheld the legality of the internment of Japanese and Japanese-American citizens in Korematsu v. United States. Justice Robert Jackson warned in his dissent that the ruling would "lie about like a loaded weapon ready for the hand of any authority that can bring forward a plausible claim of an urgent need."
That day has come with the Military Commissions Act of 2006. It provides the basis for the President to round-up both aliens and U.S. citizens he determines have given material support to terrorists. Kellogg Brown & Root, a subsidiary of Cheney's Halliburton, is constructing a huge facility at an undisclosed location to hold tens of thousands of undesirables.
In his 1928 dissent in Olmstead v. United States, Justice Louis Brandeis cautioned, "The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding." Seventy-three years later, former White House spokesman Ari Fleischer, speaking for a zealous President, warned Americans "they need to watch what they say, watch what they do."
We can expect Bush to continue to exploit 9/11 to strip us of more of our liberties. Our constitutional right to dissent is in serious jeopardy. Benjamin Franklin's prescient warning should give us pause: "They who would give up an essential liberty for temporary security, deserve neither liberty or security."
Marjorie Cohn, a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, is president-elect of the National Lawyers Guild, and the U.S. representative to the executive committee of the American Association of Jurists. Her new book, "Cowboy Republic: Six Ways the Bush Gang Has Defied the Law," will be published in 2007 by PoliPointPress.
Arrest over Cheney barb triggers lawsuit
By Charlie Brennan, Rocky Mountain News
October 3, 2006
A Denver-area man filed a lawsuit today against a member of the Secret Service for causing him to be arrested after he approached Vice President Dick Cheney in Beaver Creek this summer and criticized him for his policies concerning Iraq.
Attorney David Lane said that on June 16, Steve Howards was walking his 7-year-old son to a piano practice, when he saw Cheney surrounded by a group of people in an outdoor mall area, shaking hands and posing for pictures with several people.
According to the lawsuit filed at U.S. District Court in Denver, Howards and his son walked to about two-to-three feet from where Cheney was standing, and said to the vice president, "I think your policies in Iraq are reprehensible," or words to that effect, then walked on.
Ten minutes later, according to Howards' lawsuit, he and his son were walking back through the same area, when they were approached by Secret Service agent Virgil D. "Gus" Reichle Jr., who asked Howards if he had "assaulted" the vice president. Howards denied doing so, but was nonetheless placed in handcuffs and taken to the Eagle County Jail.
The lawsuit states that the Secret Service agent instructed that Howards should be issued a summons for harassment, but that on July 6 the Eagle County District Attorney's Office dismissed all charges against Howards.
The lawsuit filed today alleges that Howards was arrested in retaliation for having exercised his First Amendment right of free speech, and that his arrest violated his Fourth Amendment protection against unlawful seizure.
Cheney: GOP ‘will retain control’
Vice President Dick Cheney rejects predictions that the Democrats will take control of Congress in this fall’s midterm elections.
Bill Sammon, The Examiner
Oct 5, 2006 5:00 AM (7 hrs ago)
ABOARD AIR FORCE TWO - Vice President Dick Cheney said he “can’t tell” how a Republican sex scandal will impact next month’s elections, but insisted “it makes no sense” for House Speaker Dennis Hastert to resign.
In his first public remarks on the burgeoning scandal, Cheney told The Washington Examiner in an exclusive interview that fellow Republican Hastert, R-Ill., should reject Democratic calls for his resignation.
“I’m a huge Denny Hastert fan — I think he’s a great speaker,” Cheney said in his private cabin aboard Air Force Two. “And it makes no sense at all for him to think about stepping down.”
Cheney aides described the vice president as repulsed by allegations that former Rep. Mark Foley, R-Fla., sent salacious e-mails and instant messages to teenage boys working as congressional pages. At the same time, Cheney is determined not to let the scandal overshadow campaign issues that he considers far more important — national security and the economy.
“I think we’ve got good stuff to work with,” he said during a flight from Houston to Washington. “The Foley thing, again, as to how that cuts, I can’t tell.”
Cheney flatly rejected predictions by pundits that Democrats will take control of the House and Senate in November.
“We will retain control of both houses,” he said.
If Cheney is wrong, some believe Democrats will spend the next two years investigating the Bush administration with subpoenas and hearings. Some Democrats have already called for Bush to be censured, while others have hinted at impeachment proceedings.
“I don’t think we fear investigations,” Cheney said. “I don’t think they [Democrats] would get much done, if that’s all they’ve got. And I don’t think there’s great enthusiasm on the part of the country for that.
Is Desperate Cheney Scheming Nuclear Sneak Attack on Iran?
Senior U.S. military and intelligence sources canvassed by EIR do not rule out the possibility of a White House-ordered "Global Strike" unprovoked sneak attack against sites inside Iran before the Nov. 7 midterm U.S. elections. In fact, a number of particularly well-placed military and intelligence professionals identified the period from Oct. 4-18 as a possible window for just such a pre-election "preventive strike."
Operational plans for such an attack have been recently updated, and could be activated with virtually no lead time, utilizing long-range strategic bombers and missiles, and carrier-based fighter jets, already in or near the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf region, according to one senior U.S. diplomat. "The military did the planning, but they hated it. Expect mass resignations at the flag level, if the orders come down to launch," the source warned.
What's more, in the aftermath of Israel's failed "shock and awe" bombing campaign in the recent Lebanon war, do not rule out the U.S. use of nuclear "bunker busters" in an attack on hardened sites inside Iran, according to several of the sources.
Hezbollah fighters waited out the initial weeks-long Israeli bombing campaign, inside air-conditioned reinforced underground bunkers, and then emerged to launch a barrage of over 4,000 rocket and missile attacks against Israeli targets. The psychological impact of the rain of missiles on the northern half of Israel eventually drove the government of Ehud Olmert to deploy "boots on the ground" inside Lebanon's treacherous southern region, leading to a second disastrous Israeli military debacle, at the hands of trained and seasoned Hezbollah partisan fighters.
While military professionals noted the Hezbollah victory as a turning point in the politico-military situation in the extended Southwest Asian and Persian Gulf region, fanatics in the Bush-Cheney White House have been reportedly driven into an even more desperate flight-forward commitment to near-term military action against the Islamic Republic of Iran.
So-called Iranian "nuclear weapons sites" are far more heavily reinforced and could withstand any conventional bombing attacks, according to military specialists. Therefore, the nuclear bunker-buster option cannot be ruled out, despite an intensive "generals revolt" last Spring, which temporarily forced the White House to remove the use of tactical nuclear weapons from the contingency plans.
While the establishment mass media has conducted a top-down coverup of the White House plans for a sneak attack on Iran, a number of think-tank journals and Internet-based news services have sounded the warning:
• On Sept. 23, former U.S. Sen. Gary Hart (D-Colo.), who headed a late-1990s Congressionally sponsored commission on the U.S. vulnerability to a terrorist attack, warned that the Bush White House was planning "The October Surprise," in the form of a bombing of Iran. Writing on Huffington Blog, Senator Hart bluntly warned, "It should come as no surprise if the Bush Administration undertakes a preemptive war against Iran sometime before the November election. Were these more normal times, this would be a stunning possibility, quickly dismissed by thoughtful people as dangerous, unprovoked, and out of keeping with our national character. But we do not live in normal times. And we do not have a government much concerned with our national character. If anything, our current Administration is out to remake our national character into something it has never been."
Senator Hart summarized the "Global Strike" war plan: "Air Force tankers will be deployed to fuel B-2 bombers, Navy cruise missile ships will be positioned at strategic points in the northern Indian Ocean and perhaps the Persian Gulf, unmanned drones will collect target data, and commando teams will refine those data. The latter two steps are already being taken."
Indeed, U.S. military sources have confirmed that special reconnaissance units have been on the ground inside Iran since the Summer of 2004, planting sensors and recruiting intelligence assets, to prepare the battle field for a U.S. air campaign.
• On Sept. 26, conservative syndicated columnist Paul Craig Roberts wrote "Why Bush Will Nuke Iran," declaring that "the neoconservative Bush administration will attack Iran with tactical nuclear weapons, because it is the only way the neocons believe they can rescue their goal of U.S. (and Israel) hegemony in the Middle East."
• Several weeks before the Hart and Roberts warnings, The Century Foundation posted a 28-page analysis, "The End of the 'Summer of Diplomacy': Assessing U.S. Military Options on Iran," by Col. Sam Gardiner (USAF-ret.), a respected retired Air Force strategist and war-planner. The document detailed the Bush White House's fractured logic, leading to a military assault on Iran, aimed at regime change, not the delay or destruction of the Islamic Republic's purported secret nuclear weapons program. In plain language, Colonel Gardiner spelled out why an attack by the United States on Iran would occur sooner, not later:
"Waiting makes it harder. The history of warfare is dominated by attackers who concluded that it was better to attack early than to wait. One source of the momentum in Washington for a strike on Iran's nuclear program is the strategic observation that if such an attack is in fact inevitable, then it is better done sooner than later."
Colonel Gardiner documented that the order of battle for Phase I of war on Iran would require virtually no lead time to put military assets in place. Rather, he spelled out a propaganda buildup as the key indicator of imminent attack: "The most significant indications will come from strategic influence efforts to establish domestic political support. The round of presidential speeches on terrorism is a beginning, but I expect more. An emerging theme for the final marketing push seems to be that Iran threatens Israel's existence. We can expect the number of administration references to Iran to significantly increase, and will see three themes—the nuclear program, terrorism, and the threat to Israel's existence." Gardiner added the warning that the Bush Administration would likely strike without seeking Congressional approval, concluding, ominously: "The window for a strike on Iran stands open."
• Months before the Gardiner report, The National Interest, the journal of the Nixon Center, published a detailed analysis by Col. W. Patrick Lang (USA-ret.) and Larry C. Johnson—two Middle East specialists with decades of military and intelligence experience—"Contemplating the Ifs," debunking the notion that the United States or Israel has any viable military option for confronting Iran. Taking a very dispassioned approach, the two reported: "Friends in the intelligence community tell us that civilian officials at the Department of Defense have been pushing aggressively for almost two years to 'do something violent' in Iran. but before we embark on another military operation, we must reckon the costs; we must ensure that we are willing to pay those costs; and we should ensure that neoconservative enthusiasts would not be tempted to say—if venturing into Iran becomes a misadventure—that it was impossible to foresee negative consequences. There are a lot of bad things that could happen if we launch a pre-emptive war with Iran. Before we act, we must thoroughly consider what our viable military options are."
Lang and Johnson dismissed, out of hand, a conventional ground invasion; disputed the viability of commando and air raids; blew off any "mirage" of a possible Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear sites; and then detailed Iran's asymmetrical counter-capabilities, concluding, "In the end, it may become necessary to confront Iran militarily over its emergent nuclear power status, but the costs would be so high that all diplomatic resources should be exhausted before such measures are adopted."
Voices in the Congressional Wilderness
The pathetic bipartisan surrender to the Bush-Cheney White House over the status of "enemy combatants," will only serve to send Dick Cheney and the ever-more-mad President George W. Bush into a flight forward into sneak attack war on Iran (see Editorial). A relative handful of Members of Congress from both parties have stood up against the tide of capitulation by both the Democratic and Republican leadership.
On Sept. 29, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) filed a resolution in the House, giving the Bush White House 14 days to turn over policy documents relating to Iran, including intelligence on Iran's nuclear energy program and "Iran's capability to threaten the United States with nuclear weapons"; any decision documents "to remove the ruling regime from power in Iran"; details of any "covert action being conducted by any United States Armed Forces in Iran"; details concerning "creation of a new office in the Department of Defense similar in scope, function, or mandate to the former Office of Special Plans"; any "Prepare to Deploy" orders by the United States Navy on the waters near Iran; and any National Intelligence Estimates or any other intelligence documents on the consequences, including economic consequences, of a U.S. attack on Iran.
The same day, Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest (R-Md.) and 19 other House Republicans and Democrats wrote to President Bush, urging him to open direct dialogue with Iran "as soon as possible," noting that "more than 25 years of isolating Iran has moved us farther from, not closer to, achieving these goals."