Liberal blogger Glenn Greenwald is back to reveal just how little change the American people can expect for the Obama Administration outside of the largely rhetorical. Greenwald describes the Obama Administration’s recent decision to continue the Bush Administration’s reliance on the “state secrets” doctrine to prevent victims of rendition and torture from seeking any civil relief for their wrongful imprisonment as both “resounding” and “disgraceful”.
“What makes this particularly appalling and inexcusable is that Senate Democrats had long vehemently opposed the use of the ‘state secrets’ privilege in exactly the way that the Bush administration used it in this case, even sponsoring legislation to limits its use and scope. Yet here is Obama, the very first chance he gets, invoking exactly this doctrine in its most expansive and abusive form to prevent torture victims even from having their day in court, on the ground that national security will be jeopardized if courts examine the Bush administration’s rendition and torture programs — even though (a) the rendition and torture programs have been written about extensively in the public record; (b) numerous other countries have investigated exactly these allegations; and (c) other countries have provided judicial forums in which these same victims could obtain relief.”
Though there may be other reason’s for why the Obama Administration chose the “Bushian” legal route, the most obvious one is that the newly inaugurated President’s administration is just as interested in protecting, aggrandizing, and expanding executive power as the last one was. The only difference is that Obama and his political functionaries will undoubtedly be less “ham-fisted” and incompetent in their applications of the radical legal doctrines – thus allowing for a semblance of “change” on the surface.
This, of course, does not stop the Obamaniacs from defending their Oval Office Oracle.
“It’s simply not possible to know any less about an issue than The Atlantic‘s Marc Ambinder apparently knows about the State Secrets privilege, yet that doesn’t deter him even for a moment from opining pedantically on what happened today. Not only doesn’t Ambinder have the first idea what the controversy is even about (he defends what the Obama DOJ did here by arguing that ‘Obama certainly never promised Americans that he’d declassify everything, or that the government had to renounce its right to assert a state secrets privilege forever’ — as though there is anyone who actually believes that), but he has also anointed himself spokesman for Obama-supporting civil libertarians such that he can read their minds and divine why they voted for Obama: ‘civil libertarians and others who voted for Obama did so with the belief that his judgment and his attorney general would be better stewards of that privilege than President Bush and his attorney generals [sic] (and vice president.)'”
The entire post can be read here.Published in