"Watch what I do"- President Barack Obama
I've been monitoring comments on Kos and there are many ranging from negative anticipation, to outright cries of "sellout" about the what some perceive as a lack of zeal on the part of our new President to jump into legal proceedings against the outgoing administration from hell.
If you think about it, and I am herein inviting you to do so, public outcry, increased whistleblowing and opportunities for evidence to come forth, as well as the careful assembly of facts, chains of evidence, growing freedom in some areas of the press, and a thorough search of legal precident and consensus around constitutionality with an empowered attorney general
an immediate, top-down, reactive directive from the Commander in Chief is a hell of a lot more compelling in building a case for the prosecution of the Bush War Crimes.
It has been so long since there has been truly refined statesmanship in the Office of the President that we may have forgotten what superior talent might look like.
I don't think anyone who loves our nation would want to manage this. It is unprecedented. It is shameful and no one wants a fiasco of distraction like that enacted by the Republicans over so much less. (while 9/11 was being plotted!) President Obama has the present to manage, and needs to focus on immediate steps to heal our nation and rebuild and repair damage. He cannot afford this distraction right now. Nor can we.
There is also, still, a full machinery in place through media outlets, to manipulate the agenda, rouse the crazies, or rig a "false terrorist" event to distract or remove an obvious advocate for this from office. Let's be frank. Bush did not do this on his own, and the tentacles of corporation were strings on the puppet Bush. If Bush is to be prosecuted it must be because outcry from the people to the Justice Department and members of Congress is overwhelming and sustained.
If there are legal charges to be brought forth it should be because an ironclad case has been carefully built over time, and the President has no choice but to uphold the law- not because President Obama has directed an investigation.
We have to have President Obama's back on this. He has respected President Bush's humanity and is being impeccable in avoiding the appearance of a partisan witch hunt, which will only be dismissed loudly by many as payback for Clinton, or more pointedly given President Obama's historic Presidency, as "payback for slavery", rather than a true patriot's real concern for our very real descent into fascism. The corporations pay folks a lot of money in this nation and elsewhere, to stir up canards, distractions, and above all sew racial suspicion and hatred. It's how they do. Rush Limbaugh is part of a very concerted effort to split votes and turn them against citizen's self interest.
President Obama needs to be President around a broad range of issues first, and to enact policies that have some success to win trust. He must be able to empathize with all citizens. This is vital. And there are countless areas of law which must be repaired if justice can work.
He seems a wise and painstaking person,able to take the long view over immediate reactivity, and he is doing his job of creating whatever unity and cooperation he can, building trust, and attempting to steady and uphold our nation. He is also working to heal our relationships abroad, which is vital if the former administration is ever tried.
We need relationships with other nations to weather that! We also need to separate what was done in our names in secret, from what our citizens believe and support. Sadistic acts done in our name must be shown clearly to have been enacted against our collective will and in a crime of deception against our own citizens. That is vital and this election is a first step.
President Obama should be able to sincerely say that he wishes that "this cup could pass from his lips", and will need to model compassion for the persons, and all citizens of whatever party, while upholding the law. That would be the appropriate statesmanship in an unprecidented situation. He must be able to comfort all Americans and be perceived as grieving for our nation and for the actions of the past in no partisan way.
I have become less of a "religious" person in the sense of an identity with any particular organizations these past years, but do recall a quote to the effect that
"the wheels of God's justice grind slow, yet they grind exceedingly small".