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Will Porter Goss be prosecuted for lying to Congress?

Mar. 18, 2005, Reuters
Goss told the Senate Armed Services Committee "The United States does not engage in or condone torture, ... We don't torture."

Give an incompetent liar enough rope ....

Goss in attempting to put that noose on Rep. Nancy Pelosi, seems to have forgotten his own contradictory testimony to Congress.  If Goss and Pelosi were briefed about waterboarding, Goss lied to Congress, a crime.  Goss' own statements are now evidence implicating himself.

Even competent liars eventually get caught in the web of their own irreconcilable constructions.

Whose timely words back up this view?
Minority leader Boehner! "Lying to congress is a crime."

Democracy Now: Why Porter Goss really resigned.

MORE: mcjoan: CIA and Pelosi: Still No Proof She Was Briefed on Waterboarding

SourceWatch, emptywheel, DU

§ 1001. Statements or entries generally

(a) ... whoever, in any matter within the jurisdiction of the executive, legislative, or judicial branch of the Government of the United States, knowingly and willfully—
(1) falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact;
(2) makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or
(3) makes or uses any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry;

shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 5 years or, if the offense involves international or domestic terrorism (as defined in section 2331), imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both. ....

(c) With respect to any matter within the jurisdiction of the legislative branch, subsection (a) shall apply only to—

  1. any investigation or review, conducted pursuant to the authority of any committee, subcommittee, commission or office of the Congress, consistent with applicable rules of the House or Senate.

VIDEO: Senate Hearing on Worldwide Threats to Nat'l Security, March 2005
Anyone have the videos?  It is disappeared from C-SPAN.

Originally posted to jqjacobs on Mon May 18, 2009 at 07:51 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  What about (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "Iraq is an imminent threat"

    I'd say that was a much bigger lie.

  •  Congress lying to the public should be a crime (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Arken, AJsMom

    ... but then we would have no congress.

  •  Look (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    william shipley

    the enhanced tecniques were determined to NOT be torture. We can disagree on this all day long but that WAS the determination.

    Pelosi however, has stated that the CIA mislead and lied to Congress.
    I believe she is a liar.
    I also believe that she should provide the proof as she has accused the CIA of a crime.
    Put up or shut up.

    Congress knew what was going on, we were in a very scary time and things looked different.

    Now Pelosi wants to prosecute those who made the decisions or were in on those decisions.
    She is trying to change the rules mid game.
    She is caught up in this because she was a part of it!

    A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

    by AJsMom on Mon May 18, 2009 at 08:14:24 AM PDT

    •  Uh... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fnord warrior, jqjacobs

      the enhanced tecniques were determined to NOT be torture

      Yes, but Bush's lawyers. Not by any other metric. Certainly not by U.S. precedent since we successfully prosecuted the Japanese for doing the same thing.

    •  Waterboarding is Torture (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Arken, fnord warrior

      We can disagree on this all day long but that IS the determination.

      The CIA mislead and lied to Congress. Goss told the Senate Armed Services Committee "The United States does not engage in or condone torture, ... We don't torture."

      You can argue all day long that they can play semantic games to alter reality, but the facts are there.  We all know the facts, and the CIA cannot change the meaning of words  at their whim to satisfy their need to cover up war crimes.

      •  What legal authority made that determination? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        If you take an income tax deduction based on the advice of your accountant which is later overriden by the IRS, you can pay interest and late penalties, but you are not guilty of tax fraud.

        Someone testifying accuratately based on the information available at the time cannot be found to have retroactively lied.  A requirement of lying is that you actually know you are doing so.

        •  UN Convention on Torture from 1984 (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          fnord warrior

          Pres. Ronald Reagan on torture prosecution, signing statement ratifying the UN Convention on Torture from 1984:


          "The United States participated actively and effectively in the negotiation of the Convention. It marks a significant step in the development during this century of international measures against torture and other inhuman treatment or punishment. Ratification of the Convention by the United States will clearly express United States opposition to torture, an abhorrent practice unfortunately still prevalent in the world today.

             The core provisions of the Convention establish a regime for international cooperation in the criminal prosecution of torturers relying on so-called 'universal jurisdiction.' Each State Party is required either to prosecute torturers who are found in its territory or to extradite them to other countries for prosecution."

          •  Ah, but what is torture? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Of course that's the issue.  They did not believe it was.  I mean I can say that "sitting through that class was torture", but does that mean that I can sue the school under this convention?

            To establish that he was lying you would have to produce an authoritative determination that the techniques involved were in fact torture that had been produced prior to the testimony.

            Since legal council had advised that it was not, he cannot be considered lying for believing his lawyers.  Now it's possible that the 1983 case is relevent, but that would not establish lying.  And, the simple fact that the Sheriff's actions were found to be illegal does not mean that they were torture.  There are lots of things you can do to prisoners that are illegal but are not torture.

            •  Research opinions. (0+ / 0-)

              I'm not your law clerk!  
              Did you even read the article?

              "To take one example, there was a court-martial addressing the practice of waterboarding from 1903, a state court case from the Twenties, a series of prosecutions at the Tokyo Tribunal (in many of which the death penalty was sought) and another court-martial in 1968," Scott Horton

              The TX case went to the Appeals court, and their decision repeatedly refers to the practice as torture.  Look it up for yourself!

        •  DOJ Prosecuted Texas Sheriff For Waterboarding (0+ / 0-)

          Reagan's DOJ Prosecuted Texas Sheriff For Waterboarding Prisoners
          by Jason Leopold - 21 April 2009

          By Jason Leopold

          George W. Bush’s Justice Department said subjecting a person to the near-drowning of waterboarding was not a crime and didn’t even cause pain, but Ronald Reagan’s Justice Department thought otherwise, prosecuting a Texas sheriff and three deputies for using the practice to get confessions.

          Federal prosecutors secured a 10-year sentence against the sheriff and four years in prison for the deputies. But that 1983 case – which would seem to be directly on point for a legal analysis on waterboarding two decades later – was never mentioned in the four Bush administration opinions released last week.

          The failure to cite the earlier waterboarding case and a half-dozen other precedents that dealt with torture is reportedly one of the critical findings of a Justice Department watchdog report that legal sources say faults former Bush administration lawyers – Jay Bybee, John Yoo and Steven Bradbury – for violating "professional standards."


    •  "Claimed." You Can't "Determine" That Species Wer (0+ / 0-)

      created 6000 years ago in finished form. You can "claim" it but you can't "determine" it.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Mon May 18, 2009 at 08:26:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Pelosi? (0+ / 0-)

      SHE'S trying to change the rule mid-game?  

      Not the Bush legal team, who 'determined' that torture is legal?  They're not guilty of that?  

      Wow.  Just.  Wow.  I hated your appearance on This Week yesterday, by the way.  Your outfit looked like you inherited it from Bozo the Clown.  

      "[Y]ou give me a waterboard, Dick Cheney and one hour, and I'll have him confessing to the Sharon Tate murders." -Jesse Ventura

      by Nada Lemming on Mon May 18, 2009 at 09:01:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Your name suits you n/t (0+ / 0-)

        A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

        by AJsMom on Mon May 18, 2009 at 09:51:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Pelosi knew about it (0+ / 0-)

        She did NOTHING to stop it and she was complicit in it.
        If she wants to prosecute those responsible, she will be one of those included.

        A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The USA for an amount of "up to and including my life." - unknown

        by AJsMom on Mon May 18, 2009 at 09:55:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  no video, but a transcript (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


       Mr. Goss: Thank you, Chairman Warner and Ranking Member
    Levin, thank you, for the opportunity to be here today. I would
    ask unanimous consent that my full statement could be made part
    of the record so I could abbreviate my statement, sir.


    Professional interrogation has become a very useful and
    necessary way to obtain information to save innocent lives, to
    disrupt terrorist schemes, and to protect our combat forces.
    The United States Government has had documented success
    protecting people and capturing terrorists with such
    information. As I have publicly said before, the United States
    Government does not engage in or condone torture.

  •  Response to Boehner. Bush lied. (0+ / 0-)

    From another board in a parallel thread:

    "great!!! bush lied to congress.... so.... what are you going to do about it!"

    Excellent point that!
    During the State of the Union Address, as I recall.

  •  Only if Congress pursues it. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    And, as we've seen over the last few years, Congress doesn't really care about enforcing it's constitutional right not to be lied to. Only the fall guys get prosecuted in D.C.

    -6.38/-3.79::'A man is incapable of comprehending any argument that interferes with his revenues.' Descartes

    by skrymir on Mon May 18, 2009 at 09:51:50 AM PDT

    •  Good point! & explains the Pelosi attack (0+ / 0-)

      This could be why they are creating such a concerted assault of Pelosi, to prevent prosecutions for lying to Congress, to preempt and spin the issue.

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