The ad brands Eric Holder's DOJ the "Department of Jihad" because it employs 9 lawyers who previously represented Guantanamo detainees (including Deputy Solicitor General Neal Katyal, who successfully represented the Guantanamo-plaintiffs in the 2006 Hamdan case before the U.S. Supreme Court). The ad darkly asks of these lawyers: "whose values do they share?," and labels 7 of those unidentified DOJ lawyers "The Al Qaeda 7."
There is something good that can be gleaned from this dispicable defamatory ad: the Cheneys and Krystol fear lawsuits on behalf of GITMO detainees, which is why they are virulently attacking the Department of Justice.
Thus, let the GITMO cases be tried and let justice be done!
One case, Greenwald discusses, was conducted by ACLU attorney, Jonathan Hafetz, who
represented , a boy no older than 15 at the time he was detained in Afghanistan and shipped to Guantanamo, falsely accused of throwing a grenade at American soldiers who had invaded his country, and put in a cage for 7 years with no trial (where he twice tried to commit suicide), until finally being released last year after a federal judge granted his habeas petition on the ground of insufficient evidence.
It's cases such as this one that document the torture and war crimes committed via the direction of Liz's father, Dick.
In essence, these GITMO victim cases try her father's policies and find that they are indeed war crimes and torture, which is why she and Bill Krystol are spending so much time and money trashing the lawyers who dare to represent the victims of her father's illegal policies.
On today's NPR Morning Edition, Nina Totenberg's report, Can Torture Victims Sue Their Tormentors?, told the story of Somali torture victims who have received asylum in the USA, only to discover that their torturers are residing here, too, free and clear.
The lead plaintiff is Bashe Yousuf, a Somali businessman who was doing volunteer work to clean up hospitals in 1983 when he and fellow volunteers were arrested. He was tortured for several months — subjected to electric shocks, trussed up and hung for hours, and waterboarded. And then he was held in solitary confinement for six years. In 1989, he was finally released and granted asylum in the United States, where he is now a citizen.
He is suing Samantar, he says, not because he fears for his safety anymore, but to make the man answer for his crimes.
"It's outraging me," he says, "that somebody like him can live in America. I just need a day in court. I want to hold him up [to show] what he did."
As soon as I heard that last statement: "It's outraging me," he says, "that somebody like him can live in America. I just need a day in court. I want to hold him up [to show] what he did.", I thought of how outrageous it is that Bybee, Yoo, Cheney, Bush, etc., can live in America after the torture they sanctioned. I, and many other Americans, who believe in our system of laws, wish that Cheney, et al, would have to face a day in court, under oath, and be held accountable for what they have done.
These GITMO victims' cases expose the Cheney/Bush torture and war crimes to the light of day. They sidestep the documents stamped "secret," lost e-mails, shredded and burnt documents, and tell the devastating stories of the real life victims, who suffered due to the heinous policies, which were unfairly decreed "legal" by Bush Lawyers Criticized on Interrogation Advice, Jay Bybee and John Yoo, who the U.S. Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility found
had engaged in professional misconduct and also urged that criminal prosecution be considered for interrogators who relied on their advice
and clearly tells us in a court of law what these polices really were: torture.
Yousuf's lawsuit was brought under the 1991 Torture Victim Protection Act, which authorizes lawsuits in the U.S. against individuals who have committed torture or extrajudicial killings while acting in an official capacity for a foreign nation. The law only permits suits to be brought in the U.S. when the nation where the torture occurred has no adequate judicial remedy.
Samantar, the accused war criminal, has an eclectic group of allies on his side. They include the government of Saudi Arabia [BRIEF OF THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA
AS AMICUS CURIAE IN SUPPORT OF PETITIONER],
some pro-Israel groups [BRIEF OF THE ZIONIST ORGANIZATION OF AMERICA, THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF JEWISH LAWYERS AND JURISTS, AGUDATH ISRAEL OF AMERICA, AND THE UNION OF ORTHODOX JEWISH CONGREGATIONS OF AMERICA, AMICI CURIAE IN SUPPORT OF PETITIONER] and three former Republican U.S. attorneys general. The former attorneys general — Edwin Meese, Bill Barr and Richard Thornburgh — say that if this lawsuit is permitted to go forward, it could expose U.S. officials in other countries to similar suits.
Say what? This bears repeating:
three former Republican U.S. attorneys general. The former attorneys general — Edwin Meese, Bill Barr and Richard Thornburgh — say that if this lawsuit is permitted to go forward, it could expose U.S. officials in other countries to similar suits.
Torture lawsuits could expose U.S. officials in other countries to similar suits?
No wonder Liz Cheney and Bill Krystol are attacking the lawyers who defend torture victims!