The Wall Street Journal has an editorial by Representative Pete Hoekstra, regarding Barack Obama’s decision to inform our enemies about the details of the interrogation techniques we would be using against them to protect America:
Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair got it right last week when he noted how easy it is to condemn the enhanced interrogation program “on a bright sunny day in April 2009.” Reactions to this former CIA program, which was used against senior al Qaeda suspects in 2002 and 2003, are demonstrating how little President Barack Obama and some Democratic members of Congress understand the dire threats to our nation.
George Tenet, who served as CIA director under Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, believes the enhanced interrogations program saved lives. He told CBS’s “60 Minutes” in April 2007: “I know this program alone is worth more than the FBI, the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency put together have been able to tell us.”
Last week, Mr. Blair made a similar statement in an internal memo to his staff when he wrote that “[h]igh value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the al Qa’ida organization that was attacking this country.”
Yet last week Mr. Obama overruled the advice of his CIA director, Leon Panetta, and four prior CIA directors by releasing the details of the enhanced interrogation program. Former CIA director Michael Hayden has stated clearly that declassifying the memos will make it more difficult for the CIA to defend the nation.
It was not necessary to release details of the enhanced interrogation techniques, because members of Congress from both parties have been fully aware of them since the program began in 2002. We believed it was something that had to be done in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks to keep our nation safe. After many long and contentious debates, Congress repeatedly approved and funded this program on a bipartisan basis in both Republican and Democratic Congresses.
I previously wrote about how Obama had opened the door to prosecutions of those who, from the bottom to the top, defended the United States from terrorist threats. Even if no one is convicted, this witch-hunt undermines our vigilance, and will create incentives that will make our counter-terrorism personnel hesitate in the performance of their duty to defend us.
But now I want to ask a different question. Is waterboarding really torture? Take a look at this MSNBC video linked at Hot Air, featuring a debate between an ignorant, unqualified, left-wing journalist and Liz Cheney.
And here is some of the transcript from Hotline:
O’DONNELL: Well Liz, we’ll get to that argument in a minute, about do the means justify the ends. Whether torture justifies…
L. CHENEY: Well, it wasn’t torture, Norah, so that’s not the right way to lay out the argument.
L. CHENEY: Everything done in this program, as has been laid out and described before, are tactics that our own people go through in SEER training and that our own people have gone through for many years. So it’s really – does a fundamental disservice to those professionals who are conducting this very effective program and to those people who approved the program in order to keep this nation safe and prevent attacks through the program to call it torture.
O’DONNELL: Liz, the CIA, on its own after 2005, stopped waterboarding on its own. The U.S. prosecuted people for waterboarding after World War II.
So to suggest there’s a consensus out there that waterboarding is not torture is not in fact accurate.
L. CHENEY: No, I think it is accurate. There were three people who were waterboarded. And two of those people are people who gave us incredibly important and useful information, information that saved American lives after they were waterboarded. Both Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah.
And I would just refer your viewers to the really important op-ed piece that Mike Hayden and Attorney General Mukasey wrote laying out why this program worked, why it was effective and what damage has now been done to our national security by releasing the tactics of this program
The impression I get is that the left-wingers in the Democrat party and the mainstream media is more concerned about the rights of terrorists than protecting American lives. They have a right to hold and express those opinions – it’s a free country. But should we really reward them by voting for them or watching their silly biased television broadcasts?
RELATED: Hot Air notes that a new Rasmussen poll finds that 58% think Obama endangered national security.