Thursday, May 14, 2009

Now Dick Cheney Wants Transparency? (Return to the House of Hypocrisy)

Oh, now I understand: Dick Cheney thinks that national security requires secrecy . . . except if it might help him make a rhetorical point. The Washington Post reports:

The CIA has rejected a request from former vice president Richard B. Cheney to release documents that he says show that the agency's harsh interrogation methods helped thwart terrorist plots.

A letter today denying the request cites pending legal action as the sole reason for keeping the documents under seal.

* * * *
Cheney, who has sparred publicly with the Obama administration since it prohibited coercive interrogations in January, submitted a formal request to the National Archives and Records Administration on March 31, asking for the declassification of two secret documents that were said to describe the intelligence gained from the CIA's questioning of suspected al-Qaeda terrorists in overseas prisons.

Cheney, in a Fox News interview last month, said the documents "lay out what we learned from the interrogation process" and would presumably validate Bush administration claims that the controversial methods disrupted terrorists' plans and saved American lives.

Recall that as Vice-President, Cheney didn't even think he was required to give the Information Security Oversight Office data on how much material from his own files he had designated as "classified." (Something in the nature of a privilege log). That is, he not only kept his own documents secret, he wouldn't even say how many documents he was withholding from public view.

And Vice President Cheney also famously refused to disclose information about his meetings on energy policy with executives at the now-infamous Enron. See TIME story

But now, the necessity of preserving his reputation -- oops, I mean, the nation -- has made Dick Cheney a fighter for transparency in government.

Can't anybody shut this guy up?

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