Bush, Defending Justice Nominee, Sees Unfairness (Excerpted)
Doug Mills/The New York Times, President Bush arriving on Thursday to address a crowd at the Heritage Foundation in Washington.
With Mr. Mukasey’s confirmation in doubt over his refusal to state a clear legal position on a classified Central Intelligence Agency program to interrogate terrorism suspects, Mr. Bush took the unusual step of summoning a small group of reporters into the Oval Office to preview remarks he planned to make later in the day at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative research organization here.
“I believe that the questions he’s been asked are unfair,” Mr. Bush said. “He’s not been read into the program — he has been asked to give opinions of a program or techniques of a program on which he’s not been briefed. I will make the case — and I strongly believe this is true — that Judge Mukasey is not being treated fairly.”
Mr. Bush, in the Oval Office meeting, declined to address waterboarding. “I’m not going to talk about techniques,” he said, adding, “My view is this: The American people have got to understand the program is important and the techniques used are within the law.”
Waterboarding, a centuries-old method that simulates a feeling of drowning, has become a symbol of the larger debate over the C.I.A. detention and interrogation program, and the Mukasey nomination has become a kind of proxy fight for that battle. Both Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney made the war on terror and the C.I.A. program a central theme of their speeches on Thursday, with Mr. Cheney suggesting that the agency’s efforts had spared Americans another terrorist attack.
“Because we’ve been focused, because we’ve refused to let down our guard, we’ve done — gone more now than six years without another 9/11,” the vice president said, addressing the American Legion in Indianapolis.
I AM THE THE LAW AND THE LAW IS MINE
Oct 6th, 2007 by faithful |
Bush Defends US Interrogation Methods, By JENNIFER LOVEN, AP
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Bush defended his administration’s methods of detaining and questioning terrorism suspects on Friday, saying both are successful and lawful.
“When we find somebody who may have information regarding a potential attack on America, you bet we’re going to detain them, and you bet we’re going to question them,” he said during a hastily called Oval Office appearance. “The American people expect us to find out information, actionable intelligence so we can help protect them. That’s our job.”
Bush volunteered his thoughts on a report on two secret 2005 memos that authorized extreme interrogation tactics against terror suspects. “This government does not torture people,” the president said.
The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over the government.