Immunity for Dick Cheney? Now there is an odd idea. He is one of the most despised men on the planet, and therefore beloved by probably close to one half of Americans, but why precisely is he entitled to immunity? You haven’t heard about his being granted immunity? Okay, so he hasn’t been granted immunity in the traditional sense, as a testifying or cooperating witness. He has been granted immunity from being questioned about the subject that he apparently thinks absolves him of any responsibility to act as decency and humanity ordinarily dictate—–9/11.
I do not begrudge him in the slightest for being the guy that says the oft-thought but unsayable, that he isn’t concerned about the rights or comforts of suspected terrorists, or even the ones who turn out to be innocent. His support of the use of torture is not a particularly enlightened position now that its uselessness has been established. And even if no one is entitled to their own facts, there will always be partisans impervious to reason. Chuck Todd is as good as anyone, I suppose, at demonstrating those people are wrong. But Cheney’s answer to the question, “what is torture?” was a recounting of the horrors of 9/11. Twice. And of all of the human beings in the world, the most painfully prominent who should not be allowed that refuge is Dick Cheney. Why? Because whether it knows it or not, the world has the goods on him. He was complicit in the attacks in a more demonstrable way, based on far more powerful evidence, than any other soul alive,… or dead; Osama bin Laden comes to mind. The U.S. never even tried to prove Bin Laden’s guilt to the Taliban, which was all they were asking for as a prerequisite to turning him over, thereby alleviating the necessity of a 10-year war in Afghanistan.
How bad is it exactly? Does Chuck Todd know the truth but hasn’t the stones to inquire? Is he uncertain, possibly, or has he found Cheney innocent after exhaustive investigation? Does he know that Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta testified to the 9/11 Commission that he was in the PEOC with Cheney before the Pentagon was hit on the morning of 9/11? Does he know that Mineta gave a detailed account of Cheney confirming orders which either allowed the attack to succeed–we call that treason–or were not followed, leaving the building undefended? If it were the latter, military history and military law and military standard operating procedure dictate that there would have been a Board of Inquiry, courts-martial, demotions, reprimands, or prosecutions for failure to obey orders. Instead, there were, in the wake of this nation’s worst single event, promotions across the board. Whatever Todd’s state of mind, aren’t Meet The Press’s viewers entitled to their own conclusions?
Is this Mr. Todd’s ignorance at work, his failure to raise the obvious questions? Or is this just the grandest display of intimidation by a truly evil man in the history of journalism, surpassing Rather’s quailing at the scour of Bush in the dark episode known as Iran-Contra?.