Leon Panetta has been a busy little bee. Not only is he in the middle of a turf war with National Security Advisor Gen James Jones but he's been writing lengthy, Bush-like defenses of Bush secrecy policies that Obama used to call "a false choice" between security and civil rights. Shortly after testifying in Congress that photos of torture victims at Gitmo must be suppressed on the Nixonian grounds of "national security" (a phrase that has lost a good deal of meaning lately), Panetta found himself writing a similar brief for the SCOTUS arguing that tapes of the interrogations at Gitmo must be suppressed on the Nixonian grounds of...but you've heard all that before.
In an affidavit, CIA Director Leon E. Panetta defended the classification of records describing the contents of the 92 videotapes, their destruction by the CIA in 2005 and what he called "sensitive operational information" about the interrogations.
The forced disclosure of such material to the American Civil Liberties Union "could be expected to result in exceptionally grave damage to the national security by informing our enemies of what we knew about them, and when, and in some instances, how we obtained the intelligence we possessed," Panetta argued.
Actually, the "forced disclosure...could be expected to result in" embarrassment or even war crimes charges against an ex-president, ex-vice president, ex-DefenseSec, ex-WH lawyers, and a number of other Bush Admin figures who conspired against the Constitution so they could have people thrown in jail on a whim and half-drowned just for the hell of it. A lousy reason to suppress evidence of US war crimes by top American officials.
That this BS is being taken by the GOP and other conservative war-mongers and torture-lovers everywhere as proof that Bush/Cheney were right to do what they did is the most dangerous game of all. To them, Obama has 180'd his position because once he got in office he learned that the torture policies he used to despise were after all necessary to US security and if a raging socialist moonbat like Obama changed his mind that must mean that the destruction of our civil liberties and the shredding of the Constitution were necessary.
IOW, Obama just made goddam heroes out of Bush and Cheney. I've heard this lately even from people who were once opposed to torture and more or less convinced that it was unnecessary and never should have been done. But their opposition began to waver when the Democrat majority wouldn't allow Gitmo to be closed and now that Obama himself is doing everything he can to keep the whole thing a "state secret", that waver is turning into certainty that there must be great danger to Americans in that Gitmo crowd. Which, of course, is nonsense.
It's nice to see the House throw a (probably temporary) monkey wrench into the Lieberman-Graham bill to suppress the photos but with the top leadership of the party in the WH and Senate moving heaven and earth to maintain Bush's state secret policy, it's getting a lot harder to convince people that the smoke is just smoke and the "fire" they think it means must be there is a nothing but a politically-motivated, ass-covering illusion.
As far as our civil rights are concerned, we threw Bush out and wound up electing...Bush.