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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wikileaks Reveal Mel Martinez As Water Boy For Torturers

Dec 29th, 2010

From a report in The Miami Herald using wikileaks as a source comes news that former Republican Senator Mel Martinez was sent to attempt to manipulate Spanish legal proceedings against U.S. figures tied to the torture of five Gitmo detainees. The betrayal of our principles by President Obama's administration for reasons of supposed pragmatism is but a part of this.

It was three months into Barack Obama's presidency, and the administration -- under pressure to do something about alleged abuses in Bush-era interrogation policies -- turned to a Florida senator to deliver a sensitive message to Spain:

Don't indict former President George W. Bush's legal brain trust for alleged torture in the treatment of war on terror detainees, warned Mel Martinez on one of his frequent trips to Madrid. Doing so would chill U.S.-Spanish relations.

Rather than a resolution, though, a senior Spanish diplomat gave the former GOP chairman and housing secretary a lesson in Spain's separation of powers. "The independence of the judiciary and the process must be respected,'' then-acting Foreign Minister Angel Lossada replied on April 15, 2009. Then for emphasis, "Lossada reiterated to Martinez that the executive branch of government could not close any judicial investigation and urged that this case not affect the overall relationship.”

It is strongly recommended that you read the full article. There is so much wrong here not the least of which is the image of an American Senator being schooled by a foreign official on the principle that an executive branch ought not leverage or intimidate a judiciary branch of government. That this is supposed to be one of the Cardinal Virtues of the American system seems to have been utterly lost on Martinez and the President. It points to how removed from our values they and so many of our other representatives have become in the years following 9/11. 

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