Just asking

Bush acknowledges what he acknowledges “everybody knew”: that the CIA was running secret prisons in Europe. His supporters here mostly won’t mind his making them look like a pack of fools. His supporters in Europe may not be so understanding.

Do you expect any of the wingnuts and warbloggers who denied that the CIA was running secret prisons in Eastern Europe to express any embarrassment now that the President has acknowledged the truth?

Me neither.

Of course, that’s just good clean fun. Making all our supporters in Europe look stupid isn’t. But of course all other considerations must give way to national-security imperative of preventing the GOP from getting clobbered in November.

Update Link added in response to comments. Yes, the primary winger response was that Dana Priest and her sources were traitors who ought to be put in prison for revealing state secrets. But the secondary line, especially after the EU Parliament investigation failed to find the smoking gun, was that the prisons didn’t exist and the story was part of a mole-hunting operation aimed at disloyal (to Bush, that is) elements within the CIA. Little Green Footballs, Captain’s Quarters, RedState, and Right Wing Nut House all made the same claim, and Glenn Reynolds helped spread the wildly implausible story without committing himself to it.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

13 thoughts on “Just asking”

  1. "[the] national-security imperative of preventing the GOP from getting clobbered in November"
    In fact, I'm sure that this is how they think of it. Since the Dems will ruin the nation, therefore anything done to prevent them from taking power is justifiable.
    Besides, too much money is at stake. By my estimate, at least $500 billion dollars per year.

  2. "Do you expect any of the wingnuts and warbloggers who denied that the CIA was running secret prisons in Eastern Europe"
    Link please!

  3. Also, can you please specify the passage in Bush's speech where he acknowledges that we had secret prisons *in Eastern Europe*?
    I see an acknowledgement of prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan. I don't see any other locations specified. Perhaps you can point it out to me.

  4. Not to be smart, but I agree with A. S. I remember plenty of wingnuts saying he *should* have secret prisons, not so many denying that he did.

  5. A.S.:
    Link added.
    And no, Bush didn't actually specify "Eastern Europe." But he did, finally confirm the existence of the secret prisons, thus vindicating Dana Priest's story. And that story specifies Eastern Europe; Priest withheld the names of the specific countries at the request of the government, but it seems that they were Poland and Rumania.

  6. A.S.:
    Link added.
    And no, Bush didn't actually specify "Eastern Europe." But he did, finally, confirm the existence of the secret prisons, thus vindicating Dana Priest's story. And that story specifies Eastern Europe; Priest withheld the names of the specific countries at the request of the government, but it seems that they were Poland and Rumania.

  7. The obvious response from Bushapologists about confirmation of secret US gulags will be:
    a) So what?
    b) You do what it takes to win.
    c) So you're pro-terrorist?
    d) The terrorists have them too. I don't hear you complaining about that.
    e) War is war. Get used to it.
    f) Even they save just one American life, they are worth it.
    g) Everyone already knew it. Why do you keep dragging up old news? Getting desperate come November?

  8. Thanks for the update, Mark. Yeah, Moran's inital speculation was crazy (as was the rest of the right blogosphere for linking to it). But as he notes above, he basically retreated from it already. (E.g., http://rightwingnuthouse.com/archives/2006/04/22/… And while there no doubt in my mind that we had secret prisons in Eastern Europe, just as Dana Priest wrote, I don't think that Bush's statement confirmed that. It confirmed the existence of secret prisons; in eastern Europe, not so much.

  9. "Quite a post – other than Bush never confirming Eastern European prisons"
    Quite a post — the important thing is that Bush has confirmed secret prisons. But for some pedants, the only cover left to them is to scream — he didn't say they were in East Europe.

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