Code Pink Vs. Cheney
In honor of Dick Cheney's new book release, Code Pink held an action to move his book to the crime section of local bookstores. The former Vice President was given a multi-million dollar contract to write a book about his political career. According to Cheney’s media hype, the book, "In My Time," will have “heads exploding all over Washington." In the book Cheney offers no apologies and feels no remorse for any of his actions including water boarding detainees. Peace activists around the country deposited bookmarks in the new release listing "10 Reasons Dick Cheney's New Book Belongs in the Crime Section."
The list comprises Cheney’s top ten most egregious crimes, beginning with his lies about weapons of mass destruction and Saddam Hussein’s ties to the 9/11 attack. The scathing list seems to have endless material. Cheney committed War Crimes in Iraq, by violating the Geneva Conventions--targeting civilians, journalists, hospitals, and ambulances, and using illegal weapons, including white phosphorous, depleted uranium, and a new type of napalm.
Then there's war profiteering. While U.S. taxpayers shelled out about three trillion dollars for the Bush/Cheney wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Cheney and Halliburton made out like bandits, getting billions in contracts. Cheney who of course was the CEO of Halliburton, left in 2000 for the VP position with not only a $20 million retirement package, but millions in stock options. Before the Iraq War began, Halliburton was 19th on the U.S. Army's list of contractors; by 2003 it was number one, while the value of Cheney’s stocks went up by over 3,000%.
Cheney violated basic human rights. Cheney shares responsibility for holding thousands of prisoners without charges and without the fundamental right to the writ of habeas corpus, and for keeping prisoners hidden from the International Committee of the Red Cross. He sanctioned kidnapping people and sending them to secret overseas prisons. His authorization of the arbitrary detention of Americans, legal residents, and non-Americans--without due process, without charges, and without access to counsel--was in gross violation of U.S. and international law.
Cheney advocated torture. Cheney was behind the Bush administration's decision to violate the Geneva Conventions and the U.N. Convention Against Torture and to break with decades of past practice by the U.S. military by supporting “enhanced interrogation techniques.” This led to hundreds of documented cases in Iraq and Afghanistan of abuse, torture and homicide. The torture included the practice known as "water-boarding," a form of simulated drowning.
Cheney abused executive privilege: Cheney used executive privilege to refuse to comply with over a dozen Congressional subpoenas related to improper firing of Federal attorneys, torture, election violations and exposing—for political retribution--the identity of Valerie Plame, a covert CIA operative working on sensitive WMD proliferation.
Cheney Spied on us. Cheney was the mastermind behind the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping program that spied on thousands, perhaps millions of American citizens on American soil. This massive government interference with personal phone calls and emails was in violation of FISA (the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act), the Federal Telecommunications Act, and 4th Amendment of the Constitution.
Of course the list had to end somewhere. He may not have been the best VP in history, but at least Cheney put together quite the International War Criminal resume.
Image, "Darth Cheney" by Phinzup on Flickr Courtesy of Creative Commons Licensing.