Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Former Ron Paul campaign official explains Ron Paul’s views on foreign policy

From Right Wing News, an exclusive interview with a Ron Paul insider who was working for Ron Paul from 1987-2003.

Excerpt:

Ron Paul was opposed to the War in Afghanistan, and to any military reaction to the attacks of 9/11.

He did not want to vote for the resolution. He immediately stated to us staffers, me in particular, that Bush/Cheney were going to use the attacks as a precursor for “invading” Iraq. He engaged in conspiracy theories including perhaps the attacks were coordinated with the CIA, and that the Bush administration might have known about the attacks ahead of time. He expressed no sympathies whatsoever for those who died on 9/11, and pretty much forbade us staffers from engaging in any sort of memorial expressions, or openly asserting pro-military statements in support of the Bush administration.

On the eve of the vote, Ron Paul was still telling us staffers that he was planning to vote “No,” on the resolution, and to be prepared for a seriously negative reaction in the District. Jackie Gloor and I, along with quiet nods of agreement from the other staffers in the District, declared our intentions to Tom Lizardo, our Chief of Staff, and to each other, that if Ron voted No, we would immediately resign.

Ron was “under the spell” of left-anarchist and Lew Rockwell associate Joe Becker at the time, who was our legislative director. Norm Singleton, another Lew Rockwell fanatic agreed with Joe. All other staffers were against Ron, Joe and Norm on this, including Lizardo. At the very last minute Ron switched his stance and voted “Yay,” much to the great relief of Jackie and I. He never explained why, but I strongly suspected that he realized it would have been political suicide; that staunchly conservative Victoria would revolt, and the Republicans there would ensure that he would not receive the nomination for the seat in 2002. Also, as much as I like to think that it was my yelling and screaming at Ron, that I would publicly resign if he voted “No,” I suspect it had a lot more to do with Jackie’s threat, for she WAS Victoria. And if Jackie bolted, all of the Victoria conservatives would immediately turn on Ron, and it wouldn’t be pretty.

If you take anything from this lengthy statement, I would hope that it is this final story about the Afghanistan vote, that the liberal media chooses to completely ignore, because it doesn’t fit their template, is what you will report.

If Ron Paul should be slammed for anything, it’s not some silly remarks he’s made in the past in his Newsletters. It’s over his simply outrageously horrendous views on foreign policy, Israel, and national security for the United States. His near No vote on Afghanistan. That is the big scandal. And that is what should be given 100 times more attention from the liberal media, than this Newsletter deal.

I think Paul’s comments on World War 2, which I didn’t excerpt here, are pretty disturbing as well. I guess I just don’t believe that he knows enough about national security and counter-terrorism to be President. If I asked him questions like “who is FARC?” or “who is the Quds force?” or “How is Iran working with the Mexican drug cartels?” or “How is Iran working with Hugo Chavez?” then all I’ll get in response is Libertarian rhetoric.

Ron Paul doesn’t know a thing about national security or Islamic terrorism, he can’t quote any specifics at all about who terrorists are, what they’ve done, what they want to do, etc.. It’s like asking a witch doctor to explain modern medicine. You’ll only get conspiracy theories and unverifiable assertions – never any details. Everything Ron Paul asserts about how unilateral disarming would do this, or unilateral withdrawal would do that is really nothing more than his uninformed personal ideology. If you asked him to prove out any of his views on foreign policy, you would just get more excitable old crank rhetoric – devoid of data and history.

The best way to engage a libertarian who thinks that Ron Paul conspiracy theory diplomacy would work is to bring up a specific example when actual counter-terrorism produced results. For example, when KSM was waterboarded and gave up intelligence on the 9/11-style attack on Los Angeles, or when enhanced interrogation techniques led to the location of Osama Bin Laden. You can also point out how Clinton’s policies of appeasement emboldened terrorists to commit actual terrorist attacks against American assets. And how Bush’s invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan did actually dissuade terrorist attacks from occurring. And how large-scale attacks resumed under Obama, e.g. – the NYC subway bomb, the NYC Times Square bomb, the attempted assassination of the Saudi ambassador in New York, etc., to name a few. This is kryptonite to a fever-swamp libertarian who forms his foreign policy reading dead economists from the 1800s – prior to the invention of nuclear weapons.

Like this:

How to defeat Ron Paul in 2012

How to defeat Ron Paul in 2012

We can’t put someone like Ron Paul in charge of national security. It would be like putting a witch doctor in as the Surgeon General. Conspiracy theories are not good foreign policy. The antidote is to talk about the way things work in the real world.

Libertarian: a person who thinks waterboarding a terrorist to prevent a 9/11 attack is “cruel”, but who thinks aborting 50 million unborn babies since 1973 is “just”. Just understand what libertarianism is, and the scope in which it is useful, and don’t apply it to areas where it doesn’t apply.

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CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding led to Osama Bin Laden

CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding / enhanced interrogation techniques led to Osama Bin Laden, in this MSNBC interview by Brian Williams.

Excerpt:

Brian Williams: I’d like to ask you about the sourcing on the intel that ultimately led to this successful attack. Can you confirm that it was as a result of waterboarding that we learned what we needed to learn to go after Bin Laden?

Leon Panetta: You know, Brian, in the intelligence business you work from a lot of sources of information, and that was true here. We had a multiple series of sources that provided information with regards to this situation. Clearly, some of it came from detainees and the interrogation of detainees, but we also had information from other sources as well. So it’s a little difficult to say it was due just to one source of information that we got.

Williams: Turned around the other way, are you denying that waterboarding was in part among the tactics used to extract the intelligence that led to this successful mission?

Panetta: No, I think some of the detainees clearly were — you know, they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of these detainees. But I’m also saying that the debate about whether we would have gotten the same information through other approaches I think is always going to be an open question.

Williams: So, final point, one final time: enhanced interrogation techniques, which has always been kind of a handy euphemism in these post-9/11 years, that includes waterboarding.

Panetta: That’s correct.

This is the waterboarding that Obama opposed. Obama opposed enhanced interrogations. Obama opposed military tribunals. Obama opposed CIA prisons. Obama opposed Guantanamo Bay. Obama opposes counter-terrorism in general.

And don’t forget how waterboarding prevented a similar 9/11-style attack on Los Angeles.

Excerpt:

The Central Intelligence Agency told CNSNews.com today that it stands by the assertion made in a May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that the use of “enhanced techniques” of interrogation on al Qaeda leader Khalid Sheik Mohammed (KSM) — including the use of waterboarding — caused KSM to reveal information that allowed the U.S. government to thwart a planned attack on Los Angeles.

Before he was waterboarded, when KSM was asked about planned attacks on the United States, he ominously told his CIA interrogators, “Soon, you will know.”

According to the previously classified May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that was released by President Barack Obama last week, the thwarted attack — which KSM called the “Second Wave”– planned “ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.”

KSM was the mastermind of the first “hijacked-airliner” attacks on the United States, which struck the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Northern Virginia on Sept. 11, 2001.

After KSM was captured by the United States, he was not initially cooperative with CIA interrogators.  Nor was another top al Qaeda leader named Zubaydah.  KSM, Zubaydah, and a third terrorist named Nashiri were the only three persons ever subjected to waterboarding by the CIA.

Waterboarding works. It is not torture. We waterboard all our our naval aviators as part of their SERE training.

But do you know what is torture? Partial-birth abortion. We don’t partial-birth abort our naval aviators as part of their SERE training – yet the same people who oppose waterboarding support partial-birth abortion.

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Obama vows to continue prosecuting counter-terrorism experts

Consider this Wall Street Journal article by former Attorney General Michael Mukasey.

Excerpt:

Consider how the intelligence that led to bin Laden came to hand. It began with a disclosure from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM), who broke like a dam under the pressure of harsh interrogation techniques that included waterboarding. He loosed a torrent of information — including eventually the nickname of a trusted courier of bin Laden. That regimen of harsh interrogation was used on KSM after another detainee, Abu Zubaydeh, was subjected to the same techniques. When he broke, he said that he and other members of al-Qaeda were obligated to resist only until they could no longer do so, at which point it became permissible for them to yield. “Do this for all the brothers,” he advised his interrogators. . . .

The harsh techniques themselves were used selectively against only a small number of hard-core prisoners who successfully resisted other forms of interrogation, and then only with the explicit authorization of the director of the CIA. Of the thousands of unlawful combatants captured by the U.S., fewer than 100 were detained and questioned in the CIA program. Of those, fewer than one-third were subjected to any of these techniques.

[...]President Obama ran for election on the promise to do away with these techniques even before he became aware, if he ever did, of what they were. Days after taking office, he directed that the CIA interrogation program be done away with entirely and that interrogation be limited to the techniques set forth in the Army Field Manual, a document designed for use by even the least experienced troops. It’s available on the Internet and used by terrorists as a training manual for resisting interrogation.

Jennifer Rubin, writing in the left-wing Washington Post comments on the Mukasey column.

Excerpt:

In addition to eliminating the very techniques that allowed us to track down and kill bin Laden, Obama has permitted the Justice Department to reopen investigation of previously cleared CIA operatives. Mukasey explains: “ I say ‘reopening’ advisedly because those investigations had all been formally closed by the end of 2007, with detailed memoranda prepared by career Justice Department prosecutors explaining why no charges were warranted. Attorney General Eric Holder conceded that he had ordered the investigations reopened in September 2009 without reading those memoranda. The investigations have now dragged on for years with prosecutors chasing allegations down rabbit holes, with the CIA along with the rest of the intelligence community left demoralized.

That’s right – Barack Obama has intimidated the entire intelligence community with his prosecution of CIA operatives who were judged innocent. Does his decision to prosecute CIA counter-terrorism experts make us safer from terrorist attacks?

And just look at how he treated the 9/11 widow Debra Burlingame. He literally turned his back on her just because she asked him why he is continuing to prosecute the CIA interrogators for doing their jobs. That’s the real Barack Obama. He can’t take a question, he can’t handle criticism. He has no civility for people who disagree with him.

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CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding led to Osama Bin Laden

CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding / enhanced interrogation techniques led to Osama Bin Laden, in this MSNBC interview by Brian Williams.

Excerpt:

Brian Williams: I’d like to ask you about the sourcing on the intel that ultimately led to this successful attack. Can you confirm that it was as a result of waterboarding that we learned what we needed to learn to go after Bin Laden?

Leon Panetta: You know, Brian, in the intelligence business you work from a lot of sources of information, and that was true here. We had a multiple series of sources that provided information with regards to this situation. Clearly, some of it came from detainees and the interrogation of detainees, but we also had information from other sources as well. So it’s a little difficult to say it was due just to one source of information that we got.

Williams: Turned around the other way, are you denying that waterboarding was in part among the tactics used to extract the intelligence that led to this successful mission?

Panetta: No, I think some of the detainees clearly were — you know, they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of these detainees. But I’m also saying that the debate about whether we would have gotten the same information through other approaches I think is always going to be an open question.

Williams: So, final point, one final time: enhanced interrogation techniques, which has always been kind of a handy euphemism in these post-9/11 years, that includes waterboarding.

Panetta: That’s correct.

This is the waterboarding that Obama opposed. Obama opposed enhanced interrogations. Obama opposed military tribunals. Obama opposed CIA prisons. Obama opposed Guantanamo Bay. Obama opposed counter-terrorism. I would not be surprised if the decision to kill Bin Laden was made in order to keep Obama from reading him his rights, giving him a civilian trial, bowing to him, etc.

Notice that the left-wing New York Times is in denial about the facts.

And don’t forget how waterboarding prevented a similar 9/11-style attack on Los Angeles.

Excerpt:

The Central Intelligence Agency told CNSNews.com today that it stands by the assertion made in a May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that the use of “enhanced techniques” of interrogation on al Qaeda leader Khalid Sheik Mohammed (KSM) — including the use of waterboarding — caused KSM to reveal information that allowed the U.S. government to thwart a planned attack on Los Angeles.

Before he was waterboarded, when KSM was asked about planned attacks on the United States, he ominously told his CIA interrogators, “Soon, you will know.”

According to the previously classified May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that was released by President Barack Obama last week, the thwarted attack — which KSM called the “Second Wave”– planned “ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.”

KSM was the mastermind of the first “hijacked-airliner” attacks on the United States, which struck the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Northern Virginia on Sept. 11, 2001.

After KSM was captured by the United States, he was not initially cooperative with CIA interrogators.  Nor was another top al Qaeda leader named Zubaydah.  KSM, Zubaydah, and a third terrorist named Nashiri were the only three persons ever subjected to waterboarding by the CIA.

I actually asked one person who thought waterboarding was “torture” who KSM was. She didn’t know! But this is like asking “who is buried in Grant’s tomb?” when it comes to intelligence matters. You can’t decide what to believe based on your feelings or the need to please others or to strike a pose with your peers to earn their approval. You have to have access to the facts, or you get taken in by conspiracy theories and sloganeering. You have to understand WHY Americans will use an Apache helicopter to attack a force of infantry armed with RPGs when a convoy of Hummers comes into their line of fire. It does no good to try to participate in debates on national security and foreign policy without knowing the facts. Feelings of envy and hatred for the United States are not arguments.

Let me be very very clear. To oppose the waterboarding of a terrorist like KSM is to favor the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans, thousands of innocent civilians in wars, and millions or even billions of dollars of financial losses. That is the “moral superiority” of the left. They would rather protect a guilty terrorist from a little discomfort than save huge numbers of innocent lives and protect the assets of huge numbers of innocent people. And they expect you to hold them in high regard for protecting evil, and punishing good. Apparently, this is considered as being the height of morality on the secular left, as Evan Sayet has pointed out. Despite what leftists believe, it is morally good for American soldiers kill a terrorist who has harmed innocent people or who is plotting an attack that will kill innocent people.

Thank you, President George W. Bush, for having a clear moral vision, and for making the hard, unpopular decisions that kept us safe.

Thank you, Central Intelligence Agency, for doing hard, unpopular things in order to protect us from terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.

Thank you, United States Armed Forces, for taking on the thankless task of protecting the people of the United States.

GOD BLESS AMERICA!

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How George W. Bush’s secret CIA prisons and waterboarding killed Osama Bin Laden

UPDATE: CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding was used to get the tip on Osama Bin Laden’s location

Obama should NOT be getting a speck of credit for the execution of Osama Bin Laden. It was GEORGE W. BUSH who created the enhanced interrogation techniques and clandestine prisons that led to the location of Osama Bin Laden. Barack Obama voted to stop the enhanced interrogation techniques, and to close the secret CIA prisons.

The ultra-liberal Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that the secret CIA prisons led to the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

Excerpt:

Officials say CIA interrogators in secret overseas prisons developed the first strands of information that ultimately led to the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Current and former U.S. officials say that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, provided the nom de guerre of one of bin Laden’s most trusted aides. The CIA got similar information from Mohammed’s successor, Abu Faraj al-Libi. Both were subjected to harsh interrogation tactics inside CIA prisons in Poland and Romania.

The news is sure to reignite debate over whether the now-closed interrogation and detention program was successful. Former president George W. Bush authorized the CIA to use the harshest interrogation tactics in U.S. history. President Barack Obama closed the prison system.

The UK Daily mail reports on how interrogation of Guantanamo Bay detainees led to the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

Excerpt:

Detainees at Guantanamo Bay provided the crucial breakthrough in hunting down Osama Bin Laden, American officials said last night.

Senior officials in the Obama administration said intelligence gained from interrogations at the U.S. base was directly responsible for helping security forces track down and kill Bin Laden.

The claim will fuel the international row about the Guantanamo camp – one of the most controversial legacies of the 9/11 attacks on the U.S. – and whether torture can ever be justified.

[...]Hundreds of suspects rounded up in Afghanistan and Pakistan were subjected to techniques such as water-boarding, sleep deprivation, white noise and stress positions at the U.S. Naval base in Cuba.

Human rights groups claim the techniques amounted to torture, and that many of the detainees had no link to terrorism.

But U.S. officials said interrogations had produced crucial information about a trusted courier who provided support to Bin Laden after he fled Afghanistan.

A senior source said detainees had provided the courier’s nickname and indicated he could be living with Bin Laden – although it took years to track down his true identity and location.

The official said: ‘Detainees flagged for us individuals who may have been providing direct support to Bin Laden and his deputy after their escape from Afghanistan. One courier in particular had our constant attention.’

Remember how the Democrats wanted to ban interrogations and close CIA prisons in 2009? (H/T Michelle Malkin)

Excerpt:

Officials say CIA interrogators in secret overseas prisons developed the first strands of information that ultimately led to the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Current and former U.S. officials say that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, provided the nom de guerre of one of bin Laden’s most trusted aides. The CIA got similar information Mohammed’s successor, Abu Faraj al-Libi. Both were subjected to harsh interrogation tactics inside CIA prisons in Poland and Romania.

And Obama campaigned on closing down Guantanamo Bay. He had nothing to do with the killing of Bin Laden. If anything, he was completely against the techniques and policies that worked to find and kill Bin Laden.

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