Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Obama Does A "Complete 180" On Releasing Detainee Abuse Photos To ACLU

Obama has, as ABC White House Correspondent Jack Tapper puts it, done a "complete 180" on the issue of whether to release 44 more detainee abuse photos pursuant to a FOIA lawsuit brought by the ACLU. The photos date to the Abu Ghraib time frame and come from DOD investigative files. The primary effect of their release is quite predictable - to provide the radical Muslim element with a propaganda windfall and to put our soldiers in greater danger. That is weighted against the ACLU claim that it would show how evil BushHitler was, or something like that.

Obama, three weeks ago, had stopped court proceedings on this issue, indicating that the U.S. would release the photos without any further defense. Sec. of Def. Gates, in the link above, indicated that he passed on the warning to Obama from Gen. Odierno - that such release of photos would "cost American lives." I can't imagine that alone would be a tipping point for Obama, given his prior positions on things such as genocide in Iraq. But Obama is under fire for his blatantly political decision to release the carefully redacted torture memos and the ramifications of that decision are clearly getting away from him. I would imagination that the tipping point lies in the latter rather than the former.

Update: It has been pointed out that Obama is supposed to give a major speech in Egypt very shortly after the May 28 release date set for the photos. Could that also have influenced his decision?

1 comment:

MK said...

So hussein grows a brain eh. I hear the aclu is suing over his about face, yeah well, he languished when his lickspittles were sticking it to bush, he can deal with them now.