by Michael Salla, Ph.D.
from TheExaminer Website
Former Vice-President Richard Cheney - March 15. Photo: AP
Speaking at a conference at the University of Minnesota on March 10, respected journalist Seymour Hersh said that the JSOC unit, comprising special military forces personnel, reported directly to Cheney and operated without any kind of Congressional oversight. According to Hersh, even the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Secretary of Defense were out of the loop on JSOC operations.
In comments that set Washington abuzz, Hersh concluded:
Hersh’s claims led to Congressman Dennis
Kucinich on March 13 asking the Chair of a key House Committee to launch
an investigation. Hersh's claims are also likely to boost efforts by Senator
Patrick Leahy to create a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate
wrongdoing during the Bush-Cheney administration.
Section 5(b) states:
Curiously, at the time Ford issued his EO, Dick
Cheney was his Chief of Staff. In 1981, President Reagan reiterated the
proscription against political assassination with Executive Order 12333. No
legislative act or executive order has since been issued to override
Reagan’s EO 12333 which remains in effect.
In a letter to the Committee Chairman, Edolphus Towns, Kucinich wrote:
If Vice President Cheney did authorize political
assassinations using a special operations unit that reported only to him,
then according to Kucinich in his letter, Cheney violated EO 12333.
It seeks the investigation of abuses that,
If the Senate Judiciary committee or the House
Judiciary Committee decide to launch a Truth Commission, the mandate in
Leahy’s petition would give it the power to investigate Cheney’s alleged
This time he may gain more support if a reply from Towns is any indication:
Despite Towns positive response, Kucinich does
not have the same status as Patrick Leahy in persuading democratic
colleagues to support his proposed investigation. Leahy heads the Senate
Judiciary Committee which makes it more likely that his Truth Commission
proposal will gather support as indicated in the March 3 Hearing he convened
where a number of Senate colleagues and witnesses spoke in favor.
Also, a Truth Commission can address other even more controversial claims of executive override of laws such as unanswered questions over events on 9/11, and the suppression of information concerning UFOs and extraterrestrial life.
Hersh's claims about a Cheney-led assassination unit, if accurate, may prove to be the tipping point in the effort to establish a Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and other Congressional inquiries into executive abuses by the Bush-Cheney administration.