Sen. Patrick Leahy of Michigan wants to convene a “truth and reconciliation” commission to investigate abuses under the Bush administration. The article mentions this: “The panel he envisions would be modeled after one that investigated the apartheid regime in South Africa. It would have subpoena power but would not bring criminal charges, he said.”
Sen. Leahy claims that such his intent isn’t to humiliate or punish, but to find the truth. The claim is pure rubbish, and anyone with half a mind should know it. Such a panel, if it was convened, would be for the political benefit of the Democratic party to attack the Republican administration that came before it. It would represent the true essence of hyper-partisanship and political gamesmanship. If Bush administration officials committed crimes, then charge them criminally. To go on a fishing expedition in the hopes of finding damaging information on a previous administration, one that is, not coincidentally, of a different political party, and to ignore the actions of any previous administrations, namely the immediately preceding Clinton administration, is power-drunk and imbecilic. You just want to find out the error in our policies? Great, let’s look at the decisions of all our modern Presidents, Democrat and Republican. It won’t happen that way because the only thing that is desired is political posturing and theater for the voter’s amusement. The idea of such a panel in no way represents any desire to move forward, merely a desire to score political points and consolidate power. And I’m pretty sure it’s the opposite of “post-partisan.”
Incidentally, comparing the Bush years to apartheid South Africa goes way beyond disingenuous, it is idiotically hyperbolic and does an extreme disservice to the suffering of blacks for decades in the apartheid system. Don’t like some of Bush’s political choices? Fine, but you cannot with a straight face compare them to the brutal oppression that went on in South Africa. To do so would be beyond deranged, but I have no doubt that many would do so and pray for the death penalty for their political opponents, all the while turning a blind eye to those in power who they deem above reproachment.