Sunday, September 24, 2006

Wallace (the Younger) puts Clinton on the run

Not having a hooked-up TV, I didn't see it, but I'm checking out online videos of "the" Fox News Sunday interview with Bill Clinton that "everyone" is talking about now. (For a transcript, see here.) You can find reax at any politically-minded blog, but Marshall at On Tap is a particularly good one.

UPDATE: Jeff Harrell notes a strange comment (one that bothered me too) from Clinton:

When Wallace asked President Clinton what he did during his two terms about Osama bin Laden, Clinton replied, “What did I do? I worked hard to try and kill him. I authorized a finding for the CIA to kill him. We contracted with people to kill him.”

If true, this is a very troubling statement. Because you see, during President Clinton’s term in office, ordering the CIA to kill Osama bin Laden would have been an overt violation of U.S. law.

On December 4, 1981, President Ronald Reagan signed Executive Order 12333, a lengthy document that elaborated on the authority and responsibility of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Paragraph 2.11 of EO 12333 was absolutely clear: “No person employed by or acting on behalf of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, assassination.”

. . . EO 12333 wasn’t amended until September 2001, when President Bush authorized the use of covert lethal operations against al-Qaida.

So if I’m reading the law right — and as I’ve said time and again, I’m just an interested layman, not a legal scholar — then it seems to me that President Clinton just admitted on national television to ordering the assassination of Osama bin Laden, thus breaking the law of the United States of America.

Unless he was lying, of course. Not that he has a history of doing that or anything.

Oh joy.

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