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Olbermann: Does Bush want to remake US into 'invisible fascist state'?
Mike Aivaz and Muriel Kane
Published: Tuesday November 6, 2007
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MSNBC's Keith Olbermann delivered a blistering special comment on Monday concerning the true significance of the dispute over waterboarding and the essential role played by torture in maintaining the George W. Bush presidency.

"The presidency of George W. Bush has now devolved into a criminal conspiracy to cover the ass of George W. Bush," Olbermann began. "All of it is now, after one revelation last week, transparently clear for what it is ... the refocusing of our entire nation towards keeping this mock president ... and all the others from potential prosecution for having approved or ordered the illegal torture of prisoners being held in the name of our country."

The revelation to which Olbermann referred was the account of former acting assistant attorney general Daniel Levin, who, when assigned to assess the legality of the administration's "enhanced interrogation techniques," decided the most direct method was to have himself waterboarded.

"Have you, Mr. Bush, ever done anything that personally courageous?" Olbermann asked. "Perhaps when you've gone to Walter Reed and teared up over the maimed servicemen and then gone back to the White House and confirmed and determined that there would be more maimed servicemen?"

"Daniel Levin should have a statue in his honor in Washington, right now," Olbermann stated. "Instead, he was forced out as acting assistant attorney general nearly three years ago because he had the guts to do what George Bush could not do in a million years. ... They waterboard him, and he wrote that even though he knew those doing it meant him no harm ... he could not stop the terror screaming from inside him, could not quell the horror."

"Waterboarding, he said, is torture," Olbermann continued. "And he wrote it down ... somewhere where it could be contrasted with the words of this country's 43rd president, 'The United States of America does not torture.'"

According to Olbermann, Levin was forced to modify his report to suggest that waterboarding might not be torture if it was done carefully and then was fired because of his inability to lie to protect the president. "If it ever got out," Olbermann noted, once more addressing Bush directly, "you would have been screwed. And screwed you are."

Olbermann then went on to ask why waterboarding was even used on terrorists when it's well documented that "torture does not get them to tell the truth."

"Of course, Mr. Bush," Olbermann stated, "this isn't a problem, is it, if you don't care if the terrorist plots they tell you about are the truth. ... If, say, a president simply needed a constant supply of terrorist threats to keep the country scared ... if, say, he realized that even terrorized people still need good ghost stories before they will let a president pillage the Constitution -- well, heck, Mr. Bush, who better to dream them up for you than an actual terrorist. He'll tell you everything he ever fantasized of doing."

"Now, if that's what this is all about -- you tortured not because you're stupid ... but you tortured because you're smart enough to know it produces really authentic-sounding fiction -- well then, you're going to need all the lawyers you can find, because that crime wouldn't just mean impeachment, would it, sir? That crime would mean George W. Bush is going to prison."

That, Olbermann asserted, is the real explanation for the peculiar inability on the part of Gonzales, Cheney, and Mukasey to agree on a definition of torture -- along with "the giddying prospect that maybe you could ... remake a nation into a fascist state so efficient and so self-sustaining that the fascism itself would be nearly invisible.

"But ultimately," Olbermann concluded, speaking of men like Levin, "these patriots will defeat you, and they will return this country to its righteous standards and to its rightful owners -- the people."

The following video is from MSNBC's COUNTDOWN with Keith Olbermann, broadcast on November 05, 2007