Anti-Torture Groups Request Special Prosecutor for Bush, Cheney War Crimes


Lawyers’ organizations, anti-war groups, peace groups and others today issued the following statement:

Statement on Prosecution of Former High Officials

We urge Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a non-partisan independent Special Counsel to immediately commence a prosecutorial investigation into the most serious alleged crimes of former President George W. Bush, former Vice President Richard B. Cheney, the attorneys formerly employed by the Department of Justice whose memos sought to justify torture, and other former top officials of the Bush Administration.

Our laws, and treaties that under Article VI of our Constitution are the supreme law of the land, require the prosecution of crimes that strong evidence suggests these individuals have committed. Both the former president and the former vice president have confessed to authorizing a torture procedure that is illegal under our law and treaty obligations. The former president has confessed to violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

We see no need for these prosecutions to be extraordinarily lengthy or costly, and no need to wait for the recommendations of a panel or “truth” commission when substantial evidence of the crimes is already in the public domain. We believe the most effective investigation can be conducted by a prosecutor, and we believe such an investigation should begin immediately.

Drafted by The Robert Jackson Steering Committee (Lawrence Velvel, Kristina Borjesson, Marjorie Cohn, Colleen Costello, Ben Davis, Valeria Gheorghiu, Chris Pyle, Elaine Scarry, David Swanson, Peter Weiss, Andy Worthington)
Contact: David Swanson

Signed By:

Center for Constitutional Rights
The National Lawyers Guild
After Downing Street
American Freedom Campaign
Ann Wright, retired US Army Reserve Colonel and US diplomat
Backbone Campaign
Brad Blog
Cities for Peace
CODE PINK: Women for Peace
Daniel Ellsberg, Truth-Telling Project
Defending Dissent Foundation
Delaware Valley Veterans for America
Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space
Gold Star Families for Peace
Grandmothers Against the War
Grassroots America
High Road for Human Rights Advocacy Project
Iraq Veterans Against the War
Justice Through Music
Marcus Raskin, co-founder of Institute for Policy Studies, member of editorial board of the Nation, member of the special staff of the National Security Council in the Kennedy Administration
Media Freedom Foundation/Project Censored
Naomi Wolf, author of End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot, and Give Me Liberty: A Handbook for American Revolutionaries
National Accountability Network
Northeast Impeachment Coalition
Op Ed News
Peace Action
Peace Team
The Progressive
Progressive Democrats of America
Republicans for Impeachment
United for Peace and Justice
Velvet Revolution
Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity
Veterans for Peace
Voters for Peace
War Crimes Times
Wisconsin Impeachment/Bring Our Troops Home Coalition
World Can’t Wait

UPDATE March 22: 168 groups and individuals have now signed up. Please visit the After Downing Street website for the latest, and visit this page for further information.

UPDATE June 25: 216 groups and individuals have now signed up.

Andy Worthington is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK). To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed.

9 Responses

  1. Frances Madeson says...

    A great day! I had been dismayed to learn that institutions I respected were urging for a Truth Commission. The truth can well emerge in the context of criminal prosecutions and justice will be better served. Though there is surely some overlap, the above list represents millions of Americans. Further, I’m confident that given an opportunity to do so, more organizations and celebrities will sign on as word spreads. I wonder if there is already a short list of prosecutors sufficiently fearless to the task?

  2. Lets NOT Pardon Bush or Chaney; They Tortured US for 8 Years, Remember | BadGalsRadio - RootsRock since 99' says...

    […] This is from Andy Worthington’s Blog […]

  3. Prosecuting the Bush Administration’s Torturers by Andy Worthington « Dandelion Salad says...

    […] proposed “Nonpartisan Commission Of Inquiry,” and those calling for President Obama to appoint an Independent Prosecutor kept firmly outside the corridors of […]

  4. Dick Cheney And The Death Of Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi by Andy Worthington « Dandelion Salad says...

    […] Holder — is still avoiding the most obvious response to this wealth of disturbing material, by appointing a Special Prosecutor to investigate the whole sordid saga, former Vice President Dick Cheney is still gobbling up […]

  5. Philip Dennany says...

    Any that would attempt to put asside or further delay proper disposition through due process of law should themselves be prosecuted as accomplice after the fact. The entire world is waiting for the United States Government to finally make proper and just dispositioin of these anti-humanitarian crimes.

  6. USA: Tortured Gitmo prisoner found dead-AlterNet « FACT – Freedom Against Censorship Thailand says...

    […] — is still avoiding the most obvious response to this wealth of disturbing material, by appointing a Special Prosecutor to investigate the whole sordid saga, former Vice President Dick Cheney is still gobbling up […]

  7. Obama’s Confusion Over Guantánamo Terror Trials by Andy Worthington « Dandelion Salad says...

    […] bridge-building speech in Egypt — but in reality the torture promise has been tarnished by an unwillingness to appoint an independent prosecutor to investigate the legality of the Bush administration’s policies, and doubts have arisen about […]

  8. Sean says...

    I’m so happy to have found this webpage! It’s wonderful to see so many organizations taking a stand! I pray Bush et al do not get away with this heinous act!!

  9. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Sean. Good to hear from you.

Leave a Reply

Back to the top

Back to home page

Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo and We Stand With Shaker. Also, photo-journalist (The State of London), and singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers).
Email Andy Worthington

CD: Love and War

The Four Fathers on Bandcamp

The Guantánamo Files book cover

The Guantánamo Files

The Battle of the Beanfield book cover

The Battle of the Beanfield

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion book cover

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion

Outside The Law DVD cover

Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo


Posts & Comments

World Wide Web Consortium



Powered by WordPress

Designed by Josh King-Farlow

Please support Andy Worthington, independent journalist:


In Touch

Follow me on Facebook

Become a fan on Facebook

Subscribe to me on YouTubeSubscribe to me on YouTube

The State of London

The State of London. 16 photos of London

Andy's Flickr photos



Tag Cloud

Abu Zubaydah Al-Qaeda Andy Worthington British prisoners Center for Constitutional Rights CIA torture prisons Close Guantanamo Donald Trump Four Fathers Guantanamo Housing crisis Hunger strikes London Military Commission NHS NHS privatisation Periodic Review Boards Photos President Obama Reprieve Shaker Aamer The Four Fathers Torture UK austerity UK protest US courts Video We Stand With Shaker WikiLeaks Yemenis in Guantanamo