Richard Clarke, former counterterrorism czar under the George W. Bush administration, gave an interview to Democracy Now! and said Bush is guilty of war crimes for the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
Clarke was national coordinator for security and counterterrorism during President Bush’s first year in office. He resigned in 2003 shortly after the Iraq invasion.
Host Amy Goodman asked Clarke “Do you think President Bush should be brought up on war crimes, and Vice President Cheney and (Defense Secretary) Donald Rumsfeld for the attack on Iraq?”
Clarke: “I think things that they authorized probably fall within the area of war crimes. Whether that would be productive or not, I think, is a discussion we could all have. But we have established procedures now with the International Criminal Court in The Hague, where people who take actions as serving presidents or prime ministers of countries have been indicted and have been tried.”
“So the precedent is there to do that sort of thing. And I think we need to ask ourselves whether or not it would be useful to do that in the case of members of the Bush administration. It’s clear that things that the Bush administrations did – in my mind, at least, it’s clear that some of the things they did were war crimes,” Clarke said.
Clarke began working for the Department of Defense in 1973. He served in the State Department under President Reagan, as chief counterterrorism adviser to the National Security Council under George H.W. Bush, and held the same position under President Clinton.
Clarke appeared before the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks in March 2004. In his opening statement he told relatives of the victims of 9/11 “Your government failed you, those entrusted with protecting you failed you, and I failed you,” reported NBC News.
“We tried hard, but that doesn’t matter, because we failed,” he added.
Clarke is not the only person connected with the Bush administration who have accused it of war crimes.
Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, chief of staff of former Secretary of State Colin Powell accused Cheney of war crimes in 2011, citing the former Vice President’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques.
“Waterboarding is a war crime, unwanted surveillance… all of which are crimes,” he said. “I don’t care whether the president authorized him to do it or not, they are crimes.”
Clarke is currently the Chairman of Good Harbor Consulting, a strategic planning and corporate risk management firm.
[Image via npr.org]