Richard Armitage deflects blame

Richard Armitage, the former deputy secretary of state, told Al Jazeera English television that waterboarding is torture. Armitage a former Number two in the State Department in the Bush administration says he would have resigned if he had known the CIA was subjecting terrorism suspects to waterboarding. He does not believe CIA officials who engaged in waterboarding and other forms of harsh interrogation should be prosecuted. Armitage after President George W. Bush was re-elected in November 2004. He left the day after the resignation of Colin Powell, Bush’s secretary of state. Armitage claimed that no one in the State Department knew prisoners were being abused until the Abu Ghraib photos. He thought Congress shares blame because lawmakers failed to conduct rigorous oversight of the detention, interrogation and rendition programs. It is still not clear why Armitage gave the interview or why he chooses this venue to speak out. We have seen many of the Bush administration staff leave and try to separate themselves from decisions they were responsible for while on the inside. There is an angle here for Richard Armitage and it will take sometime before it becomes known or if he is still feeling the sting of releasing Valerie Plame name to Robert Novak.

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