Larry Wilkinson, former chief of staff to Colin Powell, and Larry O'Donnell really let Karl Rove have it on Countdown last night for cheerleading torture from the safe distance of his office:
Wilkerson, former chief of staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell, interviewed by Lawrence O'Donnell tonight (12 March 2010) on the matter of Karl Rove's book and its attempts to justify the use of torture techniques during the Bush administration.
WILKERSON: "Let me say this, I saw - I had the highest clearance, Top Secret SCI - I saw almost everything Secretary Powell saw. I saw no proof of any of the things that Karl Rove indicated, and, as a matter of fact, no proof that any of the interrogation techniques, other than those used by the FBI, early on, had a real impact on actionable intelligence.
And I've got something else to say about Mr. Rove: No political counselor should have - he doesn't have the need-to-know. He shouldn't have access to that kind of classified information. He has NO BUSINESS having access, so if the White House allowed him to, THAT is a no-no. And I will guess that he's getting his information from Dick Cheney, because he did not have access to that kind of information."
"He's trying to sell his book."
On Rove's contention that waterboarding was not torture because doctors were present, Wilkerson said: "Slick it up with some doctors, and slick it up with some other medical personnel present. That sounds like the Nazis... Nuremburg cites the responsibilities of physicians in that regard and it isn't positive what they say about them..."
O'Donnell started the segment pointing out that Cheney and Rove and Mark Thiessen, the big fans/cheerleaders of torture, never served in the military.
O'DONNELL: "As a military man, what does that feel like to watch the cheerleaders safely positioned on the sidelines, their whole lives, try to tell you what is the most effective process and technique in war?"
WILKERSON: "Well, it says to me, and I'll make no bones about it, that they're all cowards. I mean, it's plain and simple, they're all cowards."