Investigative reporter Seymour Hersh’s bombshell earlier this week that Vice President Dick Cheney controlled an “executive assassination ring” continues to reverberate throughout Washington, with Nixon aide John Dean going so far as to accuse the former VP of murder if the charges are true.
MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann visited the issue on his show Countdown Thursday night where he discussed the legal implications of Hersh's allegations with Dean, who was White House legal counsel under President Richard Nixon.
“It’s potentially a war crime,” Dean said of the reported assassination ring. “It’s potentially just outright murder and it’s clearly in violation of the Ford Executive Order.”
Hersh told the students at the University of Minnesota on Tuesday that the assassination squad was “a special wing of our special operations community that is set up independently. In the Bush-Cheney Days, they reported directly to the Cheney, Cheney office. They do not report to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff or to Mr. Gates, the secretary of defense. They report directly to him. Congress has no oversight of it. It’s an executive assassination ring, essentially.”
“If this is true you have to prosecute this. There is no way around this,” said Olbermann, noting the 1976 executive order of President Gerald Ford which explicitly outlawed the engagement of political employees in political assassination. Cheney was Ford’s chief of staff at the time the order was issued.
“By the time Cheney was back in the West Wing it appears that Cheney had forgotten his own boss’s executive order, or worse, he had decided to ignore it,” Olbermann said.
This video is from MSNBC's Countdown, broadcast Mar. 12, 2009.
SOURCE: Raw Story
Filed by David Edwards and Rachel Oswald
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