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Jimmy Carter Charges Obama 'Doesn't Want to Punish Those Who are Guilty' of Crimes

Jeremy Scahill

In strikingly strong language, Carter blasts Obama’s position blocking the release of torture photos and on holding Bush-era officials accountable for their “crimes.”

The Democratic Party power structure's least favorite ex-President
is speaking out of school again. Jimmy Carter has some strong words
about President Obama's decision to fight the release of thousands of
photos that reportedly show further US abuse and torture of prisoners
and has weighed in on the debate over prosecuting former Bush
administration officials for torture. In an interview to be broadcast tonight on CNN, Carter says this about Obama's position on the release of new torture photos:

[M]ost of [Obama's] supporters were hoping that he would be much
more open in the revelation of what we've done in the past. But he's
made a decision with which I really can't contend that he doesn't want
to resurrect the past, he doesn't want to punish those who are guilty
of perpetrating of what I consider crimes against our own laws and
against our own constitution. And the revelation of those pictures
might very well inflame further animosity against our country causing
some harm to our soldiers, so I don't agree with him, but I certainly
don't criticize him for making that decision.

Regarding calls for prosecution of former Bush administration officials, Carter says:

I think prosecuting is too strong a word, what I would like to
see is a complete examination of what did happen, the identification of
any perpetrators of crimes against our own laws or against
international law and then after all that's done, decide whether or not
there should be any prosecutions.
But the revelation of what did happen is what I think I would support.

At the Democratic National Convention in Denver last year, Carter was removed from a speaking position at the last minute in a move some considered to be a political snub.

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