Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson: If someone will ‘Pinochet’ Cheney, I'll testify

Former Bush official promises to testify if someone will ‘Pinochet’ Cheney

Posted on 08.30.11
By David Edwards

The former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell pledged Tuesday to testify against former Vice President Dick Cheney if he is ever tried for war crimes.

Col. Lawrence Wilkerson told Democracy Now‘s Amy Goodman that he would participate in a trial even if it meant personal repercussions.

“I, unfortunately — and I’ve admitted to this a number of times, publicly and privately — was the person who put together Colin Powell’s presentation at the United Nations Security Council on 5 February, 2003,” Wilkerson said. “It was probably the biggest mistake of my life. I regret it to this day. I regret not having resigned over it.”

In an interview that aired on NBC Monday, Cheney told Jamie Gangel that unlike President George W. Bush, he did not have a “sickening feeling” when they discovered there were no weapons of mass destruction after the invasion of Iraq.

“I think we did the right thing,” Cheney said.

Joining Wilkerson and Goodman to discuss Cheney’s new book “In My Time,” Salon’s Glenn Greenwald said that it was disturbing to see the former vice president treated simply as an “elder statesman.”

“The evidence is overwhelming… that Dick Cheney is not just a political figure with controversial views, but is an actual criminal, that he was centrally involved in a whole variety not just of war crimes in Iraq, but of domestic crimes, as well, including the authorization of warrantless eavesdropping on American citizens in violation of FISA, which says that you go to jail for five years for each offense, as well as the authorization and implementation of a worldwide torture regime that, according to General Barry McCaffrey, resulted in the murder — his word — of dozens of detainees, far beyond just the three or four cases of waterboarding that media figures typically ask Cheney about,” Greenwald explained.

“And as a result, Dick Cheney goes around the country profiting off of this, you know, sleazy, sensationalistic, self-serving book, basically profiting from his crimes, and at the same time normalizing the idea that these kind of policies, though maybe in the view of some wrongheaded, are perfectly legitimate political choices to make. And I think that’s the really damaging legacy from all of this.”

“Colonel Wilkerson, do you think the Bush administration officials should be held accountable in the way that Glenn Greenwald is talking about?” Goodman asked.

“I certainly do,” Wilkerson replied. “And I’d be willing to testify, and I’d be willing to take any punishment I’m due. And I have to say, I agree with almost everything [Greenwald] just said. And I think that explains the aggressiveness, to a large extent, of the Cheney attack and of the words like ‘exploding heads all over Washington.’ This is a book written out of fear, fear that one day someone will ‘Pinochet’ Dick Cheney.”

Wilkerson was referring to former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, who was arrested in London in 1998 after being indicted for crimes against humanity. It was the first time the principle of universal jurisdiction had been applied to a former foreign head of state.

Watch this video from Democracy Now, broadcast Aug. 30, 2011.

the interview



For those who don't knowI was

For those who don't know I was born in Santiago, Chile in 1981, under Pinochet.

My father lived through the coup on 9/11/73 and for years had assumed it was 'for the best' because he was not so politically active.

I am so satisfied to say that my father now knows Kissingers involvment in the Chilean coup, and puts blame where blame belongs.

Thousands of families are still emotionally affected by the disappeared that the Pinochet government had killed and dumped in the sea (so thats where Obama took his lessons of sea-dumping).

That's interesting

I would ask more, specifically about American involvement, but I'd be off-topic, unfortunately. Maybe there's another thread we could do this at some time, that is, if you feel like sharing more of your knowledge through your parents and what you've discovered yourself.

Thank you Larry

You've shown remorse and have called out those who did it with you. Please also tell more about your involvement in helping Condoleezza Rice prepare her lies for the 9/11 Commission. We need to know.

Col. Wilkerson: 'Gestapo,' 'Nazi's' in Cheney's Office

From 9:08 onward:

Alyona Minkovski
We're running out of time, so I just want to ask you one quick thing too, so we're here talking about today, Dick Cheney's book coming out today, but let's talk about the books that are being banned right now. This is something that we covered on the show.

Former FBI agent, Ali H. Soufan.

Larry Wilkerson

Alyona Minkovski
This is a man who, right, trying to document the connections, the evidence that the CIA had, about 9/11, perhaps some of the ways that they could have stopped it, but that is being banned. So, how does that affect the way that... that we write history, only what the government wants put out there?

Larry Wilkerson
And look at the way Glenn Carl's book, "The Interrogator" was heavily redacted, although Glenn through, some very sophisticated footnoting, took care of some of that. Yes, it's a problem, we... we, we can't ever... We as Americans, basic fundamental American citizens, can't get at the heart of these crimes, we can't get at the heart of this misdemeanors, because they're hidden by government. And as you just pointed out, the government that comes in after the government it replaces continues the hiding because it does not want these things to be aired in a public venue, it simply doesn't. It feels like that that would somehow impact their ability to govern which I think is poppycock.

Alyona Minkovski
And instead, this is the version that we do get put out there is only Dick Cheney's version. Lawrence, I want to thank you so much for joining us tonight.

Larry Wilkerson
Let's hope too many people don't read it.

Alyona Minkovski
Thank you.

Larry Wilkerson
Thank you.