"Cheney can insta-declassify an NIE. And, I think for pragmatic reasons, Fitz is not challenging that, so that will not be an issue, at all, in a trial. But the pragmatic reason is the key.
Because Libby only introduced the NIE as his excuse for having a note to leak something to Judy Miller on July 8. It's almost certainly not what that note refers to. So whether or not Dick can insta-declassify is moot. The question is, does Libby's claim that Dick did tell him to leak the NIE stand up to scrutiny? If Fitz can prove that it doesn't, he has gotten 70% of the way to proving that Dick ordered Libby to leak Plame's identity. And while Dick might be able to insta-declassify things, he'd be hard-pressed to argue he can insta-declassify someone's identity without telling her."
"But the crux of the Court's decision was that -- regardless of federal law -- the Geneva Conventions themselves prohibit the type of military commissions which the administration created. Although it is likely that the Court is without jurisdiction to enforce the mandates of the Conventions themselves (Hamdan was grounded in enforcement of federal law mandating compliance with the Conventions, not the mandates of the Conventions themselves), it is still the case that the Court held that the military commissions are violations of the Conventions (and, therefore, executing a prisoner based on the findings of such a commission would be a war crime, the Court strongly suggested).* jeralyn:
Thus, the only way for Congress to empower the President to proceed with these military commissions would be to abrogate the Geneva Conventions. That is something which the President and Congress are unquestionably empowered to do -- treaties are like any other law and can be reversed or negated at any time through the democratic process (i.e., through an act of Congress) -- but is that really something that we are prepared to do?"
"For ten years, well before 9/11, the CIA has had a secret unit, Alec Station, dedicated to finding Osama bin Laden. Yesterday, it confirmed the unit was closed last year.
The CIA's rationale: Bin Laden isn't so dangerous anymore because terror groups no long work in a "hierarchal" fashion. They are more spread out, which according to the CIA, warrants a focus on "regional trends rather than on specific organizations or individuals.""