A U.S.-based human rights group published a report Tuesday calling on foreign governments to prosecute George W. Bush and some of his chief officials in light of a growing body of evidence of war crimes, failing the Obama administration’s willingness to do so.

Those officials include former Vice President Dick Cheney, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, former CIA Director George Tenet and former National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice. Human Rights Watch, which published the report, said members of the Bush administration are open to prosecution under the 1996 War Crimes Act and for criminal conspiracy under federal law. “Under international law, any country has jurisdiction over torture and war crimes,” said the document’s author. –ARK

The Guardian:

A US human rights group has called on foreign governments to prosecute George W Bush and some of his senior officials for war crimes if the Obama administration fails to investigate a growing body of evidence against the former president over the use of torture.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch said in a report released on Tuesday that the US authorities were legally obliged to investigate the top echelons of the Bush administration over crimes such as torture, abduction and other mistreatment of prisoners. It says that the former administration’s legal team was part of the conspiracy in preparing opinions authorising abuses that they knew to have no standing in US or international law.

… The report described Cheney as “the driving force behind the establishment of illegal detention policies and the formulation of legal justifications for those policies” including torture. Rumsfeld is said to have “approved illegal interrogation methods that facilitated the use of torture by US military personnel in Afghanistan and Iraq”, and Tenet “oversaw the CIA’s use of waterboarding”, and that the agency also “disappeared” detainees by holding them in incommunicado detention in secret locations.

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