24: Live Another Cheney

Fox's classic spy show, 24 is back. But nobody is mentioning where Jack Bauer was five years ago, when Dick Cheney was going on Fox News to defend enhanced interrogation.
05/07/2014 02:37 pm ET Updated Jul 05, 2014

Fox's classic spy show, 24 is back. But nobody is mentioning where Jack Bauer was five years ago, when Dick Cheney was going on Fox News to defend enhanced interrogation. And let's face it, Cheney made Bauer look like an amateur in that department. Luckily, I have the transcript of their previously undisclosed meeting...

JACK BAUER (V.O.)
The following takes place between midnight and one A.M.

DIGITAL CLOCK 12:00:01...12:00:02...12:00:03...(BEEP-BOOM! BEEP-BOOM!)

INT. UNDISCLOSED BUNKER - CHENEY ESTATE - NIGHT

DICK CHENEY is working on his book at a computer. Suddenly there is the sound of FIST BLOWS and a BODY THUDS o.s.

CHENEY
What's going on out there?

JACK BAUER enters, gun raised.

JACK
Mr. Vice President, I'm federal agent Jack Bauer.

Jack scans the room, then holsters his weapon.

CHENEY
Jack Bauer? I thought you were a TV character.

JACK
Back in 2001, I was. But over those eight years, you made me very real. Guards at Abu Ghraib actually took their cues from me when torturing prisoners.

CHENEY
Those were a few bad apples at Abu Ghraib. They're in prison now.

JACK
All due respect, sir, that's crap. Those troops weren't bad apples. They were following direct orders from you and President Bush. You let them take the fall for you.

CHENEY
Okay. This discussion is over.

Cheney pushes a button. No one comes.

CHENEY
Where's my Secret Service protection?

JACK
I had to break their necks. I'm sorry, sir, but time is running short and I don't have time to go through channels.

CHENEY
Are you insane?

JACK
No, sir. I'm on a mission from the President.

CHENEY
Heh. The "dark horse" who actually got into office. The real-life Dennis Haysbert. I guess we have your show to thank for that, too.

JACK
Mr. Vice President...

CHENEY
I'm not surprised Obama turned to you. He comes on all liberal but when push comes to shove, he knows you have to get tough. What's the threat? Stolen nuke? Vials of plague? Cyberattack?

JACK
Worse than any of those. A secret cadre of criminals has been working to destroy the Constitution.

Cheney stares at Jack, then breaks into a dry chuckle.

CHENEY
Is that all this is about? A 200-year-old piece of parchment? I thought it was something serious.

JACK
The Bill of Rights is serious. The Eighth Amendment prohibits cruel or unusual punishment. Like waterboarding.

CHENEY
We waterboarded Khalid Sheikh Mohammed 183 times. If it ever was unusual, it's sure as hell routine after that.

JACK
It's torture and you know it. We hung Japanese as war criminals for doing it to our troops.

CHENEY
That was them, this is us. That intel saved lives.

JACK
That's crap. And you're not counting the 4800 lives we lost in Iraq. Torture didn't find any WMDs or a link to 9/11.

CHENEY
So? I swore an oath to protect the American people any way I can.

JACK
No, sir. You actually swore an oath to uphold that piece of parchment which you wiped your ass with. You disgraced America. Now the President has prohibited torture, and he wants you to confess.

CHENEY
I don't have to confess to crap.

Cheney picks up his phone and presses a button.

LYNNE CHENEY (V.O., RECORDING)
You've reached the Cheney Bunker. Please leave your name and number.

CHENEY
Lynne, this is Dick. Pick up.

JACK
She can't do that, sir. I had to break her neck too.
(off Cheney's gasp)
Don't worry, I didn't kill her. But from now on, she'll always look at you sideways.

Cheney dials 911. Jack speed-dials his cell.

JACK
Chloe, Jack. I need you to reroute the 911 call Cheney just dialed. Put it through to that midnight comedy team in New York.

CHLOE (V.O., PHONE)
To make it work I'll need to splice in funny sound effects. A bunch of farts, maybe Sam Kinison screaming.

JACK
Anything. I just need to tie up his phone for a few hours.

CHLOE (V.O., PHONE)
I'm on it, Jack.

Jack hangs up. So does Cheney.

CHENEY
Very clever, agent Bauer. But I have nothing to confess to.

JACK
You're making a big mistake.

CHENEY
What we did was not torture. It was enhanced interrogation.

JACK
(vexed)
DAMN it! I don't have time for this!

Jack sweeps the stuff off Cheney's desk, and points his gun at Cheney's head.

JACK
LIE DOWN ON THE DESK! ON YOUR BACK! DO IT NOW!

Cheney obeys, lying on the desk. Jack rips the cord off a lamp and binds Cheney's arms and legs with it.

CHENEY
You can't get away with this!

Jack gets in Cheney's face.

JACK
(low, intense voice)
That's what I said when you outed my pal Valerie Plame. She was the CIA expert on Iranian nukes. When you got through with her, she was a writer.

Jack whips Cheney's handkerchief out of his pocket, puts it over Cheney's face. He opens up a big Evian bottle.

JACK
One last chance...is waterboarding torture?

CHENEY
No. No one was permanently hur--

Jack starts pouring the water over Cheney's face.

JACK
The cloth seals off your mouth and nose. In seconds, you can't breathe. It's just like drowning.

Jack pours for another ten seconds as he checks his watch and Cheney spasms and thrashes.

JACK
Seventeen...eighteen...nineteen... twenty.

Jack stops pouring and takes off the cloth. Cheney is gasping for breath.

JACK
Do you admit to ordering torture?

CHENEY
You... you goddamned maniac!

Jack puts the wet cloth back on Cheney's face.

JACK
Twenty seconds is nothing. Khalid Mohammed usually went forty. Ready?

Cut to: DIGITAL CLOCK: 12:04:11...12:04:12...12:04:13...

GO TO COMMERCIAL

Cut to: DIGITAL CLOCK: 12:05:11...12:05:12...12:05:13...

INT. UNDISCLOSED BUNKER

Jack is still pouring water on Cheney who is flopping like a beached whale.

CHENEY
(muffled by cloth)
All right, wait, stop!

Jack stops pouring, and whips off the wet cloth.

JACK
So, is waterboarding torture?

CHENEY
You could, uh, possibly make the case that -

Jack puts the cloth back on and prepares to pour more.

CHENEY
All right, goddamn it, it's torture!

Jack lifts up the cloth.

JACK
So you ordered torture? You admit you violated the Constitution?

CHENEY
Yes. Fine. Whatever you say.
(then, evilly)
But you just made my point. You never would have gotten that out of me without torture.

JACK
Listen, you sanctimonious sack of crap. We already had proof of what you did - your own damn memos. And second, this proved nothing. You'd have said anything to get another breath. That's why no civilized country allows torture. That's why only sadistic Nazis do it.

CHENEY
Says you. Now let me go.

JACK
Not yet, Mr. Vice President. I still need to find out if you knew the 9/11 attacks were coming.

CHENEY
Of course I didn't! Look, fine, I'm a torturer, but I'd never stand by and let my country be attacked.

JACK
You say that now. I bet your story changes if I do this another 182 times.

CHENEY
Hey, wait. No! You can't do that, this is America!

Jack puts the cloth back on and prepares to pour more water.

JACK
Settle back, Mr. Vice President. This is going to be a long day. In fact, the longest day of your life.

CUT TO DIGITAL CLOCK: 12:06:21...12:06:22...(BEEP-BOOM! BEEP-BOOM!)
____

Read Doug's comic novel, Memoirs of a Time Traveler,