06/10/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Obama's Master Plan

Although nothing about our nation's legal obligation to prosecute (or extradite) torturers was mentioned, the April 29 exchange between President Obama and reporter Jake Tapper suggests a criminal investigation is inevitable. Obama flatly stated that waterboarding is torture and referred to the Bush administration's sanctioning of the interrogation technique as "a mistake."

On his blog, Marc Cooper shares the thoughts of two friends who believe Obama "is playing this like a virtuoso, that he remains two steps ahead of the rest of us, and that he is masterfully engineering this to wind up in the hands of a klieg-lit congressional drama..."

Cooper links to Jonathan Taplin's theory that the reason Dick Cheney has been aggressively defending the Bush administration's use of torture, is the former VP realizes his day of reckoning is on the horizon.

All of this means it would probably be helpful if Obama loyalists were to overcome their misguided reluctance to pressure him in any way. Indeed, it could be plausibly argued that the president wants the public to demand that the Bush gang be held accountable, so the current administration and Democrats in general are not perceived as acting overzealously for partisan reasons.

Jeff Norman blogs at