Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Would Prosecuting Yoo Contradict DOJ's Stance in Torture Lawsuit?

A few days ago, President Obama indicated that his administration would not pursue criminal charges against Bush-era officials responsible for torturing terrorism suspects. Now, he could be changing his mind:
Obama said it would be up to his attorney general to determine whether "those who formulated those legal decisions" behind the interrogation methods should be prosecuted. The methods, described in Bush-era memos Obama released last Thursday, included such grim and demeaning tactics as slamming detainees against walls and subjecting them to simulated drowning.
He said anew that CIA operatives who did the interrogating should not be charged with crimes because they thought they were following the law.
I smell some major nuance: The "torturers" are immune, but the lawyers and commanders could face prosecution. I am not sure that anything will come from this. The administration is already defending John Yoo, author of the so-called "torture" against a torture lawsuit. Prosecuting him for similar conduct would seem contradictory. Perhaps he is holding out the possibility of prosecutions because someone said it is inappropriate for a president to tell the A.G. whom to prosecute.

PS: I have not been able to locate DOJ's motion to dismiss the lawsuit against Yoo online. If you have it, could your provide a link? Thanks.

Also, I have been missing in action for the last few days, because I need to complete some professional writing. Thanks for reading!

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