US exonerates authors of Bush torture memos + Spanish judge to probe Guantanamo torture claims

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by Kate Randall
http://www.wsws.org
2 February 2010

Bush administration lawyers whose secret memos justified waterboarding and other forms of torture will not be referred to authorities for possible sanctions, according to a forthcoming ethics report.

Unnamed sources who spoke to Newsweek magazine said the Obama Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) has concluded that John Yoo and Jay Bybee, who penned the infamous memos, used “poor judgment” but will not be subject to disciplinary action. Yoo and Bybee worked in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, along with Steven Bradbury, who is also named in the report.

[…]

Obama has moreover upheld the Bush doctrine of pre-emptive war, with Yemen becoming the latest target of US threats, along with Iran.

The administration’s de facto support for John Yoo and his torture memo accomplices is of a piece with these policies, which are supported by both big business parties. Under conditions of expanding militarism abroad and deepening social inequality at home, there is no section of the political establishment committed to the defense of democratic rights.

Democratic rights can be defended only through the independent mobilization of the working class against the Obama administration, the Democrats and Republicans, and the capitalist system which is the source of war and repression.

via US exonerates authors of Bush torture memos
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Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

By Michael Isikoff and Daniel Klaidman
Newsweek.com
January 29, 2010

For weeks, the right has heckled Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. for his plans to try the alleged 9/11 conspirators in New York City and his handling of the Christmas bombing plot suspect. Now the left is going to be upset: an upcoming Justice Department report from its ethics-watchdog unit, the Office of Professional Responsibility OPR, clears the Bush administration lawyers who authored the “torture” memos of professional-misconduct allegations.

[…]

via Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe – Declassified Blog – Newsweek.com.

h/t: Roxanne Spirit Morph Studio

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Spanish judge to probe Guantanamo torture claims

AFP
Sunday, January 31

Spain’s top investigating judge Baltasar Garzon is to probe suspected torture and ill-treatment of inmates at the US prison of Guantanamo Bay, a judical source said Saturday.

[…]

via Spanish judge to probe Guantanamo torture claims-AFP

h/t: Roxanne Spirit Morph Studio

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Backtracking on Earlier Findings, Justice Dept. Said to Clear Bush Admin Attorneys of Authorizing Torture

Democracy Now!
Feb 2, 2010

A Spanish court has opened formal criminal investigations into the suspected torture of Guantanamo prisoneer Ahmed Abderrahman Hamed. The court described six Bush administration lawyers including John Yoo, Jay Bybee, and Alberto Gonzales as the “intellectual authors” of the torture to which Hamed and four other prisoners were subjected. The probe comes as the Justice Department will reportedly clear Yoo and Bybee of professional misconduct for crafting memos that justified waterboarding and other forms of torture. Senior Justice Department official David Margolis reportedly softened an earlier finding that Bybee and Yoo had violated their professional obligations when they wrote a crucial 2002 memo approving so-called enhanced interrogation techniques.

(starts at 28:36)

A Spanish court has opened formal criminal investigations into the suspected torture of a Spanish national held at Guantanamo, Ahmed Abderrahman Hamed. The court described six Bush administration lawyers including John Yoo, Jay Bybee, and Alberto Gonzales as the “intellectual authors” of the torture to which Hamed and 4 other prisoners were subjected.

Meanwhile, here in the United States, Newsweek has revealed that the Justice Department will soon issue a report clearing John Yoo and Jay Bybee of professional misconduct for crafting memos that justified waterboarding and other forms of torture. Senior Justice Department official David Margolis reportedly softened an earlier finding from the Office of Professional Responsibility. Previously, the report concluded that Jay Bybee and John Yoo had violated their professional obligations as lawyers when they wrote a crucial 2002 memo approving so-called enhanced interrogation techniques.

For more on this story I’m joined by Scott Horton here in New York. He’s an attorney specializing in international law and human rights and a contributing editor of Harper’s Magazine where he writes the blog No Comment.

Scott Horton, attorney specializing in international law and human rights and a contributing editor of Harper’s Magazine where he writes the blog No Comment.

via Backtracking on Earlier Findings, Justice Dept. Said to Clear Bush Admin Attorneys of Authorizing Torture.

see

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UN Secret Detention Report Asks, “Where Are The CIA Ghost Prisoners?” by Andy Worthington

Torture on Dandelion Salad

Rendition

Gitmo

John Yoo-4th Amendment-Torture

9 thoughts on “US exonerates authors of Bush torture memos + Spanish judge to probe Guantanamo torture claims

  1. Pingback: Justice Department clears Bush lawyers for ‘torture memos’ | Dandelion Salad

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  4. When government looses respect fro the law, the citizen will then loose respect for government.
    Americans should by no means take anything for granted. The government in Washington has lost all credibility with the citizenry. Therefore, no longer must the citizenry allow the government to dictate, control and continue to deceive, but must instead deny that government its power over them and disobey those unconstitutional laws which are meant to enslave them.
    The government no longer has the best interests of its citizens in mind. It has become a failed government and therefore America has become a failed state.

    • Good point, JohnZ.

      To quote Howard Zinn:

      “But remember, this power of the people on top depends on the obedience of the people below. When people stop obeying, they have no power.”

  5. Without prosecution of Yoo and the other authors of crime in the Bush aadministration, the law loses all meaning and becomes a mockery and nothing more than bogus words.

    By not prosecuting and pursuing the henous crimes of the Bush Regime, the Obama Administration is entirely destroying what little credibility it has left, and becomes a co-conspirator and enemy of “We The People” upon which all government is founded.

  6. Pingback: Anand Gopal: Shocking stories of US tortures in Afghanistan « Dandelion Salad

  7. I was watching Yoo on Tavis Smiley last night. To Tavis’ credit, he subjected Yoo to what today passes for hard softball lobs, but I had to wonder how many staunch advocates for peace, human rights and all around humanity and sanity he plans to have on this week to counter Yoo? Silly question, I know…

    http://www.tavistalks.com/front_page

    … as if Yoo hasn’t already had the ear of the body politic far far more than he deserves…

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