Ethical Concerns Surround Crafting of U.S. Torture Policy
Investigation of the policy guidelines used to justify so called harsh interrogation tactics, such as 'waterboarding', are under scrutiny as to the origin of the flow for development of the policies implemented that supported the use of torture against prisoners taken during a time of war, usually called prisoners of war but termed 'enemy combatants', by the Bush administration.
From the article:
An internal Justice Department report on the conduct of senior lawyers who approved waterboarding and other harsh interrogation tactics is causing anxiety among former Bush administration officials. H. Marshall Jarrett, chief of the department's ethics watchdog unit, the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR), confirmed last year he was investigating whether the legal advice in crucial interrogation memos "was consistent with the professional standards that apply to Department of Justice attorneys." According to two knowledgeable sources who asked not to be identified discussing sensitive matters, a draft of the report was submitted in the final weeks of the Bush administration. It sharply criticized the legal work of two former top officials—Jay Bybee and John Yoo—as well as that of Steven Bradbury, who was chief of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) at the time the report was submitted, the sources said. (Bybee, Yoo and Bradbury did not respond to multiple requests for comment.)
But then–Attorney General Michael Mukasey and his deputy, Mark Filip, strongly objected to the draft, according to the sources. Filip wanted the report to include responses from all three principals, said one of the sources, a former top Bush administration lawyer. (Mukasey could not be reached; his former chief of staff did not respond to requests for comment. Filip also did not return a phone message.) OPR is now seeking to include the responses before a final version is presented to Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. "The matter is under review," said Justice spokesman Matthew Miller.
The heart of the issue is whether members of the Bush administration offered guidelines it wanted the Justice Department to consider as a means for allowing the Bush administration's use of torture, in effect, asking the Justice Department to aid in possibly providing a strategy for the Bush administration's crafting of the policy regarding torture.
Click here to read A Torture Report Could Spell Big Trouble for Bush Lawyers.
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