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‘Holy Hell’ Over Torture Memos-AG Holder wants them released, intel officials don't

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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 04:54 PM
Original message
‘Holy Hell’ Over Torture Memos-AG Holder wants them released, intel officials don't
Edited on Fri Apr-03-09 04:58 PM by babylonsister
‘Holy Hell’ Over Torture Memos

Attorney General Eric Holder wants to release classified Bush-era interrogation memos. But U.S. intel officials are fiercely lobbying the White House to block him from moving forward.

By Michael Isikoff | Newsweek Web Exclusive
Apr 3, 2009


A fierce internal battle within the White House over the disclosure of internal Justice Department interrogation memos is shaping up as a major test of the Obama administration's commitment to opening up government files about Bush-era counterterrorism policy.

As reported by NEWSWEEK, the White House last month had accepted a recommendation from Attorney General Eric Holder to declassify and publicly release three 2005 memos that graphically describe harsh interrogation techniques approved for the CIA to use against Al Qaeda suspects. But after the story, U.S. intelligence officials, led by senior national-security aide John Brennan, mounted an intense campaign to get the decision reversed, according to a senior administration official familiar with the debate. "Holy hell has broken loose over this," said the official, who asked not to be identified because of political sensitivities.

Brennan is a former senior CIA official who was once considered by Obama for agency director but withdrew his name late last year after public criticism that he was too close to past officials involved in Bush administration decisions. Brennan, who now oversees intelligence issues at the National Security Council, argued that release of the memos could embarrass foreign intelligence services who cooperated with the CIA, either by participating in overseas "extraordinary renditions" of high-level detainees or housing them in overseas "black site" prisons.

Brennan succeeded in persuading CIA Director Leon Panetta to become "engaged" in his efforts to block release, according to the senior official. Their joint arguments stalled plans to declassify the memos even though White House counsel Gregory Craig had already signed off on Holder's recommendation that they should be disclosed, according to an official and another government source familiar with the debate. No final decision has been made, and it is likely Obama will have to resolve the matter, according to the sources who spoke to NEWSWEEK.

The continued internal debate explains the Justice Department's decision late Thursday to ask a federal judge for another two-week delay (until April 16) to file a final response in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union seeking the release of the memos. The ACLU agreed to the two-week delay only after Justice officials represented that "high-level Government officials will consider for possible release" the three 2005 memos as well as another Aug. 1, 2002, memo on torture, that has long been sought by congressional committees and members of Congress, according to a motion filed by Justice lawyers with U.S. Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein in New York, who is overseeing the case.

more...

http://www.newsweek.com/id/192314
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pleah Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:00 PM
Response to Original message
1. K&R
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
2. Bookmarking...
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liberalsince1968 Donating Member (245 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:06 PM
Response to Original message
3. The fact that Obama kept Brennan on means that this whole thing is just a farce.
Those memos will NEVER see the light of day. Holder is just play-acting at being "good cop."

Obama will obey the torture-monger.
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:38 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. What are you talking about? A torture report has already seen
the light of day. You should really do some research before you display your ignorance.


http://delong.typepad.com/the_torture_memo/2009/02/mich...
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chill_wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 04:37 PM
Response to Reply #6
15. Define light of day. It isn't even finished yet.
Much less released to the American pubic and the media, including pertinent Congress members, who are asking about the process. And we don't know if it ever will be.

Durbin and Whitehouse have written their questions and they have quite a few. Including when and IF they will actually get to see it.

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2009/03/31/durbin-and... /

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...



"OPR will then provide a final report to the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General. After any additional review they deem appropriate, the Department will determine what disclosures should be made. Due to the complexity and classification level of the draft report, the review process described above likely will require substantial time and effort."

Burton, however, said she could not make any promises that the report would be publicly released, nor could she predict if and when Durbin and Whitehouse would get an opportunity to review the report.



We know about it's existence and the fact of a first draft now being reviewed and revised-- and some of the funny-business Durbin and Whitehouse think may be going on. That's it.

I think Eric Holder is to be lauded for all he's released so far, but the evildoers are increasingly getting up in serious arms. I hope he wins, but he is up against some very opposing forces. I HOPE HE PREVAILS. It will be a huge turning point for restoring good for bad.

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tavalon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 11:07 PM
Response to Reply #3
10. A surprising amount has already seen the light of day
If you want to play the naysay game, I would encourage you to go the direction of wondering why an independent counsel hasn't already been appointed based on the previous memos released. All that we've gotten from that so far is Spain stepping up to do our job.

But if you prefer to just bitch, moan and complain about every last little thing, pile on this one but you've only got two weeks, so hurry. You're gonna have egg on your face come the end of that two weeks.
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chill_wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 04:40 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. A surprising lot! Agree. And that much has been very encouraging.
eom
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Bandit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:21 PM
Response to Original message
4. I guess we will see whether Obama was serious about transparent government or not.
I suspect we will never see any of these nor will anyone ever be held accountable. I hope I am wrong but it doesn't appear to be the case.
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librechik Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:26 PM
Response to Original message
5. News release, April 15, 2009: "Oops--we accidentally destroyed the memos."
predicted here for the first time.

They must release them. therefore they must be destroyed.
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 05:43 PM
Response to Original message
7. Methinks Brennan & cohorts don't "look good" in some of those
memoes. All the more reason to get the info out there
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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 06:40 PM
Response to Original message
8. Interesting. n/t
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Ghost in the Machine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-03-09 07:52 PM
Response to Original message
9. Off to the greatest, and back to the top you go.....
:kick:

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chill_wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 09:14 AM
Response to Original message
11. Dupe-- more here:
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ProgressIn2008 Donating Member (848 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
12. The political will to follow this will tell the tale. Complicity with crimes is shared guilt. nt
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WillyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
13. Big K & R !!!
:kick:
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RUMMYisFROSTED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-04-09 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
14. Embarrassment?
Whoop-dee-fucking-doo!

Criminality? Aha!
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