Jay Bybee Admits CIA Had No Approval for Water Dousing, Diapering
On May 26, the House Judiciary Committee interviewed Jay Bybee about the circumstances that went into the Bybee Memos authorizing torture. Here’s the transcript of that interview.
I’m going to read them in depth, but for now I wanted to point out this detail.
Bybee confirmed that a number of techniques reportedly used on CIA detainees were not approved by OLC: These techniques include: Diapering a detainee or forcing a detainee to defecate on himself, forcing a detainee to wear blackout goggles, extended solitary confinement or isolation, hanging a detainee from ceiling hooks, daily beatings, spraying cold water on a detainee, and subjecting a detainee to high-volume music or noise. (Transcript of May 26, 2010, Interview of former Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee at 75-78, 80-81, 86-90, 98-99.)
Spencer first wrote about the prolonged diapering here. I’ve written extensively about how CIA tried to fudge approval for water dousing (here’s an example, here’s what I wrote on Wednesday).
That is, it has long been fairly clear CIA did some things to detainees they had no authorization for. And in the case of Gul Rahman, one of those techniques (water dousing) killed him. Yet, reports say John Durham is finishing up, with not a squeak about prosecuting this death that–Jay Bybee says–had no OLC authorization.
In other words, this interview has Jay Bybee admitting that the CIA had no authorization for the techniques that contributed to Gul Rahman’s death. John Durham?
Note the one name DOJ is still protecting is that of Jennifer Koester.
have to look forward not backward. (something might be gaining on them, but they’ll never admit it until it’s actually eating them.)
One excuse they’re using for Yoo’s missing emails is that the manual instructing attorneys to keep all records is nominally for just Attorney Advisors, so the junior folks.
DC Ciruit Court order made public:
“Mohammed issue clarified; Circuit ruling released”; Lyle Denniston; 7/15/10
Bush “we don’t torture” Obama “we don’t torture”
“Bybee confirmed that a number of techniques reportedly used on CIA detainees were not approved by OLC: These techniques include: Diapering a detainee or forcing a detainee to defecate on himself, forcing a detainee to wear blackout goggles, extended solitary confinement or isolation, hanging a detainee from ceiling hooks, daily beatings, spraying cold water on a detainee, and subjecting a detainee to high-volume music or noise. (Transcript of May 26, 2010, Interview of former Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee at 75-78, 80-81, 86-90, 98-99.)”
Jason Leoplod on this topic, today:
Author of Torture Memos Admits Some Techniques Were Not Approved By DOJ; Jason Leopold; 7/15/10
This is interesting. On PDF 79 Bybee says DOJ wasn’t asked at all about diapers.
But the OPR report includes diapers as item 10 in the list of techniques CIA wanted approved.
diapers was originally listed as one of the techniques in a draft memo is that correct?
Speaking of which, for Mary when she looks at this–that section starting on PDF 79 pertains to the conditions of capture.
Was there that much disconnect between the list and what he was asked to approve? If so, what in the world is he doing as a judge?
More likely it says they took diapers out before he got involved.
There are two things (he asserts they were only asked about 10 things; they were asked about 12): diapers and mock burial.
Ok. That makes sense.
OK. question answered in this comment
Note Bybee’s correction on PDF 83: he originally said they were careful to repeat back what CIA had said “detainees, such as Abu Zubaydah, were going to be interrogated.” But then he went back and tried to make it singular.
I’m guessing he knew well they were approving for more than AZ.
Note on page 100 where Bybee deviates from the letter of the law and the memo–replacing “harm” for “suffering” to avoid admitting that their treatment of sleep deprivation was crazy.
Look for an August Friday news dump, though he looked under every rock and around every corner Mr. Durham found nothing, nothing at all to charge anyone with.
The bush treason is complete with a pretty constitution that don’t mean squat.
I think you are going to be proved wrong about this. Durham reports directly to Holder; IMHO Holder already has his report. What’s going on now, IMHO, is a battle between DOJ and WH about what to release, when to release it, and how to respond to Durham’s recommendations. IMHO the most we will see before the elections might be a sanitized version of Durham’s report.
One good thing is that Margolis is not in the reporting chain.
Bob in AZ
You are dead wrong about Margolis not being in that loop. When they staff the issue, Margolis will be involved, whether he is in the direct authority chain or not. Furthermore, unless they are going to charge first degree murder, which they have shown absolutely NO inclination to do (and there has been no discussion or intimation of), then critical statutes of limitation (those that have not already expired) expire in November of this year, most notably, the statutes on the destruction of the torture tapes, which expire in the first week of November.
But that is, in essence, a staffing decision by Holder, isn’t it? I mean formally, Durham reports to Holder, who then puts it out for review to whomever he wants to, and Margolis would be expected to be put on that review team, right?
With that infamous process, recall what Holder did: he released both the OLC report AND (separately) Margolis’ review. He then accepted Margolis’ recommendation, but released the original critical report anyway.
Is the review by Margolis mandatory, or merely customary?
Besides, Holder does not have to accept Margolis’ recommendation, does he?
I predict there’s going to be quite a scuffle over Durham’s report.
Bob in AZ
There is nothing mandatory for Margolis, it is all bullshit custom they have pawned off on him as the cleaner for the enterprise. I am not sure about the chain for Durham, although since it is still officially being handled as a regular investigation, I would assume he reports to the Crim Chief, Lanny Breuer and then the Deputy Attorney General, which is still Gary Grindler in an acting capacity (Obama has nominated Jim Cole, but he has not been confirmed yet) and then to Holder.
“meat grinder” moment? On page 102 Bybee says “the CIA says they did not indicate they would keep Abu Zubaydah awake for 11 days. They said this is what we have done.” And then “done” is crossed out and a handwritten notation replaces the word with “know.”
Ah, you and I were thinking the same thing.
The interview is unsworn, albeit with explicit mention of pertinent law covering veracity and duplicity in the setting. Minority counsel successfully obscures one answer in its first pages. This 200+ page document has the lexical texture of a hostile deposition, comparing its structure and *progress* to many others with which I have worked. I look forward to informed readers* commentaries on its subtle meanings. The business of pronoun you homonymous with surname Yoo is a confounding issue. Minority counsel successfully guides this patently very well rehearsed interviewee in avoiding some subjects altogether, altering timeframe as a way of providing a misdirecting reply; and majority counsel fails to make several lines of questioning clear in meaning, although much precision is evident. The reporter rendering of **un hunh** is anathema in the trade and positively nonstandard; I question how the HJC permits these renderings of onomatopoeic yes or no (?which?) to stand in the final published version of the interview. Still, a work of interrogatory art withal.
Oh it was a cross examination. Bybee thought, and rightfully so, he was in a hostile adversarial setting.