The letter DOJ sent a letter to Leonie Brinkema to explain why it had neglected to admit there were torture tapes it didn’t disclose to her during the Moussaoui trial. The whole letter makes a lot more sense if James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen had had the tapes.
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Michael Isikoff suggests that John Durham may be focusing on the Moussaoui requests for testimony from Abu Zubaydah and others. That may put CIA knowledge and intent to destroy the tapes much earlier.
Dusty Foggo has a date with John Durham, the torture tape investigator.
In addition to the news that the CIA destroyed 92 torture tapes, DOJ has informed Judge Hellerstein that we will shortly get a list of all the witnesses who may have viewed those tapes.
Jane Mayer’s Dark Side corroborates something I’ve been arguing. The CIA IG’s report on torture–which concluded that CIA’s interrogation methods were cruel and inhumane–was one of the things that made the CIA panic and destroy the torture tapes.
By now, the story of the CIA’s destruction of the “torture tapes” is well known. However, yesterday, an insufficiently noticed page A-16 story by Dan Eggen in the Washington Post, appears to put the lie to the defenses the Administration has posited to date and raise serious issues in relation to intentional, malicious destruction of evidence and obstruction of justice.
ABC’s story on the detailed briefings the Principals’ committee received on the torture of top detainees seems designed to focus the attention of the torture tape inquiry on the top lawyers in the Administration who had a motive to approve the destruction of the torture tapes.
The CIA has responded to the ACLU’s motion to hold them in contempt for destroying evidence ACLU had FOIAed. Their entire response relies on the technicalities by which OIG avoided taking possession of the torture tapes.
Surprise surprise. Bob Bennett is advising his client, Jose Rodriguez, not to tell Congress about how and why and when he destroyed the torture tapes unless they give him immunity. And Judge Kennedy has decided that he’s not all that worried about the government destroying torture tapes in spite of orders not to do such things.
We’re not going to find out more details about the torture tapes anytime soon.
Among new revelations today is the news (not surprise, but confirmed nevertheless) that CIA’s IG John Helverson “reviewed” the torture tapes during the period when people were discussing destroying them. That strongly suggests he may have based his report–which found the CIA to engage in cruel and inhuman treatment–on those tapes. No wonder CIA wanted to destroy them.