- -01-18-07 Manual to Allow Executions Based on Hearsay (MSNBC News)
"The Pentagon has drafted a manual for upcoming detainee trials that would allow suspected terrorists to be convicted on hearsay evidence and coerced testimony and imprisoned or put to death."
"Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., and some Democrats have said the legislation will be shot down by the courts as unconstitutional because it bars detainees from protesting their detentions. Under the law, only individuals selected for military trial are given access to a lawyer and judge; other military detainees can be held until hostilities cease." 01-07
- -08-14-07 How "Enemy Combatant" Designation Was Used Against a U.S. Citizen (CNN News)
"By April 2003, Padilla had already spent 10 months in isolation at the brig. Ultimately, he was housed in the same cell, alone in his wing, for three years and seven months, according to court documents."
" 'I'm not a psychologist, but if he is not profoundly psychologically disturbed from that experience then he is a stronger man than me,' says Steven Kleinman, a retired US Air Force Reserve colonel and former interrogator."
"He [Padilla] has 'undergone a profound, tremendously prolonged psychological stress involving extended periods of utter isolation and deprivation,' the psychiatrist writes. Grassian's report concludes: 'Given the extensive research on this issue, much of it funded by the United States government, it follows necessarily that the United States government was well aware of the likely consequences of its conduct in regard to Mr. Padilla.' "
"Officials have repeatedly said that the US doesn't use torture. 'The Department of Defense policy is clear – we treat all detainees humanely,' says Navy Cmdr. J.D. Gordon, a Defense Department spokesman." 08-07
- -09-17-07 White House Power vs. Individual Constitutional Rights (Christian Science Monitor)
"At issue is whether the White House has the power to keep an alleged victim from seeking redress in US courts."
"The [federal] judge threw out the [Masri] suit on state-secrets grounds, and a federal appeals court panel upheld the dismissal on the same grounds."
"In his appeal to the Supreme Court, Masri is asking the justices to examine whether the government properly invoked the state-secrets privilege or simply used the privilege to avoid being held accountable for alleged torture and other illegal and unconstitutional activities."
" 'The whole reason for the court system is to protect individual rights that wouldn't be protected in the political process,' says Amanda Frost, a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, who also teaches at American University's Washington School of Law." 09-07
- -10-04-07 Bush Administration Approved Harshest Techniques (New York Times)
"When the Justice Department publicly declared torture 'abhorrent' in a legal opinion in December 2004, the Bush administration appeared to have abandoned its assertion of nearly unlimited presidential authority to order brutal interrogations."
"But soon after Alberto R. Gonzales’s arrival as attorney general in February 2005, the Justice Department issued another opinion, this one in secret. It was a very different document, according to officials briefed on it, an expansive endorsement of the harshest interrogation techniques ever used by the Central Intelligence Agency." 10-07
- -12-07-07 CIA Destroys Requested Interrogation Tapes (CBS News)
"A well informed source tells CBS News the videotapes of U.S. interrogations of two high level al Qaeda operatives were destroyed to protect CIA officers from criminal prosecution, reports CBS News national security correspondent David Martin."
"A day after CIA Director Gen. Michael Hayden told agency employees the tapes were destroyed in 2005, members of Congress, human rights groups and lawyers for accused terrorists said the tapes may have been key evidence that the U.S. government had illegally authorized torture." 12-07