The request, reproduced below along with a transmittal letter, asks for the OPR report that has long been promised by Attorney General Eric Holder, as well as an earlier OPR report completed during the last months of the Bush administration. The request also seeks the 10 page rebuttal of the 2008 report by then- Attorney General Michael Mukasey.
Charlotte Dennett, an attorney member of the RJSC and one of the authors of the FOIA request, said: "The time has come to squarely address the role of these lawyers. Did they create new laws redefining the crime of torture after American forces had already begun torturing prisoners? And if so, for what purpose and on whose orders? We cannot countenance further delays or accept a greatly watered-down version of the original report. We must know the facts and then decide whether President Obama's Department of Justice is continuing the cover-up begun under his predecessor."
Peter Weiss, another RJSC attorney member and author of the FOIA request, added: "We are not simply requesting that a long-promised report be released sooner rather than later. We are requesting transparency in the unprecedented procedure of letting the very subjects of a DOJ misconduct report propose changes to it. The current Chilcot Inquiry in England of the build-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq has revealed an editing process in which the attorney general of that nation reversed his opinion that the war would be illegal. If a similar editing job has been performed on the original OPR report, the American public has a right to know it."
David Swanson, Chair of the Robert Jackson Steering Committee who also worked on the FOIA request, said "Much awaits this report. Bar associations have delayed disbarment. Congressional committees have delayed subpoenas and impeachments. The Department of Justice has delayed prosecutions. One of the lawyers under review, John Yoo, is facing a civil suit from one of the victims of his actions, Jose Padilla. If the Justice Department is refusing to release the report in order to deny the report to Padilla's legal counsel, the public has a right to know."
Members of the Robert Jackson Steering Committee are:
Chair David Swanson is the author of Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union by Seven Stories Press, Co-Founder of AfterDowningStreet.org. Swanson became chair in November 2009.
Past Chair Lawrence Velvel served as chairman of the Steering Committee of the Justice Robert H. Jackson Conference On Planning For The Prosecution of High Level American War Criminals, or the Robert Jackson Steering Committee for short, through October 2009. Velvel is Dean of the Massachusetts School of Law and a professor of law.
John Bonifaz, Legal Director of Voter Action, author of Warrior-King: The Case for Impeaching George W. Bush.
Kristina Borjesson, an award-winning print and broadcast journalist for more than twenty years and editor of two recent books on the media.
Shahid Buttar, executive director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee.
Colleen Costello, Staff Attorney of Human Rights, USA, of Washington, D.C., and coordinator of its efforts involving torture by the American government.
Ben Davis, a law Professor at the University of Toledo College of Law, where he teaches Public International Law and International Business Transactions. He is the author of numerous articles on international and related domestic law.