The article "Spain to proceed with torture prosecution of Bush lawyers: Report" at http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/09/08/spain-prosecution-bush-lawyers/ poses a difficult challenge to the US legal system. It looked like Holder wouldn't even initiate an investigation, instead honoring Obama's desire to "look forward." Now Holder is limiting himself to instances where interrogators overstepped the boundaries set out by Bush lawyers for enhanced interrogation techniques "EIT," while the Spanish case challenges the legality of the entire program. What happens if the Spanish investigation looks at all the abundance of material already documented and concludes that the atrocities against the detainees were initiated by Bush 43?
Against Bush 43 in the public domain are the September 17, 2001, Executive Order that reportedly authorizes the CIA's secret detention, interrogation, and rendition program and President Bush's February 7, 2002, Order stating that the Geneva Conventions do not apply to Taliban detainees or to al-Qaeda and excusing cruel treatment in cases of "military necessity".
The article states "A Spanish judge has decided to go ahead with the prosecution of six Bush administration lawyers -- including former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales -- who were the architects of the legal framework for President George W. Bush "enhanced interrogation" program, according to a report in the Spanish newspaper Publico."
Speaking of Gonzales--who has the July 22, 2002 letter from John Yoo Deputy Assistant Attorney General, OLC, on the applicability of the Convention Against Torture existing, but not yet made public, waiting to be exposed to the light of day, he has been in the news lately.
The September 3, 2009 article "Gonzales 'flip-flops' yet again on torture probe" at
slams both Gonzales and Ridge as it states "Either former Bush officials are being pressured to backtrack, or recent flip-flops are just more evidence that they had no convictions in the first place."
Gonzales had no convictions and seems to want you to believe he had an early onset of Alzheimer's disease as when, during the investigation of the dismissal of U.S. attorneys, he evaded answering so many times that Senator Schumer said there was no point to further questioning since Gonzales had stated "over a hundred times" that he didn't know or couldn't recall important details concerning the firings.
The Obama administration is slowly reversing course on many of Bush 43's "GWOT" policies, including "EIT" and rendition.
The article "Bush White House Sought to Soften Treaty on 'Enforced Disappearances'" at
states "From 2003 to 2006, the Bush administration quietly tried to relax the draft language of a treaty meant to bar and punish "enforced disappearances" so that those overseeing the CIA's secret prison system would not be criminally prosecuted under its provisions, according to former officials and hundreds of pages of documents recently declassified by the State Department."
Why? The article continues "But the documents suggest that initial U.S. support for the negotiations collided head-on with the then-undisclosed goal of seizing suspected terrorists anywhere in the world for questioning by CIA interrogators or indefinite detention by the U.S. military at foreign sites."
How far have we deviated from the rest of the world?