- Opening a probe focused on CIA interrogators who overstepped the "law";
- Sending Mohamed Jawad back to Afghanistan, who a federal judge recently ruled must be released due to lack of evidence. Jawad was held at Guantanamo without trial from when he was 12 until he was 17;
- Creating a new blue ribbon panel of interrogators, who will continue the Bush policy of "rendition" but allegedly under increased efforts to ensure the abductees aren't tortured in the country to which they're rendered.
So the CIA IG's report, which was created in 2004, is the "where's the beef?" inside the huge "buns of obscurity".* The Wall Street Journal gets the lede the White House was looking for:
New Investigation of CIA's Methods
Attorney General Holder named Connecticut prosecutor John Durham to investigate alleged CIA mistreatment of terror suspects.
Law Blog: Meet John Durham
Wash Wire: CIA Documents | A Shift for Intelligence
Decision Sets Off Protest
(I'm not trying to pick on the WSJ, I'm sure most papers ranked the stories this way. The top WSJ story doesn't bury the IG's report, it even lists various examples in the sidebar. And only the last article above is blatant right-wing spin. The WSJ actually has lots of crack reporters, but the Editorial Board is cuckoo, and is the only major EB which openly attacks its own news division.)
It is obvious that the Obama administration deliberately orchestrated the release (and leaks) of news to minimize the actual details (that weren't redacted) in the interrogation abuse report.
* Never mentioned on the internet, until now!
UPDATE: From ABC News:
Of the 109 pages in the 2004 report, 36 were completely blacked out in the version made public Monday, and another 30 were substantially redacted for "national security" reasons.Assuming that the unredacted portions of the 30 pages are at least offset by pages that only have some redacting, more than 60% of the report was blacked out.
The blacked-out portions hide the Inspector General's findings on the circumstances that led to the deaths of at least three of the detainees in the CIA's program, the official said. Two of the men reportedly died in CIA in Iraq and the third died in Afghanistan.
The Inspector General's findings about a fourth death involving a prisoner in Afghanistan were made public in the report. A CIA contract employee was convicted of assault in that case and is now in prison.
Note that a CIA contractor was hung out to dry already, but that the conviction was for assault.
LINKS: Of course, Scott Horton is a must read on this subject.
Eugene Robinson gets the bottom line - prosecute all clear violations of the law.
I no longer trust Obama. It didn't take very long to reach this point on National Security issues; in fact, there were plenty of signs before the election. On health care, it happened rather recently.
Stephen Walt gets real on the rule of law vs. politics. Does anyone serious doubt which should win?
Dick Cheney lied? Nooooooooo! Former Bush 43 Homeland Security Advisor Frances Fragos Townsend said that CIA documents don't prove torture works, as Cheney repeatedly said.
This is not about the 2004 CIA IG's report, but two other documents released in the frenzy this week. These are the documents Cheney begged to have released to prove his case about torture. Well, be careful of what you wish for Dick.