The Obama administration has released legal memos from the Bush administration authorizing “harsh” tactics to be used during the interrogation on suspected terrorists. The memos were released in response to a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union.
The ACLU, which sued to force disclosure of the memos in their entirety, said in a statement that anyone who “gave legal blessings to acts of torture” should be prosecuted. “No one is above the law,” ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero said in the statement.
The memos revealed that the Justice Department approved placing Abu Zubaydah, a reputed al-Qaeda leader and associate of Osama Bin Laden, in a cramped box with an insect.
“You have informed us that he appears to have a fear of insects,” Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee said in an Aug. 1, 2002, memo to the CIA. “In particular, you would like to tell Zubaydah that you intend to place a stinging insect into the box with him. You would, however, place a harmless insect in the box.”
I have an honest question for ACLU Executive Director Romero, and I would like an honest answer.
If you, knowing what you know today about the attacks on September 11, were given the opportunity to torture an individual who could have possibly held the information needed to stop the hijackings, would you refuse to put that insect in that box?