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Thread: Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

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    Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

    By Michael Isikoff and Daniel Klaidman

    Excerpt from the Aug. 1, 2002, ‘Torture Memo’:

    For weeks, the right has heckled Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. for his plans to try the alleged 9/11 conspirators in New York City and his handling of the Christmas bombing plot suspect. Now the left is going to be upset: an upcoming Justice Department report from its ethics-watchdog unit, the Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR), clears the Bush administration lawyers who authored the “torture” memos of professional-misconduct allegations.

    While the probe is sharply critical of the legal reasoning used to justify waterboarding and other “enhanced” interrogation techniques, NEWSWEEK has learned that a senior Justice official who did the final review of the report softened an earlier OPR finding. Previously, the report concluded that two key authors—Jay Bybee, now a federal appellate court judge, and John Yoo, now a law professor—violated their professional obligations as lawyers when they crafted a crucial 2002 memo approving the use of harsh tactics, say two Justice sources who asked for anonymity discussing an internal matter. But the reviewer, career veteran David Margolis, downgraded that assessment to say they showed “poor judgment,” say the sources. (Under department rules, poor judgment does not constitute professional misconduct.) The shift is significant: the original finding would have triggered a referral to state bar associations for potential disciplinary action—which, in Bybee’s case, could have led to an impeachment inquiry.
    Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe - Declassified Blog - Newsweek.com

    Well, this will save us the wasted time, effort and money for a witch hunt. I approve.
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    Re: Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

    I wonder if Obama isn't trying to make nice for political reasons. He doesn't want the stink of yet another "blame Bush" circus stunt, because the public is sick and tired of this worn out trick.
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    Re: Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

    Great news. I'm sure that the attorneys giving Obama advice on these very same matters today will be glad to hear this.

    The idea that we would prosecute legal advisors for giving advice that later turned out to be politically unpopular was absolutely repugnant. Yoo's memos were by no means perfect, but the proper remedy for that would have been to fire him at the time if they felt warranted, not to disbar him or refer him for prosecution.
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    Re: Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Great news. I'm sure that the attorneys giving Obama advice on these very same matters today will be glad to hear this.

    The idea that we would prosecute legal advisors for giving advice that later turned out to be politically unpopular was absolutely repugnant. Yoo's memos were by no means perfect, but the proper remedy for that would have been to fire him at the time if they felt warranted, not to disbar him or refer him for prosecution.
    But what about the Puffington Host types? Now what are they going to do to placate them?


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    Re: Justice Official Clears Bush Lawyers in Torture Memo Probe

    Quote Originally Posted by TOJ View Post
    But what about the Puffington Host types? Now what are they going to do to placate them?


    .
    They can blow each other.
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

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