Skip to content

Category Archives: Interrogation

Senator Feinstein: Redactions Obscure Facts, Must Be Addressed Before SSCI Report Can Be Released

By
Tuesday, August 5, 2014 at 4:42 PM

That’s the gist of this statement, made today by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.), Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. Washington—Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on the committee study of the CIA’s detention and interrogation program: After further review of the redacted version of the executive summary, . . .
Read more »

In Trouble With the Law

By
Monday, August 4, 2014 at 6:30 PM

If press accounts are correct, we will soon have the long-awaited Executive Summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee Report on the CIA detention program.  The report itself, which has not been submitted for declassification, is massive, running some 6,000 pages and including about 37,000 footnotes.  In preparing the report, the Committee and its staff apparently . . .
Read more »

ECHR: Poland’s Role in CIA Black Site Violated Detainees’ Human Rights

By
Thursday, July 24, 2014 at 10:08 AM

The European Court of Human Rights (“ECHR”) today handed down a pair of judgments in long-running human rights cases brought against Poland by two U.S. terrorism detainees—Abu Zubaydah and Abd Al Rahim Hussayn Muhammad Al Nashiri.  As is well known, both had alleged violations of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, . . .
Read more »

Pre-Abu Khattala: Yunis, That 1987 Shipboard Terrorist Interrogation Case

By
Tuesday, July 1, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Ahmed Abu Khattala is not the first person to be whisked onto a ship in the Middle East by U.S. forces, interrogated aboard, and then dropped in a U.S. court. There are some recent famous cases, of course, but there are also some older ones—one of which, in particular, may have precedential value for the . . .
Read more »

SSCI Votes to Release Parts of Detention and Interrogation Report

By
Thursday, April 3, 2014 at 5:55 PM

Likely you know by now of this afternoon’s 11-3 vote.  The Washington Post reports here, and Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein’s statement can be found here.  The latter opens: “The Senate Intelligence Committee this afternoon voted to declassify the 480-page executive summary as well as 20 findings and conclusions of the majority’s five-year study of the CIA . . .
Read more »

The SSCI Fracas and the CIA’s Duty to Make Criminal Referrals to DOJ

By
Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 4:47 PM

Ken Dilanian has a story on Acting CIA General Counsel Robert Eatinger (whom Caroline Krass, just confirmed, will succeed.)  Eatinger is at the center of the fracas between CIA and SCCI because he sent a criminal referral to DOJ related to the SSCI’s staff’s acquisition of the so-called “Panetta Review,” and because Senator Feinstein essentially accused him of . . .
Read more »

SSCI v. CIA—Three Key Questions

By
Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Senator Feinstein’s remarkable floor statement yesterday has thrown further fuel onto an already volatile mix of intelligence and oversight issues related to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s detention and interrogation report. Putting the controversy both outside and inside the SSCI about the substance of the report aside for now, the basic facts as Sen. . . .
Read more »

Text of Senator Feinstein’s Remarks This Morning Regarding SSCI and CIA

By
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 at 11:28 AM

You can find the Senator’s statement here.  Her speech began as follows: Over the past week, there have been numerous press articles written about the Intelligence Committee’s oversight review of the Detention and Interrogation Program of the CIA, specifically press attention has focused on the CIA’s intrusion and search of the Senate Select Committee’s computers . . .
Read more »

Senator Feinstein’s Remarks on the CIA-SSCI Document Controversy

By
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Right now, Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Senate Intelligence Committee’s Chairman, is speaking out, on the Senate floor, about a well-publicized dispute between the CIA and the SSCI—regarding the latter’s review of documents pertaining to the CIA’s interrogation practices in the years following 9/11, and the CIA’s auditing of Committee staffers’ computer use during the review. . . .
Read more »

NYT on the United States’ Position on Human Rights Treaties

By
Friday, March 7, 2014 at 9:45 AM

Well worth a read: Charlie Savage’s story, for the New York Times, regarding Obama Administration debate over whether the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Convention Against Torture, impose legal obligations on the United States in places beyond its borders. The piece cites, among other things, two memos written by then-State Department Legal Adviser Harold . . .
Read more »

Oral Argument Preview: Al Laithi v. Rumsfeld (Detainee Abuse Case)

By
Friday, February 21, 2014 at 6:23 AM

Today D.C. Circuit Judges David Tatel, Janice Rogers Brown, and A. Raymond Randolph will hear oral arguments in Al Laithi v. Rumsfeld. Six former Guantanamo detainees will be arguing that Chief Judge Lamberth erred in dismissing their claims, brought under the Alien Tort Statute (ATS), Bivens, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the Federal Civil Rights Act. In the wake . . .
Read more »

Congressional Control of Intelligence Programs (sometimes)

By
Sunday, January 26, 2014 at 7:03 PM

In the last ten days, an interesting controversy has bubbled up over congressional control of the drone program.  The quarrel, which has been both internal to the Senate and between the Congress and the Executive, raises some important issues regarding Congress’s ability to control controversial but classified programs (such as the current drone program and . . .
Read more »

John Rizzo on Enhanced Interrogation Techniques

By
Monday, January 6, 2014 at 10:47 AM

This must read exerpt from John Rizzo’s forthcoming book bears the provocative title, “I Could Have Stopped Waterboarding Before It Happened.”  It’s a fascinating insider account from the 30-year veteran of the CIA.  It begins: In the weeks after 9/11, the name Abu Zubaydah seemed to pop up daily at the five o’clock meeting that . . .
Read more »

Al Laithi Reply Brief Before the D.C. Circuit: Defining the Scope of Employment

By
Friday, December 27, 2013 at 7:54 AM

In response to the government’s brief, counsel for the Plaintiffs in Al Laithi v. Rumsfeld et. al.  filed a reply brief on Dec. 18th.  (The Plaintiffs—all former Guantanamo detainees—allege various abuses at the hands of U.S. government officials, and seek, among other things, civil damages from the officials in their individual capacities.) For the most part, the Plaintiffs chose . . .
Read more »

Judge Pohl Rules on Classification Motions in 9/11 Case

By
Thursday, December 19, 2013 at 9:57 AM

Earlier this week, Military Judge James Pohl, the presiding judge at the military commission case United States v. Mohammed et al, issued three orders that relate to secrecy in the military commissions. In essence, the protective order which defense counsel are required to sign prior to being given access to classified discovery obligates counsel to treat . . .
Read more »

Overview of Restrictions on Counsel in the Tsarnaev and 9/11 Cases

By and
Monday, December 2, 2013 at 3:00 PM

From the defense’s standpoint, which are more onerous: restrictions on lawyers in civilian terrorism cases or restrictions used in military commissions? Accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is currently challenging Special Administrative Measures (SAMs) imposed on him and his attorneys; Judge George O’Toole of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts heard argument on . . .
Read more »

9/11 Defense Counsel to President Obama: Please Declassify RDI Program

By
Friday, October 25, 2013 at 11:43 AM

Today defense counsel to Mustafa al Hawsawi in United States v. Mohammed et al, the 9/11 case, delivered this letter to President Obama. It requests that details of the rendition, detention and interrogation program be declassified in accordance with EO 13526, as the press release attached to the letter explains: Guantanamo Naval Station, Cuba — The Defense . . .
Read more »

Thoughts About the Obama Administration’s Counterterrorism Paradigm in Light of the Al-Liby and Ikrima Operations

By
Sunday, October 13, 2013 at 11:17 AM

Mary DeRosa and Marty Lederman, both of whom were senior national security lawyers in the Obama administration, have a helpful if somewhat hopeful post at Just Security on the significance of the recent al-Liby and Ikrima capture operations.  The post is long, but I would summarize it as follows (this is my summary, not theirs): . . .
Read more »

A Bad Idea Recycled

By
Wednesday, October 9, 2013 at 11:56 AM

If a capture comes, can calls to send the terrorist to Guantanamo be far behind? Apparently not. ABC News is reporting that GOP Senators Lindsey Graham, Kelly Ayotte, and Saxby Chambliss are calling for Abu Anas al-Libi to be taken to Guantanamo Bay: Republican Senators Lindsey Graham, Kelly Ayotte and Saxby Chambliss said today it was . . .
Read more »

Justice Thomas and the Feres Doctrine

By
Thursday, June 27, 2013 at 7:11 PM

Understandably lost in this week’s Supreme Court news was a somewhat surprising–and, in my view, welcome–dissent by Justice Thomas from the denial of certiorari in Lanus ex rel. Lanus v. United States. In his two-page dissent, Justice Thomas suggests that the Court should have granted cert. in order to revisit the “Feres” doctrine–named after a . . .
Read more »