According the May, 30, 2005 "Torture Memo," penned by Judge Jay Bybee (Bush got him onto the 9th Circ. Appellate Court), we held and tortured 94 detainees, using waterboarding, stressed positioning, subjecting them to extreme temperatures while naked, even stuffing them into boxes.
The first use of waterboarding and other harsh treatment against suspected Al-Qaeda operative Abu Zubaydah was ordered by senior Central Intelligence Agency officials over objections from his interrogators, The New York Times reported Saturday.
Citing unnamed former intelligence officials and a footnote in a newly released legal memorandum, the newspaper said the harsh interrogation techniques had been ordered despite the belief of interrogators that the prisoner had already told them all he knew.
President Barack Obama said Saturday he will ask all of his department and agency heads for specific proposals for cutting their budgets at his Cabinet meeting early next week as he searches for ways to streamline government spending.
Obama, who is attending the Summit of the Americas in Trinidad this weekend, said in his weekly radio and Internet address that he would make the request for cuts Monday at a Cabinet meeting.
In a whirlwind week of change, President Barack Obama jettisoned Bush administration policy on greenhouse gases, shone an unforgiving light on its support for torture as an interrogation tactic and eased its restrictions on Cuba.
But there are limits, even to this new president’s power, and a campaign pledge to seek a ban on assault weapons is an early casualty as a result.
And while the promise of change was arguably Obama’s single most powerful asset in last year’s campaign, the week demonstrated anew how carefully he calibrates its impact.
The Obama administration said yesterday that it will not appeal a federal court ruling prohibiting the carrying of loaded guns in national parks and wildlife refuges.
The Obama administration issued guidelines yesterday limiting government-sponsored embryonic stem cell research to cells taken from excess fertility clinic embryos, a compromise based on its reading of public opinion about the cutting-edge science.
Adding a prominent Republican voice to the ranks of those supporting same-sex marriage, the man who managed Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign yesterday warned members of his party that continued opposition on the issue could turn the GOP into a “sectarian” party.