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November 11, 2005

Was Rumsfeld given permission to authorize torture with a new legal loophole?

US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld can authorize exceptions to a new Defense Department policy on military interrogations that bars torture and calls for “humane” treatment of detainees, a spokesman said Wednesday.

The new directive lays out broad policy governing interrogations of detainees in Defense Department custody, but leaves the definition of “humane” to a separate, yet to be released directive that is still being debated within the administration.

A little noticed loophole in the directive, which was made public Tuesday, gives the secretary of defense or his deputy authority to override the policy.

Granted, he has to be willing to put his name to it, but one presumes such a document would instantly be deemed "highly classified" and we'd never know if its existence.

For what it's worth, the CIA doesn't want its own loophole. That's the one Cheney is lobbying for. (That's Vice President Cheney...the one lobbying to make torture by USofA citizens legal.) The CIA says torture isn't useful.

And, what with one thing and another, it's not likely that Vice President Cheney's Torture Program is going to get approval anyhow. Apparently he's not the powerhouse he used to be.

Posted by AnneZook at 10:27 AM