Monday, July 28, 2008

Slate's interactive guide: Who in the Bush administration broke the law, and who could be prosecuted?

Excellent article from Slate. So many criminals, so many crimes -- where to begin might be the biggest issue. The interactive feature "Crimes and Misdemeanors" is very useful for keeping it all straight.

I think we start with the war crimes and work down . . . .
Crimes and Misdemeanors

's interactive guide: Who in the Bush administration broke the law, and who could be prosecuted?

Emily Bazelon chatted online with readers about this project. Read the transcript.

The recent release of Jane Mayer's book The Dark Side revealed that a secret report by the International Committee of the Red Cross determined "categorically" that the CIA used torture, as defined by American and international law, in questioning al-Qaida suspect Abu Zubaydah. The question of criminal liability for Bush-administration officials has since been in the news. It's also getting play because retired Gen. Antonio Taguba, lead Army investigator of the prison abuses at Abu Ghraib, wrote in a recent report, "There is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimes." (Update: And today, the ACLU released three new memos from the Department of Justice and the CIA, which for the first time show DoJ explicitly authorizing "enhanced" interrogation tactics for use on specific detainees. One of the memos states, in this context, that "interrogation techniques, including the waterboard, do not violate the Torture Statute.")

One response to the amassing evidence is Nuremberg-style war-crime prosecutions. The opposite pole is blanket immunity for all lawbreakers in advance. Somewhere in the middle lies a truth-and-reconciliation commission that would try to ferret out the truth.

To enter into the debate, you might ask which Bush administration officials did what and which could actually be prosecuted. Slate has answers.

Read the whole article.

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