1. “New Bush-Era Torture Memo Released, Raises Questions About What Has Changed And What Hasn’t
A six-year-old memo from within the George W. Bush administration that came to light this week acknowledges that White House-approved interrogation techniques amounted to “war crimes.” The memo’s release has called attention to what has changed since President Barack Obama took office, but it also raises questions about what hasn’t.
The Bush White House tried to destroy every copy of the memo, written by then-State Department counselor Philip Zelikow. Zelikow examined tactics like waterboarding — which simulates drowning — and concluded that there was no way they were legal, domestically or internationally.
“We are unaware of any precedent in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or any subsequent conflict for authorized, systematic interrogation practices similar to those in question here,” Zelikow wrote. The memo has been obtained by George Washington University’s National Security Archive and Wired’s Spencer Ackerman.
On his second full day in office, President Barack Obama formally disavowed torture, banning the types of techniques Zelikow had objected to so strongly in his memo.”
2. “To protect freedom, US jurists must pardon terror suspects caught by entrapment
Since 9/11, the majority of criminal convictions in high-profile terror cases in the US relied on sting operations. In many, the FBI crossed the line into entrapment, luring penniless men and teenagers into sophisticated plots they never could have dreamed of on their own.”
3. ““NGO”: The Guise of Innocence.
The illusion of innocent philanthropic activity”