David Addington and John Yoo Testify on Torture

David Addington, Dick Cheney's former legal counsel and current Chief of Staff (post Scooter Libby) testified before a House subcommittee today on the Administration's interrogation practices and torture.

Crooks and Liars has some thoughts as well as videos of Addington's testimony and the law profs at Balkanization have lots to say about John Yoo's testimony.

Human Rights First has the lowlights of both men's testimony. John Yoo's prepared testimony is here.

In other torture news, the American Civil Liberties Union is calling on the United States government "to appoint an independent prosecutor for U.S. torture crimes, to put an end to practices that involve torture and abuse and to fulfill its obligations under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). "

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    Well (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by Steve M on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 06:57:10 PM EST
    for starters, I don't think you can exactly trust the people who claim that waterboarding revealed all sorts of super-secret information we would have never gotten otherwise.

    I heard the exchange (5.00 / 3) (#6)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 08:09:46 PM EST
    between Wassersman Schultz and Addington on NPR and had to turn it off.  It was making me too angry.  

    We have to figure out a way, legally, to stop this banality of evil in our own country.  Too many yes-men for Bush doing heinous things (see: telecom companies) are permitted, esp. in the media, the excuse of having done so for our country, for our President.  

    They'll never stop if we don't stop them.

    Heard that same exchange and (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 08:40:17 PM EST
    wondered how Wasserman Schultz was able to keep her composure.

    And John Yoo, well...words fail me.  Did I really hear Jerold Nadler explaining privilege - to no effect?  And Yoo repeatedly trying to claim attorney-client privilege?

    Addington may be "brilliant," but neither he nor Yoo appear to have come equipped with a soul or a conscience.  Which makes them pretty much perfect for writing memos and advising on torture.

    Is is small of me to hope the universe has some special karmic reward for these people?


    No, it doesn't (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 09:20:52 PM EST
    They are truly evil incarnate.

    I'm glad she had the gall. (none / 0) (#12)
    by lilburro on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 09:50:17 PM EST
    I stopped listening to President Bush... (none / 0) (#9)
    by Alec82 on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 08:52:38 PM EST
    ...after election day, 2004.  Tuned out completely.  He was already intolerable weeks into his administration.  His voice sets me on edge every time I hear it.

     Whenever I pick up Takeover to re-read it I have to put it down after a few pages.  Once was bad enough.  And the Gonzales testimony was brutal as well.  I barely made it through that without yelling at the TV screen.

     Having met Yoo, and having listened to his self-serving discussion of FISA and executive power, I can safely say that I can see little to gain by listening to him get fried by congress, apart from watching the little troll squirm, and possibly a very premature heart attack.  



    Painful (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by santarita on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 08:33:30 PM EST
    I watched parts of it as well.  I don't know whether it was more painful to listen to the inartful questioning or the dodgeball answers of two lawyers intent on using the hearing to show their contempt for Congress and the citizens it represents.   This pattern  has repeated itself since Congress decided to resume its role of acting as a check and balance on the Executive.  Given the obvious game of hide the ball employed by the witnesses of most of these hearings, why not submit written questions and get the answers before the hearing and just use the hearing to ask follow-up questions?

    No (5.00 / 3) (#10)
    by rdandrea on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 09:03:28 PM EST
    It was not worth it.

    We are Americans.  We don't (didn't?) torture people not because of who THEY are, but because of who WE are.

    If we do the same things that the terrorists do, what makes us different from them?

    I only caught (none / 0) (#1)
    by pie on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 06:35:21 PM EST
    a bit of it.  Addington was condescending, and Yoo didn't seem to know what he knew.

    According to my calendar (none / 0) (#5)
    by magisterludi on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 07:45:48 PM EST
    today is International Day in Support of Victims of Torture.

    Good day to set the testimony.

    it is on cspan right now- thursday nite! (none / 0) (#13)
    by hellothere on Thu Jun 26, 2008 at 10:07:06 PM EST
    it is just beginning so i am glad to see something on here about it. my first impression is that addington is arrogant. what else would one expect from one of cheney's aides?

    Addington did a pretty good job (none / 0) (#14)
    by Exeter on Fri Jun 27, 2008 at 08:49:19 AM EST
    testifying. Probably one of the best I've ever seen, in the sense that he was always out gaming and out thinking the questioners, who always seemed dumb-founded when Addingtion shook out of all of their staff-created questions.

    Not ever... (none / 0) (#15)
    by mrmobi on Fri Jun 27, 2008 at 09:19:38 AM EST
    Do you not think that waterboarding of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and two other al Qaeda members that supposedly yielded information is not worth it?

    No. SASQ.