"Enhanced Interrogation Methods": How legal memoranda manipulated Federal and International laws prohibiting torture and coercion.


In the aftermath of the September 11th attacks, executive branch lawyers acting as legal council for the President issued several memoranda which interpreted various laws prohibiting torture or "cruel, inhuman, and degrading conduct" as not applying to the executive branch's treatment of "unlawful enemy combatants" within military intelligence interrogations and detention. This paper highlights several specific legal memoranda's interpretations during the period of 2001-2003 by re-examining the various authorities that the memorandum dealt with (e.g. Treaties such as the 3rd Geneva Conventions, UN Convention Against Torture, The War Crimes Act and the Torture Statute). Relying on these collected legal interpretations, the Defense Department promulgated a system of "enhanced interrogation methods" which sanction treatment which would not have been allowed otherwise. This took the form of a "menu" of several interrogation techniques that in and of themselves may or may not constitute a specific act of torture, but whose cumulative effect administered over an extended time period brings the system within the purview of the Torture statute and broader Constitutional and International violations.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

Written by:

Published In:

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Dean Andrews | Attorney Advertising

Don't miss a thing! Build a custom news brief:

Read fresh new writing on compliance, cybersecurity, Dodd-Frank, whistleblowers, social media, hiring & firing, patent reform, the NLRB, Obamacare, the SEC…

…or whatever matters the most to you. Follow authors, firms, and topics on JD Supra.

Create your news brief now - it's free and easy »

All the intelligence you need, in one easy email:

Great! Your first step to building an email digest of JD Supra authors and topics. Log in with LinkedIn so we can start sending your digest...

Sign up for your custom alerts now, using LinkedIn ›

* With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name.