A Washington Post story made clear the Bush administration endorsed the idea of waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods against al-Qadea suspects. A pair of secret memos previously unclassified were requested by then CIA Director George Tenet more than a year after the start of secret interrogations. According to the Post story, intelligence officials sought cover from the White House because they were worried about a possible backlash if details of the interrogation program became public. Justice Department lawyers signed off on the agency’s interrogation methods beginning in 2002, but senior CIA officials were troubled that White House policy makers had never endorsed the program in writing.
It is quite apparent that CIA officials wanted a paper trail to cover their butts if at some future time the sleazy President Bush might turn around and deny he had ever authorized torture. Tenet finally received in June, 2003, a written assurance his agency could violate international and national standards of democracy and the rights of individuals.
A White House spokesman had no comment on the report. Hopefully, a new president in January will initiate an investigation which results in a prison sentence for George Bush and his cronies in crime.