Monday, March 10, 2008

Bush vetoes ban on waterboarding

So despite the acting head of the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, Steven Bradbury, reportedly saying last month that waterboarding is no longer allowed under US law, it seems that President Bush does not agree.

"President Bush said yesterday he vetoed legislation that would ban the CIA from using harsh interrogation methods such as waterboarding to break suspected terrorists because it would end practices that have prevented attacks.

"The bill Congress sent me would take away one of the most valuable tools in the war on terror," Bush said in his weekly radio address taped for broadcast yesterday. "So today I vetoed it."

The bill provides guidelines for intelligence activities for the year and includes the interrogation requirement. It passed the House in December and the Senate last month.

"This is no time for Congress to abandon practices that have a proven track record of keeping America safe," the president said."

According to the Times , John McCain, the Republican presidential candidate, who authored a law banning torture of detainees in American custody, surprised many by supporting the President's veto, arguing that imposing military rules on the CIA would deny it the use of many legitimate techniques.

Mr McCain has also said, however, that he would define waterboarding as torture, effectively outlawing it. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, the two Democratic candidates, are both supporters of increased measures banning coercive techniques although campaign commitments kept both of them from voting on this most recent Bill."

No comments: