Professor John Yoo Refuses to Testify on Torture Memos

Professor John Yoo has formally rejected a request from the House Judiciary Committee for his testimony, prompting a likely subpoena from the committee.

In a letter to Chairman John Conyers (D-MI), Yoo’s lawyer john Millian said that he is merely following the directions of the White House on the question:

We have been expressly advised by the Office of Legal Counsel of the United States Department of Justice that Professor Yoo is not authorized to discuss before your Committee any specific deliberative communications, including the substance of comments on opinions or policy questions, or the confidential predecisional advice, recommendations or other positions taken by individuals or entities of the Executive Branch

The problem with a confrontation over such testimony is the refusal of the democrats in both houses to pursue the torture program as an investigation in criminal acts by the Administration. The President’s authority and privilege does not extend to the commission of crimes — despite the suggestions of the prior torture memos. As such, it is hard to maintain a refusal to share any information in an oversight investigation into such crimes. Congress has tried to play it both ways: investigating torture, but not calling it a crime. Click here.

Once again, the problem

For the full story, click here.

35 thoughts on “Professor John Yoo Refuses to Testify on Torture Memos”

  1. “But the author of this thesis, stated only marginally less boldly, is one of the US’s most brilliant strategic analysts.”

    To paraphrase James Garner in “The Americanization of Emily.”

    God save us from the brilliant strategic analysts of the world, they’re the ones that get the rest of us killed.

  2. A remarkable thing happened Thursday: a press member wanted to ask Nobel Laureate Al Gore about the growing international food crisis and how it relates to ethanol and global warming hysteria. Not surprisingly, the man who cast the tie-breaking vote in the Senate fourteen years ago mandating the use of ethanol wasn’t available, and a spokesman for his hysteria-driving Alliance for Climate Protection declined to comment. Isn’t that convenient? Regardless, the good news is that press outlets continue to recognize this unholy connection, and that someone, even at the conservative New York Sun, would deign to report it.

  3. Tired Barack Obama resorts to aggression
    By Tim Shipman, Telegraph.UK
    Last Updated: 2:00am BST 27/04/2008

    He seems tired, brittle and more aggressive, and some of his appealing hope and charisma have been dispensed with.

    Five days after losing to Hillary Clinton in the Pennsylvania primary, Barack Obama has taken off the gloves in his battle to win the American presidency – and in so doing has left critics wondering whether he is not just another conventional politician grubbing for votes.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/04/27/wobama127.xml

  4. “Folks:

    It is my opinion that poster niblet is not a singular poster at all. My theory is that the political comments are that of team of people – I suspect students – performing a kind of experiment. The language is never consistent, nor is the logic, nor is the motivation.

    At times it seems the sensitivities are reflective of feminine depth and other times not particularly insightful at all. While not a bad thing, I fear these conversations are the game or experiment of younger people, perhaps students, performing an experiment or merely occupied with something more cerebral than setting bags of poop afire on someone’s porch.”

    ********
    Fredo, Carl, Scooter, Monica, Rummy…

  5. Esteem for US rises in Asia

    Greg Sheridan, Foreign editor | April 26, 2008
    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,23599516-7583,00.html

    THE US war in Iraq has strengthened its strategic position, especially in terms of key alliances, and the only way this could be reversed would be if it lost the will to continue the struggle and abandoned Iraq in defeat and disarray.

    Surely the author of this sentence is on the ganja, you might say. Something a little weird in the coffee? It goes against every aspect of conventional wisdom.

    But the author of this thesis, stated only marginally less boldly, is one of the US’s most brilliant strategic analysts. Mike Green holds the Japan chair at Washington’s Centre for Strategic and International Studies and was for several years the Asia director at the National Security Council. He is also one of America’s foremost experts on Japan and northeast Asia generally.

    His thesis, applied strictly to the US position in Asia, is correct.

    First, Green states and acknowledges the negatives. He writes: “The Iraq war has had one important, pernicious impact on US interests in Asia: it has consumed US attention.”

    Yet Green’s positive thesis is fascinating. The US’s three most important Asian alliances – with Australia, Japan and South Korea – have in his view been strengthened by the Iraq campaign. Each of these nations sent substantial numbers of troops to help the US in Iraq. They did this because they believed in what the US was doing in Iraq, and also because they wanted to use the Iraq campaign as an opportunity to strengthen their alliances with the US.

  6. Did anybody see Keith Olbermann on Letterman the other night?

    The man looks like a big fat round WOODTICK that just dropped off a dog! I kid you not! I had no idea Olbermann was so grossly overweight!

  7. I believe its humor. Although I maintain, it has all the earmarks (pardon the expression) of the burning bag of poop – snickering in the bushes (again pardon the expression) type. I think the adults should have a nice place to talk things out and ‘students’ should not abuse Professor Turley’s blog-estate. Did I mention there is a confederate among them ?

  8. Jill,
    Lovely poetry.

    Binx, Raflaw & Susan
    Remember COINTELPRO? Notice Niblet’s lacking sense of humor running through all his posts. I’m thinking Homeland Security or Rovian Republicanism gone wild. However, it might also be that the Niblet et. al. group is attempting irony, or even humor. There is something to be said for an ability to achieve boring discourse on so many levels of possibility.
    Mike

  9. Michael, you said exactly what I feel.

    To All:

    from the diary of Lady Izumi Shikibu (10-11th century Japan)

    From darkness
    I go onto the road
    of darkness.
    Moon, shine on me from far
    over the mountain range.

    Peace people,

    Jill

  10. I hadn’t thought of that either, it’s very possible. But I notice that every time one of us slams the Administration or those who support it’s pro-torture position, we get responses that totally distract from the topic of discussion, which is torture and the fact it’s a crime. Which I believe is intentional on their part.

    There are those who for whatever reason(s) don’t WANT to see the President or anyone in the White House made accountable, either criminally or politically. So they seek to distract us — and no doubt other groups — with irrelevant rants about Vietnam and other such nonsense, hoping we’ll change the subject. Too bad for them. It isn’t going to work.

  11. Binx,
    I never thought of that, but you could be right on the team aspect of Niblet. Maybe I will have to refer to him in the future as Niblet, et al.

  12. Folks:

    It is my opinion that poster niblet is not a singular poster at all. My theory is that the political comments are that of team of people – I suspect students – performing a kind of experiment. The language is never consistent, nor is the logic, nor is the motivation.

    At times it seems the sensitivities are reflective of feminine depth and other times not particularly insightful at all. While not a bad thing, I fear these conversations are the game or experiment of younger people, perhaps students, performing an experiment or merely occupied with something more cerebral than setting bags of poop afire on someone’s porch.

    In any case, I’ve never been a big fan of zoos, no less to be one of its denizen.

  13. Sometimes, my having lived for awhile brings with it an admixture of anger and despair in surveying the governmental/political scene. I remember when a congressional subpoena, or a request to testify to one who is, or was an administration official, would be complied with as a matter of course. We have watched a parade of subpoena’s ignored and no sanctions imposed. At the same time MSM attention is lavished on, pseudo-celebrities, baseball players use of steroids and political horse races devoid of positional content.

    This administration has ignored the constitution, flouted political morality, betrayed our judicial system, while prosecuting an unneeded and immoral war. Yet no one is held even minimally accountable and our corporate controlled media focuses on the inane and irrelevant. I find it difficult at times, as one who loves this country and its constitutional ideals, to swallow down the despairing feeling that we have indeed become a “banana republic.” or even a fascist state.

    Mr. Yoo is a disgusting symptom of how far we have fallen and the gall of it is his tenured position at a prestigious law school. Were it not for my family, friends and my hopes for their futures I would have long since allowed this despair to wash over me and allowed my attention span to focus solely on my own pleasures.

  14. Niblet:

    Same old right-wing toilet-stall toe tapping crap. Farmers are now beginning to sell their water rights because they can make money without the farming hassle. When the food shortages hit the US, and they will, and hording and riots start, the NeoCons will be headed for the bunkers and leaving you and the other right-wingers out in the cold. How long do you think your ideology will sustain you?

  15. Niblet,
    You never cease to amaze me with your nonsense. The Left didn’t start the war in Iraq, George W. Bush and his cabal of felons are behind it with the unfortunate assistance of some Dems in Congress. Professor Turley is correct that the Democratic Congress needs to push the Torture matter for what it is. A criminal offense. By the way, the war in Iraq is not a battle of Democracy. It is a battle for Oil and corporate profit. And now you bring Vietnam into this mix? I won’t even ask what connection Vietnam has to the torture issue and Iraq. Wait a minute, I remember the connection now. We prosecuted Americans soldiers for torture during Vietnam.

  16. Will Media Remember it was Gore’s 1994 Tie-breaking Vote that Mandated Ethanol?

    As the international disaster of ethanol begins taking its toll across the planet — and, maybe more important, as more and more press outlets finally begin to recognize it — will media remember that Vice President Al Gore cast the tie-breaking vote in the Senate requiring this oxygenate be added to gasoline by 1995?

    Seems highly unlikely, doesn’t it?

    But I digress. Liberals keep throwing the “torture” garbage out secretly hoping it is still enough to rile up Sadr & the militias into open civil war so they can say “told ya so”.

    It is amazing how the left in America is so willing to push an agenda that is getting American soldiers killed while accomplishing a noble and worthy in a battle for Democracy for the middle east.

    Of course it was the left that left Vietnam to the Communists.

  17. JT:

    Had I been around, I would have advised Eichmann to do the same thing.

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