Yoo's Memo Hints at Bush's Secrets By Jason Leopold, April 6, 2008


Yoo's Memo Hints at Bush's Secrets

By Jason Leopold
April 6, 2008

The Pentagon’s declassification of a five-year-old memo authorizing military interrogators to use brutal methods to extract information from prisoners at Guantanamo Bay sheds new light into the dark corners of the Bush administration’s legal theories that put the President and his subordinates beyond domestic and international law.

In the March 14, 2003, memo – which was released this past week – administration lawyer John Yoo cited the principle of national “self-defense” in combating terrorism as grounds for justifying harsh treatment of detainees up to and including death.

Yet, as Yoo advanced his argument for virtually unfettered presidential war-time powers regarding the treatment of prisoners, the memo also pointed to other still-secret documents suggesting the administration was prepared to take its authority even further, into domestic military operations that would brush aside constitutional protections.

Yoo footnoted one of his earlier memos, dated Oct. 23, 2001, entitled "Authority for Use of Military Force to Combat Terrorist Activities Within the United States.” According to the footnote, that memo “concluded that the Fourth Amendment had no application to domestic military operations.”

The memo – with its provocative title – has remained a closely held administration secret, kept even from the House Judiciary Committee which renewed its request for the document on Thursday.

It’s now clear, however, that from inside the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, Yoo and his colleagues were churning out a series of memos that fit with President George W. Bush’s desire to be “forward-leaning” – or extremely aggressive – in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.

Though the Oct. 23, 2001, memo is still secret, some of Yoo’s thinking on domestic military operations was revealed in an even earlier memo, written 10 days after the 9/11 attacks, on Sept. 21, 2001.

In that memo, Yoo cited hypothetical cases in which U.S. military action against suspected terrorists on U.S. territory – such as a raid against a hideout or use of military checkpoints – might endanger Americans or intrude on their constitutional rights.

Yoo argued that President Bush would “be justified in taking measures which in less troubled conditions could be seen as infringements of individual liberties. … We think that the Fourth Amendment should be no more relevant than it would be in cases of invasion or insurrection."

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.”

But Yoo’s Sept. 21, 2001, memo argued that the “war on terror” could justify domestic surveillance activities, such as monitoring telephone calls without a court warrant, that otherwise might violate the Fourth Amendment. [NYT, Oct. 24, 2004]

Continued: http://www.consortiumnews.com/2008/040608a.html

That John Yoo is one sick puppy. He makes a fine tool for the

warmongering, fascistic NeoCons.

Consider mass emailing truth messages. More info here: http://www.911blogger.com/node/13321