John Choon Yoo (born July 10, 1967) is an American attorney, law professor, and author. He served as a political appointee, the Assistant US Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel, Department of Justice (OLC), during the George W. Bush administration. He is best known for his opinions concerning the Geneva Conventions which legitimized the War on Terror by the United States. He also authored the so called Torture Memos, which concerned the use of what the Central Intelligence Agency called enhanced interrogation techniques including waterboarding....
Yoo is best known for his work from 2001 to 2003 in the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) under Attorney General John Ashcroft during the George W. Bush Administration. Yoo's expansive view of presidential power led to a close relationship with Vice President Dick Cheney's office. He played an important role in developing a legal justification for the Bush administration's policy in the war on terrorism, arguing that prisoner of war status under the Geneva Conventions does not apply to "enemy combatants" captured during the war in Afghanistan and held at the Guantánamo Bay detention camp.
In addition, in what was known as the Bybee memo, Yoo asserted that executive authority during wartime allows waterboarding and other "enhanced interrogation techniques" usually regarded as torture. Yoo argued in his legal opinion that the president was not bound by the War Crimes Act. In addition, he provided a legal opinion backing the Bush Administration's warrantless wiretapping program.
Yoo's legal opinions were not shared by everyone within the Bush Administration. Secretary of State Colin Powell strongly opposed what he saw as an invalidation of the Geneva Conventions, while U.S. Navy general counsel Alberto Mora campaigned internally against what he saw as the "catastrophically poor legal reasoning" and dangerous extremism of Yoo's opinions.
In December 2003, Yoo's memo on permissible interrogation techniques, also known as the Bybee memo, was repudiated as legally unsound by the OLC, then under the direction of Jack Goldsmith. In June 2004, another of Yoo's memos on interrogation techniques was leaked to the press, after which it was repudiated by Goldsmith and the OLC.
Yoo's contribution to these memos has remained a source of controversy following his departure from the Justice Department; he was called to testify before the House Judiciary Committee in 2008 in defense of his role. The Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) began investigating Yoo's work in 2004 and in July 2009 completed a report that was sharply critical of his legal justification for waterboarding and other interrogation techniques. The OPR report cites testimony Yoo gave to Justice Department investigators in which he claims that the "president's war-making authority was so broad that he had the constitutional power to order a village to be 'massacred'" The OPR report concluded that Yoo had "committed 'intentional professional misconduct' when he advised the CIA it could proceed with waterboarding and other aggressive interrogation techniques against Al Qaeda suspects
That's a very bad thing to do. It sounds like Holder.
"... [Yoo's and Bybee's] memoranda represent an unfortunate chapter in the history of the Office of Legal Counsel. While I have declined to adopt OPR's findings of misconduct, I fear that John Yoo's loyalty to his own ideology and convictions clouded his view of his obligation to his client and led him to author opinions which reflected his own extreme, although sincerely held, views of executive power while speaking for an institutional client."
James Steele, in charge of the US Death Squads [Paramilitary] in El Salvador where 75,000 civilians were killed was placed by Cheney and Rumsfeld as ‘OUR MAN IN IRAQ’ to train the counter insurgency. Also involved with Elliot Abrams and Ollie North in the Iran Contra Affair. War criminal
Ashcroft defends waterboarding before House panelStory Highlights
Ex-attorney general says waterboarding more effective than other techniques
John Ashcroft says he opposes torture but says waterboarding isn't torture
Congress failed to override President Bush's veto of bill to ban waterboarding
Waterboarding is an interrogation technique that simulates drowning
Let me help JohnPhoenix a bit , by giving you a example of his view, Layman Terms if I may.
Originally posted by charles1952
reply to post by JohnPhoenix
So, to claim that the US is the worst country and government that has ever existed seems extreme and makes me wonder about the value of your opinion on the subject.
I'm not sure the UN could inflict regime change on anyone let alone the US. The rest of the world? Italy, for example, is going to say "Your secret agencies killed a thousand people in South America outside the rule of law, and you waterboarded three terrorists, so we are going to forget our former friendship until we replace your government with one chosen by the people. Oh, wait." Simply to say it is to show how nearly inconceivable it would be.
wouldn't that leave the US open to regime change inflicted by the UN or the rest of the world?
First revealed by Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti in 1991, Gladio (from the Latin for "sword") is still protected to this day by its founding patrons, the CIA and MI6. Yet parliamentary investigations in Italy, Switzerland and Belgium have shaken out a few fragments of the truth over the years. These have been gathered in a new book, "NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe," by Daniele Ganser, as Lila Rajiva reports on CommonDreams.org.
Originally set up as a network of clandestine cells to be activated behind the lines in the event of a Soviet invasion of Western Europe, Gladio quickly expanded into a tool for political repression and manipulation, directed by NATO and Washington. Using right-wing militias, underworld figures, government provocateurs and secret military units, Gladio not only carried out widespread terrorism, assassinations and electoral subversion in democratic states such as Italy, France and West Germany, but also bolstered fascist tyrannies in Spain and Portugal, abetted the military coup in Greece and aided Turkey's repression of the Kurds.
Among the "smoking guns" unearthed by Ganser is a Pentagon document, Field Manual FM 30-31B, which details the methodology for launching terrorist attacks
Total of 2.2 million. A good guess would be that half of the deaths, or more, were uniformed soldiers fighting each other. War is terrible, but not illegal.
The toll of the war included about 1.2 million deaths in South Korea, 1 million deaths in North Korea, 36,500 deaths for U.S. troops and 600,000 deaths for Chinese soldiers.
Results From 1955 to 2002, data from the surveys indicated an estimated 5.4 million violent war deaths (95% confidence interval 3.0 to 8.7 million) in 13 countries, ranging from 7000 in the Democratic Republic of Congo to 3.8 million in Vietnam. From 1995 to 2002 survey data indicate 36?000 war deaths annually (16?000 to 71?000) in the 13 countries studied. Data from passive surveillance, however, indicated a figure of only a third of this. On the basis of the relation between world health survey data and passive reports, we estimate 378?000 globalwar deaths annually from 1985-94, the last years for which complete passive surveillance data were available.
Originally posted by charles1952
I'm just saying that the US doesn't violate human rights on a scale that makes them the world's worst criminals. I suspect North Korea, China, and some other countries hold that title now. Certainly we look small compared to rulers throughout history.
Violations of human rights are bad things. War is a bad thing. It would be nice to see it all stop.
Do you think I disagree? I don't.
However, I do feel a responsibility to demand that justice be carried out for those guilty of war crimes in the present day. It's important that Americans stand up and say "No More!"
Geneva International Centre for Justice considers that the catastrophic Human Rights situation in Iraq must be addressed by all relevant UN agencies and mechanisms as well as by civil society organisations working in the field, as a matter of priority.
Moreover, it has resulted in numerous far-reaching consequences world-wide. As Desmond Tutu said, the immorality of the United States and Great Britain`s decision to invade Iraq in 2003, premised on the lie that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, has destabilized and polarized the world to a greater extent than any other conflict in history.All necessary means to sustain modern life were largely destroyed, looted, or burned down in defiance of the Geneva Conventions