THE BLOG

92 Destroyed Tapes: A Need to Shed Light on Cheney's "Dark Side"

When I first posed these hard questions in the NY Times about the C.I.A. torture tapes, we were all under the belief that only two tapes had been destroyed. Now that we know it was ninety two tapes, all kinds of further questions emerge. But the most pressing is this one: how can this still be swept under the rug?! Sweeping dark things under the rug is never the answer. And despite the crude attempt to avoid accountability by shredding the evidence, I can't imagine a time there was such a need for an independent prosecutor to shed light on what Cheney once termed "the dark side".

Destroyed: The C.I.A. Torture Tapes


Published in NY Times: December 11, 2007

To the Editor:

Re ''C.I.A. Destroyed 2 Tapes Showing Interrogations'' (front page, Dec. 7):
You don't need to have worked as an F.B.I. agent for 24 years as I did to know that shredding the evidence is always a clue.

What's the common thread underlying the C.I.A.'s destruction of videotaped harsh interrogations in the midst of ongoing legal inquiries; President Bush's last-minute commutation of Scooter Libby's prison sentence; the millions of White House e-mail records missing in violation of the Presidential Records Act; and the administration's current push to give immunity to the telecommunication companies suspected of engaging in illegal eavesdropping and surveillance of Americans?

Clearly, the only way the Bush gang can protect itself now from accountability is to suppress the truth. To do so, officials must destroy hard evidence and, at the same time, protect and immunize those who followed their illegal orders.

Their contempt for the rule of law cannot get much worse. They learned from Nixon's Watergate, and they're trying not to leave any Oval Office tapes around.

Coleen Rowley
Apple Valley, Minn., Dec. 7, 2007