The four memos from the Department of Justice addresses the legal director of the CIA published mid-April show that officials appointed by the Bush administration were using clever arguments to justify harsh interrogation techniques. The brutality of these techniques has shocked many.
Supporters of the practice of the Bush era feel, for their part, the precision and detail of these memos show that precautions have been taken to avert death or what was regarded as an illegal pain. To approve projects for the CIA on interrogation, the experts of the legal bureau of the Department of Justice examines the very specific terminology employed in the recent U.S. legislation and international instruments relating to torture not to mention a few cases of jurisprudence.
The interrogators could imprison a detainee to the floor or ceiling to keep him awake for more than seven days, but they should give him a normal sleep period before repeating. They could lock him in a box and narrow dark for more than eight hours, but had to get out six hours a day. The interrogators could change the diet of prisoners, slap them, hit them in the stomach, causing them stressful and uncomfortable positions, and pour cold water for at least twenty minutes.
Scott Horton, adjunct professor at the Faculty of Law at Columbia, notes that the Department of Justice approves the same modern equivalent of room 101 of the Ministry of Love imagined in 1984 by George Orwell, in which prisoners are the experience of their greatest fear.
In the book, the jailers of Winston Smith raised his face against a cage full of rats. In a secret prison of the CIA, American agents were allowed to place Zayn al-Abidin Mohammed Hussein, a member of al-Qaida more known as Abu Zoubaida in a box and pretend ‘to introduce an insect bite which he feared.
Bybee, the deputy justice minister, in a memo dated August 1, 2002 addressed to John A. Rizzo, who still holds the position of legal director of the CIA. The Department of Justice has gone very far into detail.