Investigate destruction of CIA tapes

The word out of Washington reveals new information surrounding the destruction of CIA interrogation videotapes that feature two al-Qaida suspects. While the length of the tapes had already been made known, federal prosecutors announced Monday that a total of 92 videotapes were destroyed in November 2005. What makes the situation raise eyebrows is the fact that the interrogations of Abu Zubaydah and Abd alâÄìRahim alâÄìNashir, which were recorded on the destroyed tapes, were deemed harsh at a time when Congress questioned tactics used in the CIAâÄôs interrogation and detention program. Hmm, smells like a coverâÄìup. According to an article in The New York Times, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the agency for violation of the Freedom of Information Act. In submitting documents at a New York City court, the ACLU wants the judge in the case to hold the CIA in contempt for destroying the tapes. Finally: the chance for a major federal agency to be held accountable for its questionable actions. The Editorial Board canâÄôt help but wonder why Jose A. Rodriguez Jr., head of the agencyâÄôs clandestine service, authorized the destruction of the tapes in question. What was wrong with keeping the footage secure in a safe in Thailand until the U.S. government could properly declare that the CIA was not guilty of employing suspicious interrogation tactics? By destroying the tapes at such a seemingly opportune time to avoid potential backlash, the CIA has cast a cloud of suspicion over itself that cannot go away without further investigation. This editorial, accessed via UWire, was originally published in the Independent Florida Alligator at the University of Florida. Please send comments to [email protected].