Rush Holt Finally Wins on Videotaping Military Interrogations
Tuesday, May 18, 2010 at 1:12 pm
The New Jersey Democratic legislator and intelligence oversight maven has finally won on a fight he’s waged to record military interrogations. As The Wall Street Journal reports, a May 10 memo from Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn instructs interrogators gathering high-value intelligence off the battlefield — that is, Bagram and Guantanamo Bay in particular — to get their videocameras out when talking with detainees.
That’s been a concern of Holt’s for a while. He’s argued that not only will videotaping interrogations function as a measure to prevent detainee abuse, but it’ll create a useful lessons-learned library for training interrogators or honing their skills. Last October, he got a measure requiring the videotaping into the conference report for the defense appropriations bill.
“The Pentagon’s long awaited regulation of the provision I secured in last year’s National Defense Authorization Act continues the process of putting our detainee policies back on sound legal footing while improving our ability to get actionable intelligence,” Holt said in response to a request for comment from TWI (and subsequently emailed out in a press release). “As President Obama and local law enforcement officials across the country already know, we get better intelligence and protect both the interrogator and the person being interrogated by requiring recordings.”
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