Burn After Viewing: The CIA’s Destruction of the Abu Zubaydah Tapes and the Law of Federal Records

On December 6, 2007, the Central Intelligence Agency publicly disclosed that in 2005 it had destroyed videotapes of CIA interrogations of alleged terrorist Abu Zubaydah conducted in 2002 and asserted that the destruction was “in line with the law.” The disclosure resulted in calls for congressional investigations; a motion for contempt in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) suit by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU); emergency motions in Guantánamo detainee cases; questions about the case of Zacharias Moussaoui; and an angry op-ed from the chairmen of the 9/11 Commission. The crux of these public reactions – as with the criminal investigation that resulted – was primarily the narrow issue whether the destruction of the tapes was illegal because they were relevant to pending or foreseeable cases or investigations.

2 thoughts on “Burn After Viewing: The CIA’s Destruction of the Abu Zubaydah Tapes and the Law of Federal Records”

  1. note to self..file under

    ..holy moly Batman, if we get caught with the evidence, we might be prosecuted.” DOH!

    unfreakingbelievable. . I’m ashamed of our government, congress and president. This is not the nation I made a Pledge of Allegiance to for 12 years. I can see now that the CIA is a den of cockroaches bathing in a cesspool of filthy self preservation, lawlessness and deceit. Shame on them and shame on the DOJ for their complicity.

    Had these tapes become viewable by the public at large, there would have been no where for these criminals to hide. They are despicable, repugnant and by any measure of morality, a cabal of evil and conscious less liars and murderers.

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