Knee-Jerk Redaction?

After CIA Director Michael Hayden publicly admitted that the CIA has, in fact, waterboarded detainees, the agency could no longer cling to its last excuses for covering up the use of the very word “waterboarding” in CIA records. As a result, yesterday we obtained several heavily redacted documents in response to an ongoing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit brought by the ACLU and other organizations seeking documents related to the treatment of prisoners in U.S. custody overseas.

While the documents do, in fact, reveal the word “waterboarding” or some variation, they leave pretty much everything else to the imagination. The pages that haven’t been completely withheld (many of them contain the words “Denied in Full” instead of any actual content) have the clandestine blacked-out look that’s become a sort of trademark of this administration. This is my favorite:

Click the image to enlarge

One of the documents is a heavily redacted version of a report (PDF) by the CIA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) on its review of the CIA’s interrogation and detention program. The report includes information about an as-yet-undisclosed Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel opinion from August 2002. Interestingly, this opinion appears to be the same OLC memo authorizing specific interrogations methods for use by the CIA that is being withheld by the CIA as a classified document in the ACLU’s FOIA litigation — but the OIG report refers to this document as “unclassified.”

The CIA continues to withhold many more documents that should not be secret. The incomplete response to the ACLU’s demand for records reflects a complete disregard for the right of the American public to know when and how often the government has employed illegal interrogation methods.

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You should make a fund-raising T-shirt of that page.

The shape already suggests a T-shirt, with the redacted title at the top kind-of like the neckline, and the image as a whole is... emblematic.

Presumably, if the document is US-govt produced, it's in the public domain, and as it only uses one ink it should be cheap to screen-print.


I'd buy one.


First, lol at the document. Thats just retarded. It can't be real.

Second, if it is indeed real, they wonder why Americans always have conspiracy theories and such.

Why so sterotypes exists? Mostly because the majority of the time they are true.

I believe our government cover up much of what they do. Either for national safety or because they know its illegal.

Either way you can't really stop them and good luck to those who try.


The conduct of this administration with regards to interrogation and detention is truly appalling. Waterboarding, as with other forms of torture, is not only morally wrong and endangering to out troops but is also ineffective. The sooner this administration (or the next) lets up the better.


I'd buy one too. For real.


I'd buy one. I think it should have some sort of caption on it like "freedom of information act".


I'd suggest a caption along the lines of 'if this is what they'll show us, what are they hiding?'


It is "redacted", not "retracted."


Looks like a document put out by The Onion.


This is a complete JOKE. I'm beyond being embarassed and beyond being surprised by this kind of behavior. We have, what, 8 more months of this?


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