Tuesday, December 11, 2007

 

Rizzo not asked for final approval

John C. Truong
Lawyers gave written approval in advance to the destruction in 2005 of hundreds of hours of videotapes documenting CIA interrogations. John A. Rizzo, the agency’s top lawyer at the time, was not asked for final approval before the tapes were destroyed, although Mr. Rizzo had been involved in discussions for two years about the tapes. It is unclear what weight an opinion from a lawyer within the clandestine service would have if it were not formally approved by Mr. Rizzo. But the former official said Mr. Rodriguez and others in the clandestine branch believed the legal judgment gave them the blessing to destroy the tapes. Leaders of the clandestine service believed they “didn’t need to ask Rizzo’s permission.” here

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