A declassified, but redacted document by the CIA Inspector General details interrogation practices, including mock executions, and at least one prisoner was threatened with a gun and a power drill.
Sponsored by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), this law aimed to ban torture, including waterboarding.
“In order to respect the President’s inherent constitutional authority to manage a military campaign against Al Qaeda and its allies, Section 2340A must be construed as not applying to interrogations undertaken pursuant to his Commander in Chief authority.”
– Jay S. Bybee, as head of the Office of Legal Counsel, in an Aug. 1, 2002 memo
“The President, like all officers of the government, is not above the law. He has a sworn duty to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution, and faithfully execute the laws of the United States.” – Steven G. Bradbury of the Office of Legal Counsel in 2005.
“The text and history of the Constitution, supported by interpretations of past administrations, the courts and Congress, show that the president has the independent, nonstatutory power to take military actions, domestic as well as foreign, if he determines such actions to be necessary to respond to the terrorist attacks upon the United States on Sept. 11 and before.” – John Yoo’s conclusion on page 14 of this Oct 23, 2001 memo.