Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Former Pentagon chief lawyer William "Jim" Haynes II had his day before Congress, answering questions about torture, Abu Ghraib, and the like.

Except he didn't answer the questions. As Dana Milbank counted, In two hours of testimony, Haynes managed to get off no fewer than 23 don't recalls, 22 don't remembers, 16 don't knows, and various other protestations of memory loss.

This is the worst case of stonewalling since Alberto Gonzales' long-running series of unhelpful and uninformative appearances before Congress, after a selective lobotomy ruined any relevant memories.

Does ANYBODY really believe that Haynes can't remember things like whether he saw a memo outlining the effects of torture? This isn't like asking what you had for breakfast on September 28, 2006. This is something that I would imagine was a bit unusual.

Why can't Congress do more to compel people like Haynes and Gonzales to answer the questions? Maybe Congress should consider reviving its power to jail people.

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