NY Times - The Trump administration is preparing a sweeping executive order that would clear the way for the Central Intelligence Agency to reopen overseas “black site” prisons, like those where it detained and tortured terrorism suspects before former President Obama shut them down.
President Trump’s three-page draft order, titled “Detention and Interrogation of Enemy Combatants,” and obtained by The New York Times would also undo many of the other restrictions on handling detainees that Mr. Obama put in place in response to policies of the Bush administration.
If Mr. Trump signs the draft order, he would also revoke Mr. Obama’s directive to give the International Committee of the Red Cross access to all wartime detainees in American custody – another step toward reopening secret prisons outside of the normal wartime rules established by the Geneva Conventions.
.... The draft order does not direct any immediate reopening of C.I.A. prisons or revival of torture tactics, which are now barred by statute. But it sets up high-level policy reviews to make further recommendations in both areas to Mr. Trump, who vowed during the campaign to bring back waterboarding and a “hell of a lot worse” – not only because “torture works,” but because even “if it doesn’t work, they deserve it anyway.”
Elisa Massimino, the director of Human Rights First, denounced the draft order as “flirting with a return to the ‘enhanced interrogation program’ and the environment that gave rise to it.” She noted that numerous retired military leaders have rejected torture as “illegal, immoral, and damaging to national security,” and said many of Mr. Trump’s cabinet nominees had seemed to share that view in their confirmation testimony.