Jonathan Fredman
"If the detainee dies, you're doing it wrong"

The allegations are false.

The following document was released by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence pursuant to a FOIA request by The Washington Independent, and a second FOIA request by ProPublica:

Letter to the Senate Armed Services Committee

Bart Gellman notes,

I have come to believe I did an injustice to Jonathan Fredman, a senior lawyer for the CIA and Office of the Director of National Intelligence. On p. 187 I quoted an infamous line he is said to have delivered at Guantanamo Bay (“if the detainee dies, you’re doing it wrong”), the source of which was an unsigned memo released by the Senate Armed Service Committee. Upon closer inspection and further reporting, I have lost confidence in this document, which purports to be minutes of a meeting Fredman attended but plainly departs from verbatim quotation. I have removed the reference to this alleged quotation in the paperback, with an explanation in the chapter notes.

http://www.bartongellman.com/angler/comments.php

Additional background is contained in the following articles:

http://www.lawfareblog.com/memo-press-just-shut-about-jonathan-fredman

http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/or_20090110_9776.php

http://stuarttaylorjr.com/sources/40

One of the most quotable phrases coming out of Bush’s Global War on Terrorism now appears to be highly questionable. Then-CIA lawyer Jonathan Fredman was quoted by Senator Carl Levin, Chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, as having said that the standard of detainee treatment during interrogations was “basically subject to perception. If the detainee dies you’re doing it wrong.”

This quote continues to be used in articles and books, but reporting by Stuart Taylor, Jr. (no relation) in the National Journal and by Benjamin Wittes of Lawfare sheds light on the shaky ground on which it rests.

Read more:

http://centerforpolicyandresearch.com/2013/04/05/if-the-detainee-dies-youre-doing-it-wrong


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