Sep 082009

Wikipedia does a good job of drawing the strings together.  The text is below;  please click on the link to see the original, with active links and footnotes:

The Bush Six is a term which refers to six former
officials of the United States government under the presidency of George W.
Bush (2001–09), following the filing of criminal charges against them in
Spain.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9] In March 2009 Baltasar Garzón was asked to
consider whether Spain should allow charges to be filed against:

Alberto Gonzales,
former United States Attorney General and White House Counsel;

John Yoo, of the
Office of Legal Counsel;

Douglas Feith,
former undersecretary of defense for policy;

William Haynes II,
former general counsel for the Department of Defense (chief counsel for Donald

Jay Bybee, also at
the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel; and

David Addington,
former Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United States (under Dick

Jane Mayer, writing in The New Yorker, reported that
Phillipe Sands had predicted that charges would be laid against the six men
back in his 2008 book Torture Team.[4] Mayer reported that after hearing news
of the Spanish charges, Sands told her, “This is the end of these people’s
professional reputations! This is no joke. We’re talking about the serious
potential deprivation of liberty.”

Scott Horton, writing in The Daily Beast, reported on
April 13, 2009, that his sources said formal charges would be filed on April
14, 2009.[5][11][12] Horton reported that Garzón had been urged to allow
another judge, Ismail Moreno, to conduct the case, because he was still
involved in the possible prosecution of Spanish former Guantanamo captives.
Paul Havens, reporting for the Associated Press reported that an unnamed source
within the Spanish prosecutors office had told him that the charges would be
filed during the week of April 14, 2009.[13] CNN, also quoting an unnamed
source within the Spanish prosecutor’s office, reported that charges were not
expected for several days.[14]

On April 16, 2009, the Spanish Attorney General stated he
thought the Spanish investigative magistrate should drop the consideration of
charges against the six men.[15]

Under the Spanish justice system, investigating
magistrates like Garzón are not under the authority of the Attorney General,
and he can continue to consider laying charges even though the Attorney General
has advised against it.[15]

On April 23, 2009, Eloy Velasco took over responsibility
for determining whether or not the six former Bush officials should face
Spanish charges.[16]

The Guardian reported on April 29, 2009, that Garzón
initiated a formal investigation into whether confessions from four former
Guantanamo captives was the result of the use of abusive interrogation
techniques.[17][18][19] The four men: Hamed Abderrahman Ahmed, Lahcen
Ikassrien, Jamiel Abdul Latif al Banna and Omar Deghayes, had previously faced
charges in Spanish courts, based on confessions they made while in US custody.
Their charges had been dropped based on their claims that their confessions
were false and were the result of abusive interrogation techniques.

On May 5, 2009, Investigating Magistrate Eloy Velasco
formally requested the USA to indicate whether they were going to conduct a
domestic inquiry into the six men’s conduct.[20] Spain’s principle of universal
justice allows third party states to charge non-citizens, and request their
extradition, only when their country of citizenship has not conducted its own

On May 20, 2009, the New York Times reported that some
Spanish legislators were proposing a law to strip investigating magistrates of
the authority to pursue international human rights cases.[21] This law,
however, would not retroactively put an end to the progress of current cases.
It would merely have stopped the initiation of similar cases.

According to historian Andy Worthington, writing in the
Huffington Post, Spanish newspaper Público had reported that Garzón was
proceeding to the next phase of his investigation.[22] In February 2011,
Spain’s High Court led by Judge Ruz rejected a Spanish prosecutor’s effort to
stop the investigation. [23]

[edit] U.S. Embassy Cables

Numerous embassy cables leaked by the whistle-blowing
website Wikileaks centered on the progression of the case.[24][25][26] On April
1, 2009 a summary of the case was sent to the U.S. State Department by the
Madrid Embassy. The cable suggests that the U.S. had intended to convince
Spanish Officials to interfere with the National Court’s judicial independence:

we do not know if the government would be willing to take
the risky step of trying behind the scenes to influence the prosecutor’s
recommendation on this case or what their reaction to such a request would

The cable reveals that Chief Prosecutor Javier Zaragoza
intended to steer the case away from its assignment to Judge Baltasar Garzón
who is well known for investigating a universal jurisdiction case targeting
Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet and has been an outspoken critic of the
Guantanamo Bay detention facility and has publicly stated that former President
George W. Bush should be tried for war crimes.[28] Garzón was “forced to
give up” the case against the Bush Six to another judge who declined to
pursue the investigation.[16][29] Garzón, however, continued an investigation
in to torture at Guantanamo Bay and U.S. Officials indicated in a cable they
feared he may, “attempt to wring all the publicity he can from the case
unless and until he is forced to give it up.” [17]

U.S. Senators, Mel Martinez and Judd Gregg lobbied on behalf
of the U.S. government position as summarized in an embassy cable sent on April
17, 2009. Senator Martinez warned that, “the prosecutions would neither be
understood nor accepted in the U.S. and would have an enormous impact on the
bilateral relationship.” Spanish Foreign Minister Angel Lossada was quoted
as saying, “the National Court had broad jurisdiction for universal
justice and that there was no political influence on the judicial

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