It is a standard procedure for criminal prosecutors targeting large-scale criminal enterprises to "start at the bottom" and work up through the ranks of the organization to ultimately bring to justice the higher-ups who ordered and ran the crimes. The record on the torture program of the CIA is now partially revealed, with the release of the 500-page unclassified summary. Col. Lang is absolutely correct that the full, unredacted 6,000 page SSCI report should be declassified and made public. It should serve as the prosecutors handbook for pursing a RICO case against the entire apparatus behind the policy. This is not only a matter of sound criminal law. It is vital for the United States to be able to move beyond the post-9/11 slope towards unconstitutional police-state authority vested in the executive branch and its agencies.
CIA officers interviewed by the media since the release of the SSCI summary have made clear that many officers inside the Agency knew that the program being mandated from the Bush-Cheney White House was illegal and would lead to disaster. They explained that many CIA officers refused to participate and, as a result, outside contractors were widely used--including the so-called psychologists who adopted the S.E.R.E. methods to the "enhanced interrogations."
This program was ordered, top-down by Vice President Cheney and others in the White House. The CIA attorneys went to the Department of Justice to obtain authorization for the "enhanced interrogation" methods employed. The culpability within the Bush-Cheney Executive Branch extends beyond the CIA.