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Yoo: I Defended 'Torture Memos' for Obama's Sake

Bush lawyer says he was fighting to preserve executive power
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 24, 2010 5:14 AM CST
Yoo: I Defended 'Torture Memos' for Obama's Sake
John Yoo, a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this Thursday, June 26, 2008 file photo.    (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

(Newser) – The Bush administration lawyer who authored memos blessing harsh interrogation techniques and warrantless wiretaps says he's been defending himself in order to help...President Obama. The president "may not realize it, but I may have just helped save his presidency," by winning a fight "to protect his powers as commander in chief to wage war and keep Americans safe" John Yoo writes in the Wall Street Journal.

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It's not been an easy fight, dealing with a Justice Department "witch-hunt" and an administration "hell-bent on finding scapegoats for its policy disagreements with the last president," Yoo writes. It had to been done, however, to keep the commander in chief's power intact and ensure that American commanders fighting war in Iraq, Afghanistan, and against al-Qaeda can make hard choices without worrying about coming under attack from vengeful prosecutors and congressional committees upon their return home.
(Read more Office of Professional Responsibility stories.)

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