[A]n internal FBI memo indicates that the directive to discard traditional restraints came from the very highest civilian official in the Pentagon: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.
That revealing memo is dated May 10, 2004, a time when the Abu Ghraib revelations were humiliating the United States before the entire world. An e-mail, it is addressed to FBI counterterrorism officer Thomas J. Harrington from an agent whose name is redacted (along with much else), and its subject is captioned “Instructions to GTMO [Guantnamo] Interrogators.” The memo’s obvious purpose is to set down, for the record, the FBI’s opposition to the Pentagon’s use of coercive and abusive methods when questioning the Guantnamo detainees. It describes the FBI’s fundamental disagreement over interrogation tactics with Gen. Geoffrey Miller and Gen. Michael Dunlavey, then the military commanders at Guantnamo Bay.
“I will have to do some digging into old files,” the unnamed author begins. “We did advise each supervisor that went to GTMO to stay in line with Bureau policy and not deviate from that … I went to GTMO … We had also met with Generals Dunlevy & Miller explaining our position (Law Enforcement Techniques) vs. DoD [Department of Defense]. Both agreed the Bureau has their way of doing business and DoD has their marching orders from the SecDef [Secretary of Defense]. Although the two techniques [of interrogation] differed drastically, both Generals believed they had a job to accomplish.”
The e-mail goes on to recall how, during the questioning of one prisoner, the Pentagon interrogators wanted to “pursue expeditiously their methods” to “get more out of him … We were given a so-called deadline to use our traditional methods.”