The Bush administration yesterday announced the nomination of Timothy E. Flanigan, a former White House lawyer and a senior vice president at Tyco International Ltd., to take over as second-in-command at the Justice Department.
The nomination of Flanigan, 51, could prompt a debate in the Senate because of his involvement in setting interrogation and detention policies while he was at the White House and because the ongoing prosecutions of two former Tyco executives are being overseen by the deputy attorney general’s office.
Officials have said Flanigan was involved in some of the most controversial decisions to come out of that office after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, including the finding that the Geneva Conventions’ protections did not apply to suspected terrorists captured on the battlefield.
He was also involved in discussions that led to a Justice Department memo, since withdrawn, dramatically narrowing the definition of what constitutes torture, officials have said.
Flanigan joined Tyco as senior vice president and general counsel in November 2002, after two former executives now on trial in New York left the company. L. Dennis Kozlowski and Mark Swartz are accused of misrepresenting the company’s financial condition and improperly taking bonuses.
I see this as an opportunity to shine a bright light on the Bush assministration’s torture policies. I’m nearly to the point of disbelieving the assministration would be so stupid as to open up this entire can of worms again, but then I remember what an arrogant prick Bush is.