WASHINGTON (AP) – President Bush said Saturday he vetoed legislation that would ban the CIA from using harsh interrogation methods such as waterboarding to break suspected terrorists because it would end practices that have prevented attacks.
“The bill Congress sent me would take away one of the most valuable tools in the war on terror,” Bush said in his weekly radio address taped for broadcast Saturday. “So today I vetoed it,” Bush said. The bill he rejected provides guidelines for intelligence activities for the year and has the interrogation requirement as one provision. It cleared the House in December and the Senate last month.
“This is no time for Congress to abandon practices that have a proven track record of keeping America safe,” the president said.
The President also defended the way terror suspects are being interrogated. CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric sat down with the President for an exclusive interview at the White House, and she asked him about this transfer to Guantanamo.
“The reason why we’re moving them there is we want them to go through a military tribunal. We want them to receive the justice that they denied other people,” Mr. Bush said. **“But the other thing is that we have to have the capacity to interrogate â€” not torture, but interrogate people to learn information.” **
Nice. So America doesn’t torture high-value prisoners, but, then the President vetoes a bill that would prevent waterboarding which is by any definition torture.