One in particular, he said, “would not necessarily implode the national security of the United States. But certainly it would be embarrassing. And ugly. And shocking.”
Mr. Ruiz argued that, despite the Bush administration’s effort to “legalize torture” through Justice Department memos authorizing waterboarding and other “enhanced interrogation techniques,” the record showed that Mr. Hawsawi’s captors “exceeded, ignored and violated even those specific guidelines.”
The C.I.A., for example, has never acknowledged the waterboarding of Mr. Hawsawi. But in April 2003, his second month of custody, according to a Senate study, Mr. Hawsawi “cried out for God” while he was subjected to a waterboarding technique at a particularly brutal C.I.A. prison in Afghanistan with the code name Cobalt.
Some violations were “outright vengeance or retribution,” Mr. Ruiz said. Others were a result of a lack of training and guidance, or what Dr. James E. Mitchell, the psychologist who waterboarded prisoners for the C.I.A., testified years ago constituted “abusive drift.”
Mr. Ruiz urged the judge to reject a prosecution argument that, at trial, the government would rely on evidence gathered by the F.B.I. as part of a criminal investigation, rather than intelligence gathering by the C.I.A., which was interrogating the Sept. 11 defendants from 2002 to 2006, before their transfer to Guantánamo Bay.