The CIA Executive Order

Marty Lederman explains:

The only truly important section of the E.O. is section 3(b)(i)(C), which defines the category of violence that will be deemed to violate Common Article 3 for purposes of determining whether a CIA interrogation program comports with CA3. In addition to torture as defined by the federal criminal statute, and the forms of violence that remain prohibited under the new WCA, that subsection of the E.O. prohibits only "other acts of violence serious enough to be considered comparable to murder, torture, mutilation, and cruel or inhuman treatment, as defined in [the War Crimes Act]."

In other words, if a form of violence is not already prohibited by federal criminal law, and is not "comparable" to the forms of violence prohibited by the WCA, the CIA is not prohibited from using it.

Does this prohibit the CIA "enhanced" techniques? Who knows? Are they "comparable" to what the WCA prohibits? You tell me.

Whatever else these new rules are, they are anything but clear. You can read the full text here.