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Bush Attorney General Pick Faces Opposition Over Torture Memo


A group of retired U.S. military officers is expressing "deep concern" about President Bush's nominee to lead the U.S. Justice Department.

The officers want Attorney General nominee Alberto Gonzales to explain his views on torture, and his role in crafting Bush administration policy on the treatment of terror suspects.

As the White House legal counsel, Mr. Gonzales wrote a January 2002 memo advising Mr. Bush that prisoner of war protections in the Geneva Convention were "rendered obsolete" by the U.S.-led war on terror. He later approved a separate Justice Department memo suggesting some legal defenses U.S. officials could use to defend themselves against prosecution for torture.

The group of officers includes retired Army General John Shalikashvili, who was chairman of the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff. Mr. Gonzales faces a Senate confirmation hearing on Thursday.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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