[JURIST] Pentagon General Counsel William J. Haynes II [official profile] will resign his position with the US Department of Defense [official website] next month, according to an announcement [text] from the DOD Monday. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates [official profile] commented that Haynes' tenure as DOD general counsel was the longest in US history. Principal Deputy General Counsel Daniel Dell'Orto [official profile] will serve as acting general counsel after Haynes' departure.
Haynes leaves the Department of Defense less than five months after former Guantanamo Bay chief military prosecutor Col. Morris Davis [official profile, PDF] resigned [JURIST report; JURIST op-ed] his position citing political pressure from the Defense Department. In an interview [text] with The Nation last week, Davis implied the tribunal process may be rigged [JURIST report], saying that Haynes had told him none of the detainees could be acquitted. President George W. Bush nominated Haynes for a federal appeals court judgeship multiple times since 2003, but the nomination was never approved by the Senate and was eventually withdrawn [JURIST reports] in 2007. Haynes' nomination met resistance [JURIST report] in part over his role in helping to draft the Defense Department's detention and interrogation policies after Sept. 11.