Unlike in television shows like “24,” it is not uncommon in the real world for a meeting called to plan a counterterrorism operation to feature more CIA lawyers than case officers or analysts. These staff lawyers are intricately involved in the operational decisions made at headquarters, and legal issues often trump operational considerations.
I have seen it in other countries as well and I don’t understand it; as a revenge against previous administrations, is rather masochistic! A Secret Service should be secret, period. This fake moral posturing is so transparent (I mean, nobody believes for a second that any president/politician would give a damn about “enhanced interrogation techniques.”!) that it is not worth the price of tying the hands of your own country’s intelligence service. The disadvantage is equivalent to losing the arms race to your enemies.