The Supreme Court rejected an appeal on Monday from two American whistleblowers, Donald Vance and Nathan Ertel, who were attempting to sue former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
The lawsuit would have included unlawful procedures like false arrest, denial of Sixth Amendment rights, denial of necessary medical care and denial to present witnesses and evidence.
The decision now prevents any action holding Rumsfeld liable for any illegal actions carried out by his subordinates.
Both men argued that Rumsfeld personally approved interrogation methods used against them — including inhumane treatment such as sleep deprivation — and hold him responsible for the abuses they suffered.
Vance and Ertel, American Navy veterans, said they were tortured at Baghdad high security prison Camp Cropper after they accused an Iraqi-owned company of illegally running guns.
According to Vance, he had acted as an unpaid spy for the FBI by gifting them information about the Iraqi security firm that he worked for. However, when the firm was raided, he was treated as a suspect and taken to the Baghdad camp.
Ertel, who had resigned from the firm before the raid, was also detained.
In 2007, Vance won the Ron Ridenhour Truth-Telling Prize for revealing his story.