According to recent news reports, Rodriguez will say that he destroyed the tapes out of concern for the safety of CIA interrogators.. Another story says that Rodriguez's book will describe the tapes' destruction as "just getting rid of some ugly visuals." But it's worth recalling a now-declassified CIA email (page 17 of this PDF), sent just one day after the tapes were destroyed, which more candidly reveals Rodriguez's true motives:
As Jose [Rodriguez] said, "the heat from destroying is nothing compared to what it would be if the tapes ever got into [the] public domain — he said that out of context, they would make us look terrible; it would be 'devastating' to us."
It might not be very practical but I wish there was someway that punishments for destruction of evidence could be more severe.
I would go far as saying, if you are found guilty of destroying evidence the punishment should be the same as if the evidence was complete proof of your guilt.
I.E. In this case, Mr. Rodriguez and his underlings should go to jail for as long as they would have to go if they had been convinced of torture.
This is the kind of stuff that destroys America's reputation for moral leadership and erodes any sympathy one might have for the nation and its citizens.