EspañolA US Senate report released on Tuesday reveals that after the 9/11 attacks, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) embraced the use of torture which “was brutal and ineffective,” and they repeatedly lied about its usefulness.
The report, consisting of 20 case studies and based on more than six million of the agency’s internal documents, found that torture “regularly resulted in fabricated information,” said Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein. “During the brutal interrogations the CIA was often unaware the information was fabricated.”
The committee found that at least 39 detainees experienced torture techniques that weren’t approved by the Justice Department, such as “cold water dousing.” The report also shows at least five cases of “rectal rehydration,” and cases of death threats made to detainees. The committee alleges that CIA interrogators threatened the detainees with hurting their children and the sexual assault or deaths of their wives.
The CIA’s response to the Senate report is that, to accept the Intelligence Committee’s conclusions, “there would have had to have been a years long conspiracy among CIA leaders at all levels, supported by a large number of analysts and other line officers.… This conspiracy would have had to include three former CIA directors, including one who led the agency after the program had largely wound down.”
Current CIA Director John Brennan has conceded that the CIA “had shortcomings and that the agency made mistakes.” He cites “unpreparedness for a massive interrogation and detentions program” as the reasons behind the failure.
The committee findings are the result of five years of research, at a cost of US$40 million, conducted by staff members working for Democratic senators on the committee.
Although White House Press Secretary John Earnest said on Monday that “President [Barack Obama] believes that it is important to be as transparent as they could be,” the Senate only released the 524-page executive summary and a rebuttal by Republican congressmen. The majority of the classified 6,000-plus page report remains secret.