FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

CIA Torture Report: Where’s Our Next Heroic Whistleblower?

In December of 2014, The US Senate’s Select Committee on Intelligence issued a report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s “inadequate and deeply flawed” interrogation techniques, concluding that those practices were “not effective” and that they were “far more brutal” than the public — or Congress — had been led to believe.

The document is commonly referred to as “the CIA torture report” for obvious. Among other atrocities, it describes a detainee being chained naked to a concrete floor until he died of hypothermia, and other detainees being subject to “rectal feeding.”

Or, rather, it supposedly describes such things. The public has never seen the actual report, only summaries and excerpts.

In a rare act of legislative heroism, US Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), whose record of being wrong on the issues comes close to perfection over her 25 years in the Senate, had the report distributed to various executive branch agencies so that it would eventually be revealed through the Freedom of Information Act.

But now the Trump administration is moving to prevent that. US Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), the Select Committee’s chair, has requested the return of all extant copies of the report to the Senate (which is exempt from FOIA) and the administration is complying with that request.

What do the CIA, the US Senate, and the White House have to hide? My guess is quite a bit.

Should they be allowed to hide those things from the taxpayers who pay the bills and whose lives are put at risk by the criminal acts of the US intelligence community? Absolutely not.

Will they get away with hiding it? Not forever. The days of governments being able to permanently bury secrets are over, thanks to heroes like Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, and the folks at WikiLeaks.

It’s a near certainty that several executive branch employees put copies of the report away for safe-keeping precisely to safeguard the public interest in a situation such as this.

In fact, we may now see the report sooner than we otherwise would have. A civil servant who was content to let the FOIA process run its course, if it was allowed to, may treat this development as a trigger event for showing us what our government is hiding from us.

Good. Trump, Burr, and the CIA are cats covering up their output in the litter box. Time for someone responsible to clean up — with, pun intended, a scoop.

More articles by:

Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.

Weekend Edition
January 18, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Melvin Goodman
Star Wars Revisited: One More Nightmare From Trump
John Davis
“Weather Terrorism:” a National Emergency
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Sometimes an Establishment Hack is Just What You Need
Joshua Frank
Montana Public Schools Block Pro-LGBTQ Websites
Louisa Willcox
Sky Bears, Earth Bears: Finding and Losing True North
Robert Fisk
Bernie Sanders, Israel and the Middle East
Robert Fantina
Pompeo, the U.S. and Iran
David Rosen
The Biden Band-Aid: Will Democrats Contain the Insurgency?
Nick Pemberton
Human Trafficking Should Be Illegal
Steve Early - Suzanne Gordon
Did Donald Get The Memo? Trump’s VA Secretary Denounces ‘Veteran as Victim’ Stereotyping
Andrew Levine
The Tulsi Gabbard Factor
John W. Whitehead
The Danger Within: Border Patrol is Turning America into a Constitution-Free Zone
Dana E. Abizaid
Kafka’s Grave: a Pilgrimage in Prague
Rebecca Lee
Punishment Through Humiliation: Justice For Sexual Assault Survivors
Dahr Jamail
A Planet in Crisis: The Heat’s On Us
John Feffer
Trump Punts on Syria: The Forever War is Far From Over
Dave Lindorff
Shut Down the War Machine!
Glenn Sacks
LA Teachers’ Strike: Student Voices of the Los Angeles Education Revolt  
Mark Ashwill
The Metamorphosis of International Students Into Honorary US Nationalists: a View from Viet Nam
Ramzy Baroud
The Moral Travesty of Israel Seeking Arab, Iranian Money for its Alleged Nakba
Ron Jacobs
Allen Ginsberg Takes a Trip
Jake Johnston
Haiti by the Numbers
Binoy Kampmark
No-Confidence Survivor: Theresa May and Brexit
Victor Grossman
Red Flowers for Rosa and Karl
Cesar Chelala
President Donald Trump’s “Magical Realism”
Christopher Brauchli
An Education in Fraud
Paul Bentley
The Death Penalty for Canada’s Foreign Policy?
David Swanson
Top 10 Reasons Not to Love NATO
Louis Proyect
Breaking the Left’s Gay Taboo
Kani Xulam
A Saudi Teen and Freedom’s Shining Moment
Ralph Nader
Bar Barr or Regret this Dictatorial Attorney General
Jessicah Pierre
A Dream Deferred: MLK’s Dream of Economic Justice is Far From Reality
Edward J. Martin
Glossip v. Gross, the Eighth Amendment and the Torture Court of the United States
Chuck Collins
Shutdown Expands the Ranks of the “Underwater Nation”
Paul Edwards
War Whores
Peter Crowley
Outsourcing Still Affects Us: This and AI Worker Displacement Need Not be Inevitable
Alycee Lane
Trump’s Federal Government Shutdown and Unpaid Dishwashers
Martha Rosenberg
New Questions About Ritual Slaughter as Belgium Bans the Practice
Wim Laven
The Annual Whitewashing of Martin Luther King Jr.
Nicky Reid
Panarchy as Full Spectrum Intersectionality
Jill Richardson
Hollywood’s Fat Shaming is Getting Old
Nyla Ali Khan
A Woman’s Wide Sphere of Influence Within Folklore and Social Practices
Richard Klin
Dial Israel: Amos Oz, 1939-2018
David Rovics
Of Triggers and Bullets
David Yearsley
Bass on Top: the Genius of Paul Chambers
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail