Tuesday, April 01, 2014

The CIA lied about torture

Who'd have thunk it? The CIA lied about the effectiveness of its torture program:

A report by the Senate Intelligence Committee concludes that the CIA misled the government and the public about aspects of its brutal interrogation program for years — concealing details about the severity of its methods, overstating the significance of plots and prisoners, and taking credit for critical pieces of intelligence that detainees had in fact surrendered before they were subjected to harsh techniques.

The report, built around detailed chronologies of dozens of CIA detainees, documents a long-standing pattern of unsubstantiated claims as agency officials sought permission to use — and later tried to defend — excruciating interrogation methods that yielded little, if any, significant intelligence, according to U.S. officials who have reviewed the document.

“The CIA described [its program] repeatedly both to the Department of Justice and eventually to Congress as getting unique, otherwise unobtainable intelligence that helped disrupt terrorist plots and save thousands of lives,” said one U.S. official briefed on the report. “Was that actually true? The answer is no.”

This being America, of course, this is merely a point of argument in a bureaucratic battle between the Senate and the CIA. And prosecutions? They're off the table. Despite clear evidence and open admissions of torture, and despite torture being illegal under both US and international law, no-one will be held accountable for it in any way. the law? That only applies to peasants, not the government.

So much for America.