Tags: CIA Torture Report | War on Terrorism | senate | torture | report | impact

Wash. Post's Gerson: Senate Torture Report Endangers Americans

By    |   Tuesday, 09 Dec 2014 07:08 PM

The release of a damning Senate report on CIA interrogation tactics with suspected terrorists "is an act of exceptional congressional recklessness," according to Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson.

"[T]he Feinstein report comes in the middle of a war" on terrorism, "targeting many Americans who are still engaged in it," Gerson writes, charging Democratic senators on the Intelligence Committee "interviewed none of the key figures in the program, yet fought for months to make it easier to identify the targets of their report."

Gerson added California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, outgoing chair of the committee, leaves a legacy of "a massive dump of intelligence details useful to the enemy in a time of war."

"It is an act of exceptional congressional recklessness," he writes of the report's release Tuesday. And the "likely results," he adds — citing the concerns of Secretary of State John Kerry and a National Intelligence Council report — may well include increased violence, as well as "threats to embassies, installations and individuals."

"Democrats who approved of enhanced interrogation" after the 9/11 attacks, including Feinstein, "must now construct an elaborate fantasy world in which they were not knowledgeable and supportive," Gerson writes.

"They postulate a new reality in which they were innocent and deceived — requiring a conspiracy from three former CIA directors, three former deputy directors and hundreds of others."

Instead, the Democrat-led committee report comes out of "guilt, hypocrisy and betrayal," Gerson writes.

The columnist also questions if interrogation policies "employing waterboarding, stress positions and sleep deprivation" are worse than the current drone program in which "targets are killed (sometimes with collateral damage to the innocent)."

"Some may argue a subtle moral distinction between harshly interrogating a terrorist and blowing his limbs apart," he writes. "But international human rights groups and legal authorities generally look down on both. The main difference? One is [President Barack] Obama's favorite program. A few years from now, a new president and new congressional leaders may take a different view."

Gerson writes that one former senior intelligence officer notes:

"If you have to worry about a new administration coming along 10 years down the road, making villains out of agency officials following the exact letter of the law, it is sobering."

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The release of a damning Senate report on CIA interrogation tactics with suspected terrorists "is an act of exceptional congressional recklessness," according to Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson.
senate, torture, report, impact
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2014-08-09
Tuesday, 09 Dec 2014 07:08 PM
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