Friday, March 14, 2014

Democracy Dies Behind Closed Doors

The CIA's Excuse: Hiding the Double Agents
The secrecy becomes an end in itself.  Everybody ought to know torture doesn't work.  You use torture to get people to make false confessions or coerce other behavior.
Removing details on the effort to flip detainees also hides evidence about the purpose of torture, which wasn't really to obtain intelligence, but to exploit detainees, whether that involved propaganda (such as eliciting the justification for the Iraq War) or developing assets. Until we understand that that was one of the reasons we embraced torture and other kinds of humiliation, we won't be able to account for the full human waste of it all. One more detail. by claiming it took back evidence of flipping detainees, CIA can obscure what happened with Hassan Ghul, whose cooperation with the US Miller first broke. If this report ever comes out in any halfway revelatory form, Ghul's treatment may well be one of the most unjustifiable (particularly since he had already given up Osama bin Laden by the time we started torturing him). How convenient, then, that CIA is prepping to claim SSCI doesn't know everything about Ghul's treatment."
There is absolutely no justification for this policy.  Obama's risks his legacy by protecting the malfeasance that took place under Bush and into his own presidency.

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