It’s fun watching the Democrats in Congress scrambling for cover against complicity in torture. They’re all claiming ignorance, but they knew what was going on. Round ’em all up. That includes you, Nancy.
Ali Soufan was an FBI official who interrogated Abu Zubaydah for three months, March-June 2002, as well as other captured terrorists. He wrote a fascinating op-ed piece for the New York Times, dated April 22, called “My Tortured Decision.” Some of his comments:
- Zubaydah cooperated under traditional (and legal) FBI interrogation methods. He revealed that Khalid Shaikh Mohammed materminded 9/11, told about “dirty bomber” Jose Padilla, and gave up much more actionable intelligence. Dick Cheney and others say this info came only from “enhanced” interrogation.
- All information gained from Zubaydah using “enhanced interrogation techniques” had already been obtained, or could have been obtained, using traditional interrogation methods.
- “Using these alternative methods on other terrorists backfired on more than a few occasions.”
- Info leading to the capture of Mohammed’s top aide Ramzi bin al-Shibh didn’t come from waterboarding Zubaydah, as is being claimed, but came from another terrorist interviewed using traditional methods.
- Since the FBI refused to participate in torture, agents who knew the most about the terrorists (because the FBI specializes in counter-terrorism) had no part in the investigations once the CIA took over (which is what Dick Cheney wanted). Soufan himself was pulled out because, as his superiors told him, “We don’t do that.”
- “It was the right decision to release these memos, as we need the truth to come out.”
- He opposes prosecuting CIA officials. “Almost all the agency officials I worked with on these issues were good people who felt as I did about the use of enhanced techniques: it is un-American, ineffective and harmful to our national security.”
- Reading between the lines of the memos, “it seems clear that it was contractors, not C.I.A. officers, who requested the use of these techniques.”
- “We must ensure that the mistakes behind the use of these techniques are never repeated. We’re making a good start.”
Jane Mayer’s book, “The Dark Side,” gives a thorough account of Zubaydah’s capture (he was severely wounded) and subsequent interrogation–first by the FBI, then by the CIA. Keith Olberman seems to have discovered the book. He used lots of info from it tonite on his show (and weakly defended the claims of Democrats that they didn’t know anything).Leave a comment