The Senate Intelligence Committee's four-year investigation into the use of torture by the US is finally being made public.
Image: Kevin Dooley/Flickr
The Senate Intelligence Committee compiled a 6,000-page report on the interrogation techniques used on terrorism suspects by the US Central Intelligence Agency over the course of 2009 to 2013.
Today, some of that report was finally made public: a 500-page executive summary, with the names of CIA participating CIA agents redacted.
The report, titled " Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency's Detention and Interrogation Program," concludes that the CIA's "enhanced interrogation techniques," which include many physical and psychological situations that human rights activists say constitute torture, were "not effective."
The report concludes that the CIA misled policymakers and the public
The report also concludes that the CIA misled policymakers and the public about the operation of the program and its effectiveness. Furthermore, the report says the management of the program was "inadequate and deeply flawed," and that the program was "far more brutal" than previously known.
The methods in question also "regularly resulted in fabricated information," according to the committee.
Committee staff reviewed more than 6.3 million pages of CIA records of the report, according to a press release from chairperson Senator Dianne Feinstein. The committee voted to release the report in April 2014, but it took eight months of negotiation with the White House to hash out which parts would be redacted. In August, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence told The Washington Post that about 15 percent of the document would be redacted.
We learned a lot from the report, including:
- The CIA once used a video conference to evaluate from DC whether an "enhanced interrogation technique" session had gone too far.
- A wrong man was detained for up to six months for using a satellite phone.
- The CIA offered detainees Tylenol after torture sessions.
- It was a six-letter text message that led the agency to the mastermind behind 9/11, not torture.
- An antiquated medical procedure known as "rectal feeding" was repurposed for torture.
- Detainees were deprived of sleep for up to 7.5 days at a time.
- The CIA bypassed methods based in behavioral science and went straight to the harshest tactics, contrary to public testimony.
The full executive summary is here: