Monday, March 30, 2009

So Torture Doesn't Work...




What a surprise. After having to endure Bush-Cheney apologists blather on about television notions of the hypothetical "ticking time bomb," and other excuses for torture, the verdict is out (again)--it doesn't work. According to a recent article in the Washington Post:

When CIA officials subjected their first high-value captive, Abu Zubaida, to waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods, they were convinced that they had in their custody an Al Qaeda leader who knew details of operations yet to be unleashed....The methods succeeded in breaking him, and the stories he told of Al Qaeda terrorism plots sent CIA officers around the globe chasing leads. In the end, though, not a single significant plot was foiled as a result of Abu Zubaida's tortured confessions, according to former senior government officials who closely followed the interrogations. Nearly all of the leads attained through the harsh measures quickly evaporated, while most of the useful information from Abu Zubaida - chiefly names of Al Qaeda members and associates - was obtained before waterboarding was introduced....

What a surprise. Full article below.

Officials: Torture confessions not proven useful

White House pressured CIA to extract plots

WASHINGTON - When CIA officials subjected their first high-value captive, Abu Zubaida, to waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods, they were convinced that they had in their custody an Al Qaeda leader who knew details of operations yet to be unleashed, and they were facing increasing pressure from the White House to get those secrets out of him.

The methods succeeded in breaking him, and the stories he told of Al Qaeda terrorism plots sent CIA officers around the globe chasing leads.

In the end, though, not a single significant plot was foiled as a result of Abu Zubaida's tortured confessions, according to former senior government officials who closely followed the interrogations. Nearly all of the leads attained through the harsh measures quickly evaporated, while most of the useful information from Abu Zubaida - chiefly names of Al Qaeda members and associates - was obtained before waterboarding was introduced, they said.

Moreover, within weeks of his capture, US officials had gained evidence that made clear they had misjudged Abu Zubaida. President Bush had publicly described him as "Al Qaeda's chief of operations," and other top officials called him a "trusted associate" of Osama bin Laden and a major figure in the planning of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. None of that was accurate, the new evidence showed.

Read rest of article here.


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