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February 04, 2014

The Hill: Release the Senate torture report

By Adam Jacobson, Human Rights First

Last week, John Rizzo told an audience at Fordham Law School that he supports the public release of a Senate report on CIA interrogation and detention after 9/11. Rizzo, acting CIA general counsel 2001-2002 and 2004-2009, and one of the Bush Administration legal officials who approved many of the torture techniques used in interrogations of terror suspects, said adamantly, “I would like to see it released.”

At the Fordham event, Rizzo went on to say that he thinks the report, if not released with appropriate redactions, is “going to be leaked” anyway, and that as a former CIA employee, he has not seen any part of the report, but would like to. Rizzo defended the use and legality of “enhanced interrogation techniques,” saying that they “worked,” and were not torture. But the Senate report apparently says differently.

The report, an exhaustive 6,000-plus page study of CIA interrogation and detention post-9/11 undertaken by the Senate intelligence committee, reportedly demonstrates that torture was not effective or important in fighting terrorism and stopping terrorist attacks. It also reportedly shows that the CIA misled Congress about the program’s effectiveness and what was actually being done to detainees. The report has been adopted by the intelligence committee, but the committee has to vote before it can be declassified and released.

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