“In a limited number of cases, agency officers used interrogation techniques that had not been authorized, were abhorrent and rightly should be repudiated by all.”
CIA Director John Brennan (December 11 2014)
“No evidence that terror attacks were stopped, terrorists captured or lives saved through use of EITs”
Senator Diane Feinstein — Tweet (Dec. 11 2014)
“Torture is the weapon of the bully, the coward and the fool, and the US president’s record testifies that he is well qualified to speak on its behalf.”
John le Carré — The Times (
On December 11 2014, speaking at CIA headquarters, John Brennan conceded that some CIA officers used “abhorrent” interrogation techniques. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
Director Brennan argued that it was “unknowable” whether the agency needed to torture at least 39 detainees from 2002 to 2007 to obtain necessary counterterrorism intelligence.
“I have already stated that our reviews indicate that the detention and interrogation program produced useful intelligence that helped the United States thwart attack plans, capture terrorists and save lives.
“ut let me be clear. We have not concluded that it was the use of EITs (enhanced interrogation techniques) within that program that allowed us to obtain useful information from detainees subjected to them.
The cause-and-effect relationship between the use of EITs and useful information subsequently provided by the detainee is, in my view, unknowable.
We are not contemplating at all getting back into the detention program, using any of those EITs, so I defer to the policymakers in future times when there is going to be the need to ensure that this country stays safe if we face a similar type of crisis.”
Controversy over Iraq Intelligence
On the same day, John Brennan sent a letter to a retiring senior senator, Michigan Democrat Carl Levin, seeking to resolve a controversy over intelligence ahead of the Iraq war.
Bush administration officials claimed that 9/11 hijacker Mohammed Atta met in Prague with one of Saddam Hussein’s intelligence agents.
These officials used reports of that meeting — whose authenticity has long been under dispute — to argue Saddam’s Iraq was complicit in the 9/11 attacks, and to justify the 2003 US invasion.
On December 11 2014, CIA Director John Brennan revealed a March 13 2003 analysis from CIA field agents concluding:
“There is not one USG or FBI expert that … has said they have evidence or ‘know’ that [Mohamed Atta] was indeed in Prague. In fact, the analysis has been the opposite.”
The US invaded Iraq six days later.
CIA director defends post 9/11 tactics exposed in U.S. Senate report
On This Day — CIA Director John Brennan Defends Torture Methods (December 11 2014)