10 December, 2014

USA - Senate Select Committee on Intelligence - CIA Detention and Interrogation Program

The US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has released an important and refreshingly straightforward report- Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency's Detention and Interrogation Program - (pdf 525 pages).  The document reports the Executive Summary, Findings and Conclusions of a much larger report that remains classified though declassification may be considered later.  The report covers the period September 2001 to January 2009.

In the Foreword to the report,
the Chairman of the Committee (Senator Dianne Feinstein) stated - " .... it is my personal conclusion that, under any common meaning of the term, CID detainees were tortured ....".  She goes on to add, " ... conditions of confinement and unauthorised interrogation and conditioning techniques were cruel, inhuman and degrading ..."

See the comments of 9th December by Senator Feinstein on her website.

USA and the Torture Convention:

The United Nations Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment was ratified by the USA on 21st October 1994 (see Wikipedia) but subject to various declarations, reservations and understandings as discussed in this Congressional Briefing Document.  In particular, the USA sought to prevent Articles 1 to 16 of the Convention being self-executing within the USA.  Hence, domestic legislation is required to implement aspects of the convention within the domestic law of the USA.

UN Committee against Torture

Universal Jurisdiction - described by Amnesty International

Some media reaction:

The Guardian - CIA Torture Report - various links

The Guardian 10th December - British MPs demand inquiry into UK's role in CIA abductions

The Guardian 9th December - CIA torture report: Europe must come clean about its own complicity  - where it is argued that the CIA’s activities would not have been possible without the help of Britain and 20 other European nations.  The Council of Europe has been concerned with the matter of extraordinary rendition - see this Chronology.   Many further links are available via Rendition Project.


The Guardian 9th December - The Guardian view on the US torture report: America's shame and disgrace

Telegraph 9th December - US torture report: CIA used discredited Cold War techniques


  1. CIA torture report: So when will Britain come clean about its ...

    www.independent.co.uk/.../cia-torture-report-so-when-will-britain-come-...
    7 hours ago - Two of the Report's findings will make a permanent contribution to anti-terror discourse: the fact that torture never produces crucial intelligence ...
  2. CIA torture report: The three British plots that the CIA falsely ...

    www.independent.co.uk › News › World › Americas
    7 hours ago - Over several years, the CIA wrongfully asserted that eight separate terror plots had been foiled because of the interrogation programme and ...
  3. CIA torture: Report shows CIA tortured suspects at secret ...

    www.independent.co.uk › News › World › Americas
    11 hours ago - CIA torture: Report shows CIA tortured suspects at secret overseas sites for years, achieved nothing from it, and lied about it ...
  4. CIA 'torture report': Senate investigators say interrogation ...

    www.independent.co.uk › News › World › Americas
    21 hours ago - The report concluded that the CIA deceived the nation and policy-makers by ... CIA torture report: 5 questions you'll wish you didn't have to ask

Why do you think Al Qaeda has failed to attack America in 13 years? CIA chiefs launch vehement attack on torture report, accusing Senate of 'cherry-picking' evidence in 'one-sided and error-strewn' inquiry 


In a 2,500 word rebuttal ex-CIA leaders, including George Tenet and Porter Goss, argued the CIA's interrogation program saved lives by leading to the capture of top Al Qaeda militants.

Shaming of the West... and the cover up of Britain's role : Devastating report reveals horrific CIA torture of suspects who were kept in 'stress positions' for 180 hours, subjected to rectal feeding and waterboarded until they vomited


The full scale of how the US used torture as a weapon in the 'war on terror' was laid bare last night in a report revealing the abuse of detainees in a network of secret prisons around the world.

Torture report reveals how Poland objected to CIA's secret jail on its soil - but became 'flexible' after being bought off with large cash payment 


After denying the fact for years, former Polish president Aleksander Kwasniewski today admitted that Poland had granted the CIA permission to run a secret prison in the north of the country.

Republicans fire back at CIA torture report: Sleep deprivation and nudity DID help stop attacks on America and main report is politically biased and illogical, they claim


'We have no doubt that the CIA's detention program saved lives and played a vital role in weakening alQa'ida while the Program was in operation,' the GOP senators said.


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