10 Stories

Study: Nazi Interrogator's Unlikely Tactic May Be Best

Combining genuine friendliness with know-it-all attitude may elicit more info

(Newser) - If you need to extract useful information from someone, the best approach may be kindness, according to new research out of Sweden. Specifically, researchers compared a common, "direct" interrogation—where the questions are direct and specific—to the Scharff Technique, named after the highly successful German interrogator Hanns Scharff.... More »

CIA Chiefs Ask Obama to Scrap Interrogation Probe

Disclosure of CIA methods will help the enemy, decrease national security, former directors warn

(Newser) - Seven former CIA directors—appointees of both political parties—are calling on the Obama administration to call off the Justice Department’s investigation of Bush-era interrogation practices, the Hill reports. The probe, ordered by AG Eric Holder, will reveal too much about the CIA’s methods in an environment where... More »

CIA Refuses to Hand Over Interrogation Records

Agency says releasing Bush-era documents will undermine national security

(Newser) - The CIA has refused to hand over any more documents relating to its Bush-era interrogation and detention programs, the New York Times reports. The agency told a federal judge that dozens of documents, including communications from secret prisons and agency assessments of the programs' legality, must remain secret in the... More »

US Lets Allies Detain, Grill Terror Suspects

Program could lead to prisoner abuse, bad intel, critics say

(Newser) - The Obama administration is stepping up its reliance on foreign allies to capture, interrogate, and detain mid-level terror suspects seized outside of Iraq and Afghanistan, the New York Times reports. In the last 10 months, Middle Eastern governments have handled the cases of about six al-Qaeda operatives. “It’s... More »

Cheney Spouts 'Red Herrings and Lies'

(Newser) - Today's speech was "classic Dick Cheney," writes Fred Kaplan in Slate, and he doesn't mean it as a compliment. The former VP "built a case on straw men, red herrings, and lies" and put his "Manichean worldview" on full display. Kaplan labels as "blatant evasion"... More »

CIA Tapes Were Made—and Destroyed—for PR

Interrogations filmed to counter mistreatment accusations; stopped when techniques grew harsh, reports NYT

(Newser) - Concern over its image prompted the CIA to first secretly create—and later destroy—tapes depicting the harsh interrogation of detainees, the New York Times reports. In spring 2002 the agency decided to document every moment of senior al-Qaeda operative Abu Zubaydah's custody so that perceptions of mistreatment—by prosecutors,... More »

Judge Orders Hearing on Destroyed CIA Tapes

Federal court will not abide by DoJ's wishes

(Newser) - A federal judge scheduled a hearing today to address whether the CIA's destruction of interrogation videotapes violated a court order, the Washington Post reports. The order—issued with no comment—is a blow to the Justice Department, which has launched a probe with the CIA and contends the federal courts... More »

Biden Calls for CIA Video Probe

CIA chief to testify before Congress tomorrow

(Newser) - Sen. Joe Biden has called for Attorney General Michael Mukasey to appoint a special counsel to investigate the CIA's destruction of videos of interrogations of suspected terrorists. Biden, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, cited Mukasey's unwillingness, during confirmation hearings, to take a stand on whether waterboarding is... More »

Dems Demand Probe Over CIA Tapes

Kennedy draws Nixon comparison; others see obstruction of justice

(Newser) - Democrats accused the CIA of a cover-up today in the wake of the revelation that the agency destroyed interrogation tapes and called for the attorney general to investigate. Ted Kennedy rejected the agency's excuse that it scrubbed the tapes to protect interrogators and suggested the censors merely knew how “... More »

CIA Destroyed Videos of Interrogations

Move could raise obstruction-of-justice issues for agency

(Newser) - The CIA destroyed in 2005 videotapes showing the harsh interrogation of at least two terrorism suspects, the New York Times reports. The destruction could raise serious legal issues if the CIA is shown to have withheld tapes from federal prosecutors and the 9/11 commission. The tapes included the 2002 questioning... More »

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