CIA

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CIA's Brennan: We Got a Lot Right, Made 'Abhorrent' Mistakes

Director offers up defense of torture program as Feinstein fact-checks on Twitter

(Newser) - CIA Director John Brennan offered up a spirited defense of his agency's torture program today, saying that "our nation and, in particular, this agency did a lot of things right during this difficult time to keep this country safe and secured" in the aftermath of 9/11, and that... More »

CIA's Torture Drew on Famed Dog Experiment

More on 'learned helplessness'

(Newser) - As earlier reported , a pair of retired Air Force psychologists who had never interrogated anybody before were paid $81 million to devise the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" program and, much to Martin Seligman's displeasure, they devised their techniques by drawing on Seligman's "learned helplessness" theory. The... More »

Polish Leaders: We OK'd Secret Prisons, Not Torture

US just asked for a 'quiet site' to 'obtain info,' they say

(Newser) - After years of denials, two former Polish leaders acknowledged yesterday that they had allowed a secret CIA prison to operate on their territory, but they insisted they never authorized the harsh treatment or torture of its inmates. Former Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski and former Prime Minister Leszek Miller spoke to... More »

Torture Report's Footnotes Alone Are Frightening

One detainee may have been simply in 'wrong place at wrong time'

(Newser) - If you don't have time to read the 528-page summary of the Senate's findings on interrogation techniques , you can get a sense of its revelations just by reading the footnotes, Vocativ reports. The site offers material from just the first 200 of the report's 38,000 footnotes:... More »

What the Senate's Torture Report Gets Wrong

Former CIA chiefs, Bob Kerrey criticize lack of interviews, context, recommendations

(Newser) - The Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA interrogations has all kinds of grisly details , but, "remarkably," it makes zero recommendations, complains former Democratic Sen. Bob Kerrey in USA Today . The former committee member calls this "disturbing fact" a result of the report's partisanship—only Democrats participated... More »

Torture Report: The 13 Key Techniques

Waterboarding, 180-hour sleep deprivation among them

(Newser) - The Senate's newly released report on "enhanced interrogation" points to 13 different techniques used against detainees. They appear in a Justice Department memo to the CIA from May 2005, and the AP recounts them:
  1. Abdominal Slap: The interrogator slaps the detainee's belly with the back of his
... More »

Psychologists Were Paid $81M to Devise CIA Tortures

Air Force retirees had never carried out real interrogation

(Newser) - A pair of retired Air Force psychologists who had never interrogated anybody before were paid a fortune to devise the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" program, according to yesterday's Senate Intelligence Committee report . The psychologists—identified in earlier reports as Jim Mitchell and Bruce Jessen—helped develop interrogation techniques... More »

Report Likens Secret CIA Facility to 'Dungeon'

Site had buckets for waste and cold, isolated cells with shackled prisoners

(Newser) - Reporters are picking through the details of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on the CIA's use of torture , and the details aren't pretty. Some examples:
  • Dungeon: The Week highlights one passage comparing a CIA black site to a dungeon. "CIA detainees at the COBALT detention facility
... More »

Report Hits Hard at CIA's 'Brutal,' Ineffective Torture

Senate report says spy agency actively misled White House, Congress

(Newser) - The Senate Intelligence Committee has dropped its long-awaited report on the CIA's use of torture, and it pulls no punches in its 528 pages, detailing a "brutal and far worse than the CIA represented" program that ultimately was "not an effective means of acquiring intelligence," reports... More »

A Primer to Today's CIA Torture Report

Reuters talks to sources who detail the use of a power drill, broomstick

(Newser) - The CIA is bracing for the release today of the long-awaited Senate Intelligence Committee report on its use of torture—which one lawmaker on Sunday warned could bring "violence and deaths " overseas. Here's what you need to know:
  • Who authored the report? Democrats on the Senate Intelligence
... More »

Rep: CIA Torture Report Will Cause 'Violence, Deaths'

Mike Rogers says release of report is 'terrible idea,' will wreak havoc overseas

(Newser) - It's not a total surprise that the CIA used torture to question al-Qaeda detainees in the years following 9/11—Obama himself acknowledged over the summer that "we tortured some folks," CBS News notes. But the details of a Senate Intelligence Committee report that may be released as... More »

CIA's New Hobby: Fact-Checking Katherine Heigl Show

In case you were wondering, 'State of Affairs' doesn't seem super-accurate

(Newser) - If you've been watching Katherine Heigl's new TV show, State of Affairs, surely the foremost question on your mind is, "How accurate is this?" Well, the CIA is here to help. Heigl plays a CIA analyst on the NBC drama, and TMZ notes that the actual CIA... More »

Man Behind Secret Code at CIA Offers New Hint

Kryptos' final secret message includes phrase 'Berlin clock'

(Newser) - Jim Sanborn punched four messages into his curved copper sculpture, which has sat outside CIA headquarters in Langley, Va., since 1990. The first three messages of "Kryptos" were decoded by NSA cryptographers in 1993, then by fans in 1999. The 97-character fourth message, however, has stumped code breakers for... More »

Hey, Sen. Udall: Here's Your Chance to Reveal CIA Secrets

Transparency advocate should take advantage of midterm loss: Conor Friedersdorf

(Newser) - Sen. Mark Udall has been one of the Hill's strongest voices against CIA and NSA secrecy, and now, he's got a chance to expose some of those secrets. A clause in the Constitution largely protects lawmakers from prosecution over their comments on the House or Senate floor, the... More »

US Hired 1K Nazis After WWII

Eric Lichtblau reveals scope of spy agency Cold War effort

(Newser) - "At least a thousand." That's the number of Nazis the US government hired on as anti-Soviet spies in the wake of World War II, reports the New York Times' Eric Lichtblau, whose book, The Nazis Next Door: How America Became a Safe Haven for Hitler’s Men,... More »

Nobel Laureates to Obama: Open Up on CIA Torture

Desmond Tutu, José Ramos-Horta lead charge for transparency

(Newser) - Twelve Nobel Peace Prize winners have penned a letter to President Obama that asks their fellow laureate to open up a "grim chapter" in US history: the use of torture. The open letter on TheCommunity.com—chaired by former East Timor President José Ramos-Horta—appeals to the president to... More »

CIA Analyst: Next Great Depression 'About to Strike'

Jim Rickards sees bad news in the Fed's 'Misery Index'

(Newser) - A CIA analyst known for his dire economic predictions is speaking up again, warning that the next Great Depression may be right around the corner. Jim Rickards, a "financial threat and asymmetric warfare adviser" for the CIA, tells Money Morning that Americans should be preparing for a $100 trillion... More »

CIA: When We Arm Rebels, It Almost Never Works

Obama asked for review when deciding on Syria

(Newser) - When President Obama was trying to decide whether to arm rebels fighting the Syrian government, he asked the CIA to examine its long track record on such things. The review's conclusion? It's usually a waste of time and money—and sometimes only makes matters worse, reports the New ... More »

Panetta: Obama 'Lost His Way,' 'Lacks Fire'

Ex-CIA, DoD head describes frustration in new memoir

(Newser) - The man who ran the CIA from 2009 to 2011 and the Pentagon from 2011 to 2013 has got some pretty scathing things to say about his old boss in his new memoir, Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace, and in interviews with USA Today and... More »

The Most Amazing Artifacts From the CIA's Museum

Closed-off collection includes secret cufflinks, dead rat

(Newser) - One of the country's most fascinating museums is just a few miles outside Washington, DC—but most of us will never get access to it. The CIA's museum is inside the agency's Langley headquarters, and it's got some 26,000 items related to the intelligence organization'... More »

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