CIA to release post-9/11 torture report - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Report finds CIA's interrogation tactics ineffective

Posted: Updated:


(NBC News) - The harsh interrogation techniques used by the CIA in the years after Sept. 11 were essentially useless, and far more brutal than the spy agency told Congress and the public, according to a Senate report released Tuesday.

It found that CIA interrogation tactics, employed for days or weeks at a time, never led to imminent threat" intelligence — the figurative ticking time bomb often cited as justification. In some cases, the means were counterproductive, the report found.

The report examined the CIA's secret overseas detention of at least 119 people and interrogation techniques "in some cases amounting to torture," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. and the chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The report also criticized the CIA for "inadequate and deeply flawed" management of the interrogation program. The CIA was expected to release a response, as were six former CIA officials.

READ MORE | Feds: Not Enough Evidence to Prosecute CIA Operatives

The techniques described in the report, more than five years in the making, include waterboarding, the simulated drowning technique classified by the United Nations as torture.

According to a summary provided to reporters, the most aggressive techniques were used "in combination and nonstop," including keeping detainees awake for as long as 180 hours, standing or in stress positions.

In justifying the tactics, the spy agency provided "inaccurate information" to the White House, Congress, the Justice Department, internal CIA investigators, the press and the public, the report found.

The committee said that it had reviewed 20 of the most commonly cited examples of successes attributed by the CIA to enhanced interrogation. It found each of those examples wrong.

Of 119 known detainees in CIA custody during its program of harsh interrogation, at least 26 were wrongly held, the committee found.

The report also found that the CIA used two outside psychologists to develop and carry out its interrogations. Neither had experience as an interrogator or special knowledge of terrorism.

The psychologists formed a company and were paid $80 million by the CIA, the report found.

The full report is estimated to be 6,000 pages. A much shorter executive summary from the Democratic majority, led by Feinstein, was declassified after months of dispute between the committee and the CIA.

U.S. military and diplomatic installations were put on alert ahead of the report because of the perceived risk that the details in the report will cause unrest. About 2,000 Marines were on standby to respond to threats against embassies or other interests.

Two days after he took office, in 2009, President Barack Obama reversed some Bush-era counterterrorism policies and ordered an end to coercive interrogation. He pledged to restore the United States to "moral high ground."

Former CIA officials and Republican critics of the Obama administration lined up before the report's release to question whether it should be made public. They also defended the CIA and its tactics.

Jim Miklaszewski of NBC News contributed to this report.

Powered by Frankly