Monday, December 10, 2007
Mon Dec 10, 2007 at 02:32:34 PM PST
[An apologia for torture, or the renunciation of it? The ABC link also has a lengthy interview with Kiriakou on video in multiple parts. Promoted by smintheus.]
A leader of the CIA team that captured and interrogated the first major al Qaeda figure, Abu Zubaydah, says subjecting him to waterboarding was torture but necessary.
In the first public comment by any CIA officer involved in handling high-value al Qaeda targets, John Kiriakou, now retired, said the technique broke Zubaydah in less than 35 seconds.
Imagine that: it took 35 seconds to break a mentally ill subject who then lied his ass off to get it to stop.
Now retired, Kiriakou says he has come to believe that waterboarding is torture.
"We're Americans, and we're better than this. And we shouldn't be doing this kinda thing," he said.
Now, we have a guy who has actually waterboarded a suspected terrorist calling it "torture". In effect, this guy has admitted to breaking the law, possibly even committing a war crime. Will he finger his superiors now? And remember - the Nuremburg defense didn't save anyone after World War II.
Since the leader of the team that conducted the torture has shown his face on ABC now, can we stop pretending that the tapes were destroyed to protect the identities of the perps from vengeful terrorists?
Can we stop calling it "tough interrogation techniques" now?