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CIA says used waterboarding on three suspects

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080205/pl_nm/security_usa_waterboarding_dc;_ylt=AusWPXjTH6X_3lBXgRi4_WKs0NUE CIA says used waterboarding on three suspects By
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 5, 2008
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      CIA says used waterboarding on three suspects

      By Randall Mikkelsen Tue Feb 5, 4:03 PM ET

      WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The CIA used a widely condemned
      interrogation technique known as waterboarding on
      three suspects captured after the September 11
      attacks, CIA Director Michael Hayden told Congress on

      "Waterboarding has been used on only three detainees,"
      Hayden told the Senate Intelligence Committee. It was
      the first time a U.S. official publicly specified the
      number of people subjected to waterboarding and named

      Critics call waterboarding a form of illegal torture.
      Congress is considering banning the technique.

      Those subjected to waterboarding were suspected
      September 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and
      senior al Qaeda leaders Abu Zubaydah and Abd al-Rahim
      al-Nashiri, Hayden said at the hearing on threats to
      the United States.

      He said waterboarding has not been used in five years.

      "The circumstances are different than they were in
      late 2001, early 2002," Hayden said. "Very critical to
      those circumstances was the belief that additional
      catastrophic attacks against the homeland were
      imminent. In addition to that, my agency ... had
      limited knowledge about al Qaeda and its workings.
      Those two realities have changed."

      Hayden told reporters later that the interrogations of
      Mohammed and Zubaydah were particularly fruitful.

      From the time of their capture in 2002 and 2003 until
      they were delivered to Guantanamo Bay prison in 2006,
      the two suspects accounted for one-fourth of the human
      intelligence reports on al Qaeda, Hayden said.

      Some analysts have questioned Mohammed's credibility
      under interrogation. But Hayden said most of the
      information was reliable and helped lead to other al
      Qaeda suspects.

      He told the committee he opposed limiting the CIA to
      using interrogation techniques permitted in the U.S.
      Army Field Manual, which bans waterboarding. CIA
      interrogators are better trained, and the agency works
      with a narrower range of suspects in its
      interrogations, he said.


      Hayden said fewer than 100 people had been held in the
      CIA's terrorism detention and interrogation program
      launched after the September 11 attacks, with fewer
      than one-third of them subjected to any harsh
      interrogation techniques.

      But applying the field manual's limitations to the
      CIA, he said, "would substantially increase the danger
      to America."

      The CIA is the only U.S. agency that uses harsh
      interrogation techniques, National Intelligence
      Director Michael McConnell told the hearing. The
      entire military adheres to the Army Field Manual and
      FBI Director Robert Mueller told the hearing his
      agency does not use coercive techniques.

      A senior intelligence official said after the hearing
      that it was unclear whether the CIA could legally use
      waterboarding in the future, given changes in U.S.
      law. The Bush administration says it neither uses nor
      condones torture.

      The CIA said in December that it had destroyed
      videotapes depicting the interrogations of Zubaydah
      and Nashiri, prompting a Justice Department investigation.
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