Awaiting Senate Report Release, Torture Critics Combat Disinformation Campaign

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Ongoing coverage on Tuesday. As executive summary of Senate Intelligence Committee's probe into CIA is released, journalists, experts and human rights advocates remind the American people that torture program under Bush administration was systematically orchestrated by top officials, not executed by rogue agents.

With the release of the executive summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on CIA torture expected on Tuesday, opponents of the brutal practices authorized by the Bush administration are preparing to pour over the report to see just how far the six-year long probe goes in identifying the real perpetrators of the programs which saw individuals in the custody of the U.S. government beaten and mistreated in ways that other investigators of the program have identified as "war crimes" and members of the committee have said will make Americans "disgusted."

 

In recent days, as previously reported, current and former CIA officials, lawmakers, and members of the Bush administration have come out in defense of the CIA's brutal tactics while also attempting to discredit the Senate report.

In an interview with the German newspaperDeutsche Welle published Tuesday morning, (Ret.) Col. Morris Davis, who once led the government's  prosecution team at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, said the Senate report may not reveal things not already documented elsewhere, but that's its publication is vital nonetheless. "I don't anticipate that the report will reveal some additional practices that have not been discussed in some way already," Morris said in the interview. "What it will do though is officially confirm what's been talked about in the media for years. Having that official record is important."

Staking out his position on the report prior to its release, journalist Glenn Greenwald, who has covered the CIA torture program that took place under former President George W. Bush extensively, said that the American people should not succumb to the "worst myths official Washington and its establishment media have told" the public over the course of recent years. The program was not isolated to just a few cases, as if often suggested, writes Greenwald, but rather "was an officially sanctioned, worldwide regime of torture that had the acquiescence, if not explicit approval, of the top members of both political parties in Congress."

Throughout the day and following the release of the report Common Dreams will track reactions and critical analyses from informed voices on its contents in the section below.Check back for updates...


9:17 AMAmerica can't handle the truth – about Guantánamo, torture or a man now free from both

In an op-ed in the Guardian, Cori Crider, a lawyer with the UK-based human rights legal group Reprieve, describes why her client Abu Wa’el Dhiab, released from Guantanamo just days ago after more than 12 years without trial is a prime example of how deep the U.S. government's "indifference to human suffering" and its obsession with keeping evidence of its abuses out of the public domain has run since 2001.

...if you think you’re going to get the truth about torture out of the so-called War on Terror’s wall of silence when the long-anticipated CIA torture report finally gets released on Tuesday, consider that we can’t even see that photo of my shackled client getting on a plane – that I am not even allowed to tell you about 10 hours of video of him getting force-fed by military service members.

Perhaps the American government can’t handle the truth about itself, from torture in secret CIA prisons to my client’s torture at the world’s most notorious prison, even after he is finally free. But I believe the American people can.


9:00 AMTwo must-read backgrounders on CIA torture program

On Monday, independent journalist Marcy Wheeler, aka @Emptywheel, released this 13-part timeline via Twitter which explains the rise of the torture program under the Bush administration.

Also on Monday, Marcelene Hearn, a staff attorney with the ACLU's national security project published this piece, titled "Required Reading: Prequels to the Torture Report" on the Blog of Rights.

Following ongoing coverage on Common Dreams.


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