Torture? What Torture? - Rolling Stone
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Torture? What Torture?

Responding to my post about the intersection of the torture and the Iraq intelligence scandals, Andy asks:

What torture? Leaving guys in cold rooms? Blasting Red Hot Chili Peppers music at all hours? THAT is supposed to be torture?

No Andy. Al Libi was rendered to a foreign intelligence service, reportedly the Egyptians. According to the Senate Intelligence report he was repeatedly beaten and kept in a tiny box, 50 cm by 50 cm (roughly 20″ x 20″), for up to 17 hours at a time. From page 82:

Libi stated that “he could not come up with a story and was beaten in a way that left no marks.” According to Libi, he continued “to be unable to come up with a lie about biological weapons” because he did not understand the term “biological weapons.”

Read the report (.pdf). It’s conscience shocking. All the more so because the tortured confession of this man who didn’t even know what biological weapons were was the sole basis for George Tenet later claiming: Iraq “has also provided training in poisons and gases to two al-Qa’ida associates.”

Charges that would be repeated by Dick Cheney:

“Saddam Hussein cultivated ties to terror. He had an established relationship with Al Qaida — providing training to Al Qaida members in areas of poisons, gases and conventional bombs.”

But as the Senate report concludes:

The other reports of possible al-Qa’ida CBW [chemical and biological weapons] training from Iraq were never considered credible by the Intelligence community.


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