A classified U.S. Senate report found that the CIA's legal justification for the use of harsh interrogation techniques that critics say amount to torture was based on faulty legal reasoning, McClatchy news service reported on Thursday. The Central Intelligence Agency also issued erroneous claims about how many people it subjected to techniques such as simulated drowning, or "water boarding," according to the news service, citing conclusions from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report obtained by McClatchy.
The festering dispute between the CIA and Senate investigators that exploded in public this week shows just how hard it can be to learn from the past and move on. More than 12 years after the Sept. 11 attacks, the government still is struggling with what kind of public reckoning is due for harsh interrogation techniques introduced by President George W. Bush and banned by his successor, President Barack Obama. Some questions and answers about how the Senate and the CIA got here and what happens next:
A behind-the-scenes battle between the CIA and Congress erupted in public Tuesday as the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee accused the agency of breaking laws and breaching constitutional principles in an alleged effort to undermine the panel’s multi-year investigation of a controversial interrogation program. Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) accused the CIA of secretly removing documents, searching computers used by the committee and attempting to intimidate congressional investigators by requesting an FBI inquiry of their conduct — charges that CIA Director John Brennan disputed within hours of her appearance on the Senate floor.
A lack of transparency and oversight has led to abuses time and again, in every era.
In the wake of Friday's mass killing at an elementary school in Connecticut, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said Sunday that she plans to introduce an assault weapons ban bill on the first day of the new Congress.
Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) wants to see loans flowing to the manufacturing sector. Her plan, introduced on August 22, proposes that the Export-Import Bank directly lend as much as $20 billion to domestic manufacturers.