Imagine what would happen if Mir Hussein Moussavi disappeared into Evin prison this afternoon and then a few days later Mahmoud Ahmadinejad emerged to say that Moussavi, under the kind of harsh questioning necessary to protect the Islamic Republic from outside subversion, had confessed to being a paid agent of the CIA. Then imagine Ahmadinejad added that his intelligence agents told him that information resulting from Moussavi’s interrogation had disrupted CIA planning across the country. How credible would you consider these assertions?
In that spirit, consider some newly-declassified information from the so-called Combatant Status Review Tribunals — a now-abandoned procedure to determine if a detainee posed a threat to U.S. interests — at Guantanamo Bay of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah. KSM:
“I make up stories,” Mohammed said, describing in broken English an interrogation probably administered by the CIA concerning the whereabouts of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. “Where is he? I don’t know. Then, he torture me,” Mohammed said of his interrogator. “Then I said, ‘Yes, he is in this area.’ “
“They told me, ‘Sorry, we discover that you are not Number 3, not a partner, not even a fighter,’ ” said Abu Zubaida, speaking in broken English, according to the new transcript of a Combatant Status Review Tribunal held at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Now, according to former Vice President Dick Cheney — and, just so we don’t get distracted, I AM NOT SAYING DICK CHENEY IS AS BAD AS MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD — there are two CIA documents from 2004 and 2005 wherein the CIA vouched for the accuracy of information it obtained from torturing Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah. It would be nice to see those documents. But what could they possibly indicate other than that the agency told Cheney what he wanted to hear about a cherished interrogation program? Or are we to believe that Khalid Shaikh Mohammed is lying about having lied? His diabolical skills of deception are just that good? Waterboarding him 183 times, denying him sleep for a week by contorting his body into unnatural positions, restricting his diet to between 1000 and 1500 calories a day — that’s the stuff that works, not any of the rapport-building crap that trained interrogators like Ali Soufan of the FBI advocate because of, like, their experience.
On Friday, the CIA will release a 2004 report on interrogations and detentions written by former inspector general John Helgerson, a report referenced in the recently declassified Office of Legal Counsel documents from 2005. Read it and ask: what would we say about this behavior if another country performed it?
EPA Administrator Addresses Concerns About Oil Spill Waste Management
At a hearing of the national oil spill commission today, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson addressed concerns about waste disposal from
E-Verify Mandate Begins Today
The Obama administration today begins implementation of a new mandate to require all federal contractors to check the legal status of their employees to confirm
EPA administrator defends allowing Florida to write its own water pollution rules
The EPA seal (Pic via sentryjournal.com) The Environmental Protection Agency has come under fire for its decision to allow the state of Florida to write its own water pollution rules (known as “numeric nutrient criteria”). EPA Regional Administrator Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming is now firing back, writing that the Agency commends the state Department of Environmental Protection for its draft of a proposed standard. A host of environmental groups filed suit in 2008, seeking to compel the EPA to implement a strict set of water pollution standards in Florida, arguing that the state was in violation of the Clean Water Act.
EPA administrator fires back at critics in op-ed
EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson (Pic by USACEpublicaffairs, via Flickr) EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson penned a new op-ed for the Los Angeles Times , criticizing House Republicans desperately seeking to undermine the authority of the agency they have dubbed a “job killer.” Arguing that the environment affects red states and blue states alike, Jackson writes that “it is time for House Republicans to stop politicizing our air and water.” As head of the Environmental Protection Agency, Jackson has faced harsh criticism from House Republicans and GOP presidential candidates who say the agency’s regulations are an undue burden on businesses that have to cut jobs simply to comply with clean water and air rules. Presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann has pledged to end the EPA if she takes office. “Since the beginning of this year, Republicans in the House have averaged roughly a vote every day the chamber has been in session to undermine the Environmental Protection Agency and our nation’s environmental laws,” writes Jackson.
EPA Analysis Says Climate Bill’s Cost for Households Would Be ‘Modest’
All the attention on the energy front today is going to the BP spill, but the Environmental Protection Agency quietly released its long-anticipated analysis of
EPA administrator says federal nutrient criteria is a ‘myth’
In testimony given late last week, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said that false accusations about her agency’s numeric nutrient criteria to govern Florida waterways are proving to be a detriment to their implementation. # Testifying before the House Agriculture Committee, Jackson said her agency’s work was often “mischaracterized” and addressed several myths surrounding its work
EPA: BP Has 24 Hours to Find a Less Toxic Chemical Dispersant
Thought the massive quantities of oil pouring into the Gulf of Mexico were the only major threat to the country’s southeast coastal waters right now? Think
EPA biologist says fracking may be partly to blame for West Virginia fish kill
New documents obtained by an environmental news service show that an EPA analyst believes that wastewater from fracking may be partly responsible for a fish kill in a West Virginia river. Scientific American reports : U.S