Today, the CIA released this report by the agency's Inspector General. The Washington Independent reports that the just-unclassified document, which remains heavily redacted, "was so charged within the agency that former CIA Director Michael Hayden clashed with [Inspector General John] Helgerson over the inspector general's independence and investigative authority."
While a statement from CIA Director Leon Panetta says that "[i]n many ways, this is an old story," the report's revelations include the following:
- 1. The report states, "One of the psychologists/interrogators acknowledged that the Agency's use of the technique differed from that used in SERE [Survival Evasion Resistance Escape] training and explained that the Agency's technique is different because it is 'for real' and is more poignant and convincing."
- 2. Also, the CIA failed to disclose accurate medical information to the Justice Department when requesting permission to waterboard detainees. Rather, they provided medical information relevant to waterboarding as performed during SERE trainings which, as mentioned above, was less "poignant and convincing" than the method employed by the CIA.
- 3. While the report expressly implicates Justice Department attorneys who gave oral permission for torture to CIA officials, it appears that this permission was only granted after several uses of the "extreme interrogation techniques."
- 4. In what the report calls the "most significant" incident, one debriefer acted without authorization, using an unloaded handgun and a drill to coerce a detainee.