You can fool some people all the time

C.I.A. Destroyed Tapes of Interrogations

The Central Intelligence Agency in 2005 destroyed at least two videotapes documenting the interrogation of two Al Qaeda operatives in the agency’s custody, a step it took in the midst of Congressional and legal scrutiny about the C.I.A’s secret detention program, according to current and former government officials.

The videotapes showed agency operatives in 2002 subjecting terror suspects — including Abu Zubaydah, the first detainee in C.I.A. custody — to severe interrogation techniques. They were destroyed in part because officers were concerned that tapes documenting controversial interrogation methods could expose agency officials to greater risk of legal jeopardy, several officials said.

The C.I.A. said today that the decision to destroy the tapes had been made “within the C.I.A. itself,” and they were destroyed to protect the safety of undercover officers and because they no longer had intelligence value. The agency was headed at the time by Porter J. Goss.

Not too complicated in terms of comprehension and analysis. According to former and current officials and the C.I.A itself there were tapes. The CIA admits they destroyed them. They were probably not tapes of agents having a picnic in the park since the CIA claims they were destroyed to protect the identity of those doing the interogations. This is not “SOP”. Congress had sought all documentation having to do with 9-11 during the 9-11 Comission’s investigations. Those tapes were available then and obviously they were withheld from the Commission. Yet in a stunning display of pretentious arrogance one Republican blogger named Macsmind claims, Ny Times – the making of a story, Dec 6 at 8:08pm by Macranger, What tales they weave at the Ny Times.

Note that neither the reporters of the story have seen the DVDs, and quite frankly while I know they were destroyed (as per SOP), so that in-field operatives identities could be protected.

That would be a lie. Pretending to have knowledge of policies and procedures that that Mac does not have. In fact the CIA held onto them for three years by the agency’s own admission. Only then did they decide to destroy the tapes. Mac further asserts,

That’s all the CIA confirmed. Yet in the minds of the left that means they were “evidence that there was torture and so that is why they were destroyed!”

Yet what we have for evidence of that accusation that they showed torture is the word of “anonymous” officials.

“That’s all the CIA confirmed”? Republican blogger skims article sees what he wants to see, tunes out anything that might interfere with the little narrative he’s written inside his head. Reality continues to be a bitter pill for many Republicans. “anonymous” officials – well not quite, Hayden Says CIA Videotapes Destroyed

The CIA videotaped its interrogations of two top terror suspects in 2002 and destroyed the tapes three years later out of fear they would leak to the public and compromise the identities of U.S. questioners, the director of the agency told employees Thursday

Director, that would be Bush appointee Michael Hayden, hardly an anonymous source. Did the tapes contain depictions of torture. Since Republicans like Mac and G.W. Bush have shoved language into the Orwellian Zone it all depends,

CIA Director Michael Hayden said the CIA began taping the interrogations as an internal check on the program after President Bush authorized the use of harsh questioning methods. The methods included waterboarding, which simulates drowning, government officials said.

Malcolm Nance who is not a genuflecting blogger for Bush, but is an adviser on terrorism in the US departments of Homeland Security, Special Operations and Intelligence ,

He revealed that waterboarding is used in training at the US Navy’s Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape School in San Diego, and claimed to have witnessed and supervised “hundreds” of waterboarding exercises. Although these last only a few minutes and take place under medical supervision, he concluded that “waterboarding is a torture technique – period”. 

So Mac can’t seem to glean the pertinent facts, understand them or offer a cogent analysis, but hey he has a blog dedicated to bringing America the truth that the liberal press doesn’t want us to know. At the same link and many others the Bush administration on record as admitting the use of waterboarding. Their claim is that information could not have been gotten any other way. No proof has ever been offered to support that assertion, but as Mac shows we’ll not dealing with people that have much use for rational empirical proof that their immoral actions are of abosolute neccessity. The narrative has been and will continue to be, that despite been caught time after time in fabrications, distortions and manipulations of the truth the Bushites will continue to do so because it is the only way they know to conduct themselves. They can wrap their refuse in the flag all day, but as  Lincoln is reported to have once said, “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time. ”

Marty Lederman’s take from a legal perspective, Where’s Rose Mary Woods When You Need Her?

Well, how about a good, ol’-fashioned case of obstruction of justice?

Truly remarkable. When the Times told the CIA that it was going to run this story, Mike Hayden quickly sent out a letter to the CIA, reprinted below. (Hat tip to John Sifton for the letter.) Hayden’s explanation for the destruction was the need to protect the identity of CIA agents. As though the CIA destroys all its documents that contain identifying information about its agents.

If it is CIA Standard Operating Procedure to destroy anything and everything that might be embarrassing if leaked they probably keep the incinerators going full time. Mac the Republican blogger’s assertion is a ridiculous display of Bush Apologist Syndrome. We know that the CIA keeps records for years, CIA to Air Decades of Its Dirty Laundry

The CIA will declassify hundreds of pages of long-secret records detailing some of the intelligence agency’s worst illegal abuses — the so-called “family jewels” documenting a quarter-century of overseas assassination attempts, domestic spying, kidnapping and infiltration of leftist groups from the 1950s to the 1970s, CIA Director Michael V. Hayden said yesterday.

The documents, to be publicly released next week, also include accounts of break-ins and theft, the agency’s opening of private mail to and from China and the Soviet Union, wiretaps and surveillance of journalists, and a series of “unwitting” tests on U.S. civilians, including the use of drugs.