FVP Richard Cheney has been lobbying the White House to unclassify memos which prove that torture yeilded valuable information from terror suspects, back when we were still doing that. Here they are!
Surprise number 1: They don't prove that the valuable information came from torture.
The first document, issued by the CIA in July 2004 is about the interrogation of 9/11 architect Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was waterboarded 183 times in March 2003 and whom, the newly released CIA Inspector General report on torture details, had his children’s lives threatened by an interrogator. None of that abuse is referred to in the publicly released version of the July 2004 document. Instead, we learn from the July 2004 document that not only did the man known as “KSM” largely provide intelligence about “historical plots” pulled off from al-Qaeda, a fair amount of the knowledge he imparted to his interrogators came from his “rolodex” — that is, what intelligence experts call “pocket litter,” or the telling documentation found on someone’s person when captured.Surprise number 2: Cheney says that they prove it anyway.
This intelligence saved lives and prevented terrorist attacks. These detainees also, according to the documents, played a role in nearly every capture of al Qaeda members and associates since 2002. The activities of the CIA in carrying out the policies of the Bush Administration were directly responsible for defeating all efforts by al Qaeda to launch further mass casualty attacks against the United States.You may note that he avoids directly saying the TORTURE brought out the information, just that the people we tortured were the ones who gave us information. Distinction without a difference, if you regard torture as no big deal.
As a movie geek (news about that is a-comin', but let's not tangentalize) I can't help but think of Star Wars (A New Hope) or Marathon Man, or really, every single damn American movie up to 2004, in which the heroes were easy to spot because they were the ones who DIDN'T torture. The ones who torture are Nazis or stormtroopers. I know, I know, pre 9/11 thinking.