Even the CIA can’t stomach Bush’s brand of torture!


Richard Moore

Original source URL:

CIA Œrefused to operate¹ secret jails
By Guy Dinmore in Washington

Published: September 20 2006 22:07 | Last updated: September 20 2006 22:07

The Bush administration had to empty its secret prisons and transfer terror 
suspects to the military-run detention centre at Guantánamo this month in part 
because CIA interrogators had refused to carry out further interrogations and 
run the secret facilities, according to former CIA officials and people close to
the programme.

The former officials said the CIA interrogators¹ refusal was a factor in forcing
the Bush administration to act earlier than it might have wished.

When Mr Bush announced the suspension of the secret prison programme in a speech
before the fifth anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks, some analysts 
thought he was trying to gain political momentum before the November midterm 
congressional elections.

The administration publicly explained its decision in light of the legal 
uncertainty surrounding permissible interrogation techniques following the June 
Supreme Court ruling that all terrorist suspects in detention were entitled to 
protection under Common Article Three of the Geneva Conventions.

But the former CIA officials said Mr Bush¹s hand was forced because 
interrogators had refused to continue their work until the legal situation was 
clarified because they were concerned they could be prosecuted for using illegal
techniques. One intelligence source also said the CIA had refused to keep the 
secret prisons going.

Senior officials and Mr Bush himself have come close to admitting this by saying
CIA interrogators sought legal clarity. But no official has confirmed on the 
record how and when the secret programme actually came to an end.

John Negroponte, director of national intelligence, who was interviewed by Fox 
News on Sunday, said in response to a question of whether CIA interrogators had 
refused to work: ³I think the way I would answer you in regard to that question 
is that there¹s been precious little activity of that kind for a number of 
months now, and certainly since the Supreme Court decision.²

In an interview with the Financial Times, John Bellinger, legal adviser to the 
state department, went further, saying there had been ³very little operational 
activity² on CIA interrogations since the passage last December of a bill 
proposed by Senator John McCain outlawing torture and inhumane treatment of 

Mr Bellinger said the secret prisons remained empty for the moment. But he 
defended the US position that use of such prisons did not contravene 
international conventions as some in Europe have argued. He also said that, 
theoretically, the Pentagon as well as the CIA had the legal right to run such 
facilities. The CIA declined to comment.

Key figures among the 14 prisoners transferred to Guantánamo, including Khalid 
Sheikh Mohammed, had been held in secret centres for three years or more.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2006

"FT" and "Financial Times" are trademarks of the Financial Times. Privacy policy
| Terms

© Copyright The Financial Times Ltd 2006.

Escaping the Matrix website     http://escapingthematrix.org/
cyberjournal website            http://cyberjournal.org
subscribe cyberjournal list     mailto:•••@••.•••
Posting archives                http://cyberjournal.org/show_archives/
  cyberjournal forum            http://cyberjournal-rkm.blogspot.com/
  Achieving real democracy      http://harmonization.blogspot.com/
  for readers of ETM            http://matrixreaders.blogspot.com/
  Community Empowerment http://empowermentinitiatives.blogspot.com/
  Blogger made easy             http://quaylargo.com/help/ezblogger.html