December 21, 2012 |
When it comes to “Zero Dark Thirty,” there's been a lot written about the CIA and torture - whether it looked in real life the way it does on screen, whether it was effective, whether it was ethical. As we've been reporting this week, John McCain and other lawmakers don't agree it went down that way . The film, they say, misrepresents how the CIA found Osama bin Laden. Filmmakers say they've created an accurate depiction. Now that the movie has opened, we thought we'd ask you what you thought of the scenes.
December 20, 2012 |
The Osama bin Laden manhunt film "Zero Dark Thirty" came under fire Wednesday from a bipartisan group of senators who complained to Sony Pictures that the drama is "grossly inaccurate and misleading" because it suggests that torture helped extract key information from a terrorism suspect. In a letter to studio chief Michael Lynton, Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) wrote that the movie, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, improperly establishes a connection between "enhanced interrogations" and key intelligence.
December 20, 2012
Americans have known for years both the broad outlines and some of the disgusting details of the George W. Bush administration's policy of subjecting suspected terrorists to torture, humiliation and imprisonment at "black sites" in foreign countries. But they have been denied a comprehensive accounting of how the United States decided after the 9/11 attacks to travel to what then-Vice President Dick Cheney called "the dark side. " That would change if the Senate Intelligence Committee released to the public a 6,000-page report on the CIA's detention and interrogation policies that it approved last week.
December 16, 2012
Re "Bin Laden movie heats up CIA torture debate," Dec. 14 With the arrival of "Zero Dark Thirty," a dramatization of the hunt for Osama bin Laden, we seem to have reached the point where we are discussing the value of torture rather than its morality. We have moved from being a country that thrilled to James Cagney resisting Nazi torture to protect the secrets of D-day ("13 Rue Madeleine") to one that seemingly will embrace torture if it works. We were a country that condemned Hitler for the heinous invasion of Poland; just recently, we invaded Iraq on the pretext that we have a unilateral right to preemptive war. And those who promote these new values claim the mantle of being the real Americans.
December 13, 2012 |
LONDON - The European Court of Human Rights on Thursday ruled in favor of a German man who alleged he was kidnapped and tortured in 2003 as part of a U.S. rendition program involving the secret abductions and transfers of prisoners. Khaled Masri, a German citizen of Lebanese descent, said he was mistaken for a terrorism suspect associated with the Sept. 11, 2001, hijackers. He was arrested in Macedonia and held by the CIA for months in a prison in Afghanistan. Masri was released in Albania in May 2004.
December 13, 2012 |
Did the torture of detainees lead the U.S. to Osama bin Laden? Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee say no. A major new film that was researched with high-level CIA access, however, shows torture as yielding a big break and setting in motion the chase that ended in the terrorist's death in Pakistan last year. The Hollywood drama, "Zero Dark Thirty," is intensifying a sharp political debate in Washington about the value of "enhanced interrogation techniques. " Although the filmmakers say they never intended to take sides in the debate and the movie is not a documentary, "Zero Dark Thirty" implies that torture can be effective.
November 28, 2012 |
I'm not sure what's more peculiar about the Susan Rice story: Senate Republicans' obsession with Rice's televised comments about the genesis of the Benghazi, Libya, attack, or Rice's confession tour of Capitol Hill. If President Obama wants her as his secretary of State, he should make the announcement and then have her make courtesy calls on Sens. Lindsey Graham, John McCain et al. Rice has received a bum rap for recycling talking points about the attack that were drawn up -- and, now it seems, edited -- by the CIA. Moreover, her comments in one interview about the “decimation” of Al Qaeda aren't inconsistent with Al Qaeda being behind the Benghazi attack (though defining whether a group is an Al Qaeda “affiliate” is not a simple matter)
November 17, 2012 |
MOSCOW - Russian officials are promising a tough response to U.S. legislation that would impose sanctions on Russian officials if Congress finds them responsible for violating human rights. The U.S. House on Friday passed a bill that establishes permanent normal trade relations with Russia, repealing the 1974 Jackson-Vanik amendment, which had imposed limits on trade because of the Soviet Union's treatment of Jews. It had been waived annually since 1989, two years before the Soviet Union collapsed.
October 25, 2012 |
MOSCOW - An opposition activist being held by Russian authorities says he was kidnapped from Ukraine, tortured and forced to sign a confession, a human rights group said Wednesday. Leonid Razvozzhayev told five members of the Public Observer Commission on Tuesday night that he was abducted Friday in Kiev, smuggled back to Russia and subjected to ill treatment and psychological torment that compelled him to sign and read on videotape a 10-page confession of plotting to organize mass disturbances.
October 17, 2012 |
FT. MEADE, Md. — Three of the five alleged Sept. 11 conspirators, including purported mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, refused to attend a pretrial hearing Tuesday where lawyers argued over one of the significant overlying issues in their case — whether potential evidence of torture and other classified material will be discussed publicly in their trial at the U.S. naval base on Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The government wants a protective order prohibiting the release of material from CIA "black sites," the secret prisons where the defendants were held before being moved to Guantanamo Bay in 2006.