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Senators: ‘Enhanced interrogation techniques’ ineffective

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WASHINGTON — A US Senate report that analyzed millions of pages of intelligence records will show that enhanced interrogation techniques used by the CIA were not effective in helping find terror suspects, top lawmakers said Monday.

Senate Intelligence Committee chairwoman Dianne Feinstein and Senate Armed Services Committee chairman Carl Levin also said they were “deeply troubled” by a senior CIA operative’s claims that the harsh techniques used after 9/11 — and deemed torture by President Barack Obama’s administration — led to war-on-terror successes.

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The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, whose staff reviewed more than six million pages of documents, will “soon” complete a 5,000-page report providing “a detailed, factual description of how interrogation techniques were used, the conditions under which detainees were held, and the intelligence that was — or wasn’t — gained from the program,” the senators said in a statement.

Their comments appear to be prompted by the publication Monday of an in-depth account of CIA interrogation operations in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks in which author Jose Rodriguez, the former CIA deputy director for operations, defended waterboarding, a technique that simulates drowning.

Rodriguez also appeared on CBS show “60 Minutes” on Sunday, saying he had “no qualms” about engaging in measures that “went to the border of legality” because they helped save American lives.

“If there was going to be another attack against the US, we would have blood on our hands because we would not have been able to extract that information from” terror suspect Abu Zubaydah, who the CIA said was waterboarded some 83 times in August 2002.

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“So we started to talk about an alternative set of interrogation procedures.”

He argued that top terror suspect and 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, whom the CIA says was waterboarded 183 times in March 2003, spilled key information as a result of the methods.

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“I think that the cumulative effect of waterboarding and sleep deprivation and everything else that was done eventually got to him,” Rodriguez said on “60 Minutes.”

But Feinstein and Levin said statements by Rodriguez and others about the role the CIA interrogation program had in locating Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden, who was killed in a US military raid in Pakistan one year ago, “are inconsistent with CIA records.”

“The suggestion that the operation was carried out based on information gained through the harsh treatment of CIA detainees is not only inaccurate, it trivializes the work of individuals across multiple US agencies that led to (bin Laden) and the eventual operation.”

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The CIA used coercive interrogation methods on dozens of detainees in so-called black sites around the world, and Rodriguez and others have said that “original lead information” on bin Laden’s courier, which ultimately led to his location, came from those enhanced interrogations.

“This statement is wrong. The original information had no connection to CIA detainees,” the senators said, insisting that key intelligence on the courier came from “a variety of classified sources” and that such data will be detailed in the forthcoming report.

A source familiar with the report told AFP its completion was still “several weeks” away.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Florida teacher removed after bizarre rant about students not standing for the pledge

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Students were faced with a white-board rant in a classroom attacking anyone not standing up for the Pledge of Allegiance.

The moment went viral locally on Thursday after students posted Daniel Goodman‘s “inappropriate” message to students at First Coast High School in Duval County, Florida, The Atlanta Black Star reported.

“THINK: We had about a half million Americans die in our Civil War, which was largely to get rid of slavery. There are no longer separate water fountains and bathrooms in Jacksonville for ‘white’ and ‘colored,’ as Mr. Goodman remembers from the 1960?s. We had an amendment to the U.S. Constitution allowing women the right to vote. We have had a Black president. The superintendent of Duval Schools is a Black woman. Mr. Fluent, our principal, replaced a Black man. Mr. Simmons, who now is a DC PS admninistrator.”

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Missouri official choose Dr. Seuss’ ‘Oh the Places You’ll Go’ for swearing-in ceremony instead of ‘The Bible’

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A Missouri county official is being both celebrated and attacked after a decision to forgo The Bible for her swearing-in ceremony and opted for a copy of Oh, The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss.

The Friendly Atheist at Patheos captured the story, posting a photo of St. Louis City Councilmember Kelli Dunaway's children holding a copy of the book while she took her oath of office.

This was the scene last week at the STLCO government center. Democrats took back control of the council and @DunawayKelli was sworn in on a copy of “Oh the Places you’ll go” with her children❤️ so proud to be part of #TeamKelli pic.twitter.com/iJ1dxfZ1Zg

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Trump predicts New York Times will go out of business when he’s out of office

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In a permission tweet, President Donald Trump announced that his presidency is the only thing keeping the New York Times in business. Yet, somehow, they're also attacking him and lying about him.

"The New York Times will be out of business soon after I leave office, hopefully in 6 years. They have Zero credibility and are losing a fortune, even now, especially after their massive unfunded liability. I'm fairly certain they'll endorse me just to keep it all going!" he tweeted.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1163238629730373632

Since taking office, subscriptions for The Times have increased dramatically. According to an August report, The Times boasted a 4.7 million increase in subscribers for the second quarter. Their revenue growth was 5.2 percent. It certainly is a modest increase, but it's also an increase in an era when newspapers are struggling to survive.

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