The so-called “architect” of the CIA’s torture policy — who as recently as last week claimed he could not confirm his participation in the enhanced interrogation program — told VICE News today that he was “just done holding back,” and admitted to participating in the waterboarding of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
After the release of VICE News’ short documentary featuring the retired Air Force psychologist James Mitchell, The Architect, he said that he was “bombarded” with interview requests. Mitchell complained that those requests wanted him to speak about the alleged abuses that he and his partner, Dr. Bruce Jensen, committed while conducting enhanced interrogations.
He said that while there were “some abuses that occurred” at the CIA black sites, the Senate Intelligence Committee “marginalized and ignored numerous internal critiques, criticisms, and objections concerning the operation and management of the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation Program” — and that he and Jensen were the ones who were making those critiques.
“They reviewed the [CIA] documents and they mentioned the complaints that I made in their report,” he said, “but they never said it was me. I was one of the people in the report who raised the concerns on multiple occasions.”
Mitchell also told VICE News that, “[f]rom my perspective, the Senate Democrats held a star chamber, decided I was guilty of something… went into the CIA’s 6 million pages of records, produced enough evidence to support their conclusion, and essentially issued a fatwa on me and Bruce [Jensen].”
“They did this without having the courtesy to talk to me,” he added. “Even if they found my behavior despicable, I should have had the chance to defend myself.”
Watch the short documentary The Architect on YouTube via VICE News below.