Barack Obama rightly condemns USA’s use of torture, but . . .


The US Senate released a report today on the use of enhanced interrogation techniques, otherwise known as torture:

December 9, 2014

The United States has released a long-awaited report detailing how the Central Intelligence Agency employed extreme interrogation methods on suspected terrorists following the September 11, 2001, attacks.

The Senate Intelligence Committee disclosed a lengthy summary Tuesday of the CIA’s interrogation techniques, including confinement in small places, sleep deprivation and waterboarding, which simulates drowning.

All are methods that critics of the CIA and human rights organizations consider torture.

The report says the interrogations were “more brutal” than the CIA had said and it “misled” Congress and the White House about its activities.

Banned use of techniques

When he took office in 2009, President Barack Obama banned use of the so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques,” which had been authorized by his predecessor, George W. Bush, in the aftermath of the 2001 attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.

The Senate report is the first public documentation of the CIA’s alleged use of torture on al-Qaida suspects during what the Bush administration called a Global War on Terror.

On Tuesday Obama vowed that harsh U.S. interrogation methods will not take place on his watch, saying the techniques did significant damage to American interests abroad without serving broad counterterrorism efforts.

Obama issued a written statement in response to a Senate report that detailed interrogation procedures carried out on terrorism suspects in the years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

“Rather than another reason to refight old arguments, I hope that today’s report can help us leave these techniques where they belong, in the past,” Obama said.

“It reinforces my long-held view that these harsh methods were not only inconsistent with our values as a nation, they did not serve our broader counterterrorism efforts or our national security interests,” he added.

U.S. diplomatic facilities and military installations overseas were under increased security Tuesday leading up to the release of the report.

In announcing the release of the report, Diane Feinstein, a Democratic senator and the committee chair, said, “Under any common meaning of the term, CIA detainees were tortured.”

CIA reaction

CIA Director John Brennan, in responding to the study’s release, said, “We acknowledge that the detention and interrogation program had shortcomings and that the agency made mistakes.

“The most serious problems occurred early on and stemmed from the fact that the agency was unprepared and lacked the core competencies required to carry out an unprecedented, worldwide program of detaining and interrogating suspected al-Qaida and affiliated terrorists,” Brennan said.

“Our review indicates that interrogations of detainees on whom EITs (enhanced interrogation techniques) were used did produce intelligence that helped thwart attack plans, capture terrorists, and save lives,” he added.

“The intelligence gained from the program was critical to our understanding of al-Qaida and continues to inform our counterterrorism efforts to this day,” he said.

“We also disagree with the study’s characterization of how CIA briefed the program to the Congress, various entities within the Executive Branch, and the public,” Brennan added. …

When asked about the report’s findings, Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson for U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, said that Ban has previously stated his position against torture and the need for accountability.

Cheney backs CIA

On Sunday, former Vice President Dick Cheney defended the agency’s actions in a interview with The New York Times.

Cheney, one of the program’s strongest supporters, said he never believed the CIA withheld information from the Bush administration, and that the program had been authorized by the Justice Department.

He said the CIA officers who ran the program should be “decorated, not criticized.”

Former CIA officials disputed the report’s findings, as did Senate Republicans, whose written dissent accused Democrats of inaccuracies, sloppy analysis and cherry-picking evidence to reach a predetermined conclusion.

George Tenet, CIA director when the 2001 attacks occurred, said in defending the agency, “We know that the program led to the capture of al-Qaida leaders and took them off the battlefield, that it prevented mass casualty attacks and that it saved thousands of American lives.”

Former CIA director Michael Hayden denied the CIA lied about its program.  He said releasing the report will make it less likely that countries that cooperated in the past with Washington in the fight against terrorists will do so in the future.

The former CIA veteran in charge of the interrogation, Jose Rodriguez, wrote in The Washington Post last week the claim the interrogation “brought no intelligence value is an egregious falsehood. It is a dishonest attempt to rewrite history.”

December 9, 2014

President Obama said Tuesday that a long-awaited Senate report on CIA torture of terrorism suspects details “a troubling program” that harmed America’s reputation, reasons that he ended the practices soon after taking office.

In a statement before Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California released the report, Mr. Obama said the probe “reinforces my long-held view that these harsh methods were not only inconsistent with our values as nation, they did not serve our broader counterterrorism efforts or our national security interests.”

“Moreover, these techniques did significant damage to America’s standing in the world and made it harder to pursue our interests with allies and partners,” Mr. Obama said. “That is why I will continue to use my authority as president to make sure we never resort to those methods again.”

While condemnation of torture is normally a good thing to do, the report released today will worsen the USA’s reputation throughout much of the world.  It also will probably generate more sympathy for terrorists and some of their means.  This does not bode well for the USA.

Here are some comments from the UK related to some of this:

December 9, 2014

Analysis: Frank Gardner, BBC security correspondent

This report makes deeply uncomfortable reading but it shines a much-needed torch into some dark places.

The fact that “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” (EIT), or torture by any other name, was stopped years ago or that some people at the top of the US administration may not have known its full extent, does not excuse the fact it took place at all.

After going through six million pages of documents, the authors concluded that in none of the cases they looked at did these brutal methods stop a terrorist attack. Meaning that America’s reputation, and by extension that of the wider West, has been sullied for no tangible gain.

This will lay the US open to charges of hypocrisy, making it far harder for the West to criticise brutal and dictatorial regimes. It may also encourage terrorists to justify their atrocities by pointing to this past abuse.

Theorists of torture have long debated whether a higher good – “national security” – can justify the lesser evil. Torture is in the same category as the bombing of populated places from the air. The agony is certain, the gain speculative. That is why civilised states no longer execute, torture or mutilate their citizens, whatever the possible justification. They acknowledge that civilisation is a matter of means as well as ends. The UN outlawed torture in 1975.

Yet no area of government is so enveloped in secrecy and hypocrisy. The British government lectures the world on civil and human rights, but has yet to account for the use of torture – water-boarding and other methods – in Northern Ireland. Its blanket secrecy for “national security” extends to surveillance, rendition, hacking and drone targeting. Its use of “trusties” in parliament as a fig-leaf for accountability and its meek collaboration with Washington in all things must leave it vulnerable to suspicion of complicity with the CIA.

USA hypocrisy on torture is an issue.  Some of its Anglo-Saxon descended allies will also, to a degree, be considered complicit with this as well.

But it perhaps should also be reported here that some documents were leaked to the press last year about the rationale that the Obama Administration has used for killing Americans that it believes are affiliated with al-Qaida:

5 February 2013

The United States government can legally kill one of its citizen overseas if it determines the person is a “senior, operational leader” of al-Qaeda or an associated group, and that person poses an imminent threat to the nation, according to a U.S. Justice Department memo obtained by NBC News.

The 16-page confidential “white paper” defines “imminent threat” broadly. The order to kill need not be based on intelligence about a specific attack because actions by the organization are continuously being planned by al-Qaeda, the memo says

According to the document, “imminence must incorporate considerations of the relevant window of opportunity” as well as possible collateral damage to civilians.”…According to The Washington Post, the American Civil Liberties Union on Monday called the document a “profoundly disturbing” summary of “a stunning overreach of executive authority

5 February 2013

Where is the outrage? For all the anger over Bush-era torture policies, where is the commensurate condemnation over President Obama’s justification for killing American citizens with no due process, no transparency, and no accountability?

An administration memo uncovered by NBC reporter Michael Isikoff strips the veil from the Obama’s oft-Orwellian justification for assassinating American citizens believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or an associated force–even if there is no evidence of an imminent attack against the U.S.

Strike that: Killing suspected terrorists who happen to be American “is not an assassination,” according to the president’s Justice Department. “In the Department’s view, a lethal operation conducted against a U.S. citizen whose conduct poses an imminent threat of violent attack against the United States would be a legitimate act of national self-defense that would not violate the assassination ban.”

Oh, and disregard that part about imminent threat: Although Attorney General Eric Holder told the public in March that killing Americans could be justified if government officials determine the target poses “an imminent threat of violent attack,” his memo creates a massive loophole. It coins a chilling little phrase–“broader concept of imminence”–to absolve the government of the responsibility to find a clear and present danger.

“The condition that an operational leader present an ‘imminent’ threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons and interests will take place in the immediate future,” the memo reads.

5 February 2013

The detailed circumstances in which a US government may order the killing of an American citizen who is a high-ranking member of al-Qaida have been revealed in a leaked memo prepared by Obama administration lawyers.

The document, acquired by NBC and dating from 2011, lays out for the first time the precise rationale for carrying out targeted killings of senior al-Qaida members who are US citizens, and who are believed to pose an “imminent threat of violent attack” against the United States

Although the paper does not specify the “minimum legal requirements” for launching such an operation, it insists that the killing would be constitutionally justified as the United States is engaged in an “armed conflict”, as defined by international law and authorised by Congress, with al-Qaida and its affiliates.

In a key passage in the document – which is unsigned – it argues that for a US citizen who has rights under the due process clause and the fourth amendment, “that individual’s citizenship would not immunize from a lethal operation”.

The paper concludes: “Where certain circumstances are met, a lethal operation against a US citizen who is a senior operational leader of al-Qaida … and who himself poses an imminent threat of violent attack against the United States, would not violate the constitution.”

US President Obama is right to condemn lying forms of enhanced interrogation techniques, but should also consider that perhaps he wants to go too far.

The Bible warns of terrors affecting the descendants of Israel, because of sin:

14 ‘But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments,
15 and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant,
16 I also will do this to you:
I will even appoint terror over you (Leviticus 26:14-16)

Those in the USA who feel that they are protected by a variety of ‘constitutional’ rights are learning that their government is narrowing those rights.

While the USA is condemning torture, eventually other enemies will use it against those of the USA as well as its Anglo-Saxon descended allies.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel Are the Americans, Canadians, English, Scottish, Welsh, Australians, Anglo-Saxon (non-Dutch) Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? What will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo-Saxon nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first? Here is a link to the Spanish version of this article: Anglo-América & las Tribus Perdidas de Israel. Information is also in the YouTube sermons titled Where are the Ten Lost Tribes? Why does it matter? and British are the Covenant People. A short YouTube of prophetic interest may be Barack Obama and the State of the Apocalypse.
Will the Anglo-Saxon Nations be Divided and Have People Taken as Slaves? Will the lands of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand be divided? What about Jerusalem? What does Bible prophecy teach? Are there non-biblical prophecies that support this idea? Who will divide those lands? Who will end up with the lands and the people? Here is a link to a video titled Will the USA and other Anglo-nations be Divided and Their People Made Slaves? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Serán divididas las naciones anglosajonas?
British are the Covenant People What do ‘British’ and ‘Britain’ mean in Hebrew? Are the descendants of the Anglo-Saxons people of the covenant? Does the British royal family connect to the throne of David? What does the Bible teach? What does history show us? Is there any DNA evidence related to British-Israelism? When did Christianity make it to the British Isles? Could Jeremiah have made it to the British Isles? What type of Christians made it to the British Isles? Did the last King of England believe in British Israelism? nglo-Southern Africans, and New Zealanders descendants of Joseph? Where are the lost ten-tribes of Israel? Who are the lost tribes of Israel? Will God punish the U.S.A., Canada, United Kingdom, and other Anglo nations? Why might God allow them to be punished first?
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Edition for Second Obama Term This is a 160 page book for people truly interested in prophecies related to Barack Obama and the United States, including learning about many that have already been fulfilled (which the book documents in detail) and those that will be fulfilled in the future. It also has a chapter about a Republican choice. This book is available to order at The physical book can also be purchased at Amazon from the following link: Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States: Is Barack Obama Fulfilling Biblical, Islamic, Catholic, Kenyan, and other America-Related Prophecies? What About Republican Leaders? Second Edition for Second Obama Term.
Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition. This electronic version is available for only US$2.99. And you do not need an actual Kindle device to read it. Why? Amazon will allow you to download it to almost any device: Please click HERE to download one of Amazon s Free Reader Apps. After you go to for your free Kindle reader and then go to Barack Obama, Prophecy, and the Destruction of the United States-Second Term-Amazon Kindle edition.

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