Almost 13 years after the CIA established secret prisons to hold and interrogate detainees, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report on the CIA’s programs listing 20 key findings. Click a statement below for a summary of the findings:
1 “not an effective means of acquiring intelligence” 2 “rested on inaccurate claims of their effectiveness” 3 “brutal and far worse than the CIA represented” 4 “conditions of confinement for CIA detainees were harsher” 5 “repeatedly provided inaccurate information” 6 “actively avoided or impeded congressional oversight” 7 “impeded effective White House oversight” 8 “complicated, and in some cases impeded, the national security missions” 9 “impeded oversight by the CIA’s Office of Inspector General” 10 “coordinated the release of classified information to the media” 11 “unprepared as it began operating” 12 “deeply flawed throughout the program’s duration” 13 “overwhelmingly outsourced operations” 14 “coercive interrogation techniques that had not been approved” 15 “did not conduct a comprehensive or accurate accounting of the number of individuals it detained” 16 “failed to adequately evaluate the effectiveness” 17 “rarely reprimanded or held personnel accountable” 18 “ignored numerous internal critiques, criticisms, and objections” 19 “inherently unsustainable” 20 “damaged the United States’ standing in the world”
ROBERT STEELE: I am sick to my stomach over the lack of integrity at the highest levels of the US secret intelligence community. In my view Jim Clapper, Mike Vickers, and John Brennan should all be fired by the President before Christmas. The clearances of every DNI and DCI as well as every Director of NSA going back to George Tenet and Mike Hayden should also be rescinded by Presidential decree. These people are a national disgrace. For a quarter-century I have been politely and persistently pointing out all that is wrong with US national intelligence. For a quarter-century, despite two of my books having Forewords from past and serving Chairmen of the Senate Select Committee for Intelligence, the attitude in Washington has been clear: neither intelligence nor integrity “matter.” Well, they do. The key point in Will and Ariel Durant’s Lessons of History, the capstone work on top of their multi-volume Story of Civilization, is that morality is a strategic asset of incalculable value. The US Government at large is guilty of committing many greater crimes against humanity than these — invading Iraq on the basis of 935 lies led by Dick Cheney, wasting 4 trillion dollars, and creating over 75,000 veteran amputees along with millions killed, wounded, or displaced is right up there with the Holocaust when considered broadly. What we have here is a mix of political, financial, intellectual, and moral corruption that is a microcosm of the political, financial, intellectual, and moral corruption characteristic of US political leadership at large. I salute the Senate for having the integrity — finally — to release this report. There is much more that could be done. Below are my three most pertinent recent publications on what should be done. Firing Clapper, Vickers, and Brennan would be a good start.
UN Paper: Beyond Data Monitoring – Achieving the Sustainability Development Goals Through Intelligence (Decision-Support) Integrating Holistic Analytics, True Cost Economics, and Open Source Everything