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The Missing CIA Tapes

POSTED: 02:47 PM ET, 12/ 7/2007 by The Editors

Did the CIA eliminate evidence of waterboarding? That question is behind the uproar over the revelation that the CIA destroyed videotapes of its harsh interrogations of two captured al-Qaeda leaders.

Today's report refocuses attention on what happened in the agency's secret prisons in recent years. The Post's Dana Priest first reported two years ago that the CIA interrogated terror suspects in a system of covert prisons that at various times included sites in eight countries, including Thailand, Afghanistan and several democracies in Eastern Europe, as well as a small center at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba. Her report added focus to the picture of how U.S. intelligence and military officials had handled detainees since 9/11 and the Iraq invasion. It came a year after CBS' "60 Minutes," the New Yorker magazine and The Post uncovered photographs documenting the mistreatment of detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

By The Editors |  December 7, 2007; 2:47 PM ET Post Investigations
Previous: Police Shootings in Chicago | Next: Still Not Sweet on the Senator


Please email us to report offensive comments.

Dana, make the connection yourself. Wasn't your secret prisons article published on November 2, 2005? If you ran ops for the CIA and read your article wouldn't you look to get rid of any taped interogations thinking people would start looking for any information about the secret prison interogation program? Is it coincidence that the tapes were destroyed in November 2005? What else could have been a catalyst that month? I'm surprised The Post article today didn't make the connection. You guys need to toot your own horn better.

Posted by: M M | December 7, 2007 4:28 PM

"Her report added focus to the picture of how U.S. intelligence and military officials had handled detainees since 9/11 and the Iraq invasion."

"Her report added focus to the picture of how..."

What a strange and fascinating construction!

Posted by: Bert | December 7, 2007 4:50 PM

Nothing will come of this.

With the large Corporations running our country, raking in billions from this administration, and shelling out millions to political candidates, it truly doesn't matter any more how disgusted we've become.

We'll see charges brought up against the scapegoats, while the one's who ordered the torture won't recall ever hearing about any of the incidents.

Good Lord, the editors of the Post can't even admit there was torture. Instead, they call it harsh interrogations, and mistreatment of detainees.

Posted by: Jack | December 7, 2007 4:55 PM

Dana Priest has been utterly consistent and persistent in her
reporting about this administration and I, for one, thank her from the bottom of my heart. There are still a few journalists who speak truth to power and she is one of them.
Not that much happens after she tells the world what is really going on. Yet, there remains a record of it and that is beyond
Slowly, drip by drip by drip, the crimes and astounding amorality
by which Bush has decided this country into this mess are being
revealed to the whole world and accepted as truth.
More power to you, Dana - and thank you.

Posted by: | December 7, 2007 6:09 PM

Kudo's to Jack. His post pointing out the media can't even call torture torture anymore is a sad commentary on our society. Bush says we don't torture, he won't define torture, but admits to harsh interrogation and the media falls in line. Bush lies and the media questions what he knew when and gives him every possible out and never calls him a liar.

Of course Bush has lied repeatedly and we've been torturing captives. Kind of makes you ashamed to be an American. We've become what we detest.

Posted by: BobL-VA | December 7, 2007 6:48 PM

"Good Lord, the editors of the Post can't even admit there was torture. Instead, they call it harsh interrogations, and mistreatment of detainees."

In our time, political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible . . . [thus]political language has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness. Defenseless villages are bombarded from the air, the inhabitants driven out into the countryside, the cattle machine-gunned, the huts set on fire with incendiary bullets: this is called pacification. Millions of peasants are robbed of their farms and sent trudging along the roads with no more than they can carry: this is called transfer of population or rectification of frontiers. People are imprisoned for years without trial, or shot in the back of the neck or sent to die of scurvy in Arctic lumber camps: this is called elimination of unreliable elements. Such phraseology is needed if one wants to name things without calling up mental pictures of them.

George Orwell
Politics and the English Language

Posted by: Peter Principle | December 7, 2007 7:00 PM

I seem to remember that copies of interrogation DVDs were sent to Rumsfeld and Cheney. Maybe investigators should start there?

Posted by: walker1 | December 7, 2007 7:26 PM

The CIA spokesman who said these tapes were "theirs" and therefore, they could do what they wanted with it. Au contraire. The CIA works for us. I hope that whomever was on these tapes, torturing (through water boarding) al-Qaeda prisoners, has gone into a constant cold sweat. I hope they are prosecuted by later Administrations. The CIA knows what is and isn't torture. They know water boarding is torture. I doubt a single CIA case officer, NOC, analyst, is ready or has been ready -- ever -- to undergo water boarding. Why would that be? Well, because it is nothing that would ever be seen as pleasant. It would be horrible, and frightening and very scarey. Anyone with a brain knows that he or she can volunteer to be water boarded, if they really want to know if it FEELS like torture. And, that they, and they alone, have a SECRET that whomever is doing the water boarding, WANTS. And, that the water boarding will go on and on and on ... until the torturers GET WHAT THEY WANT. No stops. No breaks. No artificial limits. Go for it. Torture. Water board until that secret is gleaned.
I've never been water boarded. I was, as a child, physically abused in many ways. I was emotionally harassed, and made to endure all kinds of concoctions, including industrial strength rubber bands on my wrists, which I was told I HAD TO SNAP HARD, AGAINST MY WRISTS, so that I would stop biting my fingernails.
That felt like torture to ME. I did not understand why it was such a big deal to stop biting my fingernails. In fact, I feel that those things, besides being hit with anything available, led me to feel VERY nervous and very anxious. Doesn't sound like torture to you? Tough. Torture is what the tortured feels is torture.
I dare say: if 99.99% of the population didn't think water boarding might be torture, many more folks would be lining up to have it done, to break this deadlock. I think the reason most people don't want to get water boarded is obvious. I think that if someone took the option away from them, and water boarded them for all of 30 minutes, they'd give up the SECRET the torturers wanted. No problemo.
The CIA who did the torture should be given an option: take the criminal penalty, assessed by some future court, or, be water boarded for the same length of time these al-Qaeda guys were. We are BETTER THAN THAT.

Posted by: Zennhead | December 7, 2007 9:29 PM

After inheriting the muddle from Britain, the US is trying to "pacify" Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East via the "Bombs & Bullets Approach," first identified as such by author Attila S. L. Andrade in his new new book "USA 2030 - Predictions." So long as Her Majesty's Government is eager to have the US take most of the hits attributable to London's destruction of the Porte during WW1 and the ensuing and contiuning chaos, it's high time Washington considered sensible regional policies, certainly something other than the "Bombs & Bullets Approach."

Posted by: Beau Bilgely | December 7, 2007 10:40 PM

I fraternity I "rushed" at college used waterboarding to separate the sheep from the goats, as it were. As I recall, they lost a few pledges.

Posted by: Farnsworth P. Raleigh | December 7, 2007 10:44 PM

I see that an universal assumption being made is that waterboarding was the worst extreme that America has descended to. Why is this assumption being made? Given the brutality that country has demonstrated, why not kidney bashing, knee breaking, ball-crushers, electrodes on genitals etc? Don't tell that Americans baulked at that? How many detainees have joined the ranks of the 'disappeared', Argentina-style? Or, is this focus on waterboarding designed to stop the asking of more questions on other forms of torture?

Posted by: Sarbo | December 7, 2007 10:55 PM

Posted by: Zennhead
"Dana Priest has been utterly consistent and persistent in her reporting about this administration and I, for one, thank her from the bottom of my heart. There are still a few journalists who speak truth to power and she is one of them."
Posted by:
Dana, your special report brings us back to the reason we stick with the Washington Post as our home page.
Yesterday, they took a major set of hits, 'way over 600 of them, especially on the John Bolton op-ed.
But then ... you bring us back to reality.
The paper's focus does return to the right place with ground-breaking reports on Walter Reed and the abysmal state of care of our returning veterans.
You break loose on the state of affairs regarding the no-bid contracts. Lo and behold, after a confusing but revealing interview with the House Committee on Government Oversight, State Dept. Inspector General Krongard suddenly resigns in embarrassment.
We readers often blame the messenger, rather than those who developed the reason for the message.
However, we do appreciate the hard work.
We rely on you all to help us understand the real state of the nation.
Ignore the naysayers.
Please keep on living up to your reputation.
We'll keep pushing in our comments because we the public want to know what is really going on.
Zennhead is right. We the American people are better than the pitiful excuse for the navigation of our Ship of State by the junta currently running it aground consistently.
WE don't believe in torture. We want to maintain this stance so that we can keep the pressure on anyone who captures our soldiers or our civilians that they be treated with care and respect, if the captors expect any quarter from us.
We love our brave soldiers. They deserve support in this issue.
Thanks to you, we are developing an education on the issues that matter in the coming election. Little by little, the complications of the issues are becoming clearer as time passes.
Whether some in this administration haven't gotten that message yet, we're sending it loud and clear and it will become very apparent in the next election, when our formal judgment of the conduct of the current crew on the Ship of State will be given.
Keep up the good work.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 7, 2007 11:10 PM

once again, another episode of a government out of control and a supposedly, what he thinks of himself, a strong president that doesn't know what is going on. My thoughts, Dick Cheney is running the country within the confines of his vice president palace. Therefore, Bush is innocent of any wrongdoing, but is guilty of being plain stupid and a puppet for the neocons.

Posted by: sek | December 7, 2007 11:50 PM

Commentators assume the CIA was dumb in destroying the tapes, and that the outcry would be far worse than if the tapes had survived. I think it more likely that the CIA was smart, and the outcry from the tapes would be worse than that from the destruction of the tapes. While we are waiting to see a backup copy of the tapes, if one exists, let us all check out the Battle of Algiers movie; there is much to recommend it beyond its water-boarding sequence.

Posted by: Peter H. | December 7, 2007 11:55 PM

I'm afraid Peter H. probably has it dead right.

Posted by: Richard Starkey | December 8, 2007 1:11 AM

uncounted thousands of dead Iraqi children. Ruined families. 3800+ dead American soldiers, thousands more seriously wounded. $2 Billion a week in costs. Millions in handouts to Iraqis to pretend to keep the peace. Abu Ghraib.

Most Iraqis would prefer to still live under Hussein - the horrible dictator who never threatened the US, but who the press vilified.

Congress approved this war and continues to approve the vast expenditures. Why? Admitting stupidity looks bad.

Throw the bums out. It's the only way to change. Many people opposed this aggressive war from the outset, but most in Congress ignored them.

"History is a cruel judge of over-confidence" from Shock and Awe, Neil Young.

Posted by: Terry OSullivan | December 8, 2007 1:55 AM

Paging Senator Shumer and AG Mukasey.

If I recall, the good Senator said that despite Mukasey's refusal to say waterboarding was torture, he was a good man who would uphold the law.

Well, we are now at the "put up or shut up" moment.

Paging the putative one just man in the DOJ, AG Mukasey. Will you authorize an investigation?

Though after hearing Senator Whitehouse's speech on FISA, some may think President Pan is the AG.

Posted by: R49Thomas | December 8, 2007 2:44 AM

Posted by: R49Thomas | December 8, 2007 2:46 AM

"Did the CIA eliminate evidence of waterboarding?"

Do bears defecate in the woods?

Of course they did. But lighten up on the CIA. Those poor shmucks are caught between Cheney pushing one way and some (certainly not all) federal judges pushing the other. The real problem is that the Nation has lost its moral compass and our politics are unable to come to grips with this in an effective way. There is no shortage of Americans who really believe that it is perfectly OK to torture terrorists for their information in order to save lives. Whether the poor bugger is actually a terrorist, and not some poor slob in the wrong place at the wrong time, is not a question that ever seems to come up. I find it altogether strange that so many people of Faith, of deep Christian Faith, should so readily be willing to inflict pain and/or terror on helpless prisoners. I'm sorry, but I find it to be a fundamental violation of American Principles, this one explicitly outlined in our Constitution. Have we all forgotten the prohibition of "cruel and unusual punishments"?

No doubt Justice Scalia will correctly point out that our Constitution only applies to us Americans here in America. Perhaps, but to the extent that our Constitution reflects our principles, our politics, as well as our supreme legal foundation, it demands recognition in spirit as well as letter. Whether those poor buggers stuck in Guantanamo have a habeas corpus Right is, in a way, beside the point. As Americans we should instantly recognize that incarcerating someone for six years without charges, with no access to a court, or communications to the outside world, is plainly wrong, plainly intolerable, and about as UnAmerican as you can get. The presumption of innocence, the right to a speedy trial, and habeas corpus are fundamental principles so important to us that they have explicit recognition in the Constitution. This is not to say that we don't also believe that the rest of the world is also entitled to these same protections; they are. Who would say they are not? That is a political question before it is a legal one.

I am astonished and dismayed that so many of our lawyers, our representatives in the legislature, our bureaucracies, and our military can simply accept and go along with such wholesale violations of what have been fundamental American principles.

Posted by: Cayambe | December 8, 2007 3:43 AM

These tapes, if copies exist somewhere, would surely mean the end of the Bush administration. Imagine the ensuing uproar from a video on the 6 o'clock news showing someone being tortured by American agents. Even the hard right would be unable to defend torture once the abstract implications of the word are replaced with screams of terror.

Thanks to the Post for keeping the flame of journalism burning.

Posted by: rpa | December 8, 2007 6:42 AM

Back-up copies of the videotapes still exist.

Posted by: Kacoo | December 8, 2007 7:50 AM

A flaw in the American form of Government is that the Justice Department is under the Executive Branch. In a corrupt lying administration like the current one, the president appoints Attorney Generals of a like mind. Maybe the Justice Department should be a separate agency. Putting it under Congress would be no better.

Posted by: Roy | December 8, 2007 8:17 AM

The Post along with the other news outlets should be condemed for allowing the situation to happen in the first place. They beat the war drum along with the rest of Americia. Didn't everyone in the majority grant this Administration the Authority to invade Iraq on the information that they had WMD and no one questioned that information so why ask this Adminstration to be accountable?

Posted by: john | December 8, 2007 9:07 AM

No need to ask Congress for help. They have been in on it all along. They have the power to end the war and refuse to act. Congress will not act on this either.
Failure to act I believe is a crime also.

Posted by: A Friend | December 8, 2007 9:09 AM

The other misnomer used by the WP is that waterboarding is "simulated drowning." Waterboarding causes actual drowning; with the victim's lungs filling with water. The procedure is then stopped prior to inducing death.

Posted by: LMW | December 8, 2007 9:35 AM

Well, after the 9/11 attacks, Cheney plainly stated that "the gloves are coming off" as regards U.S. treatment of its enemies. It turns out the meaning of that phrase was that the leading position the U.S. held in treating Prisoners of War humanely, if only to protect our own soldiers and marines when they are captured, would be foregone, because Bush and Cheney were extremely angry that U.S. could be so effectively attacked without warning. It also meant the law of the land became maleable in the hands of Bush. He is free to enforce or not enforce, abide by or violate any law in any way as long as he claims he is doing it to protect Americans from terrorist attack. Actually, regardless of his stated reasons, the power grab by the Executive Branch was done because Conservative minds see themselves as the disciplinarian fathers of the rest of us to include citizens of other countries. They are going to set things straight, as they have a mind to see straight, and arrange so they end up on top along with their fellow travelers. Every bad thing that happens along the way is, to them, negligible collateral damage. If justice were to be done, and that is highly unlikely, certain former and current highly placed government executives would be locked away in unpleasant circumstances for the remainder of their natural lives.

Posted by: BOS | December 8, 2007 10:02 AM

Zennhead wrote: "We are BETTER THAN THAT."

No, we're not. The U.S. was born in violence and racism, grew that way, and, in its adult years, has become more subtle, but even more sophisticated in its violence and madness. Even social programs are defined as "war." War on poverty (the U.S. lost); war on drugs (the U.S. lost); war on terror (ongoing). These wars should never have been started, because it was U.S. policy that created the conditions. And the bottom line is the whole explanation: open-ended wars keep the populace jittery and frustrated and the corporations flush with government--that is, the citizens'--money.

Posted by: Ed | December 8, 2007 10:28 AM

BOS wrote: "Bush and Cheney were extremely angry that U.S. could be so effectively attacked without warning."

They did have warning. They ignored Clinton and Richard A. Clarke; both were explicit in their warnings.

Posted by: Ed | December 8, 2007 10:39 AM

Isn't anyone smart enough to ask the OBVIOUS question- What did they SAY that had to be HIDDEN? As I have been saying on these forums for months, the reason the U.S. wants innocent people to populate its terror camps, is because the guilty may LET THE TRUTH SLIP OUT!! That is why they are kept AWAY from courts! Too dangerous to let non neocons question these 911 operatives. No, No the neocons want to TELL US what they said, YOU SEE we are NOT QUALIFIED to hear what they SAY........only those that share the koolaid can just destroy......any evidence that the unthinkable was done to facilitate their grab.................Hey we need oil, right so whats a few hundred thousand dead for a good cause like the bush empire.

Posted by: Thomas | December 8, 2007 11:05 AM

Why is there all this feigned moral outrage over over the treatment of the most notorious maniacs in history? It is just another manifestation of Bush hatred run amok.

99.9% of our prisoners from this war are treated like kings compared to the treatment our own war veterans receive when they return home.

Congress is guilty of torturing these Americans on a massive scale. Just look at all the homeless vets on the streets. There are thousand upon thousands who endure far greater pain, suffering and degrading treatment.

Until Congress funds programs to radically change this horrific scandal, these crocodile tears over treatment of a few megalomaniacs--whose sole purpose on this earth is to kill as many American men, women and children in the most brutal way possibl--is merely an exercise in self-righteousness.

All the Bush critics here have a warped fantasy view of American warfare history. We have never been the righteous heroes who were suddenly corrupted by the Bush administration. War is all hell.

Are you so naive to believe that this has only occurred during the Bush administration? In the "good war" we fire bombed Tokyo and in one night, 100,000 civilians--mostly women and children--were burned to death. We repeated this in every major city. Civilians were deliberately targeted. Compare that to sleep-deprivation. Sheesh.

Go back to our own Civil War and look at how American prisoners were treated in the North and the South. Read about Andersonville and then look at Guantanamo.
This has happened throughout our history on a massive scale.

You think the CIA didn't torture Soviet spies in the Cold War? Get a grip. If one of these al Qaeda leaders was responsible hurt someone in my family, waterboarding would be a picnic compared to what I would do. If you did another Post-ABC news survey, I bet there would be a lot more people who agree with me.

Posted by: thuff7 | December 8, 2007 11:05 AM

The New York Times broke the story.

And the mishmash of Priest's past work above sounds desperately like:

"We're reporters, too!"

Posted by: lambopolis | December 8, 2007 11:15 AM

This is about WHO did 911, NOT WHO did torture. Keep these persons AWAY from COURTS Only neocons and those under their control should be allowed to ASK ANY QUESTIONS..... too DANGEROUS.. Only those who have DRUNK their KOOLAID may have ACCESS!! CAN"T Have anyone HEAR the EVIDENCE they GIVE.....

Posted by: Thomas Ward | December 8, 2007 11:18 AM

I believe the heart of the issue comes down to how could a Jose Rodriguez, a career CIA official make a decision to destroy the tapes when he was advised by Congressional members, Harriet Myers and the Justice Department not to do so. He did not advise his boss the head of the CIA not the legal department of the CIA.

Career officers do not go up so high unless they follow orders and the real question is who gave him the order.

A subpoena might cause the real story to emerge but I doubt it. Presidential pardons have a way of ensuring witnesses can lie under oath with impunity.

Posted by: Oscar | December 8, 2007 11:20 AM

Look, I don't work at the NCS (former DO) but I visit from time to time. My take is this. The argument that this tape presented a legitimate security threat to the interrogators is valid. Yes, there are docs, but not that many. Most NCS officers use fake names on written docs just for this reason. The idea of blurring out the faces and disguise the voices would be impractical given the size of the tapes, and still allow the risk of reconstruction.

But there is doubtless more to the story. Jose probably believed that, although what the interrogators did was technically legal, their actions were close enough to the legal edge to provide the risk of misinterpretation. Especially given the history of hostility towards his officers by some in Congress.

My guess, and it is only a guess, is that Jose was trying to protect his officers from ending up hung out to dry by the same people who encouraged them to "take risks."

Was this a stupid act? Probably. But I don't think it was an evil one. Protecting his officers was a big part of his job.

Posted by: NorthEast McLean | December 8, 2007 11:33 AM

The argument that these tapes presented a security threat is utterly ridiculous. CIA has the capability to secure classified information.
The only threat presented by these tapes is that government officials with proper security authorization would view these tapes. These officials could certainly be motivated to provide oversight, and accuse CIA of torture.

Posted by: Matt | December 8, 2007 11:46 AM

Dana, with all that has come from the intelligence agencies and contractors, especially the CIA, have they become a 'Rogue" agency. It seems it has been run by psychos! This is reminiscent of WorldWar II. The other side. Or the KGB. At least what we were told of the KGB. It has become lawless. Maybe it could be said of the entire administration.

Posted by: nellieh | December 8, 2007 12:15 PM

What I'd like Dana Priest to investigate is the CIA's involvement in the recent NIE, and if the news about the destroyed tapes was deliberately leaked to punish the CIA for it's involvement in the recent NIE. After the Valerie Plame affair, journalists like Dana should question retaliatory leaks aimed at the intelligence community. If the CIA played a lead role in the NIE that discredited Bush's case for war against Iran, is it a mere coincidence that the release of that NIE to the public is followed by a leak to the New York Times which then damages the CIA?
This has all the fingerprints of the Plame outing. Please investigate where this leak about the CIA tapes originated, as it may very well have come from the same team that outed Valeria Plame in an attempt to punish all of the CIA.

Posted by: ErrinF | December 8, 2007 1:27 PM

FACT: The Bush administration knew about the destroyed tapes before the New York Times ever did.

FACT: In the recent past, the New York Times has held back stories, as well as gone forward with stories, after getting approval or disapproval from the White House first.

FACT: In the past, through their surrogate Judith Miller, the White House has used the New York Times to manipulate it's case for war and to attack those who oppose it's case for war.

FACT: Valerie Plame Wilson was deliberately outed by the White House to punish her and the CIA for hurting the Bush administration's case for war against Iraq.

FACT: At the start of this week, a National Intelligence Estimate was put forth by the intelligence community (with the CIA taking a key role) that greatly damaged the White House's current case for war with Iran and hurt Bush's credibility further.

FACT: By the end of the week, info about tapes destroyed by the CIA in 2005 is leaked to the New York Times. The CIA's credibility is now under attack.

Can you put 2 and 2 together? The facts add up to the Bush administration once again trying to 'Plame' the intelligence community, only this time they are outing a past mistake of the CIA's, not an undercover agent.

Posted by: ErrinF | December 8, 2007 1:48 PM

The New York Times broke this story, yesterday, because (presumably) someone leaked it to them.

I have absolutely no doubt that our pals in the CIA are madly looking for the looker, who (if they had their way, and given the utter lack of control over them exhibited so far by Bushco, the just might) will "disappear".

Let's be fair, however, Ms Priest cultivated the ground, years ago, and in vain, as it turned out, in an attempt to eliminate this noxious weed. She failed, but not from lack of trying.

No one was listening.

Posted by: VA_Lady2007 | December 8, 2007 5:18 PM

I agree with Errin F. Why did the NYT (which employs a human voice activated tape recorder to copy the Bush administration's case for going to war with Iran) decide to publish a two year old story that drags the CIA through the mud, brands them as criminals and liars and pushes all other stories from the front page when they did? Who are their high ranking administration sources? Already at the Free Republic they are posting that the NIE about Iran is suspect, because it was written by an agency that destroyed evidence. And all the talk about investigating and impeaching Bush in the left wing blogg-o-sphere has given way to talk of investigating the destroyed tapes.

Americans may be politically naive, but we are not stupid. The press can try to distract with this story and say that it puts Iran back on the table, as in "Yes, Virginia, Bush and Cheney may get their war after all. Or at least the GOP will get to use the subject for political advatage" But the American people will not be fooled.

Posted by: McCamy Taylor | December 8, 2007 5:31 PM

The Bush administration knew about the destroyed tapes and most likely leaked the info to the New York Times so as to retaliate against and punish the CIA for it's involvement in the NIE that hurt the president and his march to war with Iran.

So, after the Valerie Plame scandal, are we going to really pretend that the administration is above such devious tactics? Did the Plame scandal not matter at all? You'd think the lesson learned would be to question any leaks made to the press or public that have the deliberate goal of punishing or putting a chill on the intelligence community. And yet, so soon after the Plame outing and the legal circus that followed, here we have a CIA-damaging leak being given to the New York Times within days of the NIE being put out first, a NIE that the CIA undoubtedly had a heavy role in. And yet where are the investigative journalists asking if this destroyed tape leak isn't just Valerie Plame redux? Where is the cry from the left (from a blogosphere that is supposedly politically savvy) asking if this is not just the Bush administration up to it's old tricks? I see little if any mention of such a possibility in the mainstream media or the alternative media.

Whether I'm right or wrong, at least I had the intellectual curiosity to ask if there was a connection between the NIE and the CIA tape leak. If only our so-called journalistic community would ask the same such questions. How many of the followed the Plame story? And they can't see the similarities between that and this? If I am right, it would be a shame if the Bush administration got away with such heinous activity. But they will if nobody on the left or nobody among journalistic circles starts getting curious about the possibility that the White House did in fact leak the destroyed tapes story to retaliate against the CIA for the NIE.

Posted by: ErrinF | December 8, 2007 6:50 PM

Bush & Cheney know about the tapes. They know that torture was being used on high value captives; they condoned them. It's time that we end this charade. Bin Laden has exposed how immoral and cowardly our leaders could be in times of extreme desperation. See, we talk about rule of law and justice etc. when things are going well in our country: we have food, shelter, jobs, entertainment. 911 was a true test of the US; how well it could withstand the attack from without. We have the wrong leader at this time. Bush is a weakling, not very bright, inexperienced, never been tested in combat, morally corrupt, spoiled, and arrogant. So, America invades a country that did not attack US, began to torture people, spy on its citizens, suspend habeas corpus, bribe the press, and soon we are looking like Stalin's Russia. We owe this to Bush, Cheney, Rove, and the neocons.

Posted by: M. Stratas | December 8, 2007 8:58 PM

I must agree with one of your readers that perhaps "waterboarding" is merely a distraction to stop us from seeing the other horrible techniques that have been used but I certainly appreciate what the "Post" has done with all of this.

Posted by: William M. Brown | December 9, 2007 11:44 AM

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