Rizzo’s Brief with Nancy Pelosi: Bush Didn’t Include Torture in the Finding Authorizing Torture

I’m going to deal with John Rizzo’s purported “mea culpa” in three posts, one each for each of his regrets.

Rizzo’s first regret is that the CIA did not push the White House to allow it to brief the entire intelligence committees so they could, as Rizzo said, “allow the committees—compel them, really—to take a stand on the merits to either endorse the program or stop it in its tracks.”

It’s an argument I totally agree with. But to make his argument, Rizzo mobilizes some of the same lies about the CIA’s briefing of the torture program, notably about Nancy Pelosi. He does so, however, with a really spooky move.

Shortly thereafter, almost seven years after CIA first informed her about its employment of waterboarding and the other EITs, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, stood before the cameras and claimed that all CIA ever told her was that waterboarding was being “considered” as an interrogation tactic, not that it would be ever employed. Confronted with evidence to the contrary, the Speaker subsequently conceded that she had been informed about EITs from the outset but insisted she was always opposed to them but powerless to do anything to stop them. None of which was true, but in hindsight the Speaker’s moonwalk was hardly unforeseeable.

It’s the same old story turning the question of whether Pelosi was briefed prospectively or historically into a claim that “she had been informed about EITs from the outset” without mentioning that even Porter Goss’ version of the briefing is consistent with Pelosi’s claim that CIA didn’t tell them in September 2002 that they had already started using torture. Rizzo’s use of this tired tactic is all the worse considering that 1) it appears that he was not at the briefing in question, and 2) the CIA changed its record of the briefing after the fact.

In other words, Rizzo’s attack on Pelosi is total bullshit. Furthermore, the attack falsely suggests that CIA briefed Congress before torture started.

But his use of Pelosi to make this point is rather intriguing. Rizzo makes no mention of Bob Graham’s attempt to exercise oversight over the torture program, which was discouraged by the CIA and thwarted by Pat Roberts.

More significantly, Rizzo makes no mention of Jane Harman, who did object to the program but proved unable to “stop it in its tracks.”

Rizzo’s silence about CIA’s briefing to Harman–and her objection to the torture program–is more significant given something else he asserts in this piece.

A few days after the attacks, President Bush signed a top-secret directive to CIA authorizing an unprecedented array of covert actions against Al Qaeda and its leadership. Like almost every such authorization issued by presidents over the previous quarter-century, this one was provided to the intelligence committees of the House and Senate as well as the defense subcommittees of the House and Senate appropriations committees. However, the White House directed that details about the most ambitious, sensitive and potentially explosive new program authorized by the President—the capture, incommunicado detention and aggressive interrogation of senior Al Qaeda operatives—could only be shared with the leaders of the House and Senate, plus the chair and ranking member of the two intelligence committees.

Rizzo starts by invoking the September 17, 2001 Presidential Finding that authorized the CIA to capture and detain al Qaeda members. He tells us–this may be news, actually–that that Finding was briefed to the entire intelligence committees and to appropriations committees. But then he says that the torture part of that program “could only be shared” with the Gang of Eight.

The detail is interesting, by itself, for the way it contradicts Rizzo’s later (false) claim that “every other member of Congress” “would be kept in the dark” about the torture program. After all, the Leaders are also members of Congress, but if the CIA’s own error-ridden briefing list is to be believed, the only Leader who ever got briefed in that role was Bill Frist (while Appropriations Subcommittee Republicans Duncan Hunter, Ted Stevens, and Thad Cochran also got briefings, as well as John McCain).

The comment is more interesting for what it says about the Finding itself. The CIA has long suggested (and reporting has repeated) that that Finding authorized the torture program. But Rizzo is making it clear here that that Finding did not include authorization for the torture program. The oral briefings the Gang of Four got were the only way the way the President informed Congress about the torture program.

While it’s significant that Rizzo is here admitting that fact, we already knew it. We knew it because Jane Harman twice asked about a Finding on torture, once implicitly in 2003 when she asked “Have enhanced techniques been authorized and approved by the President?” and once in the briefing CIA gave her on July 13, 2004, when she,”noted that the [redacted–almost certainly the Finding] did not specify interrogations and only authorized capture and detention.”

In other words, Rizzo basically admits that the point Jane Harman appears to have made repeatedly was correct: the torture program had not been formally included in a Finding briefed to Congress.

Rizzo’s lies about briefing Congress don’t appear to be the issue here. Rather, the problem is that the Administration did not issue the legally required Finding to Congress.

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107 replies
  1. Cregan says:

    Considering that most every citizen in the US, and I am sure including EW, had a pretty good idea that water boarding and similar was going on, Pelosi’s claim is baloney. And, at BEST, she should have been pressing like hell to find out–considering how much she says she was against it.

    I’m not saying that EW or myself KNEW water boarding was happening, but there was so much heat and discussion of it, it would have been hard to avoid.

    The fact water boarding was going on was the worst kept secret ever. Yes, nobody had it confirmed, but I doubt many didn’t suspect it.

    When you combine this with the propensity of politicians, of all stripes, to later deny they knew of something which had changed popularity over time, Pelosi’s claim is baloney.

    But, it has nothing to do with whether it was a good policy or not. Just Pelosi’s integrity.

  2. rugger9 says:

    Remember that Darth was a true Nixonian [he was royally pissed that Nixon didn’t fight it out], who famously said that “it isn’t illegal if the President does it”. That statement [as well as Watergate, FWIW] would cause barely a ripple now, and it’s because that gang was never held accountable. So, they upped the ante. Darth took Nixon’s tenet to a new level, because Darth made the point about creating their own realities and that means anything goes, since a new “reality” can be constructed to cover anything they did.

    What Rizzo has done to Pelosi is shameless enough, and a sign the Rethugs are running out of rhetorical bullets [maybe Luntz is on vacation] and have to recycle old themes previously debunked. But the fact that there is no legal finding to underpin the program means a lot of CIA agents may potentially face the music for going [officially, wink wink] rogue. It’s doubtful to me to think the look-forward DOJ would prosecute, but the ICC may not be so pliable, especially as everyone wades through the Wikileaks cables. After all, all signatories for the General Convention on Torture negotiated by “St” Ronnie are obligated to pursue cases of any war criminal, and “following orders” isn’t allowed as an excuse. I’m sure even a formal Presidential Finding would fail to impress the ICC on those grounds, but IANAL.

    One other note, related to Yoo’s book tangentially, is that waterboarding appears to be no longer officially torture according to the wingnuts. We have prosecuted and executed our enemies in WWII and Vietnam for doing this to our soldiers, calling it torture then. That means we set the precedent and we acted on it, therefore waterboarding is by definition torture.

  3. rugger9 says:

    @Cregan:
    Release of classified information is a crime, except when Darth does it, but even he had to pixie dust declassify Plame’s name to get Scooter to get it out.

    That action was clearly traitorous, if not necessarily treason as defined by the US Constitution. Darth has sidled away from discussing that time in his interview tour, somehow, but he deliberately outed an undercover asset working on WMD intel in Iraq. Aid and comfort to the enemy, check. Two witness to the same overt act, maybe. The Constitution requires both to call it treason. Darth’s action was far worse than anything you accuse Pelosi of doing, but it seems to be OK in your book.

    As far as Pelosi is concerned, Cregan, perhaps you can explain to us just how tolerant Darth would be on Pelosi spilling the beans. About the only place she could do it was on the floor of Congress [speech and debate clause protection]. As Harman found out, there was nothing she could do internally, and defunding the program would be the option, assuming that the line item wouldn’t turn up as something else. There’s the old story about “finding the umbrella”.

    So, given the vindictiveness constantly on display from the last administration, tell me again, Cregan, that they and the RW Wurlitzer wouldn’t have had Pelosi hanging from the trees. Look how they dumped all over her about the plane.

  4. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Uh, in 2002?

    No. I did not know or suspect waterboarding was going on. Nor did anyone else. Hell, I didn’t know it as waterboarding at that point.

    Congress only even learned about the Salt Pit death from rumors (and that was after the Pelosi briefing). You’re just making stuff up. (And ignoring the evidence from Porter Goss, but whatever, who needs evidence.)

  5. Peterr says:

    @rugger9: “That gang was never held accountable”?

    Really? I remember Watergate a bit differently than you do. Per wiki:

    The Watergate Seven were advisors and aides to United States President Richard M. Nixon who were indicted by a grand jury on March 1, 1974 for their role in the Watergate scandal. The grand jury also named Nixon an unindicted co-conspirator. The indictments marked the first time in U.S. history that a president was so named.

    The seven indicted were:

    John N. Mitchell – former United States Attorney General and director of Nixon’s 1968 and 1972 election campaigns; faced a maximum of 30 years in prison and $42,000 in fines; on February 21, 1975, Mitchell was found guilty of conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and perjury and sentenced to two and a half to eight years in prison, which was later reduced to one to four years; Mitchell actually served 19 months.
    H. R. Haldeman – White House chief of staff, considered the second most powerful man in the government during Nixon’s first term; faced a maximum of 25 years in prison and $16,000 in fines; in 1975, he was convicted of conspiracy and obstruction of justice and received an 18-month prison sentence.
    John Ehrlichman – former assistant to Nixon in charge of domestic affairs; faced a maximum of 25 years in prison and $40,000 in fines. Ehrlichman was convicted of conspiracy, obstruction of justice, perjury and other charges; he served 18 months in prison.
    Charles Colson – former White House counsel specializing in political affairs; pleaded nolo contendere on June 3, 1974 to one charge of obstruction of justice, having persuaded prosecution to change the charge from one of which he believed himself innocent to another of which he believed himself guilty, in order to testify freely[1]; he was sentenced to 1 to 3 years of prison and fined $5,000; Colson served seven months.
    Gordon C. Strachan – White House aide to Haldeman; faced a maximum of 15 years in prison and $20,000 in fines. Charges against him were dropped before trial.
    Robert Mardian – aide to Mitchell and counsel to the Committee to Re-elect the President in 1972; faced 5 years in prison and $5,000 in fines. His conviction was overturned on appeal.
    Kenneth Parkinson – counsel for the Committee to Re-elect the President; faced 10 years in prison and $10,000 in fines. He was acquitted at trial. Although Parkinson was a lawyer, G. Gordon Liddy was in fact counsel for the Committee to Re-elect the President.

    And add in John Dean, WH Counsel, whose cooperation helped put these folks away, and Jeb Magruder, who was convicted in a trial of his own much earlier.

    All in all, it kind of sounds a bit like accountability to me.

    I mean, if the DOJ indicted, tried, and convicted AGAG, Andy Card, and Karl Rove, plus minions like Addington, Bybee, Yoo, and Goodling, wouldn’t you call that accountability?

  6. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    I think you will find water boarding and other harsh interrogation techniques were discussed not long after the Afghan war was over which was 2001 late.

    And, just the fact that it was ONLY the Democrats who said this was all a surprise. Goss might have commented about a briefing, but, again, only Democrats were shocked, yes, shocked to find out gambling was happening.

    The only thing missing was the waiter bringing them their winnings.

    Why you don’t get the idea that you were royally betrayed by people you THOUGHT were on your side, is puzzling.

    They went along with it, against what you thought they were doing, and when it came out, ran for the exits and lied. The lie was not to me, but to all those who had trusted them.

    Oddly, you see and understand this betrayal with the banksters, yet you can’t conceive it happened here.

    It was no surprise to me when it came out.

    It’s like now. You think the US is not monitoring bank transfers like revealed 3 or 4 years ago?

  7. MadDog says:

    “…The comment is more interesting for what it says about the Finding itself. The CIA has long suggested (and reporting has repeated) that that Finding authorized the torture program. But Rizzo is making it clear here that that Finding did not include authorization for the torture program. The oral briefings the Gang of Four got were the only way the way the President informed Congress about the torture program…”

    I wanted to touch on this point you made. In one of the programs shown in the last couple of days (I believe it was the Frontline program “Top Secret America” with Dana Priest, but it might have been the National Geographic OBL program), Rizzo appeared and stated that the CIA received the Finding.

    I’m paraphrasing here, but I distinctly remember because it struck me at the time I watched it, that Rizzo spoke about the Finding being the longest, most detailed Finding the CIA had ever seen.

    I keep coming back to an impression that Rizzo described it as something like 150 pages long.

    In any event, I subscribe to the view that whatever was actually shown to whichever members of Congress (Gang of 4, Gang of 8, etc.), I highly doubt that the entirety of this supposed massively detailed and specific Finding was shown. In fact, I suspect that much if not all of the briefing received was provided orally.

  8. MadDog says:

    <[email protected]Cregan:

    I think you will find water boarding and other harsh interrogation techniques were discussed not long after the Afghan war was over which was 2001 late.

    And, just the fact that it was ONLY the Democrats who said this was all a surprise. Goss might have commented about a briefing, but, again, only Democrats were shocked, yes, shocked to find out gambling was happening…

    Rather than trying to bullshit EW, a master of detail, and the rest of us, why don’t you try and prove your supposed knowledge.

    Tap…tap…tap! We’re waiting…tap…tap…tap!

  9. Cregan says:

    @bmaz:
    This truly is good news.

    I finally got a chance to watch some football last Saturday with the Oregon/LSU game.

    Tonight’s game is going to be great too. Rooting for Green Bay.

  10. Cregan says:

    @MadDog:

    So,you are saying you were surprised?

    I am quite certain it was discussed. But, to find it, I would have to go down to the local newspaper office, or maybe library, to search through the records. Google doesn’t give a result of things published in 2001 or 2002. At least that I can figure out how to get them to report.

    Aside from that, it strains common sense these people, Rockefeller and Pelosi didn’t know. For a few reasons. But, you can continue to believe in fairy tales.

    Many here have a very healthy skepticism when it comes to government officials, but in this case, no skepticism.

    Next time I get to the library, I’ll check it out through the reader guide or go to the newspaper office to search their archives, but that won’t be today.

    All I know is that I was not surprised at all when the news was confirmed.

    I doubt I knew more than Nancy Pelosi.

    But, then, we all know politicians tell the truth always, ESPECIALLY WHEN TELLING THAT TRUTH MIGHT PUT THEM IN EXTREMELY HOT WATER WITH THEIR SUPPORTERS.

    It has been found that politicians are most truthful when revealing such would hurt them the most.

  11. MadDog says:

    @Cregan:

    “…But, you can continue to believe in fairy tales…”

    LOL! You’ve got one hell of an imagination, but then I’ve found that fairy tale tellers often do. It’s one of the reasons why they believe in the fairy tales they tell.

  12. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: The news was confirmed FOUR YEARS after you’re saying you knew.

    I’m saying you’re full of shit for thinking anyone knew in August 2002. It is not unreasonable to believe we had a sense of it after Maher Arar got released in 2003. It is not unreasonable to believe people had hints before that. But that’s a full year after you’re claiming we knew.

  13. Cregan says:

    @MadDog:

    OK, the Joan Sorenestein Center for Press, Politics, etc. at Harvard did a study regarding waterboarding articles in the papers. In the LA Times alone, it reported there were 27 stories between 2003 and 2008.

    I haven’t read through the entire report, but it does say there were over 143 stories on water boarding between 2002 and 2008 in the New York Times.

    I think that is enough to show that the subject was discussed at least since 2002 and not some secret prior to the news coming out to confirm it and Pelosi denying it.

    Again, you can believe in fairy tales if you want. But, I’d be concerned that someone I thought was on my side betrayed me so badly.

  14. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    First, as you can see from the post just above, this was discussed in the press many times beginning in 2002. If Pelosi didn’t suspect, she was, well I don’t know.

    Though it doesn’t prove she is lying, certainly, there is no doubt that if she said, “Yes I was briefed and I didn’t object,” a firestorm of historic proportions would have taken place.

    The incentive to lie was HUGE.

  15. Mary says:

    Glad you brought up the issue of the leaders as leaders, because it leads to the other thing that struck me at the time the briefing schedules came out. You may have looked at them more thoroughly and I may be wrong about the overall briefing revelations, but it struck me at the time that during the time Dennis Hastert was speaker, he was never briefed, i.e., that during his speaker tenure, there was never a a full gang of 8 that was briefed.

    Is that what you ended up with on the briefings as well? Bc I thought it really strange that no one was asking why the Republican speaker was not briefed and why. Especially why. Unless I missed them briefing him, in which case – never mind. But if not, why would they have never briefed him?

    Cregan – I think you’re very wrong on the waterboarding vis a vis general discussion and in particular with respect to EW. I don’t think you find much real discussion until around and about here:
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2004/06/20/a-tortured-debate.html
    (btw EW – maybe in connection with the findings, maybe not, there is this interesting reference from that story, talking about the WH response to the discussions of Yoo’s memo “It defends most interrogation methods short of severe, intentionally inflicted pain and permanent damage. White House officials told reporters that such abstract legal reasoning was insignificant and did not reflect the president’s orders.” Insignficant to the President’s orders?)
    And Cregan, for a long period of time after that, everything invovled hide the ball – only three instances of waterboarding, waterboarding saved lives, etc. – and a lot of misdirection to interrogations as being conducted (as with al-Libi) by those other than the US, with a lot of smoke and mirrors trying to hide who did what, when, why and with what consequences. We do know the consequences with al-Libi. Torture laundered to the UN direct from the mouth of the US Secretary of State (a pretty horrible stain – Powell can try to rise above but he’ll forever be the man who laundered the torture) and a horrible war that was laced with lies.

    And then al-Libi, in 2004, when what was done to him and what torture really “gained” us could have been a examined in depth (but wouldn’t have been, because it would have exposed Egyptian “allies” as well as the CIA to scrutiny and charges) – returned to the US by Egypt, only to go missing and never feature or factor in the public debate or Congressional Dick(cheney)ering.

    And then to reappear in Libya, only to be suicided by Bush and Kappes’ friends in Libya. And now we also find that Suleiman, who was integral in the Egyptian “interrogation” of Libya, is now revealed as being Ghadhafy’s top “agent” in Egypt.

    So not only where things like waterboarding not being discussed by reams of bloggers including EW in late 2001, the facts surrounding what has been done aren’t even really known now and are not freely and fairly in the public realm.

    And after being so misrepresented initially and for so long (like the Iraq/911, Iraq/911 mantra) it will take an effort much more concerted than there has ever been, up to and including main stream media (which still won’t call torture what it is, if the US Exec branch is invovled) to actually put the topics and the real facts, as opposed to the propagandized ones, center stage.

    fwiw.

  16. Mary says:

    @Cregan: Can you link to that? And waterboarding by whowhichwhat? Allegations of waterboarding by troops in the field or allegations of waterboarding by countries we were using for interrogations or – the only thing I can see as being relevant to what EW was saying – articles discussing that President Bush had authorized the CIA to use waterboarding on ghost prisoners?

    (and for the record – ew and I don’t see exactly eye to eye on Pelosi or anyone else briefed when it comes to the powerless front, since I do believe that there was a range of things that any one of them could have said on the floor, which would have been absolutely protected, and which could have run a gamut of how revealing they were or were not, from simply stating that there were programs that were controversial and which were being briefed only to a small handful of members of Congress and not the full committees and for which almost nothing in the way of verifiable facts were being provided and the members being briefed were not being allowed to consult with their staff or even members of the OLC etc. – to more specific statements. I do think Pelosi is playing games on the culpability front, but I think EW is factually spot on in her defense with respect to timelines and briefing, despite our disagreeement over what could have been done – again fwiw).

  17. rugger9 says:

    @Peterr:
    Unless Nixon was held accountable which you would agree he wasn’t the fact that the underlings went down all for less than two years at the most (and some not at all) with guaranteed wingnut welfare at the far end [how’s old Gordo doin’?] to pay the bills, it might be viewed as a business decision. Kind of like how big-corporate mahogany row types count the fines into their cost calculations.

    As it is, the Nixonians learned the lesson about packing the courts with ideologues, and so we have Cheney, Rummy, Elliot Abrams, Clarence, et al, operating with complete impunity. It’s an environment that gave us Oliver North who is a stench on the USMC.

  18. MadDog says:

    @Cregan: I suggest you do read that entire report because I don’t think it says what you think it says.

    For example, you wrote:

    “…In the LA Times alone, it reported there were 27 stories between 2003 and 2008…”

    From page 9:

    “…From 1935‐2001, the LA Times called waterboarding torture or implied it was torture in 96.3% of articles (26 of 27). The paper then did not mention waterboarding again until 2006…”

    So from the above quote, the LA Times did not mention waterboarding from the end of 2001 until 2006.

  19. Mary says:

    Cregan – from your referenced study’s intro
    http://www.hks.harvard.edu/presspol/publications/papers/torture_at_times_hks_students.pdf

    “From the early 1930s until the modern story broke in 2004…” Um, yeah – sounds about right. The modern story began to break in about 2004.

    That study also appears to be focused on when waterboarding began to be called that – vs water torture – and lose its characterization as “torture” in the papers studied. IOW, looking at articles where the word waterboarding was mentioned in 2002 it is NOT looking at articles where there were revelations that the US was engaged in Executive branch allowed and endorsed waterboarding.

    As do other sources, your referenced report consistently refers to the waterboarding by the US as policy scandal as reaching the public domain for conversation in 2004.

  20. Mary says:

    @MadDog: Sorry – we cross posted. I went to look for it after my post at 24 and found it pretty immediately, read a bit of it, and posted. I’m going to finish it, but there is a reference that can be pulled out of context to the time period starting in 2002, but it has to do with equating waterboarding as torture.

    The interesting thing about that, though, is it does make you wonder how much the papers referenced (NYT in particular) did suddenly become aware of the fact that the US was engaging in Exec branch authorized torture/waterboarding and made a determination in 2002, before the stories were out, to change their characterization. A bit point of the portions of the study I speed read was that 2002 did end up being, not when our waterboarding scandal broke, but rather when newpapers which had consistently, since the 1930s, referred to waterboarding as torture suddenly began to drop the torture characterization when they used the word – and when they also dropped water torture as a reference phrase.

    The article does make it plain, though, that it wasn’t looking at waterboarding articles about the US Exec branch authorized program, but rathter in general (and specifically refers to the fact that things like articles about waterboarding in Chile were included in the review).

  21. MadDog says:

    @Mary: I agree with your synopsis.

    The report is not a means to prove or not when the Bush/Cheney regime’s use of waterboarding torture became public knowledge, nor can it be used to make a case as to when anyone in Congress knew of it.

  22. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No, you didn’t provide a link.

    Here’s the link.
    As you can see, the report doesn’t cover what you’re talking about whatsoever.

    What it DOES do is show that newspapers started to treat waterboarding differently IN 2004 because that’s when people figured out we had done it. Before that it called it torture, because no one knew we were doing it.

    In other words, it proves that you’re absolutely wrong.

    I can see why you didn’t include the link, though, since it showed how wrong you are.

  23. Cregan says:

    @Mary:

    Yes, the broad public, but as it notes, articles began appearing starting in 2002. so, among well informed people, like Pelosi, it was not unknown.

    As I said, it didn’t surprise me.

    The rest of the study talks about how water boarding was treated in the articles. Something I was not addressing.

    Someone raised the question of whether any discussion of it had occured prior to Pelosi saying she didn’t know about it. I cited the study to indicate that certainly there was discussion from 2002 forward.

    That was the only point of it.

  24. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    Sorry, but you are not talking about the same thing.

    The study was mentioned because Mad Dog said that no discussion of water boarding had occurred prior to the program being confirmed as happening in 2004 or 2005, whatever it was.

    I cited the study ONLY to give proof that indeed, and unquestionably, public news articles and discussion of water boarding HAD occurred as early as 2002.

    ALSO, and important, the study says that the characterization of WB had changed from torture after 2002. MEANING, the only reason such change occurred was because the discussion in the articles, and among others, was linked to the US possibly using such. They were discussing water boarding in a “nice” way because people knew the US was considering using such.

    So, the study shows EXACTLY what I was saying.

    Pelosi’s story is far fetched in the extreme. And why a normally skeptical person who swallow it is odd to me.

  25. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Dude. You’re lying. Misreading. Sounding like Michele Bachmann.

    Nope. You’re wrong. You’re misreading this study. Admit you’re wrong. As it is, this will be the FIRST response we use against you every time you claim to have an argument, bc this is embarrassing intellectual stupidity.

    I’ll kick your ass on this at more length if you really insist on it. But, please, don’t insist on your stupid misreading. You’re smarter than Bachmann. Please stop pretending you’re not.

  26. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Not to mention, you CONTINUE to misread what I’ve said about Pelosi.

    What she knew has nothing to do with what I’ve proven CIA briefed her–which was that WB was approved for maybe use, but not that they had already used it.

    Stop being so dishonest, really. It’s tedious and undignified.

  27. Cregan says:

    @MadDog:

    Mad Dog, I proved what you asked, that some public discussion of water boarding had occurred before the WB was publically disclosed.

    It is plain from the study, so your point that no one could have suspected is completely disproven.

    EW posted the link (which I don’t know how to technically do)

    Since the actual study proves the exact point I was making, I had no incentive to hide it.

    My statement still stands; I was not surprised by the public announcement of the use of water boarding as I had strongly suspected its use since 2002 the minute it was first mentioned. And, there was lots of mention of it during those years prior to public confirmation.

    Pelosi would have to be most see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil kind of person to have NOT known or heavily suspected.

    And, I can say without reservation she isn’t that dumb.

  28. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: That study proves waterboarding was reported in 1901. You arguing Bush approved WB in 1901?

    You’re not this stupid, much as you pretend to be. Stop now. For your own dignity.

  29. rkilowatt says:

    …However, the White House directed that details about the most ambitious, sensitive and potentially explosive new program authorized by the President…

    Both “Bush” and “President” are cited as source in the relevant paragraphs.

    Who then is “White House”? VP Cheney? or ?

  30. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel: @emptywheel:

    Are you trying to say that the study DOES NOT say that article were published by large newspapers on water boarding beginning in 2002?

    Since that was my ONLY point, I am not sure how I am wrong, It is completely certain that it says that. 143 articles in the NYT from 2002 to 2008 alone. So, definitely they began in 2002.

    What other point do you think I was trying to make with the study?

    Yes, I added another point, just now, that the bending of the character of WB indicated the articles and discussion at the time were related to the US use of it. Otherwise, no real reason to bend it such–an way to make it more “PR” friendly.

    But, that was after I first cited the study.

    So, if you can quote me a section of the study that says “no articles were published prior to public confirmation of the WB being used, I’d be happy to see it and stand corrected.

    Other wise, don’t be so certain of yourself.

  31. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan:

    From the early 1930s until the modern story broke in 2004, the newspapers that covered waterboarding almost uniformly called the practice torture or implied it was torture:

  32. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: You’re being full of shit. You’re suggesting that people knew WE waterboarded in 2002.

    The ENTIRE POINT of this study is that NO ONE reported on waterboarding until 2004.

    It very clearly DISPROVES your entire point.

    You’re being an idiot or dishonest. Not sure which it is, but you do look stupider than Bachmann trying to claim this shit. Really, you’re demeaning yourself.

  33. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan:

    However, since the story began receiving significant media attention in 2004, following the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal and revelations of waterboarding by the United States, media sources appear to have changed their characterization of the practice.

  34. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    That isn’t the point.

    Let’s go over it again.

    I said I was suspecting WB was being used before the confirmation of it, and that it wasn’t surprising.

    Mad dog said,
    “Rather than trying to bullshit EW, a master of detail, and the rest of us, why don’t you try and prove your supposed knowledge.

    Tap…tap…tap! We’re waiting…tap…tap…tap! ”

    So, I cited the study to address THAT point.

    Plainly, there were many articles about water boarding, by whatever characterization, from 2002 onward.

    So, I really don’t know what you are talking about.

  35. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Oh right. Cregan logic is that because Filipinos used waterboarding in the 20th Century, we KNEW it–and not other forms of torture–were happening?

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

    You’re so full of shit on this point.

    Admit you’re wrong. Really, you’re like someone with feces all over his face trying to be taken seriously. You’re just talking shite.

  36. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Oh good. We all await your creative reading of this study that proves you’re an idiot.

    Go for it–dig your idiocy deeper.

    Cregan: “because someone used waterboarding in 1898, I KNEW they were waterboarding in 2002.”

    Stupid shit. Really stupid shit.

  37. Cregan says:

    By contrast, from 2002]2008, waterboarding was called torture or implied to be torture in just 2 of 143 articles (1.4%).

    Page 6 top of the page.

  38. Cregan says:

    That quote refers to the New York Times.

    So, it is YOU who didn’t read the study very carefully.

    It had another reference to the LA Times publishing articles from 2003.

    I can get that if you want too.

  39. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Right. That says a study–not news coverage–used 2002 as a time frame. A study that repeatedly notes that 2004 is when the news coverage changed.

    That doesn’t prove your point. In the least.

    It proves that scholars were cautious in their analysis to prove that the press refuses to call torture torture. But it actually disproves YOUR point.

  40. Cregan says:

    The main point is that I was not surprised regarding the US using WB when it was disclosed.

    Any person reading the articles published at the time would have to be a fool to NOT think the US was using the technique.

    These types of newspaper discussions don’t come from the ozone, they perculate up bullshit going on behind the scenes. It was an obvious effort to make what they were doing seem OK.

  41. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Do it. Look at the articles. Revel in your own stupidity.

    Let me explain so maybe you get why you’re being so stupid.

    This study is NOT about when the press started reporting on US torture (your argument). It attempts to prove something else: that after a VERY LONG history of calling waterboarding torture, around the same time the US was known to engage in it, they stopped calling waterboarding torture.

    And they use 2 rules.

    1) No one in the US knew the US was waterboarding until 2004.

    2) To be careful in what they were proving they studied how people referred to torture by using 2002 as a start date.

    but nowhere–nowhere in this report–do they claim ANYONE knew the US was waterboarding before 2004. Their entire premise is no one did know until 2004.

    So your argument is!! I have a study that shows no one knew we were waterboarding until 2004, and so I use that as proof that people knew in 2002.

    Really, you’re embarrassing yourself.

  42. Cregan says:

    What are you talking about? It says “from 2002.” Meaning articles published from 2002.

    By the way, it was top of page 8, not 6.

    Toward the bottom of page 8

    “Within the period from 2002 to 2008, the paper’s treatment was generally consistent, without significant trends.”

    Further on page 8:

    Opinion pieces were more likely than news pieces to call waterboarding torture during all time periods. Though there were few opinion pieces before 2002, 50% of these articles (7 of 14) said or implied that waterboarding was torture. After 2002, this percent decreased slightly to 49.2% (29 of 59), with 27.1% (16 of 59) of articles giving no treatment and 10.2% (6 of 59) giving negative treatment.

    So, it was even discussed in opinion pieces beginning in 2002.

  43. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Cregan.

    It was discussed in 1898. Does that mean you’ve always know we were always waterboarding?

    The point you seem totally ignorant of is THEY (unlike you) make a distinction between us waterboarding (which they say was reported only in 2004 and after) or torturers in general.

    So your logic, again, is that because the Filipinos waterboarded in 1898, and the Japanese waterboarded during WWII, that meant EVERYONE KNEW that the US was waterboarding in 2002.

    The logic is, um, breathtaking.

  44. Cregan says:

    Sorry, there are many references, of which I cited three, showing that articles on WB WERE published beginning in 2002.

    For the LA Times, they gave a start date of 2003. So, the 2002 was NOT just because it was the start date of the study. You need to read more carefully.

    Yes, no one, knew for CERTAIN WB was being used until publically confirmed.

    But, that wasn’t my point.

    And how the fuck does some study have any idea what people suspected or didn’t??

    Papers were not writing articles about it as some academic exercise. They were writing the articles because it was relevant to a practice the US officials had some attraction to.

  45. emptywheel says:

    Shorter Cregan: Because the Egyptians used mummification in the 13th C BC, everyone in the US knew the US was using mummification in 2002.

  46. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan:Well, if the study doesn’t know what peopel suspected or not, then it ALSO doesn’t prove your point.

    You’re being dumb. Really. Again, you’re saying that because people in other countries tortured at any time, we should suspect we were in 2002.

    It’s that dumb. Really.

  47. Cregan says:

    OK, here’s another quote about the LA Times

    Between 2003 and 2008, the paper’s opinion pieces called waterboarding torture or implied it was torture in 46.3% of pieces (19 of 41).

    I am sure that in 2003 they were expressing an opinion on Phillipine waterboarding at the turn of the century.

    Admit it, you didn’t read it right.

  48. emptywheel says:

    Shorter Cregan: Because we know whites were lynching blacks in the south from the 1800s until recently, we know the US govt was doing so startign in 2002.

  49. Cregan says:

    Well, we just have a difference in reading skills.

    When I see it says, articles between 2003 and 2008, I figure they mean some articles were done in 2003, or they would have said 2004.

    You seem to read whatever fits your idea.

  50. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No. You’re being an ignorant fuck about the fact that other countries used waterbaording.

    Read the damn study which–as I’ve cited–makes it clear that NO ONE COVERED US WATERBOARDING until 2004.

    You’re just being silly.

  51. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No. You seem to have ZERO ability to read this:

    However, since the story began receiving significant media attention in 2004, following the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal and revelations of waterboarding by the United States, media sources appear to have changed their characterization of the practice.</blockquote.

    You miss the ENTIRE point of the study.

    What they do is show 1) newspapers covered waterbaording consistently for a century. 2) Other people continued to waterboard–up until today. 3) That WE engaged in waterboarding became clear in 2004. 4) Around the time we started waterboarding (or, arguably, watching too much 24), we started reporting on waterboarding differently.

    That's it.

    You're confusing reporting about OTHER COUNTRY'S waterboarding with our own.

  52. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: I’ve done that twice.

    Where the study says the story got covered in the US in 2004? That means, in plain English, that the story got covered in the US in 2004.

    I can’t make it more simple than that. You’re just misreading it. Badly. Stupidly. Sorry, embarrassingly so.

  53. emptywheel says:

    Shorter Cregan: because we know the Aztecs were sacrificing people to the gods in the 15th Century, it proves the US was doing the same in 2002.

  54. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    Do you know the difference between “significant” coverage and “no” coverage?

    The study never says there was no coverage. It only refers to 2004 and after as the point where the practice received big time coverage.

    That’s all.

    On the other hand, it definitely refers to articles and opinion pieces in the period from 2002 and 2003 to 2008.

    I never said there was wall to wall coverage.

    I only said that I suspected and wasn’t surprised due to reading a number of articles about it, and knowing the nature of the people running the show.

  55. Cregan says:

    So, give me a citation in the study saying there was NO coverage prior to 2004.

    There isn’t. Only saying no “significant” coverage.

  56. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Right but NOWHERE does it say those articles pertained to the US. Or even to US allies or associates-like Egypt–that might be waterboarding on our behalf. That’s your basic misunderstanding here. You’re mistaking coverage of waterboarding anywhere in the world for coverage of waterbaording done by the US.

    That’s why I’m making fun of your for arguing that Aztec human sacrifices in the 15th C mean we did the same–bc that’s the logic of what you’re arguing.

    Look. You promised you could find evidence this was covered in 2002. Instead, you found a study that said US waterboarding was first covered in 2004.

    So the thing to do is go back and find that elusive evidence that it was covered in 2002–what this study doesn’t even pretend to show.

  57. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No, ridicule is a useful way to show how absurd your argument–that coverage of something generally amounts to coverage of that thing done by the US–really is.

    It’s laughable. Exaggeration makes the silliness of it more clear. Sorry if it hurts your ego. But you persisted in stupidity.

  58. Cregan says:

    No, you are jumping to a conclusion that the articles don’t concern the US.

    Yes, I agree, even without the study, that not many articles were published about having to do with the US.

    But, that wasn’t the point. I was challanged that I could not have suspected because NOTHING was being discussed about it prior to 2004.

    That is not correct. That’s the only point. If I had the time, I’d go to the library and look through the Readers Guide to find some articles.

    Also, I read a lot more than just newspapers and magazines–though I read three news papers cover to cover each day.

    We are not really that far off.

    My only point is that it is silly to believe Pelosi didn’t know about WB being used before the public. Or, that she should have been smart enough to find out.

    By the way, I think her statements about not knowing occurred after 2004. In fact, in your post above, it refers to a briefing she got in 2004–CLEARLY occurring after the study says widespread coverage occurred.

  59. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Go find those articles, big boy!

    I’ve spent some time with the journalists who broke this –in 2004. They didn’t suspect before their sources came to them. And that was after the Nancy Pelosi briefing, usually by years.

  60. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Waterbaording was used by corrupt cops in TX in the 1980s.

    Are you saying bc that happened Pelosi KNEW CIA was using it?

    Because short of that–which is the one reference the study shows to US use–then you’re being absurd.

    The report says–correctly or incorrectly–that the waterboarding story in teh US broke in 2004. Unless you’re going to invent some conservative meaning for that word, it proves that the study authors (correctly or incorrectly) believed no one was reporting on this story before 2004.

    “Broke” means, “first reported,” you know.

    Your basic problem is you’ve confused study categories for news categories and ignored what the study said abotu news. Understandable, perhaps. But still wrong.

  61. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Doesn’t mean it WAS covered. And the study strongly says it wasn’t. So if anything, this study simply doesn’t prove your point, even if you ignore where it disproves your point.

  62. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: “Suspect cast of characters” is a vastly different charge than “know this cast of characters was waterboarding” which is what you’ve asserted.

    I know Bob Graham has said that they had rumors–started months after the first Pelosi briefing–of torture. He started an inquiry directly as a result, which–as I noted in the post–got quashed by Pat Roberts. That’s a pretty good read, given that behavior attaches to it. But that knowledge post-dates Pelosi’s briefing by several months.

  63. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: OK, then do you get why it shows your point is so absurd? The suggestion that coverage of Japanese waterboarding equates to US waterboarding?

  64. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    Again, it only says “significant” coverage occurred after 2004. It was just brought to the broad public attention after 2004.

    Just like cops beating motorists was discussed in a small way before Rodney King, but “broke” as a big time story after that.

    Again, we’re not far apart. I just saying there was coverage of WB before 2004.

    Wait for another tidbit in a second.

  65. Cregan says:

    Also, as far as I can tell, the time of Pelosi’s claim not to know was in 2007–though I am not certain as I couldn’t find an exact date.

    That was certainly 3 years after you confirm that widespread coverage of WB happened.

    Where was she during that time? Maybe it was 2006. Same question.

    I know that I did see that leaks about it didn’t come up until 2005. So, for at least a year she never followed up on it.

    It is just laughable that she didn’t know.

  66. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Um. This entire argument is about what Pelosi knew in September 2002 when she was briefed–the only time she was briefed by the CIA.

    Are you now suggesting that February 2003 occurred before September 2002?

    I have to go to bed. But honest–you’ve done onthing to prove your point. You’ve only pointed to a report that says torture “broke” in 2004, which entirely disproves your point. There may be sources that show things that study didn’t. But right now, all you’ve shown is that Pelosi should have been aware the Filipinos waterboarded Americans during the Spanish American war.

  67. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No.

    Pelosi’s claim–as I’ve reported extensively–is that when she was briefed that (according to both Goss and her) the CIA might use waterboarding in the future in September 2002, she did not know they had already used it.

    Yes, she could have done more to stop it.

    But the question is did Pelosi have a way of knowing before September 2002 that the CIA was already using waterboarding?

    Your study says it wasn’t publicly reported until 2004. The CIA itself says they didn’t tell Pelosi until that briefing. So how did she learn it then?

  68. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Right. Because according to you she shoudl also assume that the CIA is mummfiying people and gassing them. That’s why your argument is so absurd. Because you have no explanation for why she would know, instead of an argument that says no one knew until 2004.

  69. Cregan says:

    Maybe I misunderstood your point. Were you only saying that she didn’t now in 2002, but did after that?

    What is the point of that?

    She said when it all became public, “I didn’t know.”

    THAT is laughable.

    Now, if you were only saying she didn’t know in 2002, but did after that and lied in 2006 or 2007 when she said she didn’t, then I apologize for misunderstanding your point.

  70. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    I’m saying she was a high government official who states (but I don’t believe) that she was strongly against WB.

    As a high official, she should have gotten her nose into it.

    I know you would have. Why do you excuse her?

    Far more believable was that she knew, she approved (and maybe just from the atmosphere where we were all worried in 2002) and then when it became public, ran away from it.

    Because it would have destroyed her if people knew the truth.

  71. pdaly says:

    Was it in 2009 when the Bradbury memos became public? The ones that mentioned waterboarding would now be undertaken with “normal saline” instead of regular potable water?

    I ask, because several months after this information was in the public domain, I realized the information was not well known. Waterboarding in 2009 was still being defended in the press as ‘simulated drowning’–and ‘no water getting into the airways.’ Maybe it still is.

    When I mentioned to a neurologist the government’s decision to switch to “normal saline” for waterboarding she gasped at the news. The implication was immediately clear to her, that the “simulated drowning/no water getting into the airways” descriptions were obvious lies spread by our government and press.

    My guess is we could get a few more doctors to gasp, even today, if we re-report this fact.

  72. pdaly says:

    @pdaly:

    Since the government was reassuring the US public (if not its torturees) that waterboarding is only “simulated drowning” then by definition no significant amount of water should be inhaled/ingested by a victim of the water torture.

    The implication of switching to normal saline is that it is an admission by the government that significant amounts of fluid are involuntarily ingested/inhaled by victims of the technique.

    Ingestion of large amounts of regular water causes harm: either actual drowning (if inhaled instead of swallowed) and low sodium concentration in the blood whether inhaled or ingested.

    Low sodium levels in the bloodstream can cause seizures, brain swelling, and death.

    Isotonic solutions, such as normal saline, do not affect the sodium level in the blood–so from a Yoo/Bradbury perspective causes ‘no harm.’

    Of course, normal saline, if poured into the lungs, still causes actual drowning.

  73. MadDog says:

    @emptywheel: As a person who appreciates “pattern recognition” skills, I’d bet you see a similar pattern in Cregan’s commentary that I do.

    Using just two posts of yours (this one and the “The Congressional directory now reads like a casebook of lunacy” one), Cregan’s pattern and intent becomes obvious.

    Everytime that the Repugs are described as doing stuff that is criminal or lunacy, Cregan waltzes in with bizarro commentary that whatever criminal or crazy stuff the Repugs have done/are doing, it’s the Democrats’ fault.

    Yup, the Repugs criminally torture folks by waterboarding, and Cregan writes that Nancy Pelosi is to blame.

    The Repugs are lunatics says former Repug staffer Mike Lofgren and Cregan writes that that Democrats are to blame.

    Piled on top of this kneejerk habit for conflating Repug criminality and lunacy falsely with Democratic responsibility, Cregan also exhibits the typical Repug uncritical thinking pattern whereby if the facts don’t match Cregan’s theory, those facts are ignored.

    And I’m not even including the dearth of reading comprehension skills. Or more accurately described as reading incomprehension disorder.

    I wonder if Cregan has become too tiresome?

    I also wonder if this is Jodi’s reincarnation? *g*

  74. Cregan says:

    OK, we all got WAY off the mark. Trying to watch the game and post got a few things lost.

    1. that we were using water boarding on prisioners became publically confirmed in 2007 with the release of the Red Cross report and the IG report. That happened in 2007
    2. nancy Pelosi’s statement of “I don’t know nothing” was shortly after

    3. My statement above, that began this all, was that it was not believable that at the time of her statement in 2007 that she actually did not know this was happening.

    4. You were talking about a specific briefing in 2002, and maybe that was all you continued to talk about, so your point is understandable.

    5. I said that when the water boarding was publically confirmed, that I was not surprised. And, had suspected it for some time.

    6. Mad Dog said I could not have known. Now, he may, again, be referring to 2002.

    7. The study so thrown around last night, marked 2004 as when the “story” broke and much discussion of water boarding took place. The “story” was Abu Ghraib, which did break in 2004.

    8. Obviously, between 2004 and Pelosi’s statement, there was lots of discussion and plenty or reasons for her to dig deeper. Especially not to trust the Administration after Abu Ghraib.

    9. So, what I was saying was quite correct, and I would guess many others than me were not surprised. My surprise was that only 3 or so had been water boarded.

    10. As to 2002, here is a point. If Pelosi said she knew nothing in 2007, and then her aide says she did receive info confirming WB was HAD been used in 2003, to me, that brings into question her credibility on the entire subject including the 2002 briefing. Lie about part of it, and the rest is also questionable.

    11. I also know that as soon as the US began to take prisoners, which began with the Afghan war at the end of 2001, their treatment and interrogation became the subject of media articles. As soon as it was public that KSM was captured, which I think was 2002, the discussion became more intense as to interrogation. In addition, it was known, but not clearly, that people who had been taken prisoner were not still in the camps and had been moved. Not known where, but that also sparked speculation. So, even in 2002,there were plenty of reasons for a high government official to be suspicious.

  75. Cregan says:

    To clarify point 11. when Pelosi made her statement, she said she had no knowledge of WB being used. Not that she only didn’t hear at one meeting.

    So, the aide’s information contradicted her overall claim to know nothing and brings into question the rest of the “know nothing” point she tried to make.

  76. Cregan says:

    Sorry, last post I meant point 10, not 11.

    So, I did make a mistake in not clarifying that I meant her statement in 2007 that she know nothing and that the recent public disclosure was a surprise to her.

    I was not referring only to the one 2002 briefing.

    Focusing on that one briefing is like the forest for the trees.

    Again, my gut tells me she knew during this time period, approved of it and then changed the story once it became public.

    The idea that only the democratic members briefed didn’t hear it, or some such is completely unbelievable.

    Maybe ONE Democratic member of the 8 people briefed saying they didn’t get it.

    Jay Rocks letter objecting, in my opinion, was just a cover my ass if I need it later deal. If he REALLY objected, he could have raised a lot more hell than just write one letter.

    Me, I understand that in 2002, they were likely caught up in the worry and fear that got the Patriot Act passed. So, I cut them slack in going along. But, not lying later.

    Maybe I don’t have such an easy going view of human nature.

    that said, I don’t specifically dispute your references to the 2002 meeting. But, it’s the forest for the trees type thing to me.

  77. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Again, you’ve got your dates wrong. The ICRC report was WRITTEN in 2007. But not released until 2009.

    You’re still repeating what REpublicans claim Pelosi said rather than what she has said.

    At issue is whether or not CIA followed the law on briefing stuff to COngress. In ANY case, they did not (not just bc of the Finding I point out here), but because the briefing that occurred happened after they used waterboarding.

    And Pelosi’s comment is about whether the CIA was honest in the briefing. She–AND GOSS–are clear they were told waterboaring might be used in the future. That BY DEFINITION means they lied in the briefing, because they didn’t tell Pelosi and Goss (though I suspect Goss had his own briefing somwhere) that they HAD USED waterboarding.

    Thta’s what the dispute is about.

    You’re right, she should have suspected they were lying. She should have investigated more (which would, as we’ev seen, been quashed anyway). After she was UNOFFICIALLY informed by her staffer, she should have gone on the floor of the House and exposed it. (She has said, btw, that she concurred in Harman’s note, but I agree that’s a weak response to trying to stop torture.)

    But all of that doesn’t prove as you’ve tried to claim that it was generally known in 2002 that we were waterboarding.

  78. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: No, actually, that’s not what her statement was.

    Here’s her actual statement.

    The CIA briefed me only once on some enhanced interrogation techniques, in September 2002, in my capacity as Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee.

    I was informed then that Department of Justice opinions had concluded that the use of enhanced interrogation techniques was legal. The only mention of waterboarding at that briefing was that it was not being employed.

    Those conducting the briefing promised to inform the appropriate Members of Congress if that technique were to be used in the future.”

    Her point–and mine in this post–(one that is backed up by Porter Goss’ statements) is that CIA lied when they said in September 2002 that waterboarding had not been used.

  79. emptywheel says:

    @Cregan: Um. The record shows they never briefed the full Gang of Eight.

    The record shows that Pelosi did nothing (but CIA lied to her in a briefing), Harman did object, repeatedly, Rockefeller was initially not briefed but when he was, he asked for more information, but didn’t get it, and Graham tried to start an investigation, which was quashed by the GOP.

    None of that is contested. None.

    I know you WANT Rizzo’s lies to be true. But the record shows they’re not.

  80. Cregan says:

    @emptywheel:

    But, you see, I didn’t claim that.

    I see that you misunderstood, because I didn’t clarify it. I was only saying that the fake surprise when the two reports came out was not real.

    So, no, I never said it was generally known in 2002, I was referring to 2007.

    My main point was what you say in your paragraph 5, and we agree on it. Known or unknown, there were lots of reasons to dig much deeper into it.

    Even when Abu Ghraib came out, I certainly remember there were those who had raised a lot of questions about treatment of prisoners before that, and were very “I told you so” after the photos came out. So, the questions were there for some time.

  81. Cregan says:

    That’s all I have on this subject.

    And, yes, I made a mistake not clarifying that I was talking about 2007, not 2002.

  82. Pete says:

    Marcy I have to admire your persistence.

    If someone is convinced that Pelosi should have been omniscient, no amount of logical arguments are going to shake the other person’s belief.

    It is funny because Cregan’s first post said that every US citizen had a good idea that water boarding was going on, and that it was the worst kept secret. As a US citizen – I can attest that is completely wrong.

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