Panetta To Head CIA
President-elect Barack Obama has selected Leon E. Panetta, the former congressman and White House chief of staff, to take over the Central Intelligence Agency, an organization that Mr. Obama criticized during the campaign for using interrogation methods he decried as torture, Democratic officials said Monday.
. . . Aides have said Mr. Obama had originally hoped to select a C.I.A. head with extensive field experience, especially in combating terrorist networks. But his first choice for the job, John O. Brennan, had to withdraw his name amidst criticism over his role in the formation of the C.I.A’s detention and interrogation program after the Sept. 11 attacks.
Good for Obama for not letting the CIA's torture apologists pressure him into naming one of their own. The President-Elect makes it clear that torture will not be tolerated in his administration. As Panetta wrote in a March 2008 Washington Monthly article:
If torture can stop the next terrorist attack, the next suicide bomber, then what's wrong with a little waterboarding or electric shock? The simple answer is the rule of law.
. . . We cannot and we must not use torture under any circumstances. We are better than that.
Speaking for me only
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