CIA Secret Overseas Prisons to Close, Contractors' Role Ended

The C.I.A. today announced the closure of overseas CIA prisons for detainees. Private contractors will no longer be involved in interrogating prisoners.

The C.I.A. has never revealed the location of its overseas facilities, but intelligence officials, aviation records and news reports have placed them in Afghanistan, Thailand, Poland, Romania and Jordan, among other countries.

More from CIA Chief Leon Pannetta's statement: [More...]

In the statement, Mr. Panetta vowed to continue the "global pursuit" of Al Qaeda and its allies. But he said that interrogators will use traditional methods and not physical force, and that the interrogators will be government employees.

"C.I.A. officers, whose knowledge of terrorist organizations is second to none, will continue to conduct debriefings using a dialog style of questioning that is fully consistent with the interrogation approaches authorized and listed in the Army Field Manual," Mr. Panetta wrote.

"C.I.A. officers do not tolerate, and will continue to promptly report, any inappropriate behavior or allegations of abuse. That holds true whether a suspect is in the custody of an American partner or a foreign liaison service," he wrote, ruling out asking other countries' interrogators to question suspects on behalf of the agency using the banned methods.

While Pannetta said they will cooperate with congressional investigations into past interrogations, the Administration will oppose punishment for CIA officials who engaged in abusive techniques:

He restated his opposition to investigation or prosecution of C.I.A. officers for their involvement in the program.

"Officers who act on guidance from the Department of Justice -- or acted on such guidance previously -- should not be investigated, let alone punished," Mr. Panetta wrote. "This is what fairness and wisdom require."

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  • Display: Sort:
    That "guidance" (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by Peter G on Thu Apr 09, 2009 at 09:27:45 PM EST
    from "the Department of Justice" (that is, the "torture memos" from the Office of Legal Counsel) to which Director Panetta refers, was unfortunately -- as has been shown many times -- incompetent, unethical, tendentious, and in some instances criminal in itself.  And was or should have been known to be such.  Reliance on it cannot provide a valid defense, and certainly no justification for not even investigating past conduct.

    What about renditions? (none / 0) (#1)
    by Saul on Thu Apr 09, 2009 at 06:36:52 PM EST
    Is this the same thing.  I understood that the Obama admmistration was for continued renditions.

    Great News (none / 0) (#2)
    by squeaky on Thu Apr 09, 2009 at 06:48:59 PM EST
    And we'll see if a battle takes place between Pelosi and the WH. If crimes were committed, aka torture, the perps should be tried in a court of law.

    Pelosi said that despite a difference in opinion between Congress and the Obama White House on the matter, "we believe that we have to take a look" to ferret out potential "criminal activity" in the treatment of detainees.

    raw story

    Big difference between investigation (none / 0) (#3)
    by oculus on Thu Apr 09, 2009 at 07:33:57 PM EST
    and investigation followed, where appropriate, by prosecution.  Mr. Pannetta:  please do no block investigation.  

    The Media Knew (none / 0) (#5)
    by joze46 on Fri Apr 10, 2009 at 04:53:59 PM EST
    From my view the deeper the Obama administration digs into the secret stuff one can be assured that money, perhaps that trillion dollars Bush said America needed and threatened to get because of certain bank collapse needed for the bank bail out, some funds, found its way into the world wide sports of Bush/Cheney shenanigans. Money talks, not water boarding. Particularly in the one and only phase of the surge likely was nothing more than a buy off "made off" to be a brilliant skilful military move. Not from my view. There are too many side shows in this calamity.

    Even though it's an incredibly sad state of affairs, the torture issue must be addressed. At this time I personally think the only way America is going to be redeemed for these tragedies is by indicting and convicting the total level of the Bush administration which includes, Powel, Rice, Rove, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Bush, the leadership in the CIA, FBI, Homeland security, Military heads, and NSA. Of course those heads of the media corporations and stock market manipulators that made their advantage through off shore tax havens.

    To give these people a pass will be an even greater social cultural mess in that every day persons feel no guilt in wild heresy going on now and continued on and on in a  mix of domestic bitterness swinging to higher levels of unrest. Limbaugh and right wing hate radio is a good example of what leadership America can look forward to and the heresy with the likes of a Limbaugh crowd that is and always has been endorsed by Cheney.  

    It is obvious and apparent that America is now in a media type prosecution mode with deliberate preparatory intent after being embedded in a war from the get go yet not reporting it is truly maximum complicity. The Media Knew this stuff was happening for years but kept it under the radar this should be brought out in an open trial even if just shame is the legacy at least it will be honest. Right now America appears to the leadership of lies where the rest of the world will always wonder likely never trusting us again which would lead to a depression.