Category: Intelligence

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Dividing the CIA in Two

When created in 1947, the CIA was meant to coordinate objective intelligence and thus avert some future Pearl Harbor attack, but its secondary role engaging in covert operations came to corrupt its independence, a problem that must now be addressed,…

NSA’s Binney Honored for Integrity

Retired National Security Agency official William Binney, who challenged decisions to ignore the Fourth Amendment in the government’s massive — and wasteful — collection of electronic data, faced career and legal repercussions. Because of his courage, he is being honored by…

The ‘Exceptionalism’ of US Torture

Americans like to think of themselves as the ultimate “good guys” and anyone who gets in their way as a “bad guy.” Under this theory of U.S. “exceptionalism,” whatever “we” do must be moral or at least morally defensible, from…

Is Torture a ‘Conservative’ Value?

Conservatives who usually hail individual liberties are leading the televised defense of the U.S. government’s torture of terror suspects, including many who were completely innocent. But some conservatives are troubled by this knee-jerk defense of the Bush administration, as Independent Institute’s…

Torture’s Time for Accountability

Exclusive: America’s reputation for cognitive dissonance is being tested by the Senate report documenting the U.S. government’s torture of detainees and the fact that nothing is happening to those responsible. Ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern says the nation must choose between…

Torture’s Fallacies — and Criminality

In America’s fascination with fictional entertainment, torture has been a popular plot device as some tough-guy “hero” extracts a clue from a hardened “bad guy,” most famously with Jack Bauer in “24.” But real-world torture elicits false information and is a…

How Torture Puts Americans at Risk

Exclusive: Polls show that most Americans and an overwhelming majority of “conservatives” view post-9/11 torture as justified, presumably because it made them feel safer. But torture may actually have made them less safe, as retired JAG Major Todd E. Pierce…

Addressing the Cuban Five Injustice

America’s hypocrisy on terrorism included the U.S. government prosecuting and imprisoning five Cuban agents who were actually trying to thwart terrorist operations in Miami. President Obama’s prisoner swap with Cuba finally addressed that upside-down justice, as Marjorie Cohn reports.

Letting a Cuban Terrorist Go Free

From the Archive: As much as U.S. officials have decried “terrorism” even equating harboring a terrorist with the actual deed they have applied a completely different standard to “our” terrorists who are protected from extradition and treated with kid gloves,…

Giving the Torturers a Pass

During Watergate, senior U.S. officials went to jail for lying and obstructing justice. Many politicians have gone to prison for taking bribes and for corruption. But it’s somehow unthinkable to prosecute Bush administration officials implicated in torture and murder, an…