CIA’s tactics were torture, McCain says

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) on Sunday strongly disputed claims by former officials in the George W. Bush administration and fellow Republicans that harsh interrogation tactics used by the CIA did not constitute torture.

{mosads}McCain said he had “vigorous discussion” with former Vice President Cheney and former CIA Director Michael Hayden during the Bush administration urging them not to use excruciating methods.

“I said these things are torture. They’re in violation of the Geneva Convention and the Convention Against Torture,” he said on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” noting that Congress later banned some of the techniques that were under debate.

“I urge everyone to just read the report,” he said, making reference to a Senate Intelligence Committee report that Republican leaders panned last week as an attempt to smear the Bush administration.

“You can’t claim that tying someone to the floor and have them freeze to death is not torture. You can’t say 183 times someone is waterboarded,” he said.

McCain noted that waterboarding was used during the Spanish Inquisition and the United States tried and executed Japanese officers as war criminals for using waterboarding.

He pointed out that former Gen. David Petraeus, who led U.S. combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and is viewed as one of the most respected military of recent decades, says harsh interrogation tactics are not effective.

Petraeus said interrogators should try to earn the trust of detainees to get the most information from them.

McCain noted the Senate report indicated that interrogators gained valuable intelligence from captured enemy combatants before subjecting them to painful treatment.

Tags CIA report John McCain Sunday shows

Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

See all Hill.TV See all Video

Most Popular

Load more


See all Video