Defense

McCaskill: CIA report ‘would never happen in North Korea or China’

The release of a report on CIA enhanced interrogations techniques “would never happen” in less open and accountable nations, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) said on Monday.
 
The assessment, which could be released as soon as Monday, “exposes what the world already knows, and that is that the United States engaged in torture,” McCaskill said during an interview with CBS.
 
{mosads}“But my feeling about this is that this is a gut-check moment for our democracy. The world knows we tortured. But does the world know yet that we’ll hold up our values and hold our government accountable?” she said.
 
McCaskill added that the report “would never happen in North Korea or China or Russia. But in the United States, we hold our government accountable. And I think that process is so important, so fundamental to our democracy that it’s essential that this report comes out.”
 
She stressed that the White House and Congress must have authority over the CIA.
 
“Now, if this report doesn’t come out, then we all need to get comfortable with the fact that in America, the CIA has no oversight,” McCaskill warned.
 
The report is the result of a probe by the Senate Intelligence Committee into the CIA’s enhanced interrogations during the George W. Bush administration.
 
The Obama administration and many within the intelligence community have been scrambling in advance of its pending release out of fear for potentially violent blowback around the world.
 
McCaskill, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the public would ultimately decide whether the report’s release is a “learning moment for us.”
 
She said the incoming panel chairman, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), himself a prisoner of war in Vietnam, has been “up front about how important it is that we get beyond this ever happening again in terms of using torture.”

In addition, the report itself “will help us all understand whether or not the torture was effective,” according to McCaskill.

Tags CIA report Claire McCaskill John McCain

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