Defense

FBI chief not sure where ‘torture report’ is

Getty Images

The head of the FBI said he hasn’t read a 6,000-page Senate report about harsh government interrogation programs — and doesn’t even know where it is.

During a hearing on the FBI’s 2016 budget request on Thursday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said she was “disappointed” to hear that the bureau’s copy of the report has never been unsealed.

{mosads}“I don’t know enough about where the document sits at this point in time,” FBI Director James Comey responded.

“You mentioned a lock box — I don’t know that well enough to comment on it at this point.”

Comey said that he had read the 500-page executive summary of the so-called torture report, as Feinstein had asked him to do, and would commit to thinking about lessons that the FBI could learn from it.

“I’d like to ask if you open that report and designate certain people to read it and maybe even have a discussion, how things might be improved by suggestions in the report,” Feinstein told him.

“I will do that, senator,” Comey responded.

The scathing report released by Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee late last year was harshly critical of the CIA during the Bush administration. The report said the agency misled its overseers in Washington while conducting a secretive torture campaign that was ineffective at obtaining information.

While the executive summary was released to the public, the full 6,000-page report remains classified. However, Feinstein, who was the chairwoman of the Intelligence Committee before Republicans took over the Senate this year, sent copies to the White House last year for the Obama administration to disseminate to relevant agencies.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), the new Intelligence Committee chairman, has demanded that the administration give all copies of the document back, claiming it never had a right to them in the first place. 

Many agency heads have never even opened the report, potentially in agreement that it should not have been distributed to them.

The State Department, for instance, has labeled the envelope containing a CD copy of the report: “Congressional Record — Do Not Open, Do Not Access.” 

Comey said on Thursday that “a small number of people at the FBI” have read it. 

Tags Dianne Feinstein Enhanced interrogation techniques Federal Bureau of Investigation James Comey torture report
See all Hill.TV See all Video

Most Popular

Load more

Video

See all Video