Thursday, May 5, 2011

Enhanced Interrogations; and Enhanced Deception from the Mainstream Media

Enhanced interrogation techniques, used by the CIA during the Bush administration, prevented a number of attacks against U.S. targets. It also helped track down Osama Bin Laden. However, as I noted previously, the mainstream media, in its zeal to prop up President Obama and besmirch George W. Bush, is disingenuously putting their own spin on the facts.

Before we discuss the latest spin, let's review some of the facts discussed in an earlier post.

From the AP:
Shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, detainees in the CIA's secret prison network told interrogators about an important courier with the nom de guerre Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti who was close to bin Laden.
It should be noted that the aforementioned detainees had been incarcerated in the CIA's secret prison network, which means they were likely subjected to enhanced interrogations.
After the CIA captured al-Qaida's No. 3 leader, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, he confirmed knowing al-Kuwaiti but denied he had anything to do with al-Qaida.

Then in 2004, top al-Qaida operative Hassan Ghul was captured in Iraq. Ghul told the CIA that al-Kuwaiti was a courier, someone crucial to the terrorist organization. In particular, Ghul said, the courier was close to Faraj al-Libi, who replaced Mohammed as al-Qaida's operational commander. It was a key break in the hunt for in bin Laden's personal courier.

"Hassan Ghul was the linchpin," a U.S. official said.
As I noted previously, via the Liberal Pro Publica website, Hassan Ghul was subjected to enhanced interrogations. [Mainstream pundits claim those interrogations did not involve water-boarding, but nevertheless, they were harsh, and certainly fit the description of enhanced interrogations.]
Finally, in May 2005, al-Libi was captured. Under CIA interrogation, al-Libi admitted that when he was promoted to succeed Mohammed, he received the word through a courier. But he made up a name for the courier and denied knowing al-Kuwaiti, a denial that was so adamant and unbelievable that the CIA took it as confirmation that he and Mohammed were protecting the courier. It only reinforced the idea that al-Kuwaiti was very important to al-Qaida.

If they could find the man known as al-Kuwaiti, they'd find bin Laden.
The Washington Post noted that al-Libi had been detained in a secret CIA prison where he was subjected to the harsh methods that the Bush administration termed "enhanced interrogation techniques."

All of this information ultimately helped track down Bin Laden.

However, the AP notes as follows:
Mohammed did not discuss al-Kuwaiti [the courier] while being subjected to the simulated drowning technique known as water-boarding, former officials said. He acknowledged knowing him many months later under standard interrogation, they said, leaving it once again up for debate as to whether the harsh technique was a valuable tool or an unnecessarily violent tactic.
However, even if water-boarding was not used on any of the detainees who provided the information leading to Bin Laden's demise, Hassan Ghul and Faraj al-Libi, the actual linchpins in helping to locate Bin Laden - as well as the first set of detainees cited above - were subjected to some form of enhanced interrogations. Another detainee, Mohammed Qahtani, who provided key information, was also subjected to harsh interrogations.

Clearly, enhanced interrogation techniques ultimately led to Bin Laden's demise.

As I stated in an earlier post: George W. Bush and Dick Cheney deserve all the credit for facilitating Bin Laden's demise. Barack Obama's protestations to enhanced interrogations were, in essence, an impediment to this goal. Likewise, his bellicose rhetoric about the surge in Iraq was an impediment to the military achievements in Iraq.

And, as I noted, both of the aforementioned goals, were achieved, not because of Obama, but in spite of Obama.

But because of a few detainees, who provided misleading or false information even after being subjected to rough interrogations, suddenly some, within the mainstream media - including journalists who constantly assailed the secret CIA prisons and enhanced interrogations during the Bush presidency, claim the aforementioned techniques were of little value. Mainstream journalists have an agenda, and they'll write and say whatever is necessary to further that agenda.

One particular detainee, they cite as an example, rather disingenuously, is the aforentioned Abu Faraj Al-Libi, who gave CIA officials false information about the Bin Laden's courier. However, as the AP notes, although Al-Libi "made up a name for the courier and denied knowing" him, his denial "was so adamant and unbelievable that the CIA took it as confirmation" that he was "protecting the courier. It only reinforced the idea that" the courier "was very important to al-Qaida."

Similarly, the Tribune Washington bureau writes:
Two other CIA prisoners — al-Qaida's operations chief Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and his successor, Abu Faraj al-Libbi — gave their interrogators false information about the courier after they were water boarded repeatedly, U.S. officials said.

Those lies also played a role in the decade-long manhunt, however. Over time, they were viewed as evidence by CIA analysts that bin Laden's top deputies were trying to shield a figure who might be a link to the al-Qaida leader's hide-out, according to U.S. officials briefed on the analysis. "The fact that they were covering it up suggested he was important," a U.S. official said.
Hence, the information gleaned from these two individuals under enhanced interrogations was extremely valuable.

One final point:

Information gleaned from water-boarding [which was only used on a small number of high value detainees, and yet, the mainstream media is still obsessed with it] is said to have prevented a number of attacks against U.S. targets. Hence, even if it was not was part of the enhanced interrogations that helped locate Bin Laden, it saved countless American lives.

Conclusion: Did enhance interrogations facilitate Bin Laden's Demise? Without question!

Were the protestations from Obama and company against these procedures an impediment to locating Bin Laden? [Bear in mind, Obama spoke out against all forms of enhanced interrogations, not just waterboarding.] Yes - but ultimately, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney - who had the fortitude to ignore Obama's bellicose rhetoric - prevailed!

Obama, as usual, will take the credit for someone else's achievements. And, of course, when he fails miserably, he passes the buck to others.

Good politics indeed, considering the Liberal mainstream media is in bed with him......

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