Thursday, 16 August, 2018

U.S. should not have undertaken harsh interrogations — Trump CIA nominee

Green Beret and former UFC fighter Tim Kennedy waterboarded himself on Saturday in support of President Trump's nomination of Gina Haspel for CIA director and to prove the controversial interrogation method which he called Gina Haspel Now Says CIA Shouldn't Have Conducted Its Interrogation Program
Glenn Montgomery | 15 May, 2018, 22:40

A committee vote on Haspel is scheduled for Wednesday morning.

Haspel - who would replace now-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the role - has gotten support from lawmakers on the left.

Vice Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Mark Warner, D-Va., and Sen.

Sen. John Hoeven has said he supports Haspel's nomination.

But most of the written questions, like in her hearing, addressed issues related to the CIA's defunct torture program and her role in it.

Warner's decision comes ahead of a Wednesday committee vote on her nomination, which would likely tee up a final confirmation vote in the Senate next week.

Kennedy said in the 41-minute video posted to Facebook that he pulled this stunt to show that Central Intelligence Agency nominee Gina Haspel has been unfairly criticized for overseeing a Central Intelligence Agency black site where "enhanced interrogation techniques" were used on terrorist detainees shortly after 9/11.

The CIA declassified a review that found "no fault with the performance" of Haspel in the destruction of the videotape evidence, which could help clear the air for senators who are troubled by her involvement in the matter.

Haspel wrote that she has "learned the hard lessons since 9/11".

She needs only 50 votes but Republicans enjoy just a slim 51-49 majority in the chamber.

Haspel had assured senators last week at her confirmation hearing that in hindsight, methods such as waterboarding - viewed as torture by critics - harmed America's image in the world, and she would not restart the program.

"See, I think people who have actually been tortured who are saying this is not a good thing, you should listen to them because you have never been tortured", she told Trump. Joe Manchin (WV) and Joe Donnelly (IN).

He also cited the support for Haspel by former CIA directors under the Obama administration, Leon Panetta and John Brennan, and General Michael Hayden, first appointed director of the National Security Agency by Democratic President Bill Clinton and later CIA director under George W. Bush.

As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Mr. Paul's opposition nearly triggered the panel to report Mr. Pompeo out of the committee unfavorably before the full Senate vote.

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