Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Washington (AFP) — The CIA misled the government and the public about parts of its interrogation program for years, the Washington Post said Tuesday, quoting a report by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Specifically, the U.S. agency hid details about the severity of its methods, overstated the significance of plots and prisoners and took credit for critical pieces of intelligence that detainees had in fact provided before they were subjected to harsh techniques, the Post said, quoting officials who have seen the 6,300-page report.

It was constructed with detailed chronologies of dozens of CIA detainees.

The paper said the report describes a long-standing pattern of unsubstantiated claims the CIA sought permission to use — and later tried to defend — excruciating interrogation methods that yielded little to no significant intelligence, according to U.S. officials who have reviewed the document.

“The CIA described (its program) repeatedly both to the Department of Justice and eventually to Congress as getting unique, otherwise unobtainable intelligence that helped disrupt terrorist plots and save thousands of lives,” said one U.S. official briefed on the report.

“Was that actually true? The answer is no.”

Current and former U.S. officials describing the report spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue and because the document remains classified.

The report includes what officials described as damning new disclosures about a sprawling network of secret detention facilities, or “black sites,” that was dismantled by President Barack Obama in 2009.

The report describes previously undisclosed cases of abuse including the alleged repeated dunking of a terror suspect in tanks of iced water in Afghanistan.

This method bore similarities to waterboarding but never showed up on any list of techniques approved by the Justice Department, the Post said.

AFP Photo/Saul Loeb

Donald Trump Jr.

Screenshot from Twitter

You've probably heard about Donald Trump's claim that his Democratic rival got "a big fat se onhot in the ass" before delivering a nearly perfect performance on a recently televised town hall. Or his more recent demand that Joe Biden get a "drug test" before their debate on Tuesday night. Having spent months lowering expectations for Biden, the Trumps are now busily defaming him as a junkie.

But that particular slur backfired spectacularly over the weekend when the Trump campaign posted a bizarre video of Don Jr. -- seemingly in a condition that called for rehab services. As his father might put it, "many people are saying" that the presidential spud looked and sounded like someone abusing a controlled substance. (His slurred message was disturbed too, something about an "army of able-bodied men and women" to intimidate voters).

It's both funny and sad to watch Don Jr. decompensate on Twitter. (More funny, though.)

Click and judge his condition for yourself.