Tag Archives: CIA

INSIGHTS 178 — INTERROGATION, THE REAL STORY

Enhanced interrogation! Torture! A rogue CIA! Illegal activities!

No matter what newspapers you read, what TV channels you listen to, or what comes to you online, these terms have been flooding the media market. The case for enhanced interrogation is a strong one unless you fear the power of the United States more than you fear Islamic terrorists who have a known track record of killing Americans. Other than the progressives of President Obama’s party, most Americans disagree with Obama’s approach to defending them from terrorism.

This blog is addressed to mainstream Americans who believe in the rule of law, the Constitution, and are proud of our history.

First, a few general observations about interrogation and the line between enhanced interrogation and torture. You can talk to those people who have been interrogated in the CIA’s program. They are alive and well either at Guantanamo or some place where they have been transferred. They are still alive and not crippled physically or mentally deranged. Many have gone back to the battlefield to try and kill more Americans and our allied supporters.

The deaths from enhanced interrogations are reported as one. On the other hand there is the drone program where the terrorists targeted are all dead, along with any friends, family or bystanders who happened to be nearby and all the intelligence they had died with them. At least one terrorist of those killed by a drone strike was an American citizen. I generally support the drone program but don’t understand the American left’s hatred of the CIA program while they accept reports of drone strikes with their morning coffee.

Very few people know anything about interrogation techniques. I do. A skilled interrogator will be successful. He or she will get the subject of interrogation to give up useful information. A skillful use of rewards and punishment (not torture) and a deep knowledge of the subject area gets results. Torture of the InquisitioDianne_Feinstein,_official_Senate_photo_2n type or that used by our enemies in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam was so severe that the subjects would tell their captors anything just to stop the pain. The experience of being tortured does not make you an expert on interrogation, only on being a courageous survivor.

Now the politics of the Democratic senators’ report on terror. That is the right title for the report. Republicans on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence did not contribute to nor agree with the report’s content. It is strictly a left-wing progressive report to attack the CIA. Why was the report released now years after the program ended? Simple: After the Republicans assume control of the Senate, Senator Feinstein will lose her chairmanship position and will not be able to carry on her vendetta against the CIA by publishing a remarkably unprofessional report similar to those self-serving reports we have seen come out from our enemies. No one actually a part of or associated with the Enhanced Interrogation program was interviewed or allowed to contribute to the report.

The CIA deserves a nation’s gratitude for keeping our homeland safe.

 

Written by the author of the Jack Brandon thriller/mystery novels and “Insights: Transforming America — Is This What We Fought For?” available now as an ebook, in paperback or hardcover on Amazon.com or BN.com. Another analytical book on the transforming process, “Insights: Stepping Stones to Tyranny,” is now published and available in paperback at $9.95 and on nook and kindle at $6.99.  Follow the author on Twitter @factsfictions80.

 

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Filed under Barry Kelly, Conservative views, Intelligence & Politics, Politics, Progressives, Terrorism

EIGHT DECADES OF INSIGHTS 57

OVERSIGHT?

Our Constitution, most state constitutions, judicial procedures and corporation bylaws, all contain checks and balances.  All aspects of our republic purposely contain a system of checks and balances. The premise behind the need for such restraints is that people can be corrupt and power breeds corruption. Corruption in government and unchecked power can and will destroy individual liberty. It doesn’t matter which political party is in power, the motivation to use the full and unchecked power of government for ideological supremacy is always there. Our system of checks and balances relies on another principle for its effectiveness. The protector of viability of checks and balances  is Congressional and Judicial  oversight and an aggressive questioning press, which is the third, very important leg of oversight.

079 Capitol Hill United States Congress 1993

079 Capitol Hill United States Congress 1993 (Photo credit: David Holt London)

In our federal government structure, the Congress and the Courts provide the arms of oversight of the Executive. It is the Executive branch of our government whose management of the nation’s business contains the power to encroach on individual freedom in the name of security or in  misguided attempts to destroy opposition to changing or transforming the American nation. Up until the last ten years the check and balance process has worked well  with effective oversight.

In the 1980s and ’90s, the Executive often struggled to maintain its position of prominence in running the affairs of government. At times it seemed to those of us working in the Executive branch that Congress believed oversight meant management. Congressional staff members and reporters made their bones by ferreting out real and imagined overreaches and inefficiencies of the Executive. There was a constant stream of officers from various agencies marching up to testify in front of various committees. One Director of the CIA often commented, “That while CIA is an executive agency under the command of the President, CIA works equally for the Congress.” (This is not an exact quote but it is very close and was accurate at the time.)

The power and effectiveness of the oversight process has been steadily degraded. Four things are primarily responsible for the weakening of the oversight process.

First: The Executive Branch of Government has grown much larger, starting with President George W. Bush and continued by President Obama. The Congressional and Judicial Branches have not kept up.

Secondly: The media has become politically one-sided and ignores covering events that might be critical of President Obama. In doing so they have abrogated their historical position as a key element of the oversight process.

Thirdly: Only the Executive Branch has keep up with the technology necessary to improve the management and control of their branch of government.

Lastly: No one in the Legislative or Judicial Branches anticipated that a political party would so openly and ruthlessly use the power of the executive to destroy political opposition groups. There is scarcely a piece of the executive that has not stepped over traditional lines to seize and expand political power. A few examples of the most egregious are the IRS, EPA, the State Department, the Justice Department, ranking military officers, DEA, Immigrations, HHS, Department of Labor and others that will emerge if oversight regains its footing. How can we expect Congress to oversee the collection and use of information on U.S. Citizens if it cannot even provide oversight of  the the IRS, one of the most bureaucratic  and pervasive of all agencies?  This is not over. Watch the Congressional hearing.

By the author of the Jack Brandon novels.         http://www.factsandfictions.com

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Filed under centralization, Conservative views, Eight Decades of Insights, information technology, Intelligence & Politics, Obama, Politics