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  • What Else is in the CIA Memos?

    Hoover Institution visiting fellow and chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush Marc Thiessen looks beyond last weeks headlines to find the real news buried in the released CIA memos:

    In releasing highly classified documents on the CIA interrogation program last week, President Obama declared that the techniques used to question captured terrorists “did not make us safer.” This is patently false. The proof is in the memos Obama made public — in sections that have gone virtually unreported in the media.

    Consider the Justice Department memo of May 30, 2005. It notes that “the CIA believes ‘the intelligence acquired from these interrogations has been a key reason why al Qaeda has failed to launch a spectacular attack in the West since 11 September 2001.’ . . . In particular, the CIA believes that it would have been unable to obtain critical information from numerous detainees, including [Khalid Sheik Mohammed] and Abu Zubaydah, without these enhanced techniques.” The memo continues: “Before the CIA used enhanced techniques . . . KSM resisted giving any answers to questions about future attacks, simply noting, ‘Soon you will find out.’ ” Once the techniques were applied, “interrogations have led to specific, actionable intelligence, as well as a general increase in the amount of intelligence regarding al Qaeda and its affiliates.”

    Specifically, interrogation with enhanced techniques “led to the discovery of a KSM plot, the ‘Second Wave,’ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.” KSM later acknowledged before a military commission at Guantanamo Bay that the target was the Library Tower, the tallest building on the West Coast. The memo explains that “information obtained from KSM also led to the capture of Riduan bin Isomuddin, better known as Hambali, and the discovery of the Guraba Cell, a 17-member Jemmah Islamiyah cell tasked with executing the ‘Second Wave.’ ” In other words, without enhanced interrogations, there could be a hole in the ground in Los Angeles to match the one in New York.

    The memo notes that “[i]nterrogations of [Abu] Zubaydah — again, once enhanced techniques were employed — furnished detailed information regarding al Qaeda’s ‘organizational structure, key operatives, and modus operandi’ and identified KSM as the mastermind of the September 11 attacks.” This information helped the intelligence community plan the operation that captured KSM. It went on: “Zubaydah and KSM also supplied important information about al-Zarqawi and his network” in Iraq, which helped our operations against al-Qaeda in that country.

    All this confirms information that I and others have described publicly. But just as the memo begins to describe previously undisclosed details of what enhanced interrogations achieved, the page is almost entirely blacked out. The Obama administration released pages of unredacted classified information on the techniques used to question captured terrorist leaders but pulled out its black marker when it came to the details of what those interrogations achieved.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    8 Responses to What Else is in the CIA Memos?

    1. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      To start with, none of this information should have been released. This all has to do with the security of this Nation and is not the business of every Tom, Dick and Harry via the Freedom of Information Act!

      That said, I will return to what I have said previously about extracting information from prisoners. We are too worried about the captives and have forgotten that their comrades overtook planes filled with non-military personnel and flew them into non-military targets. They are all murderers or potential murderers who will stop at nothing to kill anyone not of their belief. Sadly, the American Left forgets that entire incident and tries to cover these detainees with the same "victim blanket" that they try to cover law breakers throughout the Land.

      The Left never cares about security, they want full access to everything. The Left thinks that showing kindness to these people will stop all hostilities when history proves that this idea is nonsense. The Left wants all expose the "terrible torture" that these poor detainees endured, completely ignoring the torture that all the passengers of all the flights endured during those horrific minutes on 9/11/2001. The Left wants to bare the United States to the World just to show what terrible people we are so our enemies will stop hating us.

      The REAL enemy of the United States is within!

    2. Gordon McCauley, Gle says:

      Why is it that Veterans who have donned the military uniforms of this country and volunteered to defend its traditions and values are considered more of a threat than those who disclose National Security secrets that aid and abet the enemies of our traditions and values?

      Could it be that the one who ordered the release of the secrets is the REAL enemy?

      That would make me a friend.

    3. Nick A. Sigan, Minne says:

      The debris administration can look at our brave vets as terrorists yet the real deals cannot have their feelings hurt with such definitions, this is sick. Everything I see from this administration is treasonistic.

    4. ra,ohio says:

      I would LOVE to IMPEACH this ADMINISTRATION, and the congressional LEADERS; but I think they are sooo embedded in the Washington environment that we will have a helluva time getting them out until 2010.

      The enemy is the elite in Washington, D.C.

    5. Spiritof76, New Hamp says:

      Purpose of releasing the documents is to distance himself (doesn't care about the safety of the country)from the past presidents and our country, in general. Obama's reaction to the hateful diatribe of Ortega clearly indicates that he is narcissistic. He essentially said that Ortega was not talking about him as he was only three year old at that time. He does not think himself as representing the US first. He is doing as a president what Jeremiah Wright did for twenty years at a church in Chicago.

    6. Barb -mn says:

      Since the president did have it released, (treason to our safety if you ask me) then let's see it all.

    7. Mary Howard, Indiana says:

      The witch hunt is on again..this time to hush the Bush administration…Dick Cheny has spoken to Hannity and now, despite saying there would be no "procecutions" of the "torture" policies of the Bush Admn, news is there going to go after those that approved/authorized the practices. They want to SHUP Dick Cheny Up. They can't have him tell the American people that we got valuable intell from these "enemy combatants"…oh no, the American "sheep" won't feel safe! I think BO already took care of that on the recent apology tours around the world.

      T.E.A. has to go much further on July 4th–We will not be silenced…our very way of life is threatened here- get involved-e-m your reps, call the white house, voice your opinion, and don't give up. You are already on HS terrorist list..you,right-wing extremists..stand up for your country-your president won't..so we will have to-be proud to be an American.

    8. blair, home says:

      One would expect more from Stanford. Oh yeah, Stanford had Condie before the WH. I wonder what Hulda Hoover McClain would think of this and the attachment of her uncles name to such stuff.

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