Posts tagged ‘President Obama’
The Senate Intelligence Committee’s 6,700-page history of the CIA torture program will be kept among Barack Obama’s presidential papers — safe from the Republicans on the committee who have attempted to have it destroyed.The executive summary of the report, which was released in December 2014, contained shocking description of brutal torture tactics like waterboarding, and other types of torture.
Following the election of Donald Trump, Senate Democrats have urged Obama to make the full report public, fearing that it could be destroyed.
The public will still have to wait to see the report, however. In a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee’s top Democrat, Dianne Feinstein, White House Counsel Neil Eggleston wrote that “the President has informed the archivist that access to classified material, among other categories of information, should be restricted for the full twelve years allowed under the act.”After the report was completed, the Intelligence Committee sent copies to the White House, the CIA, the Department of Justice, and several other federal agencies, hoping to dissuade the agencies from practicing or authorizing torture in the future.
While the Obama administration has not complied with Burr’s request, executive branch policy remains that the report should not actually be read by anyone. A year after it was released, government lawyers confirmed that at the Department of Justice, it had not even been taken out of its package, and that the CIA had made “very limited use of it.” The administration has also refused to make the report available under the Freedom of Information Act. Anti-torture advocates argued that a full public accounting of the facts would keep the CIA from using torture in the future.
Despite pressure from a group of high-profile human and civil rights groups, President Obama told German newspaper, Der Spiegel late last week that he will not pardon Snowden during his final weeks in office . Snowden, a former NSA contractor, has lived in exile ever since he worked with various media organizations in 2013 to reveal an array of extensive and intrusive domestic and international spying operations run by the NSA and other agencies. The president has also been backed up by a letter sent to him in September and signed by members of the House of Representatives’s Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. More