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John McCain calls Michael Mukasey a liar

Essentially:

"I have sought further information from the staff of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and they confirm for me that, in fact, the best intelligence gained from a CIA detainee -- information describing Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti's real role in Al-Qaeda and his true relationship to Osama bin Laden -- was obtained through standard, non-coercive means, not through any 'enhanced interrogation technique.'

"In short, it was not torture or cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of detainees that got us the major leads that ultimately enabled our intelligence community to find Osama bin Laden. I hope former Attorney General Mukasey will correct his misstatement. It's important that he do so because we are again engaged in this important debate, with much at stake for America's security and reputation. Each side should make its own case, but do so without making up its own facts.

Mukasey, former United States Attorney General, in an Op-Ed wrote, in part:

Consider how the intelligence that led to bin Laden came to hand. It began with a disclosure from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM), who broke like a dam under the pressure of harsh interrogation techniques that included waterboarding. He loosed a torrent of information--including eventually the nickname of a trusted courier of bin Laden.

Who to believe?

Anyone?


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Comments (43)

Need you even ask? Thanks a... (Below threshold)
recovered liberal democrat:

Need you even ask? Thanks again Arizona.

First off, the wor... (Below threshold)
irongrampa:


First off, the words Senate and Intelligence don't mesh , secondly I'm thinking McCain fell for a set-up.

Third, I thought all this was settled long ago re coercive interrogation, has someone decided it's politically expedient to raise the issue again?

Or is someone being Mavericky ?

The information obtained vi... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

The information obtained via Standard Interrogation came after the unlawful combatant broke under Enhanced Interrorgation.

I believe McCain. He's a m... (Below threshold)
Chico:

I believe McCain. He's a man of honor, even if he made the mistake of picking Sarah Palin on the ticket.

He also knows torture when he sees it.

Mukaskey has shown nothing more than he's a lying propagandist.

Here you have the greatest ... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Here you have the greatest possible damnation of John "The RINO" McCain and a complete vindication of Mukasey:

I believe McCain. He's a man of honor, even if he made the mistake of picking[sic] Sarah Palin on the ticket.

He also knows torture when he sees it.

Mukaskey[sic] has shown nothing more than he's a lying propagandist.

4. Posted by Chico

Ah, the virtues of reliable contra-indicators. Even chicka servers a purpose under heaven.

"I believe McCain. He's a m... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"I believe McCain. He's a man of honor,"

Yeah, Amnesty McCain. Yep.

Rodney (#3) has it exactly ... (Below threshold)
Kenny:

Rodney (#3) has it exactly right.

As for Ricks original question: They are both right. McCain is simply playing the word games the left loves in leaving out the fact that these specific pieces of intelligence leading to Osama came after KSM was broken and his compliance tested with the enhanced techniques. Then standard interrogation was used to learn new information.

ChicoThanks for co... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Chico

Thanks for confirming that McCain was a lousy candidate for President in 2008. Only slightly better than Obama.

Btw Chico

Since you hold Bush personally responsible for the death of the cab driver, deaths at Gitmo and Abu Graib do you also hold Obama personally responsible for the innocent deaths which have occurred while he was President?

You never seemed to answer this simple yes or no question.


Gee Chico12 negati... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Gee Chico

12 negative votes in under 45 min. I do believe that is some kind of record.

RG and Kenny are right. </p... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

RG and Kenny are right.

Stating that most of the information was obtain without acknowledging it was after he broke is disingenuous. It also is known that for many who are capture they feel for them to be honorable they need to go through a harsh interrogation before giving up information. Once they meet that obligation then they tend to open up a great deal.

On this issue McCain because of his experience in Vietnam is too personally involved. Being too close to the subject has often made him irrational on the subject. Similar to someone I know who was in a motorcycle crash that won’t get within 50 feet of one and believe they all should be destroyed. He so emotionally involved with the subject area that one can’t talk reason with him.

"In the intelligen... (Below threshold)
Eric:
"In the intelligence business you work from a lot of sources of information and that was true here," Leon Panetta told NBC News. "It's a little difficult to say it was due just to one source of information that we got. I think some of the detainees clearly were, you know, they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of these detainees."

So which is it Leon? Were EIT's used or not?

Considering all of the past statements made by the admninistration against EIT's, it seems to me that the administration has a motivation to lie and say now that they weren't used.

Wow Chicos, you're good!</p... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

Wow Chicos, you're good!


"I believe McCain. He's a man of honor, even if he made the mistake of picking Sarah Palin on the ticket."


So in your pathetic reality, it was a mistake to run against this embarrassing fraud and theft being perpetrated on America..


Even Wooop eventually learned to take off his poopy diaper. You, not so much.

The best timeline write-up ... (Below threshold)
Hank:

The best timeline write-up I've seen has been by Ace of Spades. See:
http://ace.mu.nu/archives/315642.php

And it supports what Mukasey wrote.

As for McCain, I suspect his deep resentment and hatred of Bush still consumes him. Seems the only times he woke up in the last decade or so was to trash Bush and republicans. Bin Laden finally gets killed, some come out to explain that Bush's policies helped get it done and McCain can't handle it.

He probably also sees this as an opportunity to become a favorite of the left, once again.

Since the America-hating, l... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

Since the America-hating, lying leftist filth believes McCain, it is safe to believe Mukasey.

McCain is nutty on the subject - he was tortured for torture's own sake, not because he had any information. His torturers were the heroes to Obama and Chico's friends and idols, btw.

Comparing waterboarding to having your shoulders broken and left unset is just insane.

"Well my friends, what's no... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

"Well my friends, what's not to believe......

Well, to be frank, this is ... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Well, to be frank, this is a story that has always been difficult for me to understand. al-Kuwaiti was apparently the courier who unknowing led the CIA to bin Laden in Pakistan. I believe Murkasey when he said they gleaned important information from KSM under the conditions of enhanced interrogation but I had read that it was a Hassan Ghul in a CIA interrogation in Pakistan that actually pointed the finger at al-Kuwaiti. I bring this up because I myself have never been able to enough people validate this one way or another. Someone here probably knows this with more certainty than I.

So this is where the wacko ... (Below threshold)
Jacko:

So this is where the wacko wingnuts hang out. You think McCain attracts leftists? What alternate reality are you living in?

Panetta got it right. Some bits of the information (out of the gigabytes needed to find OBL) came from people who had been subjected to "enhanced" interogation, but we will never be able to prove one way or another whether the torture was necessary or merely convenient or even actually delayed the revelations of those bits. Recall also that in was KSM's later refusal to talk more about al-Kuwaiti that convinced the CIA he was important - not a revelation you'd get from a man blabbering everything he can make up to stop the torture.

Of course, those who were complicit in torture have a stake in claiming that it worked. But like Lady MacBeth crying "out, out damned spot!", the blood will not wash off.

Believe Tenent, Baker, Pone... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Believe Tenent, Baker, Ponetta, Hadley, Brown, GW Bush,McKusky or McCain and Chico? Hmm? Give me a nano second. I believe McCain and Chico do not know or want to not know what the truth is. ww

I believe Murkasey when ... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

I believe Murkasey when he said they gleaned important information from KSM under the conditions of enhanced interrogation but I had read that it was a Hassan Ghul in a CIA interrogation in Pakistan that actually pointed the finger at al-Kuwaiti.

These two statements do not necessarily contradict each other, according to what I've read. My understanding is that KSM knew the nom de guerre of the courier, but others identified that nom de guerre with the individual's actual identity. So (in my understanding) others fingered the person, but after KSM had revealed his significance.

A New Commenter opines (@17... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

A New Commenter opines (@17):

So this is where the wacko wingnuts hang out.

This is indeed a home on the interwebs for right thinking men and women. How on earth did you wander in?

You think McCain attracts leftists? What alternate reality are you living in?

We know that McCain is the left's favorite Republican, primarily because he IS a RINO and trends against the more conservative and libertarian elements of the GOP. It's not that he attracts or is attractive to the "progressive left" and their LSM auxiliaries, it's that he is a useful tool for them.

Panetta got it right. Some bits of the information (out of the gigabytes needed to find OBL) came from people who had been subjected to "enhanced" interogation, but we will never be able to prove one way or another whether the torture was necessary or merely convenient or even actually delayed the revelations of those bits.

Which really boils down to your being impersuasible on the subject and showing up here as a pure contrarian,

Recall also that in was KSM's later refusal to talk more about al-Kuwaiti that convinced the CIA he was important - not a revelation you'd get from a man blabbering everything he can make up to stop the torture.

You really don't understand how Enhanced Interrogation is done, do you? Here's a hint, they start out with questions they already know the answers to...

Of course, those who were complicit in torture have a stake in claiming that it worked.

And those who claim it never has and cannot work have a stake in maintaining that position despite all evidence to the contrary.

But like Lady MacBeth crying "out, out damned spot!", the blood will not wash off.

And the deliberately ignorant will not allow themselves to be educated, sirrah.

I guess to McLame, cutting ... (Below threshold)
Stan:

I guess to McLame, cutting people's heads off on video does not count as torture, nor does blindfolding them and forcing them to speak the propaganda of the captor. McLame should know all about that. It is a wonder that Hanoi Jane hasn't opened up her big yap yet. We all know what she did to American service personal back in the day.

McCain has always been asha... (Below threshold)
Jeff:

McCain has always been ashamed that he broke under his very real torture at the hands of the VC ... he admitted that eventually he gave up anything they wanted ...
(anyone would have, he has nothing to be ashamed of ...)

but while he has the moral authority to opine on what is and isn't torture he is simply trying to re-write history by acting like enhanced techniques had nothing to do with the leads ...

He thinks he is earning credit in heaven ... he already has the ticket in, he should stop trying so hard and retire ...

..."not a revelation you'd ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

..."not a revelation you'd get from a man blabbering everything he can make up to stop the torture."

Rather late to the party. Go back to sleep. Waterboarding was designed to break the will to resist, not to elicit information. Questions were asked that already had VALIDATED answers.

More plainly, so you'll grasp the concept; it's called screwing with your mind. You've already given up information. So why not continue, in order to avoid more waterboarding?
And the validation process still continues, measured against what others have said.

That's why it takes so long. You DON'T rely on just one source.

Stan"guess to McLa... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Stan

"guess to McLame, cutting people's heads off on video does not count as torture, nor does blindfolding them and forcing them to speak the propaganda of the captor"

Of course that isnt torture Stan. It wasnt done by Westerners. Just ask Chico.

McCain broke under the thre... (Below threshold)
Molon Lobe:

McCain broke under the threat of torture. No wonder he acts as he does when his fellow officers held out, some until they were killed. The man is unfit, morally, intellectually, and mentally.

No wonder Chico thinks highly of him.

Anytime that someone uses t... (Below threshold)
Yacko:

Anytime that someone uses the phrase "right thinking" it's a clear sign that groupthink has taken over.

I have far more respect for Collins and Snow than McCain - but the right's fanatic belief is that they know the minds of the left better than those minds know themselves - so they feel free to tell each other what the left thinks, usually making it up out of the negative image of their own thoughts. McCain the Maverick, as well as McCain the RINO, was largely a creation of the shallow media.

I've read the theories about how torture works; presumably it disposes the victims to future cooperation. I've also read the statements of professional military interogators who don't think it works. There is no scientific proof one way or the other. I am not unpersuadable, but no one has provided reliable, testable evidence. You believe in torture because you want to believe in torture.

Which doesn't say very nice things about you, sirrah.

Rodney, maybe some of our g... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Rodney, maybe some of our great editors/authors can submit a post on how enhanced interrogation works. The lefties seem to think it is during those sessions that information is extracted, but it is just a test of compliance and honesty. Nevermind. They're idiots. ww

ww,To what end? H... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

ww,

To what end? Have we ever seen our leftard trolls change their position just because they were wrong on the facts?

"The lefties seem to think ... (Below threshold)
Dot:

"The lefties seem to think it is during those sessions that information is extracted, but it is just a test of compliance and honesty. Nevermind. They're idiots."

A perfect specimen of the way right-thinking works.

No one here said that they think torture works like this. But you fill in the blank with the argument that works to support your thesis, and then round it off with an insult.

Rodney follows up with further disparagement and another insult.

Thusly you assure that your worldview remains unchallenged, by reassuring each other that anyone who doesn't share it is unworthy of your respect.

The facts we know are: KSM and al Libbi were tortured. Months later, they mentioned al Kuwati.

The statement that torture led to the testimony is not a fact, it is an inference.

If you have any additional relevant facts, I am happy to learn. Admitting ignorance is not a problem; we are all ignorant of far more than we can ever know. The problem is refusing to learn from new evidence and argument. This is more than ignorant, it is dumb. I try not to be dumb.

Some of you all, on the other hand, seem to be convinced that you have nothing of the sort to worry about.

Another newbie who hasn't r... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Another newbie who hasn't read the comment thread jumps in with:

"The lefties seem to think it is during those sessions that information is extracted, but it is just a test of compliance and honesty. Nevermind. They're idiots."

A perfect specimen of the way right-thinking works.

No one here said that they think torture works like this. But you fill in the blank with the argument that works to support your thesis, and then round it off with an insult.

And back @ 17 we see:

...not a revelation you'd get from a man blabbering everything he can make up to stop the torture.

You are full of fail, Dot.

Dolt-"This is more... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

Dolt-

"This is more than ignorant, it is dumb. I try not to be dumb."

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again..

Jacko continues o... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Jacko continues off into the far reaches:

Anytime that someone uses the phrase "right thinking" it's a clear sign that groupthink has taken over.

And "left thinking" is a contradiction in terms.

I have far more respect for Collins and Snow than McCain - but the right's fanatic belief is that they know the minds of the left better than those minds know themselves - so they feel free to tell each other what the left thinks, usually making it up out of the negative image of their own thoughts.

A classic case of projection. Recent studies show that the "right" actually understand the "positions" and the "reasoning" of the left better than vice versa. The "progressive left" is less of a terra incognito to the right than anything to the right of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi is to the left and the LSM (but I repeat myself).

McCain the Maverick, as well as McCain the RINO, was largely a creation of the shallow media.

Not so much. McCain the Maverick was a creation of the LSM. McCain the RINO was the counter of the dextrosphere.

I've read the theories about how torture works; presumably it disposes the victims to future cooperation.

The discussion is about Enhanced Interrogation. Torture is a whole different matter.

I've also read the statements of professional military interogators who don't think it works.

And there are those who have used Enhanced Interrogation (which is NOT torture) who have proven that it is effective.

There is no scientific proof one way or the other.

In your estimation.

I am not unpersuadable[sic], but no one has provided reliable, testable evidence.

Nor will any be declassified from the current crop of illegal combatants any time soon. Guess we'll have to withhold judgment then?

You believe in torture because you want to believe in torture.

Enhanced Interrogation is not torture. Torture is very real, and exists.

SERE is very clear on the efficacy of torture, and the realization that everyone can be broken, but that the broken can return to resistance, if they know what to expect.

KSM et al expected to be read their "rights" and given an attorney. The Enhanced Interrogation they actually met with they were not prepared for. They did not expect to break, and did not recover well from breaking.

Which doesn't say very nice things about you, sirrah.

To paraphrase Tolkien: there is no greater praise than the faint damns of a leftard.


Rodney,What you've... (Below threshold)
Dot:

Rodney,

What you've got here is a classic case of your own "fail" overflowing into your eyes.

Try to follow along, if this isn't too subtle for you.

"blabbering everything he can make up" suggests that the sessions of torture yield little reliable information, which is in agreement actually with the formulation advanced by all your right thinkers that torture is not intended to produce information.

But in the case of al Kuwati, the information was not anything said, but an inference from silence. Silence would be masked by the noise of torture.

So what you are picking at is acutally an example of agreement that torture had to end for information to arrive.

The point of contention is whether information shows up more quickly, with greater reliability, with or without torture. This is a case where we don't have proof, we have equivocable evidence and a crew of true believers vs a team of deniers and us idiot skeptics in the middle.

Dot,You wrote:... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Dot,

You wrote:

...No one here said that they think torture works like this. But you fill in the blank with the argument that works to support your thesis, and then round it off with an insult.

A fellow leftard of yours @ 17 (before your post) wrote:

...not a revelation you'd get from a man blabbering everything he can make up to stop the torture.

I'll be sure to start paying attention to you when you admit your fail.

Rodney,I just thou... (Below threshold)
Schlemiel:

Rodney,

I just thought I'd pop in to let you know that you're repeating yourself. Snap out of it!

Schlemiel.

Noted for the Record: Schl... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Noted for the Record: Schlemiel is posting from the same IP as Dot.

Everyone say hello to our latest sockpuppet.

Here we go again. First tor... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

Here we go again. First torture and Enhanced Interrogation techniques (EIT) are seldom ever the same.

Second news flash yes they can and often do lie under torture and\or EIT. However they can and often do lie under any type of interrogation or any other situations including sitting around B.S.ing with friends or those seeking an award. Good Intel gatherers know how to shift through all the B.S. and lies to get to the truth. Many of the techniques to do so are pretty simple and easy for anyone with half a brain to come up with on their own.

Third one of the biggest obstacles to using those shifting techniques is getting someone to talk. It is pretty hard to shift through the lies to get to the truth when someone isn’t talking. EIT are techniques to get people to talk. Torture if done right will get people to talk. About the only time it doesn’t is when the one doing it goes overboard and kills the person.

Last who is to be trusted? Those which claim it doesn’t work who are train that torture doesn’t work and never have done it or those which claim it does work who have done it?

Gee Woop/chico/richardw/Dot... (Below threshold)
retired military:

Gee Woop/chico/richardw/Dot/Schlemiel

I wonder if they are all the same person or do they just cohabitate together. Maybe not the same person but I guess we have to go to the zoo to prove or disprove the 2nd part fo that question.


Well, if we connect the Dot... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

Well, if we connect the Dots we see that Woop= chico=richardW=etc.


In other words, you can change the lip stick, but you cant fix stupid!

I really do think the idea ... (Below threshold)
Chico:

I really do think the idea of torturing someone, especially a dirty Muslim, give a lot of y'all a thrill.

The mask slips and we see t... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves:

The mask slips and we see that chicka thinks of his allies in this fight:

dirty Muslim

Oh, and the comment (40) as a whole is a Graves' law violation.

Torture works for the inter... (Below threshold)
Olsoljer:

Torture works for the interrogator in that the subject will eventually say what he thinks the interrogator wants to, or is asking him to admit to. Most people will do this in order to stop the pain, very few can withstand repeated applications of pain, and will admit to anything to (hopefully) stop the torture. Two of the problems encountered in torture are veracity and being able to keep the subject alive long enough to gain an objective.
Not having experience in EIT, I would hazard that (spec: waterboarding) brings the subject to a point where they actually fear death, so the interrogator (seeking information, and having pre-knowledge of some of the answers) can extract information given freely or inadvertantly by the subject. When the session is over you have a healthy (but scared) source of information who still does not know what you are actually looking for and, faced with another session of waterboarding will impart even more information (solicited or not) to avoid the spectre of death.

There a big difference betw... (Below threshold)
Wayne:

There a big difference between torturing someone to get a confession and torturing them to get information.

Yes as stated above you will get false information in any type of interrogation but you will most likely get some true information as well. There are ways with dealing with that.

Before you break a subject they may give you false information out of spite. When you break a subject, if they don’t know the answer they will likely make one up. However if they know the information then there is a very good possibility they will give it up. Again a decent interrogator or intelligence analyses will be able sort those things out.

I can respect the position that EIT and\or torture is wrong and shouldn’t be done on moral grounds. However claiming they don’t work only hurts your creditability to think. When you are wrong on such a basic fact, it makes me think you are more likely to be wrong in your conclusions.




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