CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Government Acknowledges Use of Waterboarding

From Senate Democrats demanded a criminal investigation into waterboarding by government interrogators Tuesday after the Bush administration acknowledged for the first time that the tactic was used on three terror suspects.

In congressional testimony Tuesday, CIA Director Michael Hayden became the first administration official to publicly acknowledge the agency used waterboarding on detainees following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Waterboarding involves strapping a suspect down and pouring water over his cloth-covered face to create the sensation of drowning. It has been traced back hundreds of years, to the Spanish Inquisition, and is condemned by nations around the world.

"We used it against these three detainees because of the circumstances at the time," Hayden told the Senate Intelligence Committee. "There was the belief that additional catastrophic attacks against the homeland were inevitable. And we had limited knowledge about al-Qaida and its workings. Those two realities have changed." Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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