CIA bides its time

The odd truth is the harsh tactics that the agency deployed against al Qaeda were actually an effort to be kind. Most of Langley’s operatives probably did not regard the methods used against al Qaeda’s elite as torture, since they all know how many agent networks have been torn apart by foreign security officers who had figured out how to apply pain as an investigative tool. They instinctively disbelieve the idea that FBI interrogation methods, developed in a democracy with great sensitivity about civil liberties, are always and everywhere effective. They are reflexively skeptical of the quintessentially American narrative of Feinstein that we can have our cake and eat it, too. Although the average CIA case officer has little in common with Hitchens, who was at different times a Trotskyite and a Vanity Fair columnist, he would probably agree with the writer’s observations about being waterboarded:
“When contrasted to actual torture, waterboarding is more like foreplay. No thumbscrew, no pincers, no electrodes, no rack. Can one say this of those who have been captured by the tormentors and murderers of (say) Daniel Pearl? On this analysis, any call to indict the United States for torture is therefore a lame and diseased attempt to arrive at a moral equivalence between those who defend civilization and those who exploit its freedoms to hollow it out, and ultimately to bring it down. I myself do not trust anybody who does not clearly understand this viewpoint.”

Interesting read from a former field officer:

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