Earlier this week, Trump ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and replaced him with his lapdog CIA Director Mike Pompeo. Tillerson himself found out via Twitter because our cowardly president lacked the decency to tell him in person or at very least over the phone.
Trump then made the deeply disturbing announcement that he intended to nominate CIA Deputy Director Gina Haspel to replace Pompeo as chief of the spy agency. Haspel is infamous for running a CIA black site in Thailand where detainees were brutally and repeatedly tortured at the behest of the Bush administration. In other words, Haspel has no place running such a powerful intelligence agency with a record like hers.
According to The New York Times, one of her prisoners was waterboarded 83 times in one month, demonstrating a downright medieval barbarism from Haspel and those under her command. She later ordered videotape evidence of the Thai torturings destroyed. America cannot afford to give her the full power of the CIA, lest we backslide right back into the dark era of mass torture.
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Senator John McCain (R-AZ), himself a victim of torture during his time as a POW during the Vietnam War, clearly sees the risk Haspel poses and took to Twitter to denounce such brutal interrogation methods and urged the Senate to scrutinize Haspel closely as well as her involvement in what he called the “disgraceful program.”
The torture of detainees in U.S. custody during the last decade was one of the darkest chapters in American history. The Senate must do its job in scrutinizing the record & involvement of Gina Haspel in this disgraceful program. https://t.co/p2eZfMDF5N
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) March 13, 2018
Representative Liz Cheney (R-WY) didn’t take kindly to McCain’s tweet, presumably because her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney, was one of the sinister puppeteers behind the Bush-era torture program.
Cheney took to Twitter to defend torture by claiming that it “saved lives” and erroneously insisting that the cruel interrogation methods helped to catch the terrorist Osama Bin Laden. In reality, the Senate found that this was not the case.
The torturing of detainees provided little if any useful intelligence. Clearly, Liz Cheney is far more interested in defending her family’s sordid legacy than she is in telling the truth. It will take a lot more than a lie-filled tweet to convince the American people that her father had anything even close to resembling morality on his side when he pushed to torture people all over the world.
The Enhanced Interrogation Program saved lives, prevented attacks, & produced intel that led to Osama bin Laden. The techniques were the same as those used on our own people in the SERE program. No one should slander the brave men & women who carried out this crucial program. https://t.co/IXQuldr1R6
— Liz Cheney (@Liz_Cheney) March 13, 2018
Not willing to let her father be accused of slander so cavalierly, Senator McCain’s daughter Meghan took to Twitter with a brief yet strong rebuke of Cheney. Invoking her father’s nightmarish five years imprisoned in Vietnam, McCain said her father “doesn’t need torture explained to him.”
Her point is a good one. The fact that McCain, one of the more hawkish members of the Senate, opposes torture shows that his firsthand experience with it made it clear to him that it should never be used, and that its implementation is indefensible.
My father doesn’t need torture explained to him. https://t.co/ajrtr7Vn5A
— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) March 15, 2018
Meghan McCain made the defense of her father just a day after the 45h anniversary of McCain’s release from North Vietnamese detention, which he celebrated by sharing some footage yesterday.
45 years ago today… pic.twitter.com/jXhCFY9pK2
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) March 14, 2018