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February 05, 2008

Waterboarding: Much Ado About Not Much

CIA Director Michael Hayden confirmed today what ABC news reported months ago…The US waterboarded a grand total of…3 people.

Those subjected to waterboarding were suspected Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and senior al Qaeda leaders Abu Zubaydah and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, Hayden said at the hearing on threats to the United States.

He said waterboarding has not been used in five years.

"The circumstances are different than they were in late 2001, early 2002," Hayden said. "Very critical to those circumstances was the belief that additional catastrophic attacks against the homeland were imminent. In addition to that, my agency ... had limited knowledge about al Qaeda and its workings. Those two realities have changed."

Hayden told reporters later that the interrogations of Mohammed and Zubaydah were particularly fruitful.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is of course the man behind the 9/11 attacks.

Abu Zubaydah was a top operations officer for al Qaeda

Abd Al-Rahim al-Nashiri was head of al Qaeda operations in the Persian Gulf region and was behind the attack on the USS Cole.

In short, they weren’t just ‘some guys’ picked up in Afghanistan or somewhere. They were high level members of the group responsible for killing thousands of Americans and who were key players in planning future attacks.

I am sure the hysterical types and the reflexive anti-American crowd will tell us that waterboarding even one person taints our national soul. The important thing to remember is people who say that are idiots.

Waterboarding didn’t hurt America’s imagine abroad. The constant attacks by these people who used the specter of every person being a potential target of waterboarding as weapon against the US are responsible for that. Naturally, they had willing allies in the media.

UPDATE: Commenter Z Ryan prompts a thought...more protesters and media members subjected themselves to waterboarding than the CIA did terrorists. How did that work out for you guys?

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posted by DrewM. at 06:40 PM

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