This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal

On the Justification for Detaining Individuals

HAYDEN: The requirement to be in the CIA detention program is knowledge of[an] attack against the United States or its interests or knowledge about the location of Usama bin Ladin or Ayman al-Zawahiri.

FACT CHECK: The representation that the "requirement to be in the CIA detention program is knowledge of [an] attack against the United States or its interests or knowledge about the location of Usama bin Ladin or A yman al-Zawahiri" is inconsistent with how the CIA's Detention and Interrogation Program operated from its inception." As detailed elsewhere, numerous individuals had been detained and subjected to the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques, despite doubts and questions surrounding their knowledge of terrorist threats and the location of senior al-Qa'ida leadership.

Nearly 40 pages of the Senate Intelligence Committee report on U.S. interrogation techniques are devoted to fact-checking one day of testimony on Capitol Hill. In 2007, then CIA director Michael Hayden testified before the Senate committee on CIA detainee policies.  The report's authors charge Former CIA director Michael Hayden with misleading Congress during that testimony.

Below, Hayden's 2007 statements before the committee are listed, followed by the reports inquiry into his claims. In these excerpted passages, Hayden is mainly talking about the detainment and interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, who has been in U.S. custody since 2002. Later, he talks about other cases, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (Emphasis ours.)

On the Justification for Detaining Individuals

HAYDEN: The requirement to be in the CIA detention program is knowledge of[an] attack against the United States or its interests or knowledge about the location of Usama bin Ladin or Ayman al-Zawahiri.

FACT CHECK: The representation that the "requirement to be in the CIA detention program is knowledge of [an] attack against the United States or its interests or knowledge about the location of Usama bin Ladin or A yman al-Zawahiri" is inconsistent with how the CIA's Detention and Interrogation Program operated from its inception." As detailed elsewhere, numerous individuals had been detained and subjected to the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques, despite doubts and questions surrounding their knowledge of terrorist threats and the location of senior al-Qa'ida leadership.

On the Vetting of the CIA Interviewers

HAYDEN: All those involved in the questioning of detainees have been carefully chosen and carefully screened...

FACT CHECK:  Contrary to CIA Director Hayden's comments and Statement for the Record that "all those involved in the questioning of detainees are carefully chosen and screened for demonstrated professional judgment and maturity," CIA records suggest that the vetting sought by [REDACTED] did not take place.

On Oversight During Interrogation Sessions

HAYDEN: All interrogation sessions in which one of these lawful procedures is authorized for use has to be observed by nonparticipants... Any observer can call "knock it off" at any time. They are authorized to terminate an interrogation immediately should they believe anything unauthorized is occurring.

FACT CHECK: "This testimony is in xongruent with CIA records...

During the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, CIA personnel... objected to the continued use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques against Abu Zubaydah, stating that it was "highly unlikely" Abu Zubaydah possessed the threat information CIA Headquarters was seeking. When the interrogation team made this assessment, they stated that the pressures being applied to Abu Zubaydah approached the legal limit. CIA Headquarters directed the interrogation team to continue to use the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques..."

Senator Olympia Snowe asked Hayden in the 2007 hearing: "Did any CIA personnel express reservations about being engaged in the interrogation or these techniques that were used?"

HAYDEN: "I'm not aware of any. These guys ai*e more experienced. No."

FACT CHECK: ...The non-stop use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques was disturbing to CIA personnel at DETENTION SITE GREEN. These CIA personnel objected to the continued use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques against Abu Zubaydah, but were instructed by CIA Headquarters to continue using the techniques. The interrogation using the CIA's enhanced techniques continued more than two weeks after CIA personnel on site questioned the legality "of escalating or even maintaining the pressure" on Abu Zubaydah.

On What Types of Questions CIA Interviewers Ask During Enhanced Interrogations

HAYDEN: "When we're asking him questions during that period of increased stress, when we're being more rather than less coercive, we are generally asking him questions for which we know the answers."

FACT CHECK: CIA interrogators asked open-ended questions of CIA detainees, to which the CIA did not know the answers, while subjecting detainees to the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques. This approach began with Abu Zubaydah... and remained a central feature of the program."

On "Threats Related to Sodomy, Arrest of Family"

HAYDEN: Threats of acts of sodomy, the arrest and rape of family members, the intentional infection of HIV or any other diseases have never been and would never be authorized. There are no instances in which such threats or abuses took place.

FACT CHECK: As documented in the May 2004 Inspector General Special Review and other CIA records, interrogators threatened 'Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, KSM, and Abu Zubaydah with harm to their families. ...

At least five detainees were subjected to rectal rehydration or rectal feeding. .... KSM was subjected to rectal rehydration without a determination of medical need, a procedure that KSM interrogator and chief of interrogations, would later characterize as illustrative of the interrogator's "total control over the detainee." ... Three detainees, Rarazi bin al-Shibh, Khallad bin Attash and Adnan al-Libi, were threatened with rectal rehydration.

On Physical Violence

HAYDEN: Punches and kicks are not authorized and have never been employed.

FACT CHECK: According to the interview report of DUNBAR, "there were approximately five CIA officers from the renditions team... they opened the door of Rahman's cell and rushed in screaming and yelling for him to "getdown." They dragged him outside, cut off his clothes and secured him with Mylar tape. They covered his head with a hood and ran him up and down a long corridor adjacent to his cell. They slapped him and punched him several times. [DUNBAR] stated that although it was obvious they were not trying to hit him as hard as they could, a couple of times the punches were forceful. As they ran him along the corridor, a couple of times he fell and they dragged him through the dirt (the floor outside of the cells is dirt). Rahman did acquire a number of abrasions on his face, legs, and hands, but nothing that required medical attention.

On Hygiene

HAYDEN:Detainees have never been denied the means—at a minimum, they've always had a bucket—to dispose of their human waste.

FACT CHECK: CIA detainees, particularly those subjected to standing sleep deprivation, were routinely placed in diapers. Waste buckets were not always available. In the interrogation of Abu Hazim, a waste bucket was removed from his cell for punishment. According to a CIA cable, Abu Hazim "requested a bucket in which he could relieve himself, but was told all rewards must be earned."

On Health Care 

HAYDEN: Health Care has always been administered based upon detainee needs.

FACT CHECK: ...as CIA interrogators prepared for the August 2002 "enhanced interrogation" phase of Abu Zubaydah's interrogation, the CIA's DETENTION SITE GREEN noted, and CIA Headquarters confirmed, that the interrogation process would take precedence over preventing Abu Zubaydah's wounds from becoming infected. ...

On August 25,2002,the Base stated that the "combination of a lack of hygiene, sub-optimal nutrition, inadvertent trauma to the wound secondary to some of the stress techniques utilized at that stage, and the removal of formal obvious medical care to further isolate the subject had an overall additive effect on the deterioration of the wound.

On Waterboarding

HAYDEN: [W]aterboarding cannot take place any more than five days out of a total of 30 days. There cannot be more than two sessions per day. ... In any session, there can be no more than six pourings of the water greater than ten seconds in duration. Under no circumstances can any detainee be under the pouring of the water a total of more than twelve minutes in any 24-hour period.

FACT CHECK: KSM was waterboarded on nine separate days over a two-week period. On March 13, 2003, KSM was subjected to three waterboard sessions in one day. Over March 12-13, 2003, he was subjected to five waterboard sessions in 25 hours. During that same period, he was subjected to the pouring of water for more than twelve minutes during a 24-hour period.

On Injuries

HAYDEN: The most serious injury that I'm aware of - and I'll ask the experts to add any color they want, Senator—is bruising as a result of shackling.

FACT CHECK: CIA records indicate that CIA detainees suffered physical injuries beyond bruising from shackling, as well as psychological problems. ...

At the CIA's DETENTION SITE COBALT, CIA interrogators used "rough takedowns," described as taking a naked detainee outside of his cell, placing a hood over his head, and dragging him up and down a long corridor while slapping and punching him.

Senator Levin Asked Hayden: "Did Anybody Die?"

HAYDEN: No. ... The Committee is aware that there was an individual who died in CIA custody prior to the initiation of this program.

FACT CHECK: Gul Rahman died in CIA custody at the CIA's DETENTION SITE COBALT after being rendered there on November, [REDACTED] 2002. ...

Gul Rahman was shackled to the wall of his cell in a short chain position, which required him to sit on the bare concrete." Rahman was wearing a sweatshirt, but was nude from the waist down. On November 2002, the guards at DETENTION SITE COBALT found Gul Rahman's dead body. Although a CIA employee tried to perform CPR, Gul Rahman remained unresponsive and was declared dead. An autopsy report by the CIA found that the cause of Gul Rahman's death was "undetermined," but that the clinical impression of the medical officer who conducted the autopsy was that the cause of death was hypothermia.'

This is a breaking news story. This post will be updated.

On the Vetting of the CIA Interviewers

HAYDEN: All those involved in the questioning of detainees have been carefully chosen and carefully screened...

FACT CHECK:  Contrary to CIA Director Hayden's comments and Statement for the Record that "all those involved in the questioning of detainees are carefully chosen and screened for demonstrated professional judgment and maturity," CIA records suggest that the vetting sought by [REDACTED] did not take place.

On Oversight During Interrogation Sessions

HAYDEN: All interrogation sessions in which one of these lawful procedures is authorized for use has to be observed by nonparticipants... Any observer can call "knock it off" at any time. They are authorized to terminate an interrogation immediately should they believe anything unauthorized is occurring.

FACT CHECK: "This testimony is in xongruent with CIA records...

During the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, CIA personnel... objected to the continued use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques against Abu Zubaydah, stating that it was "highly unlikely" Abu Zubaydah possessed the threat information CIA Headquarters was seeking. When the interrogation team made this assessment, they stated that the pressures being applied to Abu Zubaydah approached the legal limit. CIA Headquarters directed the interrogation team to continue to use the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques..."

Senator Olympia Snowe asked Hayden in the 2007 hearing: "Did any CIA personnel express reservations about being engaged in the interrogation or these techniques that were used?"

HAYDEN: "I'm not aware of any. These guys ai*e more experienced. No."

FACT CHECK: ...The non-stop use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques was disturbing to CIA personnel at DETENTION SITE GREEN. These CIA personnel objected to the continued use of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques against Abu Zubaydah, but were instructed by CIA Headquarters to continue using the techniques. The interrogation using the CIA's enhanced techniques continued more than two weeks after CIA personnel on site questioned the legality "of escalating or even maintaining the pressure" on Abu Zubaydah.

On What Types of Questions CIA Interviewers Ask During Enhanced Interrogations

HAYDEN: "When we're asking him questions during that period of increased stress, when we're being more rather than less coercive, we are generally asking him questions for which we know the answers."

FACT CHECK: CIA interrogators asked open-ended questions of CIA detainees, to which the CIA did not know the answers, while subjecting detainees to the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques. This approach began with Abu Zubaydah... and remained a central feature of the program."

On "Threats Related to Sodomy, Arrest of Family"

HAYDEN: Threats of acts of sodomy, the arrest and rape of family members, the intentional infection of HIV or any other diseases have never been and would never be authorized. There are no instances in which such threats or abuses took place.

FACT CHECK: As documented in the May 2004 Inspector General Special Review and other CIA records, interrogators threatened 'Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, KSM, and Abu Zubaydah with harm to their families. ...

At least five detainees were subjected to rectal rehydration or rectal feeding. .... KSM was subjected to rectal rehydration without a determination of medical need, a procedure that KSM interrogator and chief of interrogations, would later characterize as illustrative of the interrogator's "total control over the detainee." ... Three detainees, Rarazi bin al-Shibh, Khallad bin Attash and Adnan al-Libi, were threatened with rectal rehydration.

On Physical Violence

HAYDEN: Punches and kicks are not authorized and have never been employed.

FACT CHECK: According to the interview report of DUNBAR, "there were approximately five CIA officers from the renditions team... they opened the door of Rahman's cell and rushed in screaming and yelling for him to "getdown." They dragged him outside, cut off his clothes and secured him with Mylar tape. They covered his head with a hood and ran him up and down a long corridor adjacent to his cell. They slapped him and punched him several times. [DUNBAR] stated that although it was obvious they were not trying to hit him as hard as they could, a couple of times the punches were forceful. As they ran him along the corridor, a couple of times he fell and they dragged him through the dirt (the floor outside of the cells is dirt). Rahman did acquire a number of abrasions on his face, legs, and hands, but nothing that required medical attention.

On Hygiene

HAYDEN:Detainees have never been denied the means—at a minimum, they've always had a bucket—to dispose of their human waste.

FACT CHECK: CIA detainees, particularly those subjected to standing sleep deprivation, were routinely placed in diapers. Waste buckets were not always available. In the interrogation of Abu Hazim, a waste bucket was removed from his cell for punishment. According to a CIA cable, Abu Hazim "requested a bucket in which he could relieve himself, but was told all rewards must be earned."

On Health Care 

HAYDEN: Health Care has always been administered based upon detainee needs.

FACT CHECK: ...as CIA interrogators prepared for the August 2002 "enhanced interrogation" phase of Abu Zubaydah's interrogation, the CIA's DETENTION SITE GREEN noted, and CIA Headquarters confirmed, that the interrogation process would take precedence over preventing Abu Zubaydah's wounds from becoming infected. ...

On August 25,2002,the Base stated that the "combination of a lack of hygiene, sub-optimal nutrition, inadvertent trauma to the wound secondary to some of the stress techniques utilized at that stage, and the removal of formal obvious medical care to further isolate the subject had an overall additive effect on the deterioration of the wound.

On Waterboarding

HAYDEN: [W]aterboarding cannot take place any more than five days out of a total of 30 days. There cannot be more than two sessions per day. ... In any session, there can be no more than six pourings of the water greater than ten seconds in duration. Under no circumstances can any detainee be under the pouring of the water a total of more than twelve minutes in any 24-hour period.

FACT CHECK: KSM was waterboarded on nine separate days over a two-week period. On March 13, 2003, KSM was subjected to three waterboard sessions in one day. Over March 12-13, 2003, he was subjected to five waterboard sessions in 25 hours. During that same period, he was subjected to the pouring of water for more than twelve minutes during a 24-hour period.

On Injuries

HAYDEN: The most serious injury that I'm aware of - and I'll ask the experts to add any color they want, Senator—is bruising as a result of shackling.

FACT CHECK: CIA records indicate that CIA detainees suffered physical injuries beyond bruising from shackling, as well as psychological problems. ...

At the CIA's DETENTION SITE COBALT, CIA interrogators used "rough takedowns," described as taking a naked detainee outside of his cell, placing a hood over his head, and dragging him up and down a long corridor while slapping and punching him.

Senator Levin Asked Hayden: "Did Anybody Die?"

HAYDEN: No. ... The Committee is aware that there was an individual who died in CIA custody prior to the initiation of this program.

FACT CHECK: Gul Rahman died in CIA custody at the CIA's DETENTION SITE COBALT after being rendered there on November, [REDACTED] 2002. ...

Gul Rahman was shackled to the wall of his cell in a short chain position, which required him to sit on the bare concrete." Rahman was wearing a sweatshirt, but was nude from the waist down. On November 2002, the guards at DETENTION SITE COBALT found Gul Rahman's dead body. Although a CIA employee tried to perform CPR, Gul Rahman remained unresponsive and was declared dead. An autopsy report by the CIA found that the cause of Gul Rahman's death was "undetermined," but that the clinical impression of the medical officer who conducted the autopsy was that the cause of death was hypothermia.'

This is a breaking news story. This post will be updated.

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal.

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