Ex-CIA interrogation chief warns of betrayal

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Ex-CIA interrogation chief warns of betrayal
Ambassador James Woolsey, who was CIA Director from 1993 to 1995, insists the torture report should never have been released. (The National Academy of Sciences/Flickr)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 09: Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., Chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, talks with reporters after sharing a report on the CIA and it's torture methods, December 9, 2014. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 09: U.S. Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (R), and Senate Minority Whip Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) (L), listen as the Senate Republican speak to members of the media after the Senate Republican Policy Luncheon at the Capitol December 9, 2014 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The Senate Republican leadership responded to a report on CIA's use of torture conducted by the Senate Intelligence Committee where were released today. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 9: Sen. Diane Feinstein(D-CA), makes her way through a crush of reporters toward the Senate floor to deliver her remarks on the CIA report on torture released this morning on December, 09, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 09: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) speaks to members of the media after the Senate Democratic Policy Luncheon at the Capitol December 9, 2014 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Senator Reid responded to a report on CIA's use of torture conducted by the Senate Intelligence Committee where were released today. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Pakistani private security guards stand on duty outside the US consulate in Lahore on December 9, 2014. The US Senate will release a long-delayed report into the CIA's brutal interrogation of Al-Qaeda suspects after the 2001 attacks, as American embassies went on heightened alert amid fears of a backlash. AFP PHOTO / Arif ALI (Photo credit should read Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images)
A lighthouse and old migrants boats on the ground of the marine museum, on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014 at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in this photo approved for release by the U.S. military. (Walter Michot/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)
The original courtroom at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in this photo approved for release by the U.S. military. (Walter Michot/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)
A display of the restraint chair that the Navy medics use to tube-feed hunger strikers on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014 at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in this photo approved for release by the U.S. military. (Walter Michot/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)
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WASHINGTON (AP) - The Senate Intelligence Committee's report on coercive tactics betrays intelligence officials and will erode their trust in future presidential administrations, a former CIA official who oversaw the agency's enhanced interrogation program said Sunday.

Jose Rodriguez, who headed the agency's counterterrorism section and its clandestine service, said that the Senate report "throws the CIA under this bus." He predicted that intelligence officials would be undercut by "second-guessing" from the White House and Congress and warned that allied nations that have cooperated with U.S. intelligence in the past might reassess their aid.

Rodriguez, who authored a memoir of his CIA years, said Sunday the use of enhanced interrogations under his purview was "one of the most thoroughly reviewed covert action programs in the history of the agency." He raised concerns that "leaders at the agency are going to wonder whether the authorities that they receive from the president will last longer than one election phase."

Rodriguez was among several former senior CIA and Bush administration officials who appeared on Sunday's news shows and tried to cast doubt on the 525-page Senate report, which riveted the American public last week with accounts of brutal interrogations of terror detainees that ranged from simulated drowning to improvised enemas. Vice President Dick Cheney, long known for his blunt dismissal of critics of the harsh tactics, tossed off the report as "a crock."

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., one of several congressional leaders who defended the document, said the detailed accounts justified the report's public release. "What we need to do is come clean, move forward and vow not to do it again," McCain said, adding: "We're not a perfect nation, but we acknowledge our mistakes." A Navy pilot during the Vietnam War, McCain was shot down over North Vietnam, held as a prisoner of war in Hanoi and tortured before his captors released him six years later.

The report spans the creation and four-year history of the CIA's coercive interrogations and secret overseas prisons. Its release last week spawned media attention, international outrage and a carefully coordinated rebuttal that included an official CIA response and critiques from former senior agency officials. Among the critics is Rodriguez, a tough-talking agency veteran who micromanaged the interrogation program and ordered the destruction of videotapes of some waterboarding sessions, according to the Senate report.

The CIA veteran also revived previous claims that Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and other top Democratic legislators were thoroughly briefed and approved the program that President Barack Obama now calls torture. Pelosi and other Democrats have denied Rodriguez' claims.

"We came to know very gradually about it," countered Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-Ohio, who served on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Rodriguez and Whitehouse spoke on "Fox News Sunday," Cheney was on NBC's "Meet the Press" and McCain made his remarks on CBS' "Face the Nation."

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