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SUPPORTERS ARGUE The use of enhanced interrogation techniques yielded crucial information that allowed intelligence agents to foil terrorist attacks and protect American lives. CIA agents did not break the law, nor did the agency seek to deceive the president, Congress, or the American public. The Senate Intelligence Committee's torture report released in December 2014 was an error-ridden, partisan attack on the brave agents who served on the front lines of America's war on terror. OPPONENTS ARGUE The torture report released in December 2014 confirms that the CIA knowingly broke U.S. and international law—and all moral boundaries—when it tortured detainees. So-called enhanced interrogation techniques failed to yield useful, reliable information. By resorting to torture, the United States lowered its international standing and damaged relations with other countries. Officials who permitted and carried out torture should face criminal prosecution. to a nearby secret prison, or "black site," operated by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). On December 9, 2014, the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee released the executive summary of a report detailing the interrogation tactics used by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) during the administration of President George W. Bush (R, 2001–09). The 500-page summary, which became known as the "torture report," was the result of a five-year investigation into CIA activities in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against the United States. Although many of the interrogation tactics used by the CIA had been public knowledge foryears, the report indicated that the program was more widespread than had previously been revealed and had failed to gather any unique, reliable intelligence that could not have been gained through traditional questioning. Supporters of the CIA program had long argued that such interrogations yielded information that helped foil terrorist attacks. The report further found that the CIA had misled the public, government officials, and lawmakers about the extent of the program. "The interrogations of CIA detainees," the report claimed, "were brutal and far worse than the CIA represented to policymakers andothers." The torture report revealed several specific and, for many, shocking and disturbing details of tactics used. According to the report, detainees were confined in boxes, chained to walls, and kept in stress positions for long periods of time. Agents threatened detainees' family members, sexually threatened the detainees themselves, dragged, slapped, and screamed at hooded prisoners and, on several occasions, subjected detainees to forced rectal feedings. One detainee, Gul Rahman, died after being chained to a concrete floor in a freezing cell at a secret CIA prison in Afghanistan. Codenamed the Salt Pit, the prison was also where CIA operatives held and interrogated German citizen Khalid El-Masri for five months before determining that they had mistaken him for another individual, a suspected terrorist with a similar name. The report also revealed that the use of waterboarding—an interrogation tactic devised to evoke the sensation of drowning—was more pervasive and severe than previously
acknowledged, leading to at least one detainee, Abu Zubaydah, losing consciousness and nearly dying.

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