It’s outrageous that John Kiriakou, a whistleblower, is the ONLY INDIVIDUAL TO BE PROSECUTED IN RELATION TO THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION’S TORTURE PROGRAM.
In December 2007 Kiriakou gave an interview to ABC News where he was described as participating in the capture and questioning of Abu Zubaydah, who is accused of having been an aide to Osama Bin Laden. According to Kiriakou, based on what he had been told by the CIA, it had taken only a single brief instance of waterboarding to extract answers to an interrogator’s questions from Abu Zubaydah.
… He was able to withstand the waterboarding for quite some time. And by that I mean probably 30, 35 seconds … and a short time afterwards, in the next day or so, he told his interrogator that Allah had visited him in his cell during the night and told him to cooperate.
Eventually it became known that Abu Zubaydah had in fact been waterboarded at least 83 times, and that little or no useful extra information may have been gained by “harsh methods”.
The charges are just the latest crackdown by the Obama administration on alleged leakers. This is the sixth time during the Obama administration that prosecutors have filed charges pertaining to the unauthorized disclosure of classified national security information to media outlets. (In the previous four decades, the US government has pursued such cases on only three occasions.) Under the Espionage Act, the Obama administration has gone after media sources including Stephen Kim, an arms expert accused of passing along classified information to a Fox News reporter; NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake (who was profiled in an exhaustive New Yorker story by Jane Mayer), and alleged Wikileaks source Bradley Manning, among others.
There are citizens of the United States … who have poured the poison of disloyalty into the very arteries of our national life; who have sought to ring the authority and good name of our Government into contempt … [W]e are without adequate federal laws…. I am urging you to do nothing less than save the honor and self-respect of the nation. Such creatures of passion, disloyalty,and anarchy must be crushed out.