[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

SCVNews.com | ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ Prompts Feinstein, McCain, Levin to Question CIA | 01-04-2013
Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
72°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
July 30
1869 - The Del Valle family's then-1,340 acre Rancho Camulos is legally separated (partitioned) from the Rancho San Francisco land grant [story]


ZeroDarkThirty2012PosterSenate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Senate Armed Service Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Senate Armed Service Committee Ranking Member John McCain (R-Ariz.) have sent two letters to Acting CIA Director Michael Morell seeking information provided to the filmmakers of the film Zero Dark Thirty and clarification of comments made to CIA employees related to the use of coercive interrogation techniques on CIA detainees.

In the first letter, dated December 19, 2012, Feinstein, McCain and Levin stated their concern that “given the CIA’s cooperation with the filmmakers [of the film Zero Dark Thirty] and the narrative’s consistency with past public misstatements by former senior CIA officials, that the filmmakers could have been misled by information they were provided by CIA” and requested “all information and documents provided to the filmmakers by CIA officials.” The film credits CIA detainees subjected to coercive interrogation techniques as providing lead information on the courier that led to the UBL compound.

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s recently-adopted Study of the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation program concluded that the CIA did not first learn about the existence of the bin Laden courier from CIA detainees subjected to coercive interrogation techniques and that the CIA detainee who provided the most accurate information about the courier provided the information prior to being subjected to coercive interrogation techniques.

The senators sent a second letter to the CIA on December 31, 2012, following a message the Acting Director sent to CIA employees on December 21. In his message, Acting Director Morell stated that “Some [intelligence related to bin Laden’s location] came from detainees subjected to enhanced techniques, but there were many other sources as well.” The senators’ letter asks Acting Director Morell to provide information obtained from CIA detainees subjected to enhanced interrogation techniques and whether such information was provided prior to, during, or after the detainee was subjected to such techniques.

Full text of both letters follows:

December 19, 2012

Mr. Michael Morell
Acting Director
Central Intelligence Agency

Dear Acting Director Morell,

We are writing to request information and documents related to the CIA’s cooperation with the makers of the film, Zero Dark Thirty. We are concerned by the film’s clear implication that information obtained during or after the use of the CIA’s coercive interrogation techniques played a critical role in locating Usama Bin Laden (UBL).

As you know, the film depicts CIA officers repeatedly torturing detainees. The film then credits CIA detainees subjected to coercive interrogation techniques as providing critical lead information on the courier that led to the UBL compound. While this information is incorrect, it is consistent with public statements made by former Director of the CIA Counterterrorism Center, Jose Rodriguez, and former CIA Director Michael Hayden.

The CIA cannot be held accountable for how the Agency and its activities are portrayed in film, but we are nonetheless concerned, given the CIA’s cooperation with the filmmakers and the narrative’s consistency with past public misstatements by former senior CIA officials, that the filmmakers could have been misled by information they were provided by the CIA.

In an unclassified letter you provided to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on May 31, 2012, you wrote that the CIA engaged with the filmmakers “to ensure an appropriate portrayal of the Agency’s mission as well as the dedication of the men and women of the CIA who played a key part in the success of that mission.” The film opens with the words “based on first-hand accounts of actual events,” and according to now publicly released CIA records, the filmmakers met extensively with CIA personnel. Specifically, one publicly released email notes that the filmmakers met with you for forty minutes, during which you provided “substance again.” Another publicly released CIA email states that “As a [sic] Agency, we’ve been pretty forward-leaning with [the filmmaker], and he’s agreed to share scripts and details about the movie with us so we’re absolutely comfortable with what he will be showing.”

Pursuant to the Committee’s recently-adopted Study of the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation program, Committee staff reviewed more than 6 million pages of CIA records. Based on that review, and with prior notification to the CIA, Chairman Dianne Feinstein and Senator Carl Levin released the following findings on April 30, 2012, regarding the UBL operation:

  • The CIA did not first learn about the existence of the UBL courier from CIA detainees subjected to coercive interrogation techniques. Nor did the CIA discover the courier’s identity from CIA detainees subjected to coercive techniques. No CIA detainee reported on the courier’s full name or specific whereabouts, and no detainee identified the compound in which UBL was hidden. Instead, the CIA learned of the existence of the courier, his true name, and location through means unrelated to the CIA detention and interrogation program.
  • Information to support the UBL operation was obtained from a wide variety of intelligence sources and methods. CIA officers and their colleagues throughout the Intelligence Community sifted through massive amounts of information, identified possible leads, tracked them down, and made considered judgments based on all of the available intelligence.
  • The CIA detainee who provided the most accurate information about the courier provided the information prior to being subjected to coercive interrogation techniques.

In addition to the information above, former CIA Director Panetta wrote Senator McCain in May 2011, stating:

“…no detainee in CIA custody revealed the facilitator/courier’s full true name or specific whereabouts. This information was discovered through other intelligence means.”

Given the discrepancy between the facts above and what is depicted in the film, previous misstatements by retired CIA officials, as well as what appears to be the CIA’s unprecedented cooperation with the filmmakers, we request that you provide the Committee with all information and documents provided to the filmmakers by CIA officials, former officials, or contractors, including talking points prepared for use in those meetings. Furthermore, we request copies of all relevant records discussing the cooperation between CIA officials, former officials, or contractors and the filmmakers, including records of the meetings that occurred, notes, internal emails, Sametime communications, and other documentation describing CIA interactions with the filmmakers.

Thank you for your assistance on this matter.

Sincerely,

Dianne Feinstein
Chairman
Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

Carl Levin
Chairman
Senate Armed Services Committee
Ex-Officio Member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

John McCain
Ranking Member
Senate Armed Services Committee
Ex-Officio Member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

 

December 31, 2012

Mr. Michael Morell
Acting Director
Central Intelligence Agency

Dear Acting Director Morell:

In your December 21, 2012, statement to CIA employees regarding the film, Zero Dark Thirty, you state that “the film creates the strong impression that enhanced interrogation techniques” were “the key to finding Bin Ladin” and that this impression “is false.” However, you went on to refer to multiple streams of intelligence that led CIA analysts to conclude that Bin Ladin was hiding in Abbottabad and stated that “Some came from detainees subjected to enhanced techniques, but there were many other sources as well. And, importantly, whether enhanced interrogation techniques were the only timely and effective way to obtain information from those detainees, as the film suggests, is a matter of debate that cannot and never will be definitively resolved.”

In our previous letter of December 18, 2012, we made several points based on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s Study of the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation program that are potentially inconsistent with your press release. Principal among those points was that “The CIA detainee who provided the most accurate information about the courier provided the information prior to being subjected to coercive interrogation techniques.”

Accordingly, we would ask that you provide the following to the Committee:

  1. In regards to the Bin Laden operation, what information was acquired from CIA detainees subjected to enhanced interrogation techniques? When was this information provided: prior to, during, or after the detainee was subjected to the CIA’s enhanced interrogation techniques? If after, how long after? Please note whether such information corroborated information previously known to the CIA.
  2. Please provide specific examples of information that was obtained in a “timely and effective” way from CIA detainees subjected to the CIA’s enhanced interrogation techniques? When was this information provided: prior to, during, or after the detainee was subjected to the CIA’s enhanced interrogation techniques? If after, how long after? Please note whether such information corroborated information previously known to the CIA.

Thank you for your assistance on this important matter.

Sincerely,

Dianne Feinstein
Chairman
Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

Carl Levin
Chairman
Senate Armed Services Committee
Ex-Officio Member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

John McCain
Ranking Member
Senate Armed Services Committee
Ex-Officio Member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT LINKS
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
Friday, Jul 29, 2016
The City of Santa Clarita’s Thursdays@Newhall series will shake up Main Street in Old Town Newhall this August with a sensational lineup of free live performances, workshops, activities for the entire family and more.
Thursday, Jul 28, 2016
Local watercolor artists Zony Gordon and Gary Friedman will give a live art demonstration of landscape and flower painting on Saturday, July 30, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the community room at the Old Town Newhall Library.
Thursday, Jul 28, 2016
The Valencia Jazz and Blues Concert Series will feature nationally recognized original blues recording artist Jim Gibson on Friday, July 29, on Town Center Drive in front of the Hyatt Valencia.
Wednesday, Jul 27, 2016
Studio 2 will provide additional classroom space during the week, but also be utilized as gallery space for rental on the weekends.
Wednesday, Jul 27, 2016
Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1869 - The Del Valle family's then-1,340 acre Rancho Camulos is legally separated (partitioned) from the Rancho San Francisco land grant [story]
In response to an Executive Order issued last year by Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr., state agency leaders on Friday released the California Sustainable Freight Action Plan, a comprehensive document that serves as a blueprint for transforming the state’s multi-billion dollar freight transport system into one that is environmentally cleaner, more efficient, and more economically competitive than it is today.
State Unveils Plan to ‘Green Up’ Freight Industry
The Condor Squadron flew its “missing man” formation over Eternal Valley Cemetery Friday in honor of longtime Newhall resident Raphael Neale, a Navy veteran who died two months shy of his 100th birthday.
Military Honors for Navy Pilot who Flew Berlin Airlift
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, Grace Chapel in Lancaster was filled with friends and family Friday afternoon for Sharon Runner's memorial. Plus, updates on two wildfires near Santa Clarita.
SCV NewsBreak for Friday, July 29, 2016
streets in Santa Clarita will be affected the week of August 1-5 for resurfacing. See if your street is on the list.
Local Streets to be Resurfaced Aug. 1-5: See List
The City of Santa Clarita’s Thursdays@Newhall series will shake up Main Street in Old Town Newhall this August with a sensational lineup of free live performances, workshops, activities for the entire family and more.
Get Revved Up for Thursdays@Newhall in August
In an ongoing effort to prevent wildfires, all burn permits in Los Angeles County remain suspended.
No More Burn Permits in L.A. County Until Further Notice
News and events from the Child and Family Center of Santa Clarita.
Child & Family Center News
Workshops and seminars for local entrepreneurs, from the Small Business Development Center at College of the Canyons.
Small Business Workshops from SBDC at COC
Fire Chief Daryl Osby will ask the Board of Supervisors Tuesday to authorize him to spend up to $8.5 million annually for five years continue leasing CL-415 SuperScoopers from the Quebec government.
Supes to Consider 5 More Years of Renting SuperScoopers
The east side of the Sand Fire is still hung up in a deep drainage with heavy vegetation to the east. If winds align with the drainage, the fire could potentially come out of the drainage. The north and south sides of the fire are predicted to have minimal to no spread. The west side of the fire still has some potential to affect the Sand Canyon and Placerita Canyon area.
#SandFire 85% Contained; Burning in Deep Drainage on East
Los Angeles Regional Human Trafficking Task Force has been hard at work since inception and continues its efforts to protect children and young adults from predators lurking on various social media sites and the Internet.
Regional Task Force Targets Predators, Sex Traffickers
Predictably, there was a lot of sneering critique over the speeches at the Republican convention, but as the Democrats’ convention unfolds, we've heard Barack Obama and Bill Clinton make claims that are incomprehensible.
A Hollow Cry | Commentary by Betty Arenson
1983 - U.S. release of "National Lampoon's Vacation;" Magic Mountain is Walley World [story]
Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe is proud to announce that the County’s Safe Surrender Program celebrated success for the fourth time this year with the report of a safely surrendered newborn baby boy.
Baby Boy Safely Surrendered in Northridge
A fast-moving brush fire with big potential was sparked by a car fire in Bouquet Canyon Thursday evening. But an equally quick air and ground assault suppressed the flames, saving numerous homes in Leona Valley.
Car Fire Sparks 25-acre Blaze in Bouquet Canyon (Video)
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, forest areas affected by Sand Fire are closed off to the public. Plus, Arminta Guthrie, "Mom" to the last Saugus Depot family, died at age 90. Click the link to see these stories and more.
SCV NewsBreak for Thursday, July 28, 2016
The Los Angeles County Health Officer has issued a Heat Alert as high temperatures have been forecast for the Santa Clarita Valley on Friday.
SCV to Bake Again Friday
Upcoming networking opportunities sponsored by the Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce.
SCV Chamber Networking Opportunities
The Los Angeles County Fire Department will hold a series of workshops in Newhall over the next two weeks at for persons affected by the Sand Fire.
Local #SandFire Assistance Office Opens Aug. 5; Also: Workshops for Victims
Local watercolor artists Zony Gordon and Gary Friedman will give a live art demonstration of landscape and flower painting on Saturday, July 30, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the community room at the Old Town Newhall Library.
July 30: Artists to Demonstrate Landscape, Flower Painting
The Valencia Jazz and Blues Concert Series will feature nationally recognized original blues recording artist Jim Gibson on Friday, July 29, on Town Center Drive in front of the Hyatt Valencia.
July 29: Jazz & Blues with Jim Gibson at Town Center is ON
California law now requires all students entering junior high as seventh graders must be vaccinated. Families will no longer be allowed to submit a personal or religious belief exemption.
State Law: Incoming 7th Graders Need Their Shots
The City of Santa Clarita and the American Red Cross are teaming up to host a Community Blood Drive on Thursday, Aug. 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Century Room at City Hall.
Aug. 11: Red Cross Blood Drive at City Hall
Arminta Guthrie, widow of the last Southern Pacific Railroad station agent at Saugus and “mom” to the last family to live in the Saugus Depot, died Wednesday. She was 90.
Arminta Guthrie, ‘Mom’ to Last Saugus Depot Family, Dies at 90
The William S. Hart Union High School District is announcing its policy for providing free and reduced-price meals for children served under the National School Lunch Program and/or School Breakfast Program.
Hart District: Notice of Free, Cut-Price Breakfast, Lunch
The City of Santa Clarita’s Community Services Office will host the 2016 Closing Ceremony for the City’s summer Mentoring Programs, Peers on the Way to Everlasting Recovery (POWER) and Girls Empowerment and Mentorship (GEM) Program, on Thursday, Aug. 4
Aug. 4: Closing Ceremony for City’s Teen Summer Mentoring Programs
The Sand Fire is currently at 38,346 acres with 65 percent containment. Forest Service Closure order 01-16-05 is now in effect.
#SandFire 65% Contained; Metrolink Running Again
The California Department of Transportation will close all lanes of the westbound Foothill Freeway (I-210) between Lake Avenue and Mountain Street for two 55-hour weekend closures as part of a pavement rehabilitation project.
This Weekend: 55-hour Closure of 210 Freeway in Pasadena
The weekend before last, my son-in-law and I gathered about 3 quarts of elderberries from the side of the road in Agua Dulce, and I decided to turn them into jelly.
Elderberry Jelly
1938 - Newhall Tunnel cut away, replaced by Sierra Highway [story]
Johnny Rockets, a global operator and franchisor of more than 350 Americana-themed restaurants in 28 countries around the world, is pleased to announce John Maguire has been named President and CEO.
Johnny Rockets Names New President
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, find updates on the Sand Fire. Plus, hear from the couple who's house burned down due to the Sand Fire. Follow the link to see these stories and more.
SCV NewsBreak for Wednesday, July 27. 2016
The illnesses reported to health officials continue to be connected with consumers reporting that they ate or handled uncooked dough or ate uncooked batter made with raw flour. No illnesses have been connected with flour that has been properly baked, cooked or handled.
General Mills Expands Flour Recall
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Justice announced a settlement Wednesday with Cemex Inc., under which the company will pay a $1.69 million civil penalty and invest approximately $10 million to cut emissions of harmful air pollution at five of its cement manufacturing plants in Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee and Texas to resolve alleged violations of the Clean Air Act.
Settlement: Cemex to Pay Fine, Spend $10 Mil. to Cure U.S. Clean Air Act Violations
Concerts in the Park for this Saturday, July 30, is canceled, and Santa Clarita Central Park is closed until further notice.
Saturday’s Concert in Park Canceled; See What Else