Senate panel votes to declassify CIA report
By: Burgess Everett
April 3, 2014 03:03 PM EDT
The Senate Intelligence Committee voted on Thursday afternoon to declassify a 480-page summary of a report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s detention and interrogation programs.
Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said the documents show the CIA “made serious mistakes that haunt us to this day” in the agency’s efforts to track down those responsible for the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
“The purpose of this review was to uncover the facts behind this secret program, and the results were shocking,” Feinstein said. “The report exposes brutality that stands in stark contrast to our values as a nation. It chronicles a stain on our history that must never again be allowed to happen.”
The committee agreed to declassify the report in a narrowly divided 11-3 vote, with Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) voting present. The decision marked the culmination of a five-year investigation by the Senate panel that studied how the CIA treated more than 100 detainees. It comes at a time of heightened tension between some lawmakers and the CIA after Feinstein recently accused the agency blocking the committee’s investigation.
Feinstein said that the documents contain details about CIA mismanagement of its Bush-era interrogation programs and exposes “major problems” regarding the intelligence community’s interactions with Congress and the White House.
“The release of this summary and conclusions in the near future shows that this nation admits its errors, as painful as they may be, and seeks to learn from them,” Feinstein said. “We are acknowledging those mistakes, and we have a continuing responsibility to make sure nothing like this ever occurs again.
The report now goes to the White House, where President Barack Obama must review it before its public release. The panel’s Republicans also plan to eventually release minority views on the report, which is expected to critique how the report was gathered.