CIA's Brennan: We Got a Lot Right, Made 'Abhorrent' Mistakes

Director offers up defense of torture program as Feinstein fact-checks on Twitter
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 11, 2014 1:57 PM CST
CIA's Brennan: We Got a Lot Right, Made 'Abhorrent' Mistakes
CIA Director John Brennan testifies on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

CIA Director John Brennan offered up a spirited defense of his agency's torture program today, saying that "our nation and, in particular, this agency did a lot of things right during this difficult time to keep this country safe and secured" in the aftermath of 9/11, and that most agents "carried out their responsibilities faithfully," obtained "useful and valuable" information, and "did what they were asked to do in the service of our nation." He acknowledged that techniques were used that "had not been authorized, were abhorrent, and rightly should be repudiated by all," notes Politico, and that "we fell short when it came to holding some officers accountable for their mistakes."

Speaking at a rare press conference, Brennan took questions, including one about whether more information would be forthcoming, notes CNN. "I think there's been more than enough transparency that's happened over the last couple days. I think it's over the top," responded the nation's top spy. Brennan bashed the "flawed" report for the "unusual" choice of not talking to CIA agents, but said that ultimately many "conclusions are sound and consistent with our own prior findings." The AP notes that Senate Intelligence Committee chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein's office began a lively and real-time Twitter fact-check defending the report's accuracy, using #ReadTheReport. Read one: "Brennan: 'unknowable' if we could have gotten the intel other ways. Study shows it IS knowable: CIA had info before torture. " (More John Brennan stories.)

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