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NBC’s Richard Engel: CIA Operatives Feel “Betrayed” By Obama, Dems Just Settling Personal, Political Scores

RICHARD ENGEL, NBC’S CHIEF FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT: I have mixed feelings about it, frankly. I’ve been reading the report over the last several hours, disgusted by many of the details in it. The torture, and I think you can only describe some of these techniques as torture. People leaving people in ice baths, dragging them outside of cells, cutting their clothes off, beating them up, putting them back into their cells, leaving them standing for days at a time, sometimes on broken legs. And then continuing to do it for months and months and months, well after the period where they would probably have any kind of valid intelligence.

So, in a certain sense, I think it’s very good that it’s out there, that people don’t — they appreciate and are disgusted by what happened in this country after 9/11 and hopefully never do it again. But on the other side, this is why I say I have mixed feelings, the CIA felt it had authorization to do this. It felt it was asked to do this. It felt the president knew what was going on. The president and certainly his national security staff were getting regular reports of the information, certainly senior leaders were going to the CIA and telling them, you guys are doing great work to keep America safe. And now we have a change of administration and they’re being punished for it. So I can feel a sense of betrayal on their behalf as well, that they did something that they were asked to do, that was brutal and that you wouldn’t want to air in public, and now they’re being scrutinized for it.

h/t Pat Dollard

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