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10 May 2018, 01:27 | Nina Hammond
CIA Chief Nominee Haspel Vows Not to Resume Interrogation Program
Kamala Harris, D-Calif., pressed Haspel regarding her views on torture being "immoral".
She portrayed herself as a "typical middle-class American" with a "strong sense of right and wrong" who just doesn't happen to have any social media accounts.
A senator from the Bluegrass State now stands between her and her next role.
Under questioning by members of the Senate Intelligence Committee, acting CIA Director Gina Haspelsaid she would not permit the spy agency to restart the kind of harsh detention and interrogation program it ran at black sites after September 11. I want to trust that you have the moral compass you said you have. "There is nobody even close to run the Central Intelligence Agency!".
Those who support Haspel's nomination-including virtually all living ex-CIA directors from Democratic and Republican administrations alike, along with powerful sections of the USA ruling establishment-see her as a fit candidate to lead an agency preparing for war overseas and repression at home.
"What I believe sitting here today is that I support the higher moral standard we have chose to hold ourselves", said the agency nominee.
Haspel suggests that she might have learned her lesson from a very trying experience - one closely entwined with Mitchell and Jessen.
Waterboarding is a form of torture in which water is poured over a cloth covering the face of a person, eliciting the feeling of drowning.
Asked if she would stand up to Mr. Trump if he ordered her to resume an "enhanced" interrogation program, she first said, "I do not believe the president would ask me to do that", then added, "I would not restart under any circumstances an interrogation program at C.I.A". Before that, she rose through the ranks on the clandestine side of the agency, becoming station chief in several cities the CIA will not disclose. Jack Reed, D-R.I., asked whether she would report to Congress if Trump were to ask her for a loyalty pledge akin to that he allegedly sought from former FBI Director James Comey. "They use unfair trade and other practices to undermine our industrial and technical base", Mr. Rubio said.
"The CIA can, probably, make the biggest contribution, in collection, about these countries' activities and various groups activities so that we can inform the USA government agencies that have to mount our defence", she said.
But she told senators that she doubted the president would ever ask her to waterboard a suspectand demurred when Sen.
"I do not believe the president would ask me to do that", Haspel said, as protesters in the crowd laughed loudly.
"We're not getting back in that business", she said.
"I believe Gina Haspel is a patriot who loves our country and has devoted her professional life to its service and defense", McCain said. She also refused to answer whether she had been a vocal advocate for expanding the interrogation program in the past.
McCain is a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, which heard Haspel's testimony Wednesday, but it is unclear if McCain would be able to return for the vote.
In addition to overseeing torture, Haspel is deeply implicated in its cover-up, playing a key role in the decision to secretly shred 92 videotapes of the abuse meted out to detainees at the Thailand black site.
McCain's opposition to Haspel's nomination marked the latest instance in which the Arizona senator broke with Trump.
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