For months CIA thought that it had shredded a U.S. Senate report on its use of waterboarding and other enhanced interrogation techniques, but it suddenly discovered that its copy hadn’t been lost, Reuters reports. Christopher Sharpley, the acting CIA Inspector General, apologized for that and said that it is embarrassing.
The torture report, which is championed by Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, is a result of a six-year investigation into the interrogation techniques CIA used after 9/11.
There were disputes over several issues linked to the report. The Agency and committee Democrats, as well as Democrats and Republicans, couldn’t agree whether the 6,700-page document should be declassified. Even though Feinstein wants declassification, the Republican Senator Richard Burr opposes. He is her successor as committee chairman and he wants the copies distributed do government agencies back.
According to Sharpley, the Central Intelligence Agency received the report in December 2014 on a computer disk, which was uploaded into a classified system, but it had to be deleted because of Freedom of Information Act litigation. Sharpley was told months later that the disk had been lost, even though it had been emphasized in an email that it shouldn’t be destroyed. One employee had even said that the disk had been shredded, but it was discovered after the litigation concluded that the report was a congressional document not subject to FOIA requests. Sharpley than returned the disk to Burr.
Feinstein said that the report was delivered to the departments so that they could read it and learn from it and added that not one fact in the report has been refuted.
Sharpley stated he has read only an unclassified executive summary and not the whole report. The Democrats don’t like the fact that Sharpley handed the report to Burr, even though there were no legal requirements for that. He also would not commit to protecting future reports like one related to the probe of potential links between Trump’s campaign and Russia.
With an executive order in 2009, President Barack Obama ended the use of enhanced interrogation techniques.