May 4, 2015
Mr. Ferdinand Reinke
1641 International Dr Unit 414
McLean, VA 22102-4831
Dear Mr. Reinke:
Thank you for contacting me about the report on interrogation techniques by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. It was good to hear from you.
I believe that torture has no place in national security methods; it should not be used as it contradicts our values. In December 2012, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) voted 14-1 to approve a more than 6,000-page report that included detailed information on each detainee the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) interrogated, the methods used, and the accuracy of the intelligence. Since 2005, the SSCI has worked on this report, conducting its own investigation into these tactics. Following this investigation, on April 3rd, 2014 the SSCI voted in a bipartisan manner to declassify certain sections of the report. On December 9th, 2014 the SSCI released an unclassified executive summary and findings of the report to the public. The report found that enhanced interrogation methods were not effective or properly justified. In addition, the study cited discrepancies between management, oversight, and reporting to the administration of interrogations the CIA conducted.
While I am well aware of the unique national security challenges faced by our nation, I have always believed strongly that torture is not a proper method for ensuring our security and does not belong in the pursuit of our foreign policy or national security goals. I support the Committee’s thorough work to properly oversee and review intelligence collection methods, and support the report’s release. I believe that intelligence collection is critical to our national security and counterterrorism efforts, and I deeply respect the work of the professionals who remain vigilant and keep us safe. I hope that by fully exposing these past interrogation measures we can help guard against the future use of such a program, which is inconsistent with American values.
I am encouraged that the SSCI carefully reviewed the information presented to it and continues to evaluate a number of important issues. As a member of both the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services Committees, I recognize the important implications the declassification of this report has on our servicemembers and intelligence community, which are so closely tied to Virginia, as well as on efforts to maintain diplomatic relations to and manage future conflict.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me with your views on this important matter.
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