CIA “Accidentally” Deletes Only Copy Of Confidential 6,700-Page Torture Report
First it was the IRS, which several years ago launched countless headlines, and much laughter, when it announced the emails of Lois Lerner targeting conservatives had magically disappeared. Then, as we observed last week (again with great amusement), the State Department couldn’t seem to find any of the email correspondence to or from Hillary Clinton’s IT aide Bryan Pagliano during the time Hillary was there. Now it is none other than the CIA’s Office of Inspector General that is having an issue with its handling of documents.
According to The Hill, the CIA’s inspector general has accidentally deleted its only copy of a 6,700 page classified Senate report detailing the agency’s history of brutal interrogation techniques.
Although the full torture report has never been released to the public, the Senate did release a 500-page executive summary in 2014. The report detailed the CIA’s use of so-called “enhanced interrogation” techniques, including waterboarding, sleep deprivation, and more, sparking an outcry from a number of human rights groups.
Acting inspector general Christopher Sharpley uploaded the report to the office’s internal computer network and then destroyed the hard disk, apparently following standard protocol, the news outlet reported. Then, someone else in the watchdog’s office reportedly misinterpreted instructions from the Justice Department not to open the file and deleted it from the server.
The CIA, in which the inspector general’s office sits, retains a copy of the full report, and is waiting for the conclusion of a legal battle over the document.Still, the episode is a humiliating one for the CIA inspector general and has inflamed human rights advocates hoping to make the report public.Cori Crider, a director with the international rights group Reprieve, called it “stunning,” and suggested that it is part of a broader effort to erase the practices from history.
“One worries that no one is minding the store,” Crider said in a statement.
The Senate report on so-called enhanced interrogation techniques, such as waterboarding and sleep deprivation, has been at the center of a years-long battle on the Intelligence Committee.