May 29th, 2009
02:26 PM ET
6 years ago

Levin: Memos don't show what Cheney says they do

Democratic Sen. Carl Levin is challenging former Vice President Cheney's recent claims about the effectiveness of the Bush administration's use of harsh interrorgation techniques.
Democratic Sen. Carl Levin is challenging former Vice President Cheney's recent claims about the effectiveness of the Bush administration's use of harsh interrorgation techniques.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, says former Vice President Dick Cheney's claims - that classified CIA memos show enhanced interrogation techniques like waterboarding worked - are wrong.

Levin, speaking at the Foreign Policy Association's annual dinner on Wednesday, said an investigation by his committee into detainee abuse charges over the use of the techniques - now deemed torture by the Obama administration - "gives the lie to Mr. Cheney's claims."

The Michigan Democrat told the crowd that the two CIA documents that Cheney wants released "say nothing about numbers of lives saved, nor do the documents connect acquisition of valuable intelligence to the use of abusive techniques."

"I hope that the documents are declassified, so that people can judge for themselves what is fact, and what is fiction," he added.

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Filed under: Carl Levin • CIA • Dick Cheney • Popular Posts
soundoff (329 Responses)
  1. R in Maine

    Cheney, a liar! Imagine our surprise! He would not recognize the truth if it waterboarded him. His only problem now is that he cannot figure how to entertain himself on those long afternoons.

    May 29, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  2. carlo

    Guess what wingnuttery?

    Just saw the latest Gallup polls. Not only is Obama's approval at 65%, but he is at 70% and above around the world, so we know that only the wingnuttery division of the GOP frantically posts everywhere.

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  3. maude

    And, I suppose, next you are going to tell us that george (the moron) bush was lying, too!

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  4. JimD Palatine

    Haven't seen statements like Pierre Changstien's since Germany, mid 1930's.

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  5. Right wing talking point

    We impeached a president for lying about sex, but let these fools walk free for lying about torture and war. When did sex become a larger offence than murder?

    This is the USA became under the guidance of the neo-cons.

    I'm digusted.

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  6. Dave

    Amazing how many of you immediately believe the puppet of Obama. A liberal said it "it must be true!"

    Even though just about every interrogator and all the CIA directors said it worked. They all must be lying, let's believe the liberals who weren't there and are trying to appease the enemy.
    Brillaint strategy, it is working well with North Korea and Iran right now.

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  7. tell it like it is

    I love it on here when people read these articles and then comment on how they knew Cheney was lying and in no way can believe obama, pelosi, or any other democrat is not.

    They all lie, have their versions of the truth, etc. Democrats and republicans. Try having a mind of your own for once instead of strictly following party lines or does the DNC have to give you the OK to think for yourself first? Oh I forgot, that would make you a republican and defeat their purpose.

    May 29, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  8. The General

    wait now, a liberal-biased CNN is siding with a liberal democrat...who's taking a peek at some memo's...and calling Cheney a liar? SHOW THE MEMOS!

    Especially after the ENTIRE nations witnessed Pelosi lying over and over, about whether or not she's lying? How come CNN's not calling Pelosi a liar? Afraid of Obama?

    Get real CNN....you're quickly becoming an E-ragsheet. Your liberal spew is taken as gospel by many, so you have a duty to be honest in the stories you present. Getting these uneducated, obama-swilling, liberals spun up over heresy will come back to haunt you. Of course, you'll chose to post liberal's comments instead of mine...try being fair and balanced.....

    May 29, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  9. CJ

    What everyone in this country should be focused on is the abuse of power during the Bush/Cheney administration. No one in this country should be above the law, and if we allow those in power or those with wealth to be above the law, then we are no different than those in the very country which was invaded. I once had so much pride in this nation, but it saddens me to see to what level it has stooped. Cheney, Limbaugh, Gingrich, et. al. need a strong reality check.

    May 29, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  10. Jimbo

    Experts agree that torture is ineffective in part because the subject will say whatever the torturer wants to hear in order to stop the pain. All of the useful information to prevent terrorist attacks was obtained prior to torture being applied. But Cheney didn't apply the torture to obtain useful information. He did it to extract lies implying a connection between Al Quaeda and Iraq, and any other lie that could be used to justify the war. In that respect the torture did work.

    May 29, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  11. Eric

    Well, tough choice. A respected Senator or a pathological liar who killed thousands of Americans in a wrong war.

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  12. Andrew

    One easy way to figure this all out. Let the memos be released. It is not Bush or Cheney not releasing them. It is cnn's most precious deity Obama who is not releasing them. If what Cheney is saying is not true just release the memos and shut him up forever.

    Why wont they release them? What happened to transparency?

    Stop drinking the Kool Aid folks! Start thinking. I know its hard but I think you guys can do it.

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  13. RN in Ann Arbor

    The CIA & courts – not Obama and not Levin – have the authority to release the documents.
    Why assume that Levin is lying? I have never known him to have that reputation.
    Why assume Chaney is lying? Well, okay, HE does have that reputation.

    The burden of proof should rest on Cheney, since his was the first claim that torture was used to save lives.
    Are we not a better nation than those nations that use torture? Have we decided to abandon our moral authority so fast and sink to the level of our enemies? For those conservative Christians who would claim this is okay – I just want to know: Who would Jesus torture? Why does anyone think this is acceptable?

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  14. single mom

    This politician said that. That politician said this.
    They're politicians! Do you really think either of them, any of them, are being truthful?

    Facts – 3, count'em – 1,2,3 – 'detainees' were waterboarded.
    The Pentagon said this week that they have conclusive proof that two dozen 'detainees' who were released went straight back to Al Qaeda and they have circumstantial evidence for 70 more. In simple term – these people are not our friends. They want to attack this country.
    I doubt that those at Gitmo have any up-to-date knowledge of efforts to attack the United States and our allies, however, I think it would be the height of stupidity to simply release them. And to bring them onto American soil, no matter what type of prison, well, I think anyone who seriously thinks that's a good idea, go to the nearest insane asylum and turn yourself in.

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  15. kevin C

    The Democrats need to stop doing this piece meal. It is slow, awkward and solves nothing. We need an independent investigation, that is done as quickly as possible.

    Water boarding is just the tip of the ice berg, far worse things were done and with the full knowledge of Cheney, Bush, Rumsfeld. Sodomizing, Rape and Electrocution are the reasons Obama won't release the photos and that is wrong, we need to condemn these actions and the leaders who justified them.

    We need a real investigation, see what the results are then go from there.

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  16. Hop Capitol

    Three? Not so, the CIA has admitted that over fifty prisoners died due to "enhanced interrogation"during the Bush Administration. And yeah, Dick Cheney is a proven liar and a war profiteer who holds no elective office. Who cares what he has to say?

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  17. cecilia

    Bush was asked what he thought his legacy would be and he responded, " a man showed up and would not compromise his soul for popularity"

    How about this, " a man and his croonies stole and election and compromised the soul of a nation through lies and greed"

    May 29, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  18. Alex in MA

    Pierre Changstien says:

    "nice the see the democrat terrorist defense squad out in full force. remember folks, we are talking about the waterboarding of ONLY 3 senior alQaeda members, each of whom had a role in the 9/11 attacks.. that is all… 3 al Q members who particiapted in the murder of 3000 americans and made it clear they want to kill many, many more.. you freaks make it sound like cheney was rounding up liberals and waterboarding them. maybe we should be waterboarding you al Qaeda sympathizing traitors…."

    Right Pierre! Lets do away with "Due-Process" altogether. Heck, why don't we just behead them in public while we are at it! I bet you their beheading video will sell very well and can help with the budget deficit.

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  19. The General

    @ JOYCE –

    You've got the wrong guy. Cheney doesn't think he's God, that's Obama's dig, remember?

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  20. Necie OKC

    I wouldn't be surprised.

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  21. todd

    Cheney lied? What's next? There were no weapons of mass destruction?

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  22. Slappy White

    "I believe, in fact, we'll be greeted as liberators."

    –Shotgun Dick, Meet the Press, March 16, 2003
    .
    .
    Shotgun Dick's been lying for quite some time now.

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  23. Eric

    CNN, can you explain how you can print racist comments like the one from Matt, calling Obama a boy. Don't you have any guideline?

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  24. Zaley

    Cheney will always be a liar...

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  25. Larry S

    Liars calling other liars . . . the GOP will not win on this one because the democrats have learned the best on how to lie.

    May 29, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
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