The Takeaway Weekender: Inside the CIA Torture Report

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Beth Brockman of the organization Witness Against Torture wears an orange prison jump suit and a hood over her head as she sits in a cage during a demonstration outside the White House. Jan. 10, 2012
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This weekend The Takeaway explores the CIA torture report and the firestorm of debate that it has ignited among policy makers, the intelligence community, and the American public.

After a long political fight, the Senate released its report on the CIA's use of torture during the George W. Bush Administration this week, triggering a firestorm of debate among policy makers, the intelligence community, and the American public.

The report found that the CIA lied to the White House and Congress about the number of "black site" prisons, the intelligence derived from torture, the level of violence inflicted on detainees, and that enhanced interrogation techniques lead to information that found Osama bin Laden, among other things.

To what extent does this deception damage the relationship with the CIA and it's overseers in Congress and at the White House? Who, if anyone, should be held accountable? And how might this information impact detainees currently held at Guantánamo Bay?

For answers, The Takeaway turns to a panel of distinguished guests:

Robert Baer is a former CIA Operative based in the Middle East and author of the book "The Perfect Kill: 21 Laws for Assassins." He says that intelligence agencies routinely lie to Congress and the White House.

Retired Brigadier General David Irvine, spent 18 years with the Sixth U.S. Army Intelligence School, teaching prisoner-of-war interrogation and military law. He says that far from making America safer, the CIA's misuse of power has made Americans less safe than ever.

Anthony Romero, the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, says that President Barack Obama should prosecute or pardon President Bush and members of his administration to establish, with finality, that torture is illegal.

David Nevin serves as lead defense counsel for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. He's defended Mohammed at Guantanamo Bay since 2008, and he tells The Takeaway what questions he would ask former Vice President Dick Cheney if he were to take the stand in KSM's trial.

Listeners in The Takeaway community also reached out to us to share their thoughts and opinions on the newly released Senate report on CIA torture. What do you think of the report? Comment or call us at 1-877-869-8253.