One Year after SSCI Votes to Declassify Torture Report, Not Much Has Changed

Today marks one-year since the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence voted to declassify and release the executive summary of its report on the CIA’s detention and interrogation program–otherwise known as the “torture report.” The committee hoped the document would force Congress to finally confront the torture meted out in America’s name.

Former chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) released the summary in December 2014. Members of government, civil society, and the public alike were appalled by the details contained within its pages. Retired Generals and former interrogators spoke out vehemently against the CIA’s interrogation practices. There was momentum for action to guarantee that America never again has an official policy of torture.

That outcry has since died down, but the importance of the matter has not. Simply because torture is not in the headlines on a daily basis doesn’t mean that it’s no longer a problem. Many government agencies haven’t even read their copies of the full, classified report. And the loophole lawyering used to authorize torture in the first place could be repeated.

Congress will soon have the opportunity to ensure that America never again engages in torture by voting for soon-to-be announced legislation. The next anniversary we celebrate needs to be the date that America said no to torture, once and for all.

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Published on April 3, 2015

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