Home > war & peace > Why does Fox’s CIA “expert” want to torture his daughter?

Why does Fox’s CIA “expert” want to torture his daughter?

mike-baker-fox-newsFox News interviewed someone they described as “former CIA operative Mike Baker” about enhanced interrogation techniques yesterday, in response to a report by the Senate’s intelligence committee that found they were ineffective.

That doesn’t come as much of a surprise. Members of the FBI have complained about the use of water boarding, sleep deprivation and other techniques since early on in the war on terror. But the issue is still unsettled over at Fox.

It’s bizarre to think that small-government conservatives are happy for the federal government to torture people in secret through the CIA, while at the same time claiming to be so distrusting of the government that they demand to be allowed to keep a small arsenal at home. Talk about cognitive dissonance.

Anyway, there was one line that particularly caught my attention — at the end of the segment, when Baker makes this extraordinary claim about current US military guidelines for interrogations: “I couldn’t break my teenage daughter with the Army field manual techniques, it’s just not gonna happen.”

He couldn’t “break” his daughter? What on earth is he talking about? Why would he want to?

Let’s imagine the situation: his daughter has fallen in with the wrong crowd and is suspected of committing an act of domestic terrorism. They call in her dad to speak to her. What does he do?

Well, apparently, this guy thinks he would need to water board her to get the truth. I think that says all we need to know about the CIA’s expertise in interrogating suspects. And I’m sure his daughter is really charmed by the analogy.

The idea that you need to “break” someone to get information from them is feeble-minded nonsense — it’s the stuff of Jack Bauer and Hollywood movies. Even the police would blush at such attitudes.

Of course, Baker was certain the report basically represented the views of civil liberties groups and throughout the interview he gave no indication that a subtle thought had ever crossed his mind.

“It’s inane to say that they didn’t work ever. The reality is always a little bit more complicated — the reality is sometimes enhanced techniques work, sometimes they don’t.”

The report isn’t public, but I’d be very surprised if it said that enhanced interrogation techniques don’t work ever. Still, who expects competent analysis from the CIA these days?

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