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February 09, 2007

The Dark Side

An Iraq Interrogator's Nightmare
By Eric Fair

A man with no face stares at me from the corner of a room. He pleads for help, but I'm afraid to move. He begins to cry. It is a pitiful sound, and it sickens me. He screams, but as I awaken, I realize the screams are mine.

That dream, along with a host of other nightmares, has plagued me since my return from Iraq in the summer of 2004. Though the man in this particular nightmare has no face, I know who he is. I assisted in his interrogation at a detention facility in Fallujah...

Despite my best efforts, I cannot ignore the mistakes I made at the interrogation facility in Fallujah. I failed to disobey a meritless order, I failed to protect a prisoner in my custody, and I failed to uphold the standards of human decency. Instead, I intimidated, degraded and humiliated a man who could not defend himself. I compromised my values. I will never forgive myself.

Tyler Drumheller, 25-year veteran of the CIA:

DRUMHELLER: It was Vice President Dick Cheney who talked about the "dark side" we have to turn on. When he spoke those words, he was articulating a policy that amounted to "go out and get them." His remarks were evidence of the underlying approach of the administration, which was basically to turn the military and the agency loose and let them pay for the consequences of any unfortunate -- or illegal -- occurrences...

From the perspective of the White House, it was smart to blur the lines about what was acceptable and what was not in the war on terrorism. It meant that whenever someone was overzealous in some dark interrogation cell, President (George W.) Bush and his entourage could blame someone else.

Posted at February 9, 2007 12:02 PM | TrackBack


Posted by: Mike Meyer at February 9, 2007 12:28 PM

Apparently its a little harder to sleep at night when you were actually doing the torturing as opposed to someone snuggled up in a comfy bed in the White House.

Posted by: SPIIDERWEB&trade: at February 9, 2007 06:35 PM

Good job putting these two articles together. Eric Fair is not the first interrogator I've known who had these kinds of traumas as he came to grips with what he had done, but he's the first to talk about it openly.

There's no doubt that Bush, et al. set us up for this kind of fall, but it's nice to see a major CIA figure pointing the finger so directly. One of the things that makes me angriest is that justice in this case will never be done. If things ever get too hot for Cheney and his goons, which I seriously doubt they will, a pardon will be issued by President Bush or Hillary or whoever and it will all be swept under the rug.

Land of the Free, eh?

Posted by: Decline and Fall at February 10, 2007 08:09 AM

two words, which it turns out aren't really a joke after all:

Darth Cheney

Posted by: mistah charley, ph.d. at February 11, 2007 06:12 PM