Rep. Peter King of New York Declares That CIA Detainees Were Not Tortured

Rep. Peter King R-NY

Rep. Peter King

By Elaine Magliaro

Rep. Peter King (R-NY)–who made the news last week after claiming that Eric Garner was responsible for his own death because he was obese and had asthma and a heart condition–is back making headlines again. Andrew Kaczynski of BuzzFeed reported today that King claimed that the 525-page Senate report on the CIA’s interrogation and detention techniques “does not detail torture, but instead just procedures which create what King described as ‘tremendous discomfort.’”

Today, King spoke with both local radio and NewsMaxTV’s America’s Forum. He was quoted as saying “it would be a crime if we didn’t take these actions and that those who support the release of the Senate’s scathing report have an attitude of ‘hate America first,’ ‘self-loathing,’ and ‘self-hatred.’”

King told W-CBS in New York, “I don’t believe these are torture at all. For instance waterboarding, there were medical personnel present during the whole time. It creates tremendous discomfort there’s no doubt about it. It creates tremendous fear, but the fact is there was no lasting damage to these people and we got information from them, which is very helpful.”

The Republican from New York continued, “We’re not talking about anyone being burned or stabbed or cut or anything like that. We’re talking about people being made to stand in awkward in positions, have water put into their nose and into their mouth. Nobody suffered any lasting injuries from this.”

Rep. King claims that no detainees were tortured. I’m sure he read about the forms of “enhanced interrogation” techniques that detainees were subjected to in the torture report.

The Guardian:

Detainees were forced to stand on broken limbs for hours, kept in complete darkness, deprived of sleep for up to 180 hours, sometimes standing, sometimes with their arms shackled above their heads.

Prisoners were subjected to “rectal feeding” without medical necessity. Rectal exams were conducted with “excessive force”. The report highlights one prisoner later diagnosed with anal fissures, chronic hemorrhoids and “symptomatic rectal prolapse”.

…One prisoner died of hypothermia brought on in part by being forced to sit on a bare concrete floor without pants.

A detention site known as COBALT was described as a “dungeon.” According to The Guardian, detainees at COBALT were “kept in complete darkness and constantly shackled in isolated cells with loud music and only a bucket to use for human waste.” The report said it was so cold there that it likely contributed to the death of one detainee. It was reported that prisoners “were walked around naked or were shackled with their hands above their heads for extended periods of time.”

The Guardian:

About five CIA officers would engage in what is described as a “rough takedown”. A detainee would be shouted at, have his clothes cut off, be secured with tape, hooded and dragged up and down a long corridor while being slapped and punched.

Here’s how the Senate report detailed the “most aggressive interrogation phase” of Abu Zubaydah’s  detention:

“Security personnel entered the cell, shackled and hooded Abu Zubaydah, and removed his towel (Abu Zubaydah was then naked). Without asking any questions, the interrogators placed a rolled towel around his neck as a collar, and backed him up into the cell wall (an interrogator later acknowledged the collar was used to slam Abu Zubaydah against a concrete wall). The interrogators then removed the hood, performed an attention grab, and had Abu Zubaydah watch while a large confinement box was brought into the cell and laid on the floor.” A cable states ‘Abu Zubaydah was unhooded and the large confinement box was carried into the interrogation room and paced [sic] on the floor so as to appear as a coffin.’”

Zubaydah spent 266 hours in the large “coffin-sized” confinement box and 29 hours in a smaller confinement box, which measured 21 inches wide, 2.5 feet deep, and 2.5 feet high.

Right you, are Rep. King! None of these “enhanced interrogation” techniques I wrote above or included in the Senate report amounted to torture. It’s a good thing we have people like you in Congress to clear things up for us and set the record straight.


Rep. Peter King: Senate Report Not Torture, Just People Having “To Stand In Awkward Positions” (BuzzFeed)

Peter King: ‘Hate America’ Club Used Torture Report To Distract From Obamacare (Right Wing Watch)

Peter King Dismisses Torture Report As Just People In ‘Awkward Positions’ (TPM)

Rep. Peter King: CIA Didn’t Torture People, Just Made Them ‘Stand in Awkward Positions’ (Mediaite)

Rectal rehydration and standing on broken limbs: the CIA torture report’s grisliest findings (The Guardian)

Here Are The Most Horrific Details From The Senate Torture Report (Huffington Post)

How the CIA tortured its guinea pig detainee Abu Zubaydah (Global News)


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14 Responses to Rep. Peter King of New York Declares That CIA Detainees Were Not Tortured

  1. Elaine M. says:

    Fox News Andrea Tantaros Dismisses Torture Report Because ‘America Is Awesome’

  2. Inga says:

    Let’s see what King would say if he were subjected to waterboarding. What an ignoramus.

  3. Elaine M. says:


    Maybe a little “rectal rehydration” would clear his thinking.

  4. pete says:

    For instance waterboarding, there were medical personnel present during the whole time.

    Yep, medical personal present to make sure you live for round two, and three, and one hundred eighty four.

  5. Inga says:

    Yes they could purée his dinner and rectally feed him for a few days.

  6. eniobob says:

    “Rep. Peter King of New York Declares That CIA Detainees Were Not Tortured”
    I saw this headline regarding the above statement:

    “Peter King’s Comments On The Torture Report Suggest He Didn’t Actually Read The Torture Report”

    With the GOP takeover of the House and Senate we must prepare ourselves for the question we will be repeating over and over again for the next two years”did he/she really think/say that ?

  7. In the immortal words from the epic “Blazzing Saddles”, Governor Mel Brooks said..

    “We must protect our phony bologny jibs”

  8. eniobob says:

    This current place that these revelations have brought us to sounds like step number (4) in Alcohol Anonymous 12 step program:
    “Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves. ”

    And the “denials” that have followed seem to be from those “drunk” with power.IMHO.

  9. Affairs of state and corporations have NO moral compass. The goal is self perpetuity and.damnation of anyone or anything that gets in the way.

  10. bettykath says:

    Peter King, Dick Cheney – brothers in mind. They have a few sisters as well.

  11. eniobob says:

    ” The goal is self perpetuity and.damnation of anyone or anything that gets in the way.”

    ie John Yoo on the Bill O’reilly show and the parsing the word “torture’ by the defenders.And we can’t forget the fall back “Tuesday’s release of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s torture report pushed back into public view the former government lawyers who justified the legality of the CIA’s so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” used against enemy combatants rounded up following 9/11.”

    Read more:

  12. 9/11.. Project Vigilance and..

    R.I.P. Michael Ruppert

    Who finally crossed the Rubicon

  13. eniobob says:

    ” ByCatherine ThompsonPublishedDecember 11, 2014, 1:18 PM EST

    Rep. Peter King (R-NY) on Thursday doubled down on his argument that the harsh techniques detailed in a Senate report on the CIA’s Bush-era interrogation program did not amount to “torture.”

    MSNBC’s Kirsten Welker asked King to respond to Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) speech against torture on the Senate floor. King said that the treatment McCain underwent as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam was not similar to the way the CIA treated its detainees.”

  14. I think we should give Rep. King the right to prove his point. We,ll even make it easy. He.can endure 3 days of EIT and a week of McCain.

    Then he must chose which program is more harsh and he can endure the easier technique, one more time.

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