Editorial: Senator Burr’s Response to Torture Report is an Embarrassment to NC
The News and Observer is out with a scathing editorial that lambasts U.S. Senator Richard Burr for his response to the report about CIA torture. Burr will chair the Senate Intelligence Committee, but has promised not to hold a single hearing about the abuses of power. From the editorial,
U.S. Sen. Richard Burr's response to the report on CIA torture is an embarrassment to the state that once proudly claimed Sam Ervin as a senator who would stand up to the abuse of power.
Burr, the incoming head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, has dismissed the summary of the 6,000-page report as a partisan and flawed telling of what the CIA did to detainees after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Most of the country and much of the world are appalled by the summary's account of secret prisons, waterboarding, "rectal feeding," days of sleep deprivation and men shackled and abused until until they were broken. Worse yet, the summary said, the techniques yielded no crucial information, and at least 26 of the 119 detainees were not involved in terrorism.
Along with dismissing the findings and any lessons they may teach the nation, Burr promises that any further public scrutiny of the torture issue by his committee will end in January when he takes charge.
"I just don't know what you would accomplish with hearings," Burr said. "Put this report down as a footnote in history."
Not surprising, but nonetheless discouraging, is that North Carolina's Sen.-elect Thom Tillis agrees with Burr that what was bad about the report wasn't what it says, but that the American public was informed.
"I think it's something the Democrats have chosen to release," Tillis said, referring to the executive summary of the report, which was prepared by Democrats. "I think they need to be very careful about the safety and security issues it may raise, not only in terms of our consulates or embassies but also people who partnered with us in a very difficult time."