January 15th, 2008 06:48 EST
CIA Response to Dec. 31 NY Times Editorial
The following letter to the editor, published in the January 7 edition of The New York Times, responds to a December 31 editorial:
To the Editor:
Your Dec. 31 editorial "Looking at America" does a great disservice to the men and women of the C.I.A. You describe the lawful questioning of hardened terrorists as "sickening behavior." The interrogation methods the C.I.A. has employed over the years have been closely reviewed by lawyers and others in the executive branch, and they have been briefed to our oversight committees in Congress. That is a fact.
It is absurd to suggest that the C.I.A. has an interest in any process that would produce bad intelligence. To dismiss as "barbaric acts" a small, carefully run effort that has disrupted terrorist plots and saved innocent lives -- and done so in accord with the law -- is wrong and unfair.
The officers of the C.I.A. who put their lives on the line to gather intelligence on the terrorist threat -- and are as committed as anyone to protecting American ideals -- deserve better.
Director of Public Affairs
Central Intelligence Agency
McLean, Va., Jan. 3, 2008