John Kiriakou

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John Kiriakou was a CIA analyst and case officer from 1990 to 2004. In December 2007, John was the first U.S. government official to confirm that waterboarding was used to interrogate al-Qaeda prisoners, a practice he described as torture. Kiriakou was a former senior investigator for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and a former counter-terrorism consultant. While employed with the CIA, he was involved in critical counter-terrorism missions following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, but refused to be trained in so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques,” nor did he ever authorize or engage in such crimes. After leaving the CIA, Kiriakou appeared on ABC News in an interview with Brian Ross, during which he became the first former CIA officer to confirm the existence of the CIA's torture program. Kiriakou’s interview revealed that this practice was not just the result of a few rogue agents, but was official U.S. policy approved at the highest levels of the government. Kiriakou is the sole CIA agent to go to jail in connection with the U.S. torture program, despite the fact that he never tortured anyone. Rather, he blew the whistle on this horrific wrongdoing. John can be reached at: jkiriakou@mac.com.
CIA detracts from national security by purporting to know what it doesn’t In a recent feature article in The New Yorker magazine, writer Amy Davidson Sorkin recalls the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s 1995 bill, the Abolition of the Central Intelligence Agency Act. One of the original neoconservatives, Moynihan had...
The new Israeli government led by an enemy of peace is more right-wing, more reactionary, more nationalistically populist, and more religious than any previous government in Israeli history. I had the good fortune during the last week of October and the first week of November to be in Israel...
But instead, he pandered to the CIA’s leadership and to the politicians who put them there. A friend from Covert Action Magazine recently sent me a video of former CIA Acting General Counsel John Rizzo giving an interview upon his retirement from the CIA. The interview is seven years old....
A federal jury in New York last month convicted former CIA officer Joshua Schulte on nine felony counts under the Espionage Act for providing information to WikiLeaks that became known as Vault 7. Schulte has consistently denied that he was the source of the information. Two years ago, he was convicted...
New Reader Featuring His Reporting Should be Assigned in College Classrooms There aren’t a lot of journalists that Americans can look up to these days, especially in the mainstream media. Edward R. Murrow and his “boys” are long gone. Americans don’t have a Walter Cronkite to set their minds...
The Intelligence Community lost a bona fide hero last month with the death of David C. MacMichael, 93, a former contract CIA analyst who resigned from the Agency in 1983 to go public with information that the Reagan Administration was planning a coup d’état against the Nicaraguan government of...
I’ve been doing a lot of research lately for a new book I’m writing that has nothing whatsoever to do with intelligence or the CIA, and I stumbled upon the biography of Frank Mankiewicz, the former Robert F. Kennedy speechwriter, who apparently had been a “secret backchannel” between President...
Sociopaths like Ric Prado rise to leadership positions in rogue agency that acts with utter disregard for the law If you’ve watched Fox News or CNN or if you’ve read the Washington Post or New York Times over the past two weeks, you will have been told that Enrique “Ric”...
UK government shamefully cooperated with U.S. in torture of al-Qaeda suspects We Americans have had a painful and difficult national debate over the past 20 years relative to torture. Torture was official U.S. government policy from 2002 until at least 2005, and that iteration was not formally outlawed until passage...
The So-called ‘Humane’ Murder of Families and How the Pentagon’s Favorite Weapon Endangers Us All An article in the latest issue of Foreign Affairs magazine, widely seen as the official mouthpiece of the neoliberal foreign policy establishment, posits that the U.S. government’s drone program could be made more humane, killing...