Former CIA Analyst Turned Activist Ray McGovern Escorted Out Of Gina Haspel CIA Confirmation Hearing

By Aaron Kesel

Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern who used to brief Ronald Reagan was thrown out of Gina Haspel’s confirmation hearing to become the second CIA director under U.S. president Donald Trump, replacing Mike Pompeo, Vice News reported.

It all started when Senator Jack Reed (D-Rhode Island), asked Haspel about the morality of “enhanced interrogation techniques” (TORTURE) and how she would react if one of her own CIA officers were tortured by terrorists. Would she consider a CIA officer being waterboarded by “terrorists” to be immoral?

“Sorry to interrupt here,” McGovern lambasted as he stood up in the audience. “Senator Wyden, you deserve a direct answer.” Although, Wyden wasn’t the Senator questioning Haspel at the time.

At that point, Sen. Richard Burr, who was appointed as the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, ordered Capitol Police to escort McGovern out of the hearing, while threatening that everyone would be removed if there were any more interruptions.

McGovern yelled and demanded that Haspel answer questions about the waterboarding of terror suspects at a CIA “black site” in Thailand.

In a video uploaded to social media, McGovern is seen being escorted out of the hearing and police can be heard telling the former CIA officer to “stop resisting.”

Due to the hectic situation, it was unclear exactly what McGovern said to Haspel.

McGovern recently wrote an opinion piece headlined, “Will a Torturer Become CIA Director?” ahead of the nomination hearing, claiming that the torture is not only immoral but fails to give the correct intelligence.

The Department of Justice sought to block the deposition of Haspel as a nominee for deputy director of the CIA last year when President Trump and the former CIA director Mike Pompeo appointed her.

Gina Haspel, a career CIA officer, was selected by Trump and appointed as deputy director by the agency’s head, Mike Pompeo, on February 2nd. That same day last year it was revealed that Haspel, during the post-9/11 Bush era, ran one of the CIA’s black sites in Thailand where prisoners were waterboarded.

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To give you a little refresher, Derrick Broze reporting for Activist Post wrote last year:

In October 2015, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against James Mitchell and John Bruce Jessen, former U.S. military psychologists who created the CIA’s torture program. The lawsuit accuses Jessen and Mitchell of operating a “joint criminal enterprise” and seeks compensatory damages of at least $75,000.  The ACLU is representing Suleiman Abdullah SalimMohamed Ben Soud, two survivors of the CIA torture program, and Gul Rahman, who died as a result of his torture. The plaintiffs are suing Mitchell and Jessen under the Alien Tort Statute — which allows federal lawsuits for gross human rights violations — for their commission of torture; cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment; non-consensual human experimentation; and war crimes.

James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen served in the U.S. military’s Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape program (SERE), teaching U.S. troops how to resist and survive torture in the event of capture by foreign nations. SERE was supposed to help troops understand torture techniques while Jessen and Mitchell supervised their mental state.  After 9/11, the psychologists were tasked with designing and developing the CIA’s detention, rendition, and interrogation operations. Using their knowledge of how to resist torture, the two reverse-engineered the SERE program to create a new program that would break detainees’ mental state in the hopes of creating loose-lipped zombies. According to the 2015 Senate report on CIA torture, “neither psychologist had experience as an interrogator, nor did either have specialized knowledge of al-Qa’ida, a background in terrorism, or any relevant regional, cultural, or linguistic expertise.”

It was also reported that, under orders, Haspel aided in the destruction of videotapes capturing the torture taking place at the black site. Jose Rodriguez, the CIA official who ordered CIA officers to destroy the cache of videotapes that had documented the treatment of two terror suspects, says he told Gina Haspel what he intended to do.

Rodriguez’s chief of staff, none other than Gina Haspel, has even directed at least one instance of waterboarding on a suspect herself according to Rodriguez who gave an account at Haspel’s confirmation hearing.

Former deputy CIA director Michael Morell, another harsh critic of the inquiry, has also written that Haspel did so “at the request of her direct supervisor and believing that it was lawful to do so. I personally led an accountability exercise that cleared Haspel of any wrongdoing in the case.”

According to an article by John Kiriakou, a former CIA counterterrorism officer, Haspel was responsible for allowing some of the most brutal torture methods. Kiriakou also accuses Haspel of directly overseeing the staff in Thailand, including Mitchell and Jessen. Kiriakou himself served 23 months in prison after pleading guilty to blowing the whistle about Bush administration waterboarding and torture of detainees.

Last year, CIA officials testified how and why they authorized brutal torture methods in a series of historic court deposition videos that can be seen here. Derrick Broze highlighted one area of particular note that gives insight into who was behind the torture program and its subsequent attempted cover-up:

When questioned about why he ordered the videos destroyed, Rodriguez offers nothing but a sad excuse. “It would make the CIA look bad, and almost, in my view, destroy the clandestine service because of it.” No regard to morality or even law, but rather, acting from what will or will not make the State and its spy agencies look good.

Earlier this year, Senator Ron Wyden, expressed that Haspel had been in charge of the same black site where a man “was waterboarded 83 times; stuffed into a wooden box barely bigger than a coffin; and had his head slammed into walls.”

“If Ms. Haspel seeks to serve at the highest levels of U.S. intelligence, the government can no longer cover up disturbing facts from the past,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR), a member of the intelligence committee who opposes her nomination, told The Daily Beast.

Haspel promised not to create another torture program, but she also wouldn’t condemn the torture that took place at a CIA black site under her watch in the years after 9/11. When McGovern spoke up, at least five Capitol Police officers quickly detained him, warned him to stop resisting, and threw him out of the hearing in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee. However, Haspel expressed in her hearing that torture doesn’t work and she wouldn’t restart the program.

When asked if she agrees with the president’s assertion that torture works, Haspel said: “I don’t believe that torture works.” She added that she doesn’t think Trump would ask the CIA to resume waterboarding, which simulates drowning.

“I would not allow CIA to undertake activity that I thought was immoral, even if it was technically legal,” Haspel, said. “I would absolutely not permit it.”

McGovern was there representing VIPS (Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity) who previously on March 25, 2018, sent President Trump a Memorandum urging him to withdraw Haspel’s nomination, citing a long list of cogent, compelling reasons to do so. The organization noted that they have had no response from the Trump administration or the president, Consortium News reported.

Further, more than 100 former U.S. ambassadors who served both Republican and Democratic presidents sent the Senate a letter opposing Haspel, saying that despite her credentials, confirming her would give authoritarian leaders around the world the license to say U.S. behavior is “no different from ours,” The Hill reported.

Aaron Kesel writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Steemit, and BitChute. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.

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5 Comments on "Former CIA Analyst Turned Activist Ray McGovern Escorted Out Of Gina Haspel CIA Confirmation Hearing"

  1. lightingstrikesthrice | May 10, 2018 at 6:24 am | Reply

    Well, Haspel done her job well and is being rewarded for it. McGovern gets thrown out of the ‘hearing’, Kiriakou goes to prison, and Haspel gets her life long ambitious promotion. The term kakistocracy is best suited here methinks.

  2. Common Sense | May 10, 2018 at 6:25 am | Reply

    Irreversible Momentum has been established. The nation is crashing under the weight of unfettered corruption.
    We had our opportunity to take corrective action when it was possible to have an affect, but that time has been wasted and squandered because we were too busy being enthralled with reality TV based activities that were contrived to captivate attention, distract, and addict the mindless populace to drivel and drama.

    What we are doing now is entertaining ourselves with the details of our demise.

    You can now look forward to endless name calling, he said she said, and blaming until the eventual end.
    The worst of us has been allowed to rise to the top and all of their plans are self serving. Their greed for money and power has blinded them to the fact their own corrupt plans ruin all of us, including them.
    They are not on their right minds, and prove it by their actions, but what is said of a nation who KNOWS this, and allows it.

    • Richard Olsen | May 10, 2018 at 2:40 pm | Reply

      Actually, there is very likely no more than two percent of the people in this so-called nation that have even the faintest idea about what is really taking place among the cabal of financial gangsters that have become our rulers. Years of compulsory indoctrination masquerading as “education” has yielded an entire population of dumb shits. Some are trained to the point of technical competence, but even a great number of those are almost functionally illiterate. Illiteracy, incompetence, obedience, ignorance, and acceptance of authority are, along with a cult like dedication to mediocrity, the only “virtues” allowed a people ruled by tyrants who are, if not already the most, certainly among the most evil men and women in all of recorded history.

  3. Last time I saw Ray McGovern on film was when they beat the crap out of him for silently protesting Hillary at a speech about not suppressing 1st amendment rights! Brave and ethical man.

  4. Namerri Naame | May 10, 2018 at 2:36 pm | Reply

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