Letter from Jeff Bingaman, U.S. Senator (D-NM) to Paula Dobriansky, Undersecretary of Global Affairs, DOS re: Washington Post Article, December 26, 2002 Concerning Interrogation Methods Used by the U.S.

This Letter from Senator Jeff Bingaman, (D-NM) is an inquiry to State Department Under Secretary for Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky concerning a Washington Post article published on December 26, 2002 which described U.S. interrogation methods used in Afghanistan that include beatings and denial of medical treatment. Sen. Bingaman expresses his concerns that, if true, the actions may cause the U.S. to "surrender the moral high" and could "undercut our image as a civilized society."

Doc_type: 
Letter
Doc_date: 
Tuesday, February 11, 2003
Doc_rel_date: 
Wednesday, December 1, 2004
Doc_text: 

UNCLASSIFIED

02/25/03 12:52 FAX 202 847 0753 .U/S Global Affairs eon
RELEASED IN FULL FEB 2 5 20C3

states senate

WASHINGTON, DC 20510
February 11, 2003

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The Honorable Paula Dobriansky
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Under Secretary for Global Affairs Department of State 2201 C Street, NW Washington, DC 20520
Dear Under Secretary Dobriansky:.
A recent article in the Washington Post (December 26, 2002) provided a detailed account of interrogation methods used in Afghanistan with Al Qaeda and other prisoners. The article quoted American officials as saying beatings, so-called "stress and duress" techniques, and denial of medical treatment are used on a systematic basis, and that some prisoners are sent to foreign intelligence services in other countries for more intensive interrogation.
I understand the need to obtain important information concerning terrorist networks and plans, as well as the new realities of the international system. That said, ifthese allegations are correct I am concerned that the United States may surrender the moral high ground it has held in the past, undercut our image as a civilized society, and, in this manner, seriously harm our long-term national security interests.
I would appreciate your comments on the Washington Post article, speCifically whether our previous commitment against human rights violations is being reconsidered in light of the threats we fact from Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.
JB/rs

UNCLASSIFIED
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF STATE REVIEW AUTHORITY: SHARON. E AHMAD -DATE/CASE ID: 30 SEP 2004 200303827
DOS-000415

Doc_nid: 
6938
Doc_type_num: 
69