Statement for the Record: FBI Executive Assistant Director John Pistole

Error message

  • Deprecated function: Return type of DBObject::current() should either be compatible with Iterator::current(): mixed, or the #[\ReturnTypeWillChange] attribute should be used to temporarily suppress the notice in require_once() (line 7 of /usr/home/documentafterliv/public_html/sites/all/modules/contrib/eck/
  • Deprecated function: Return type of DBObject::next() should either be compatible with Iterator::next(): void, or the #[\ReturnTypeWillChange] attribute should be used to temporarily suppress the notice in require_once() (line 7 of /usr/home/documentafterliv/public_html/sites/all/modules/contrib/eck/
  • Deprecated function: Return type of DBObject::key() should either be compatible with Iterator::key(): mixed, or the #[\ReturnTypeWillChange] attribute should be used to temporarily suppress the notice in require_once() (line 7 of /usr/home/documentafterliv/public_html/sites/all/modules/contrib/eck/
  • Deprecated function: Return type of DBObject::valid() should either be compatible with Iterator::valid(): bool, or the #[\ReturnTypeWillChange] attribute should be used to temporarily suppress the notice in require_once() (line 7 of /usr/home/documentafterliv/public_html/sites/all/modules/contrib/eck/
  • Deprecated function: Return type of DBObject::rewind() should either be compatible with Iterator::rewind(): void, or the #[\ReturnTypeWillChange] attribute should be used to temporarily suppress the notice in require_once() (line 7 of /usr/home/documentafterliv/public_html/sites/all/modules/contrib/eck/

The document is a statement for the record for FBI Executive Assistant Director John Pistole before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. The statement discusses FBI interrogation needs and techniques for counterterrorism efforts as well as the legal authorities under which extraterritorial law enforcement activities are authorized for the FBI.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

N 10-07-2009
JULY 14, 2004
OIG REQ 08/22/05-ITEM #14
. DOJOIG013756 FBI0000008
Statement of
John S. Pistole
Executive Assistant Director
• Counterterrorism/Counterintelligence Divisions
Federal Bureau of Investigation
DECLASSIFIED BY 6517 Before the
ON 10 - 07 09 United States House of Representatives
Permanent Seiect Committee on Intelligence. ,
"The Critical Need forTnterrogation in the Global War on Terrorism"

(U) Good morning, Chairman Goss, Representative Harman, and members of the Committee.
Thank you for this opportunity to discuss the critical need of the FBI, and other members of the *
Intelligence Community, to conduct interrogations in order to fight the global war on terrorism. I will
discuss with you today the FBI's critical need to conduct interviews and interrogations of suspected
terrorists, and their supporters in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere around the world.
.0 Everyday,' the ruen-a..nd wornierr.of. the FBI denlonstrai:trtlicir,f uI.f iatiez'gieat
responsibility that you, and the public, have entrusted to them. As a result, the FBI has made steady
• progress in meeting our highest priority of preventing terrorism, of the tools used by FBI agents
on a daily basis, wherever in the world they may be located, is their ability to talk to people; build
rapport and collect valuable inforniation and intelligence. Whether you call this activity conducting an
interview or an interrogation, it is an.investigative tool that is heavily relied upon by our. Agents to obtain
intelligence. FBI agents have proven to be some of the most skilled and experienced interrogators of
terioridin suspects not only in our great nation, but across the globe.. The FBI interrogator's personalityis
tempered by an :understanding and sympathetic attitude, combined with a great deal of patience td get
accurate and complete information, especially when encountering a lack of cooperation. History has -
shown that the interrogator must impress their subject, not through the use of their authority, but
because their persOnality commands respect.
(U). The interview and interrogation process allows for the innocent to explain their activities, while
implicating the guilty. As experience has shown, only limited infOrmation can be learned through
technical means and while the spoken Words may be understood, the thought process behind those
words goes unchecked without actually speaking to the subject. FBI agents, working within the
framework of the Constitution, have a proven ability to obtain information, through the use of
interrogations, while 'still respecting basic human rights and civil liberties. To fully combat terrorists and
their organizations, the FBI must be allowed to interrogate suspected members to identify those gaps in
the technical coverage thatwould otherwise go unfilled.
OIG REQ 08/22/05—ITEM #14 FBI0000009
DOJOIG013757 •
(U) Without the use of interrogations the FBI, and our partners in the Intelligence Community,
would lose the ability to:
• obtain information concerning the guilt or innocence of those in custody
• induce the subject of the interrogation to make admissions
• obtain confessions/admissions from the guilty
• learn the facts and circumstances of particular terrorist events
• learn of the existence and locations of other terrorist members
• develop additional leads for investigation
• uncover other activities the subject of the interrogation'maY have been involved with
(U) The FBI is authorized to conduct extraterritorial law enforcement activities, to include
interrogations, through three avenues. First, statutory authority under Title 28, USC, Section 533(1)
and Title 18, USC, Section 3052, allows for the FBI to investigate, interrogate and arrest individuals
for violations of United States law even if those investigations are not consistent with international law.
Second, the President, acting through the Attorney General, has inherent constitutional authority to
order for the FBI to investigate and arrest individuals in a.manner that departs from international law.
And third, Executive Order 12333 signed by President Reagan in 1981, created thevehicle which
est hlish° Allorney,General national security-related investigations: These national
.security guidelines have-a provision that permits the FBI to conduct eZrate-ria—riai figaiiietfiyfaes--
• with certain approval levels from relevant agencies.
(LES) Part of the FBI's mission in combating terrorism centers on gathering intelligence and .
evidence through interrogations of detainees, both in Guantanamo Bay and Iraq, forwarding actionable
intelligence to the Intelligence Community and FBI field officeS, coordinating liaison with foreign police:
and intelligence services and supporting the Department of Defense by assisting in the preparation of
cases for military prosecution. Although detainees may not possess critical real-time tactical
intelligence, other important intelligence has-been obtained from detainees including knowledge of
terrorist tradecraft, identification of command and control functions of insurgent and Al Qaeda cells,,
methods of obtaining financial resources to fund terrorist operations, methods used in the recruitment of
-operatives and the confirmation of relationships between terrorist subjects.
The Guantanamo Bay operation has provided FBI personnel with a unique Opportunity and has
provided our field investigators with the continued access to,military detainees. Since February 2002,
the FBI has assigied over 300 interviewing Special Agents to Guantanamo Bay who have conducted
- -approximately 4,000 detainee interviews. As a direCt result, over 400 actionable leads have been sent
between FBI field offices and our operations center at Guantanamo Bay. These leads and the
extensive intelligence generated by these interviews, have led to new cases, identified previously
unknown links between subjects and supported ongoing investigations.
E T//X-1
O'IG REQ 08/22/05—ITEM #14 DOJOIG013758 FBI0000010
(U) XI
SY>I I These detainees were .the first to be charged by theilan
accused of serving as financiers and bodyguards for admitted to FBI L6
location of numerous Al-Qaeda dl 'guesthouses and residences in Afghanistan. Confessions
interrogators that he too was a seniorbcly guard foil land he provided FBI personnel with the
were also obtained by _FBI interrogators from UK citizens' who
admitted to serving as Al Qaeda recruiters, financiers, and facilitatorsfor travel, as well as a
communication link between Islamic extremists in the UK and the Al-Qaeda network in Afghanistan:
The FBI's efforts in Guantanamo Bay continue to yield critical intelligence and evidence for ongoing
Most recently in Iraq, FBI agents have conducted over 445 interviews and interrogations of
over sixty high value detainees between January and March 2004. Some of these detainees were highlevel
Al-Islam members, ES members, Al Zarqawi and Al, Qaeda affiliates, and foreign fighters.
These interrogations resulted in a great deal of intelligence gained regarding the infrastructure of Ansar
Al-Islam, the Al Zarqawi network, foreign fight er uoiips, and foreixi regime e-Jegiegt-s..: These
interrogations provided support to ongoing investigations within Several FBI field office's by providing
lead coverage, conducting assets debriefings,.and in one case assisting the family of one US member
who testified in a United States court. Ekamples of detaineeS that the FBI has interrogated include:
Tj) • I 'Abu Musab Al Zarqawi, who provided b6
information regarding. the Al Zar awi communications network, financial support.and operations. b7C
plicated Al bombings in Iraq, to include the Jordanian-
Embassy, United Nations, Red Cross, An Najaf, Nasariyah, and Karbala.
• 'also known as of Ansar Al-
Islam, provided detailed information regarding the personnel, structure and operations ofAnsar Al-
Islam. provided details and personal knowledge regarding anti-coalition
attacks. Through the rapport built by the FBI agents interviewing' the Norwegian government
was able to obtain information that assisted their investigation oil lof
Ansar Al-Islam.
Guantanamo Bay has allowed the FBI's Behavioral Science experts access to study the
interrogations of the military detainees. The FBI has consistently pursued an interrogation strategy
based on building rapport with the detainees. This rapport building -process has resulted in nnmerniis
successes to include obtainin the confessions oft
ilitary and are
Ansar Al-Islam members.' ladmifted to procuring vehicles and arranging for safehouses for
'also known asi
• .1 I admitted, to securing
finances originating in Saudi Arabia, an [for eventual use by
S17/X-i .3
OIG REQ 08/22/05—ITEM #14 •FBI0000011
members of Ansar Al-Islam fighting Coalition forces in the Baghdad area.
(U) The interview and interrogation process is critical to not only the FBI's counterterrorism mission,
but to all members of the United States Intellig.ence Community. Thank you for the opportunity to
testify before you today and to highlight the FBI's efforts in the interrogation process of terrorist
suspects. It would be my pleasure to answer any questions you may have.
FB1031050CBT I
.0IG REQ 08/22/05—ITEM #14