Washington, DC: Al Qaeda manual had its own description of torture techniques
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A report released on Tuesday outlined a lengthy review of Central Intelligence Agency interrogation techniques used on detainees after 9/11. It described several methods, including abdominal slaps, cramped confinement, and dietary manipulation, that were employed to gain information from people being held.
Since the Senate Intelligence Committee's report came out, CBS News has obtained further documentation on torture techniques, but this time from an al Qaeda handbook that described what types of interrogation methods its members might encounter if they are captured.
Al Qaeda chapter describing alleged torture techniques
The handbook, which was seized in 2000 in the Manchester, England home of Anas al Liby, a student at the time. It was a translation from its "Declaration of Jihad" and is broken down into two dimensions, physical and psychological torture.
It purports to know the methods of torture that are used by secret agents in order to glean information from captured detainees. Although several situations are described under which torture could be experienced, it is not necessarily specific to the United States. However, it does mention nations where the U.S. has military installations.
Listed under physical, al Qaeda's leaders told members they may experience blindfolding, hanging by the hands or feet, forcing individuals to stand naked for long periods; pouring cold water over one's head; pulling out nails and hair; forcing consumption of watery foods, then constricting the genitals; and drugging.
Psychological tortures included social isolation; threatening to find and rape female relatives, or even the detainee himself; threatening permanent physical injury; controlling all of the individual's singular actions; and removal of individual identity to the point of forbidding calling one by name.
The writer of the handbook emphasizes that the methods described comes from actual accounts of experiences of al Qaeda members imprisoned throughout the Middle East.
"Let no one think that the aforementioned techniques are fabrications of our imagination, or that we copied them from spy stories," the manual says. "On the contrary, these are factual incidents in the prisons of Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and all other Arab countries."
It goes on to describe the degradation of veiled women, the rape of family members of an al Qaeda operative, and security personnel causing the wife of another to have a miscarriage.
It is unclear if the findings of the Senate Intelligence Committee completely match or corroborates what was found in the al Qaeda manual, but they do not seem to include waterboarding, the most controversial technique outlined by the committee.
CIA officials serving in the agency during the post-9/11 period have criticized the report, saying it is "deeply flawed" and denying that any detainees were tortured.
"It's inaccurate. It's a report that tends to apparently deal with salacious aspects of our interrogation program," said Charles Allen, former intelligence chief with the Department of Homeland Security and the CIA.