🎧 ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

The Central Intelligence Agency is waging an unusual campaign to make Gina Haspel its next leader, despite her polarizing past. Why do officers see her most controversial quality as her greatest asset?

On today’s episode:

• Adam Goldman, a reporter who covers the intelligence community for The Times.

• John Bennett, a former chief of the C.I.A.’s clandestine service who retired in 2013.

Background reading:

• Gina Haspel, President Trump’s nominee for C.I.A. director, is expected to face tough questions at a Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday about her involvement in torture and secret prisons after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

• Ms. Haspel offered to withdraw her nomination last week amid concerns that her role in the brutal interrogation of a Qaeda suspect in Thailand would scuttle her confirmation.

Apparently there’s a broader story to be told about Haspel than the one that’s been circulating recently. Perhaps she’s not as pro-torture as previously indicated?

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🎧 Season 2 Episode 2 The Road to Damascus | Revisionist History

Listened to Season 2 Episode 2 The Road to Damascus by Malcolm GladwellMalcolm Gladwell from Revisionist History

What happens when a terrorist has a change of heart? An Islamic militant, who left a trail of destruction in Europe, crosses over to work for the CIA. And then, one day, vanishes.

I’ve wanted to read both John Rizzo1 and Tim Weiner‘s2 books for a while. This is a good example of some of what I’ve apparently been missing here.

I can see this story being an awesome movie. In particular the crossing of the spy world, morality, and ethics have great potential for characters and some action.

References

1.
Rizzo J. Company Man: Thirty Years of Controversy and Crisis in the CIA. Simon and Schuster; 2014.
2.
Weiner T. Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA. Anchor; 2008.
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