Snowden Criticizes New CIA Pick for Involvement in Torture Program

Gina Haspel accused of participating in torture, destroying video tapes of interrogation sessions

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden criticized the Trump administration Tuesday for picking a CIA officer involved in the torture program to head the agency.

Gina Haspel, who ran a secret black site prison in Thailand during the Bush administration, was chosen to lead the CIA after the agency’s current head, Mike Pompeo, was moved to replace Rex Tillerson at the Department of State.

Responding to a tweet from the president announcing the pick, Snowden noted that Haspel had been involved in illegally covering up the torture program by destroying video tapes of brutal interrogations.

“The new CIA director was a key part of the torture program and its illegal cover-up,” Snowden said. “Her name was on the Top Secret order demanding the destruction of tapes to prevent them being seen by Congress. Incredible.”

Snowden also pointed out that the European Center for Constitutional Rights in 2017 asked Germany’s Public Prosecutor General to issue an arrest warrant for Haspel.

In a 2017 article from The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald tweeted by Snowden, Haspel is not only reported to have ran a torture site but to have had an “extensive role” in torturing detainees as well.

Haspel, who was never charged following the Obama administration’s decision not to prosecute Bush-era torturers, remained out of the spotlight for most of her career due to her undercover status.