Following the release of the controversial CIA report on interrogation techniques, Vice President Joe Biden called it a “badge of honor.”
“No, I think it’s a badge of honor,” Biden said when asked at POLITICO’s Women Rule Summit whether the sharply critical report by the Senate Intelligence Committee is a “black stain.”“Every country, every country, has engaged in activities somewhere along the line that it has not been proud of,” he added.
“Think about it, name me another country that’s prepared to stand and say, ‘This was a mistake, we should not have done what we’ve done and we will not do it again,'” Biden said to applause from the 400 people in attendance for the daylong event that featured a number of panels on promoting women in politics, business and other professions.
Biden said America will be the stronger for saying, “We made a mistake, we’re exposing it.”
“That will strengthen us worldwide,” he said. “It will not weaken us … it will make it more difficult for the mistake to ever to be able to be made again.”
But not everyone was so chipper about the release of the CIA report. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) said the report “will cause violence and deaths.”
“I think this is a terrible idea,” Rogers said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “Foreign leaders have approached the government and said, ‘You do this, this will cause violence and deaths.’ Our own intelligence community has assessed that this will cause violence and deaths.”
The White House was fully supportive of the release of the report despite security risks associated with releasing inflammatory details about U.S. intelligence programs. WH spokesman Josh Earnest said Obama “strongly supports the release of the declassified summary” and that it was an opportunity to “be clear about what American values are and be clear about the fact that the administration believes . . . that something like this should never happen again.”
Prior to the release of the report, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel warned that military forces were on “high alert everywhere in the world.”
“We don’t have any specific information or intelligence to show that there is anything out there that would lead us to do anything beyond high alert right now,” Hagel told reporters in Baghdad. “But, yes, we were concerned about the content of that report being declassified.”