May 4, 2012

Former CIA official Jose A. Rodriguez Jr. [“How we really got bin Laden,” op-ed, May 1] boasted about his role in abusive acts such as waterboarding, a practice that has been successfully prosecuted by the U.S. government. Now, to justify his deeds, Mr. Rodriguez is trying to revise history.

Experienced, professional interrogators (which Mr. Rodriguez never was) know that torture and cruel treatment do not work. We should listen to those who know their craft and who have effectively rebutted Mr. Rodriguez’s claims.

Yet public opinion polls show that the United States may be turning into a nation that accepts torture, at least in some cases. That would be Mr. Rodriguez’s most tragic legacy. My hope is that his assertions will lead many Americans to demand full disclosure of documentation relating to the CIA’s detention and interrogation program, starting with the release of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s report on its in-depth investigation of the program. Only with all the facts can Americans reach an informed consensus about torture.

Gay Gardner, Springfield

The writer is a member of the steering committee of the Washington Region Religious Campaign Against Torture.