The second prisoner, Mohammed al-Shoroeiya, said he was subjected to similar treatment in Afghanistan, but he also described being strapped to a board that was mounted on posts and could be dipped backward so that his feet were elevated above his head. “Then there is the water pouring,” he said, according to the report. “They start to pour water to the point where you feel like you are suffocating.”
A 2004 investigation by the CIA inspector general documents other abuses in Afghanistan but makes no mention of a waterboard. The findings of a multi-year probe by the Senate Intelligence Committee have yet to be released.
The CIA maintains that only three prisoners were ever waterboarded: Khalid Sheik Mohammed, Abu Zubaida and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri. Former agency officials said that those sessions took place at secret CIA sites outside Afghanistan and that the agency restricted the use of such techniques to controlled environments far from the war zone.
The documents recovered from the offices of Gaddafi’s former spy chief and foreign minister, Musa Kusa, trace the U.S. embrace of Gaddafi as a counterterrorism ally during the brief window after he renounced his chemical weapons program but before the United States turned on him again last year.
A 2004 message describing the CIA’s plans to open a station in Tripoli was sent by “Mr. Steve,” an apparent reference to Steve Kappes, the agency’s former deputy director. Another fax offered to help pay for Libya to charter a plane to pick up a prisoner in Hong Kong — a remarkable accommodation for a country accused of plotting the 1988 bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland.
The pages outline often-elaborate plans for delivering to Gaddafi’s government prisoners who were part of an Islamist group that fought for his overthrow. The documents include requests for direct CIA access to the prisoners and assurances that they wouldn’t be mistreated.
“Our officers cannot condone any significant physical or physiological” abuse, said a March 2004 document that describes plans for “the capture and rendition” of Libyan Islamic Fighting Group leader Abdullah Al-Sadiq “and his pregnant (4 months) wife.”
Julie Tate contributed to this report.