On June 2, government officials said that the White House started returning copies of a 2014report compiled by Congress which describes the harsh interrogation and detention programs by the CIA. The fact that the White House has done this could be seen as the Trump administration being proactive since the President has made no secret of wanting to bring back torture. In fact, during Donald Trump's campaign he said that he was willing to bring back "torture" and "a hell of a lot worse."

Senator Burr moves to 'secure' torture report

Senate officials confirmed that Sen.

Richard Burr (R-N.C.) -- who is the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee -- was the one who made the request. Sen. Burr apparently emailed Reuters telling them that he had directed his staff to get those copies in order to protect sensitive information such as sources and the methods the CIA used. In his letter, he also mentioned that his request was standard for all classified and compartmented information.

Originally, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Cali.) -- who chaired the committee in 2014 and is still a member, intended to have the report releasable under the Freedom of Information Act by asking that it be distributed to multiple agencies within the executive branch. Her recent response to Sen.

Burr's actions was one of disappointment, but she also said that no one, not even Burr, had the authority to erase history which she believes was the reason he made his request.

Democrats fight Republicans over CIA torture transparency

Congress is exempt from releasing information that is in their possession and so the view is that copies of the report will end up in congressional vaults and therfore out of reach.

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) also expressed similar disappointment with Burr, with the agreement that they needed to make the report accessible for them to learn from their mistakes. In December 2014, an executive summary of the report had been declassified which caused Burr to respond in his determination to keep the report secret.

During the first term of President Obama's administration, it was reported that the CIA had an active torture program under the Bush administration.The former Bush White House was under severe public scrutiny for it. Over the years, many neo-conservatives leftover from that administration expressed their support for the torture program, even using their own term for it which is "enhanced interrogation techniques". Senators like John McCain (R-AZ.) have been critical of the program saying that America does not torture as he was when he was a prisoner during the Vietnam War.

One copy left

President Trump has not only said that he would bring back torture but has also re-employed former CIA officials who were central to the torture program as Blasting News initially reported.

Since the summary had been declassified in 2014, the American Civil Liberties Union sued to have the full report released but their suit was denied by the U.S. courts who said that it was exempt from the Freedom of Information Act because it was written by Congress. In any case, Senator Burr's efforts might be in vain as there is, however, one copy of the report that was preserved by former President Obama for his presidential archive. It's unknown as of this writing what steps Senator Burr will take to secure that report as well.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!