Today, we’re launching our first crowd-funding campaign of 2015—in support of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism’s new reporting project on the Senate’s recently-released report on CIA torture.
The Bureau, which is partnering with the Rendition Project and long-time torture and secret prisons researchers Crofton Black and Steve Kostas, will be using the Senate’s report as a launching-off point to investigate many of the questions left unanswered due to heavy-handed censorship by the CIA and White House.
While the Senate released the executive summary of the torture report, there are still over 6,000 pages of the main report that remain classified. Even in the summary that was released, many names, dates, and places remain redacted. This project will seek to fill in many of these holes still left in the story.
For example, one of the immediate questions is what has happened to the 119 people who were put through the program? The Bureau has analyzed the list of names in the report and measured them against the people known to have been held in secret prison sites. There is a crossover of about 60 names, which means that about half of the people who went through the program are not known.
Who are they and what has happened to them? This is just one of the questions the CIA torture investigation project will attempt to answer.
We’ve partnered with the Bureau before on a previous crowd-funding project. In 2013 we raised over $25,000 to fund their “Naming the Dead” project, which aims to identify and catalog every single victim—militant or civilian—of American drone strikes in Pakistan.
Since then, the Bureau has become the go-to source on tracking covert drone strikes for media outlets around the world, and we hope this project will have similar success.
Rachel Oldroyd, managing editor of the Bureau said:
The use of black site prisons and the enhanced interrogation techniques were a dark period for the CIA. Years of research by journalists and NGOs brought some of the actions into the public light, but even those people who had dedicated years to investigating the secret program were shocked by what appeared in the summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report. The report has provided a much greater understanding of the program, but it has raised many unanswered questions. It is vital that the public are given a full view of what went on and as importantly what happened to those prisoners who were put through the program.
You can go here to donate.