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Former CIA director calls Cheney 'vice president for torture'

[JURIST] A former director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) [official website] has called US Vice President Dick Cheney [official website] a "vice president for torture," saying that the Bush administration condones and even approves torture policies. Admiral Stansfield Turner, a Carter administration appointee who led the CIA from 1977 to 1981, spoke to Britain's ITV News [ITV report] and said Cheney was damaging America's reputation by overseeing torture policies for potential terrorist suspects. Turner said that torturing to elicit information from terror suspects is immoral, not effective, and encourages the country's adversaries to do the same. The admiral stated, "We have crossed the line into dangerous territory. I am embarrassed that the USA has a vice president for torture. I think it is just reprehensible. [Cheney] advocates torture, what else is it? I just don't understand how a man in that position can take such a stance." Turner said he does not believe repeated reports by President Bush that the US does not condone torture. Earlier this month, US senators affirmed their support [JURIST report] for an anti-torture amendment [JURIST document] sponsored by Sen. John McCain [official website], but the White House has threatened to veto the provision [JURIST report] if it is passed by the US House of Representatives. The UK Press Association has more.

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