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Matthew Alexander
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Blog Entries by Matthew Alexander

Interrogators Speak Out: America Is Morally Bipolar

(30) Comments | Posted April 27, 2012 | 8:04 PM

Another year, another round of the torture debate -- the pattern keeps repeating itself. Each year, the pro-torture advocates submit a new mouthpiece to put forth the arguments of former President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.

We've heard from...

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Rep. King: Meet Muslim-American Heroes

(10) Comments | Posted March 8, 2011 | 2:42 PM

As a former interrogator who worked alongside Muslim American heroes in Iraq, I feel I need to speak out against the attacks on Muslim Americans by Congress. We have to do something.

Representative Peter King began his hearings this week on the "radicalization" of America's Muslim communities.

I'd like...

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Misplaced Justice

(23) Comments | Posted October 24, 2010 | 7:59 PM

The case of Omar Khadr, the Canadian born detainee at Guantanamo Bay prison on trial by military commission for alleged crimes he committed at the age of fifteen, should be cause for American reflection on our values. There is talk that a plea bargain agreement is in the works,...

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Build the Mosque; Help Defeat al Qaeda

(41) Comments | Posted August 20, 2010 | 1:04 PM

The debate over the mosque in lower Manhattan has caused our country's political volcano to erupt. Republicans and Democrats, among them Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have argued that the designated site for the Cordoba House, a Muslim community center and mosque, is too close to hallowed ground. President Obama...

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The Cost of Torture on Returning Vets

(8) Comments | Posted June 21, 2010 | 2:52 PM

I've been following what happens to the soldiers who torture detainees after the soldiers' return from war. Some of you may remember that I wrote previously of Nancy Sherman's excellent book, The Untold War, about the effects on soldiers who do the right thing but still experience guilt. In light...

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The Untold War by Nancy Sherman: A Must Read for Vets and Those Who Support Them

(2) Comments | Posted March 16, 2010 | 10:09 AM

Yesterday I attended an author event at the National Security Law Center at Georgetown Law School. Nancy Sherman presented her book The Untold Story: Inside the Hearts, Minds, and Souls of Our Soldiers. One cannot overstate the importance of this book in furthering the cause of veterans.
...

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Dark Days

(118) Comments | Posted February 19, 2010 | 11:00 PM

The Justice Department finally released their review of the conduct of the authors of the Torture Memos (Yoo, Bradbury, and Bybee, primarily). The Office of Professional Responsibility found that the lawyers were guilty of professional misconduct. However, that conclusion was watered down, as Eric Licthblau and Scott Shane

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The FBI Is Getting it Right

(1) Comments | Posted February 3, 2010 | 1:38 PM

The FBI has had it figured out for a while. They are leveraging their experience interrogating multiple terrorists over the past two decades along with knowledge gained since 9/11. The result: Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the would-be Christmas Day bomber, is talking. This after critics of the FBI's decisions led...

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Music Matters

(5) Comments | Posted October 23, 2009 | 12:48 PM

My high school friends and I grew up on R.E.M.'s early albums - Murmur, Reckoning, Fables of the Reconstruction, and Life's Rich Pageant. And who can forget Pearl Jam's debut album Ten and Eddie Vedder's ominous vocals on hits like Jeremy and Alive? I have one particular memory, the...

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The Next Generation of American Interrogators

(1) Comments | Posted October 9, 2009 | 11:24 AM

I recently had the honor of speaking to a graduating class of U.S. Army Reserve and National Guard interrogators at Fort Devins, Massachusetts. After speaking to the students and instructors, I'm more convinced than ever that Americans are more than capable of successfully conducting interrogations without breaking the law or...

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McCain Backs Torture as Recruiting Tool for Al Qaida; Policy Led to the Deaths of U.S. Soldiers in Iraq

(3) Comments | Posted August 31, 2009 | 5:04 PM

Since writing an op-ed ("I'm Still Tortured by What I Saw in Iraq", Nov '08) for the Washington Post over nine months ago stating that the U.S. policy of torture and abuse was Al Qaida's number one recruiting tool and ultimately caused the deaths of hundreds, if not thousands,...

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Interrogation Elite

(18) Comments | Posted August 25, 2009 | 12:25 AM

President Obama's administration announced the creation of an elite interagency interrogation team to handle captured high-level terrorists. It was also announced that the team would be led by the FBI, but include professionals from other government agencies.

There are qualified, competent interrogators in all of our...

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How Obama's Speech Makes Us Safer

(2) Comments | Posted June 5, 2009 | 2:45 PM

For those looking for a concrete example of how President Obama's speech in Cairo makes us safer, let me offer one. His quoting of the Quran was monumental in bridging the divide between Western and Muslim cultures and ensuring our cooperation against extremists.

While conducting interrogations of high-level Al Qaida...

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Former Senior Interrogator in Iraq Dissects Cheney's Lies and Distortions

(536) Comments | Posted May 24, 2009 | 11:48 AM

As a senior interrogator in Iraq (and a former criminal investigator), there was a lesson I learned that served me well: there's more to be learned from what someone doesn't say than from what they do say. Let me dissect former Vice President Dick Cheney's speech on National Security using...

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If We're Going to Reveal More Memos

(85) Comments | Posted May 15, 2009 | 4:31 PM

Former VP Dick Cheney has requested the release of additional memos showing that torture and abuse saved American lives by preventing terrorist attacks. If the Obama administration decides to release these memos, then I suggest they also release statistics from Iraq showing the number of foreign fighters that were recruited...

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My Written Testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing

(20) Comments | Posted May 13, 2009 | 9:37 PM

This is my full testimony to the Committee. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse read a portion of this statement near the end of the hearing. I also recommend the reading of Ali Soufan's testimony, available on the Senate Judiciary Committee website.

Chairman Leahy and Esteemed Members of the Committee,

...
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Ann Coulter Insults Me and Hundreds of Combat Veterans

(613) Comments | Posted May 3, 2009 | 8:49 PM

On Hannity on April 30th, Ann Coulter criticized me for speaking out against torture, mocking my service and stated, "I did not know the Air Force had interrogators."

This is an insult to hundreds of Air Force combat veterans who were trained as interrogators by the U.S. Army as reported...

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An Officer's Obligation -- Say No to Torture

(201) Comments | Posted April 28, 2009 | 6:40 PM

"Once an Army is involved in war, there is a beast in every fighting man which begins tugging at its chains... A good officer must learn early on how to keep the beast under control both in his men and in himself."

-- General George C. Marshall

As...

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