President Donald Trump says while he believes the practice of waterboarding suspects works, he will give Defense Secretary James Mattis who disagrees, the final say on whether to use it. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) The decision on whether to use the controversial interrogation technique known as waterboarding will be up to Defense Secretary James Mattis, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday (January 27). "He has stated publicly that he does not necessarily believe in torture or waterboarding or however you want to define it," Trump said during a news conference at the White House with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May. "I don't necessarily agree, but I will tell you he will override because I am giving him that power." Trump's commetns comes days after U.S. officials said he may order a review that could lead to bringing back a CIA program for holding terrorism suspects in secret overseas "black site" prisons where interrogation techniques often condemned as torture were used. The black sites were used to detain suspects captured in President George W. Bush's "war on terrorism" after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and were formally closed by former President Barack Obama. Any return to the Bush administration's initial anti-terrorism tactics - including secret prisons and interrogation methods considered torture under international law - would likely alienate key U.S. allies in the fight against militant groups like al Qaeda and Islamic State. Trump vowed during the 2016 election campaign to resume waterboarding and a "hell of a lot worse" because even if torture does not work, "they deserve it anyway."