WASHINGTON: President George W. Bush finally is acknowledging that the CIA runs secret prisons overseas and saying that tough interrogation forced terrorist leaders to reveal plots to attack the United States and its allies.

Bush said Wednesday that 14 suspects — including the mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and architects of the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole and the U.S. Embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998 — had been turned over to the Defense Department and moved to the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for trial.

Bush said the CIA program “has helped us to take potential mass murderers off the streets before they were able to kill.” Releasing information declassified just hours earlier, Bush said the capture of one terrorist months after the Sept. 11 attacks had led to the capture of another and then another, and had revealed planning for attacks using airplanes, car bombs and anthrax. […]

Extracted from the International Herald Tribune.