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Even some of those who have supported the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee's torture report agree that it could damage American interests abroad.America was at a disadvantage compared with the Soviet Union, it was said, because it had to operate with its hands tied behind its back, with congressional interference, media exposure and all the other trappings of a democracy.It pursued an arms race with the United States that consumed by some estimates 10 percent to nearly 20 percent of its GDP.The CIA claims that its programs after 9/11 worked very well and suggests that the best judge of this should be itself.It became an article of faith for many that the committee, set up in 1975 in the wake of the Watergate scandal, destroyed the CIA and weakened America.As for the broader consequences, a few years after the Church Committee, the revolt in Afghanistan, dissent in Eastern Europe and dysfunction in the Soviet Union – all assisted by U.S. intelligence agencies – caused the unraveling of the Soviet empire.
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