'It’s irresponsible the way they throw these words around'

Dick Cheney does not appreciate the tone adopted by the likes of Don Davies.

“Now we have a lot of people running around using language like ‘torture.’ I heard one of your members of Parliament saying we used it on hundreds of people at Guantanamo. Not true,” said Mr. Cheney, who became a lightning rod for critics of the Bush administration, particularly over the war on Iraq, during his eight years as vice-president.

“We did not use torture. … We did what we absolutely needed to do. We had an obligation to gather intelligence to ensure that we didn’t get struck again, and I think it worked,” he said, noting that Mr. Mohammed, in particular, produced a “gold mine” of information “after he’d been through the process.”

The utility of waterboarding Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is a matter of some debate. So far as the hunt for Osama bin Laden, for instance, John McCain has said that torturing Mr. Mohammed actually produced false and misleading information.