An Associated Press wire report getting widespread publication today says that the Mumbai police have determined that the ISI, Pakistan’s intelligence agency, planned the July train bombings and had them executed by members of Lashkar-e-Toiba and the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). The police were forthright about their methods:
Mumbai police Commissioner A.N. Roy said an intensive investigation that included using truth serum on suspects revealed that Pakistan’s top spy agency had “masterminded” the bombings.
Roy said Pakistan’s Directorate of Inter Services Intelligence, or ISI, began planning the attacks in March and later provided training to those who carried out the bombings in Bahawalpur, Pakistan.
“The terror plot was ISI sponsored and executed by Lashkar-e-Tayyaba operatives with help from the Students Islamic Movement of India,” Roy said at a news conference to announce the completion of the investigation. (…)
Police cracked the case after tracking down a suspicious call from Mumbai to the Nepal border region, Roy said. There they picked up one of the suspects, who led them to others.
However, Roy said that many of the suspects had been trained to resist interrogation and only the use of truth serum helped tie loose ends together.
I sure hope that none of the suspects were picked up by mistake, because it must have gotten very ugly indeed in that interrogation room. As for this “truth serum,” it may ring a bell — it was one of the “methods” discussed in the first wave of pro-torture proposals immediately after September 11. Here’s what Slate’s “Explainer” feature clarified at the time: Continue reading