The E&P Pub: No Torture Needed -- Cookies Did the Job Fascinating piece coming in tomorrow's TIME magazine. Reporter Bobby Ghosh writes, The most successful interrogation of an al-Qaeda operative by U.S. officials required no sleep deprivation, no slapping or walling and no waterboarding. All it took to soften up Abu Jandal, who had been closer to Osama bin Laden than any other terrorist ever captured, was a handful of sugar-free cookies. Former interrogator/member of the FBI Ali Soufan, who testified to Congress last month, tells TIME: He was a diabetic ... We had showed him respect, and we had done this nice thing for him .... So he started talking to us instead of giving us lectures. Ghosh points out, Defenders of the Bush program, most notably Cheney, say the use of waterboarding produced actionable intelligence that helped the U.S. disrupt terrorist plots. But the experiences of officials like Soufan suggest that the utility of torture is limited at best and counterproductive at worst.