Morning Buzz: Dec. 11, 2007

New details are coming out that waterboarding—a controversial interrogation technique that many deem as torture—was used on a top al Qaeda official and approved by top levels of the U.S. government. This information comes as CIA Director Michael Hayden prepares for two days of questioning by House and Senate intelligence panels about the destruction of videotaped interrogations.

+ More

New details are coming out that waterboarding—a controversial interrogation technique that many deem as torture—was used on a top al Qaeda official and approved by top levels of the U.S. government. This information comes as CIA Director Michael Hayden prepares for two days of questioning by House and Senate intelligence panels about the destruction of videotaped interrogations. 

Forty-five people were killed in a car bomb attack today in the Algerian capital, Algiers. The blasts heavily damaged a U.N. building; 12 U.N. employees are still missing. Authorities suspect the North African wing of al Qaeda may have been responsible for the attack.

After yesterday's Supreme Court decision allowing judges some leniency in federal sentencing guidelines, 19,500 federal inmates—most of them black—are hoping that the U.S. Sentencing Commission will make its recent easing of crack cocaine punishment guidelines retroactive. There has been a long-criticized disparity in sentencing for crack and powder cocaine offenses.  Crack is predominantly used by blacks, powder cocaine predominantly by whites.