“Life lie,” somehow worse than a regular lie.

Online translator discussions have proposed English equivalents such as grand illusion, sustained delusion or “a self-deception on which your life is based,” as in Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman. A sham existence, living a lie.

German media descriptions of the C.I.A. malfeasance documented in a classified 6300-page Senate report investigating post-9/11 torture by the U.S.A. said, among other things, that the Bush administration’s assertion that their torture prevented attacks on the U.S. was a Lebenslüge.

Other items in the suppressed report, as described in German media:

  • Some of the worst lying the agency or agencies did was to Congress.
  • Often people told interrogators what they knew, and then they were tortured.
  • The C.I.A. did not even follow its own, light, regulations about maltreating prisoners.

(LAY bens LOO gah.)

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