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Torture


Yesterday, my local news station spent nearly fifteen minutes on Paris Hilton. Your news outlet probably did the same. We had a national dialogue on Paris Hilton -- which (Americans being what they are) soon became, in private, a national dialogue on the do-ability of Paris Hilton. That's what we care about, y'see. What we don't care about is torture -- torture committed by Americans and funded by taxpayers. Here are a couple of stories your local news outlet probably did not cover: Fort Huachuca runs a torture school: Two Roman Catholic priests, Jesuit Fr. Steve Kelly and Franciscan Fr. Louie Vitale, are willing to go to prison to expose the fact that young soldiers at Fort Huachuca are being trained to torture. Further, one of those young soldiers has already committed suicide after going into the prisoners' cages as an interrogator in northern Iraq...

[33549]



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Torture

Joseph Cannon, Cannonfire

June 8, 2007

Yesterday, my local news station spent nearly fifteen minutes on Paris Hilton. Your news outlet probably did the same. We had a national dialogue on Paris Hilton -- which (Americans being what they are) soon became, in private, a national dialogue on the do-ability of Paris Hilton.

That's what we care about, y'see.

What we don't care about is torture -- torture committed by Americans and funded by taxpayers. Here are a couple of stories your local news outlet probably did not cover:

Fort Huachuca runs a torture school:

Two Roman Catholic priests, Jesuit Fr. Steve Kelly and Franciscan Fr. Louie Vitale, are willing to go to prison to expose the fact that young soldiers at Fort Huachuca are being trained to torture. Further, one of those young soldiers has already committed suicide after going into the prisoners' cages as an interrogator in northern Iraq.
Alyssa Peterson, 27, was a Mormon missionary who wanted to do something good with her life. She was good at languages and thought by joining the military, she could serve humanity. She was trained as an interrogator at Fort Huachuca and sent to northern Iraq. She was assigned as an interrogator to a US air base in Tal Afar.

"After twice in the cages, she became suicidal," Vitale said. "She did end up committing suicide."

Peterson's suicide on Sept. 15, 2003, was not revealed by the military. It was exposed by news reporters using the freedom of information act. This was before the torture atrocities of Abu Ghraib were exposed.
Psychologists play a large role in American torture: Robert Lifton, as I recall, once did a study on the Nazi doctors. How is it that men (and women) trained to heal could become accessories to evil?
Two years ago, after a leaked report from the International Committee of the Red Cross criticizing the role of health professionals in U.S. interrogations, the American Psychological Association formed its Presidential Task Force on Psychological Ethics and National Security (PENS). There were nine voting members. Six of them were connected to the military. At the time, the identities of the panelists were secret. The PENS panel endorsed the continued participation of psychologists in military interrogations.
Col. Morgan Banks, as Mark Benjamin of Salon.com first reported, is "the senior Army Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape psychologist, responsible for the training and oversight of all Army SERE psychologists, who include those involved in SERE training. He provides technical support and consultation to all Army psychologists providing interrogation support." Another task-force member, Capt. Bryce Lefever, served at the Navy SERE school from 1990 to ĺ93, then became the "Special Forces Task Force psychologist to Afghanistan in 2002, where he lectured to interrogators and was consulted on various interrogation techniques."

Also included was R. Scott Shumate, who was the chief operational psychologist for the CIAĺs counterterrorism center until 2003. He then became head of the Pentagon Counterintelligence Field Activityĺs Behavioral Sciences directorate, overseeing psychologist participation in the interrogation process at Guantanamo.
The full import of this story did not become clear to me until a reader "turned on all the lights," as it were. The American Psychological Association is a private organization. (Perhaps dr. elsewhere can give us more information on what it does.) What the hell are these military officers doing shaping an important APA report?

This is an abuse of the profession as gross as anything that occurred in the Soviet Union. As my reader put it:
In this case it appears that we have military officers directly involved in manipulating a civilian organization within the USA. Possibly to provide quasi legal or ethical coverage, for acts that were neither.
Commandeering the American Psychological Association -- transforming a private professional group into an instrument of state power -- is, in and of itself, a "psyop," a psychological operation directed against the American people.

So why does the American Psychological Association refuse to pass a resolution barring members from participating in interrogations? The American Medical Association has done just that. So has the American Psychiatric Association.

I suppose we should mention, once more, that the vast majority of the poor slobs at Gitmo are not members of Al Qaeda. When Afghanistan was invaded, the American military offered big rewards to any farmers who would finger "terrorists" -- and as a result, locals desperate for some cash pointed toward whoever happened to be the least-popular guy in town. Real Al Qaeda bad guys were allowed to fly (fly!) into safe refuges in Pakistan -- as the film 911: Press for Truth makes clear.

And now, back to Paris Hilton. Hot or not? Discuss...


:: Article nr. 33549 sent on 09-jun-2007 16:56 ECT

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Link: cannonfire.blogspot.com/2007/06/torture.html



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