Wednesday, April 22, 2009

PHR Responds to Release of Senate Torture Report

Yesterday, the Senate Armed Services Committee released their long-awaited full report, Inquiry into the Treatment of Detainees in U.S. Custody (large PDF file). In coming days I will be exploring its many revelations and mysteries. One thing the report does is validate my own earlier stories about the timeline of Bush administration forays into torture of "war on terror" prisoners beginning prior to the writing of any Office of Legal Counsel memorandum justifying it, with overtures by the Defense Department to the Joint Personnel Recovery Agency as early as December 2001.

The report also amply documents the use of medical personnel, including psychiatrists and psychologists, as "control officers" for the torture sessions. Additionally, it appears OLC cherry-picked the research efforts of military psychologists for the SERE program and used them to justify the use of horrific techniques, such as waterboarding.

Below is a YouTube video released by Physicians for Human Rights, Tortured Logic: How Medical Professionals Rationalized the Bush Administration's Torture Program. Nataniel Raymond, Director of PHR's Campaign Against Torture, responds to the release of the Senate Armed Forces Committee report on detainee abuse.

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