A reader notes the role of American psychologists in devising the torture techniques of the last administration. It seems to me essential that the APA discover who these individuals were and enforce baseline professional ethics. From the OPR:
1. P. 40: “The CIA's perception that a more aggressive approach to interrogation was needed accelerated the ongoing development by the CIA of a formal set of EITs [enhanced interrogation techniques] by CIA contractor/psychologists, some of whom had been involved in the United States military's Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) training program for military personnel.” (The report goes on to describe the history of the SERE program, which thereby highlights the irony, well-described by David J. Morris, of our employing tactics that we learned from “ . . . German, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and North Vietnamese military in past conflicts,” causing consternation among U.S. military brass because they were repeatedly resulting in false confession by American GIs.)
2. P.41: “The CIA psychologists eventually proposed the following twelve EITs to be used in the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah . . .” The report then lists torture techniques including “walling”, cramped confinement (with the option of adding an insect to the box), stress positions, sleep deprivation for up to 11 days at a time, waterboarding, and a twelfth technique that is redacted.
3. P.62: “Over the next few days, [REDACTED] sent [REDACTED] additional information relating to the proposed interrogation, including a psychological assessment of Abu Zubaydah and a report from CIA psychologists asserting that the use of harsh interrogation techniques in SERE training had resulted in no adverse long-term effects.”
4. P. 89: [Regarding Abu Zubaydah] “According to the CIA OIG Report, independent contractor psychologists were assigned to lead the interrogation team . . . psychologist/interrogators administered all of the interrogation sessions involving EITs . . .”
5. P.90: [Regarding the waterboarding of Abu Zubaydah] “ . . . unlike the method described in the DOJ memorandum, which involved a damp cloth and small applications of water, the CIA interrogators continuously applied large volumes of water to the subject's mouth and nose. One of the psychologists involved in the interrogation program reportedly told CIA OIG that the technique was different because it was for real’ and was therefore more poignant and convincing.’”
6. P.91: [Regarding Abd Al-Rahim Al-Nashiri] “ . . . psychologist/interrogators immediately began using EITs, and Al-Nashiri reportedly provided lead information about other terrorists during the first day of interrogation. On the twelfth day, the psychologist/interrogators applied the waterboard on two occasions, without achieving any results. Other EITs continued to be used, and the subject eventually become [sic] compliant.”
7. P.94: [Regarding Khalid Sheik Muhammed] “The CIA OIG also reported that on one occasion, one of the CIA psychologist/ interrogators threatened KSM by saying that if anything else happens in the United States, 'We're going to kill your children."'
8. P.133, footnote 99: “The conditions of [Office of Legal Counsel attorney Dan] Levin’s approval [of waterboarding] were: . . . (2) a physician and psychologist would approve the use of the technique before each session, would be present for the session, and would have the authority to stop the session at any time; (3) there would be no material change in the subject’s medical and psychological condition . . . “
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