Skip to main content

In a hearing Thursday to dismiss charges in the second war crimes trial at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp in Cuba, U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Diane M. Zierhoffer, a licensed psychologist who had ordered the torture of a juvenile detainee, refused to testify under Section 831, Article 31 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Article 31 prohibits compulsory self-incrimination as a right under the Fifth Amendment. And the judge in the case ruled that a Pentagon official cannot participate in the trial by military tribunal of Mohammed Jawad, a detainee captured in Afghanistan and held in extrajudicial detention at Bagram Theater Internment Facility and at Gitmo for the past five and a half years.

The official, Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas Hartmann, the legal adviser to the tribunals, had previously been barred from the trial of Salim Hamdan, Osama bin Laden's driver, who was convicted last month of "providing material support" to al Qaeda. In both instances, according to the Associated Press, the general was kept out of the trials because of his political interference. Hartmann was eager, testified former prosecutor Air Force Col. Morris Davis, to keep Jawad's case at the top of the queue because it would be a grabber for Americans. The Pakistani-born Jawad, who was 16 or 17 at the time of his capture, allegedly tossed a grenade at a U.S. convoy in December 2002.

The judge did not grant the motion to throw out the charges against Jawad. The motion was based on claims that Jawad had been tortured physically at Bagram, where his nose may have been broken, and by means of threats, linguistic and physical isolation, as well as sleep deprivation at Gitmo. Twice, Jawad was kept in extreme isolation for 30 days. Sleep deprivation and prolonged periods of isolation are widely recognized as torture by non-governmental organizations, human rights groups, governments, the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the U.S. State Department, and federal courts as well as state courts.

Although the Bush administration, in the person of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, had expressly said the Geneva Conventions did not apply in the case of the Gitmo detainees, a perspective later overruled by the U.S. Supreme Court, the approved torture techniques were to be used only when there was a good reason to believe that the detainee possessed "critical intelligence," clearly not the case for the young Jawad, who was not being held on terrorism charges. Rather, the accusation against him then, as now, was that, in effect, if he committed the act he was charged with, he had behaved like any soldier in a war zone. (Jawad has always denied throwing any grenades.)

The torture practices used against Jawad can cause physical deterioration, panic, rage, loss of appetite, lethargy, paranoia, hallucinations, self-mutilation, cognitive dysfunction, disorientation and mental breakdowns, any of which, alone or in combination, can spur the detainee to give interrogators more information than he might otherwise surrender. The techniques had a particularly severe effect on Jawad, who attempted suicide on Christmas Day, 2003.

It is especially egregious that these practices were carried out on a juvenile. But worst of all, according to a source familiar with the case who spoke with Daily Kos but asked not to be identified, the torture was ordered by Lieut. Colonel Diane M. Zierhoffer, a PhD psychologist operating as part of Gitmo's Behavioral Science Consultation Team (BSCT). BSCTs are not mental health providers. Their primary mission is to support military interrogations. Their role has been widely criticized by prominent psychologists and psychoanalysts such as Stephen Soldz and Steven Reisner.

According to an unclassified but highly censored document that the anonymous source has read, when an interrogator came to Zierhoffer and said he thought the techniques being applied to Jawad should be temporarily halted because they were causing him to dissociate, to crack up without providing good information, she recommended that the torture continue. This was a clear violation of the Convention Against Torture, and a clear violation of Principle A of the American Psychological Association, the first sentence of which reads: Psychologists strive to benefit those with whom they work and take care to do no harm. At the time, Zierhoffer was still a member of the APA, which she joined in 1997. Her membership lapsed in 2005.

According to a story by Adam Zagorin and Michael Duffy in the June 12, 2005, issue of Time magazine, Inside the Interrogation of Prisoner 63, Army Major John Leso is named in the logs as the psychologist supervising Mohammed al-Qatani’s interrogation, who many believed to be the "20th hijacker." According to the interrogation logs, Qatani (Prisoner 63) almost died during his questioning. Charges of war crimes and terrorist acts against him were dismissed May 13 but he remains at Gitmo.

As recently as 2007, Major Leso was stationed at Fort Rucker, Alabama, which includes the Survival, Evasion, Resistance, Escape school (SERE) for Army Aviation, whose purpose is to train soldiers to resist torture. Government sources and reports show that SERE training was reverse-engineered as a means to break enemy soldiers. Leso is still a member of APA and could be disciplined by the organization if it so chose. Zierhoffer, having left the organization in 2005, cannot.

The significance of that date is that it was the year of the first disclosures, in The New York Times, about Red Cross reports of psychological torture involving psychologists. The APA consequently formed a task force called PENS (President’s Task Force on Psychological Ethics and National Security). Its report, subsequently discredited by ethicists inside and outside psychology as a whitewash, allowed psychologists to participate in interrogations if they were "legal," which was defined as being in compliance with Bush administration interpretations of what constitutes legal. Did Zierhoffer resign her membership because of the increased scrutiny?  

As reported here Tuesday in Torture Generates Turmoil at the APA, the organization has faced growing concern about its stance on torture, and particularly its unwillingness to say that psychologists should not participate in BSCTs when violation of international law is occurring or likely to occur.

Today, Leonard S. Rubenstein, president of Physicians for Human Rights, which operates the Campaign Against Torture, sent a letter to the president and vice president of the APA:

The emerging information is alarming because it shows not only the involvement of individual psychologists in abusive CIA and military interrogations, but an institutionalized program of psychological torture supervised by teams of CIA psychologists and the Pentagon’s Behavioral Science Consultation Teams (BSCT), staffed predominantly by psychologists.

To date, the APA has been muted about these revelations. It has twice passed resolutions reaffirming its opposition to torture and ill treatment but the Association has never explicitly condemned the operations and policies authorizing such abuses, nor concluded its ethics investigations of psychologists who have engaged in such conduct. ...

It is past time for the APA to explicitly and categorically reject the use of psychologists and psychology to perpetrate a widespread, command-ordered program of torture and abuse. General statements opposing torture fail to fully address the reality of what psychologists have done.

The letter asks APA to take six steps: acknowledge that psychologists were "deeply and structurally involved" in detainee torture and degrading treatment; condemn such behavior as unethical; demand that Congress set up an independent commission to investigate the role of military and intelligence psychologists in torture; appoint a blue-ribbon APA panel to review the role of psychologists in torture; initiate disciplinary measures against any APA member alleged to have participated in torture or cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment; reform APA's ethical rules.

Said PHR CEO A. Frank Donaghue:

"The APA must hold psychologists who were involved in the abuse and torture of detainees in U.S. custody accountable. The APA should implement critical reforms to its ethics code.  On the top the list is ensuring that psychologists be required to adhere to the highest ethical standards, rather than be allowed to descend to the lowest interpretations of the law."

Each new revelation that emerges in the cases of the detainees that the Bush administration tried to turn into non-persons rekindles the rage of anyone who believes in civilized behavior and the rule of law. But none is more chilling than the knowledge that medical professionals and psychologists willingly participated in violating the most basic human rights, and that, in the latter case, their leading professional organization has yet to deliver clear and firm objections against that behavior.  

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:25 PM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  This just gets worse and worse (39+ / 0-)

    I am leaning more and more toward resigning from the APA. This is not why I entered this professsion, and certainly not why I pay hundreds per year in dues.

    "All of us -- as citizens and as a government -- have a moral responsibility to each other, and what we do together matters." J.R.E., 1/30/08

    by MaskedKat on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:27:38 PM PDT

  •  Meteor Blades (18+ / 0-)

    is putting in work TODAY!

    The Low Road Express: So low, an ant would be too big for it.

    by sluggahjells on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:27:51 PM PDT

  •  How ironic that the good doctor used (20+ / 0-)

    her rights under the law.  Hopefully come January 2009, we can reinstate some of the rights that have been taken away from the American People.

    After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music. - Aldous Huxley

    by Throwing Stones on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:30:45 PM PDT

  •  asdf (11+ / 0-)

    This whole thing is just so horrible that American's don't want to hear it.  They are putting their fingers in their ears and singing "la la la".  If they ignore it then they don't have to admit that their representatives allowed torture - not only allowed it but condoned it.  It is so anti-american that it is easier to pretend it didn't happen.

    If you are in DC see Man of La Mancha at the Church Street Theater opening 7/10/08

    by BDA in VA on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:32:36 PM PDT

  •  This is so fucking disgusting. (20+ / 0-)

    I'm a psychologist (albeit an experimental psychologist), and it just freaking galls me that anyone who would purport to spend at least 5 years studying things about how people work would get within 5 miles of this administration.

    And it really pisses me off that the APA won't stand up.  Makes me gladder and gladder I'm a member of APS instead.

    It's just disgusting.

    Je suis inondé de déesses

    by Marc in KS on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:33:08 PM PDT

    •  I'm a counseling psychologist in academia (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, Marc in KS, kyril, BYw

      with an emphasis on training, supervision and practice and completely agree.  I quit APA years ago when it became obvious they sold their soul to the insurance companies etc. for legitimacy and greed.

      I almost wish I still belonged so I could protest, vote then resign.

      Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

      by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:47:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Good for you. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        juslikagrzly

        APS was pretty much born from people who wanted a society for scientific psychology; APA had more and more become a tool for those who were practicing clinicians, not for clinical researchers or psychological scientists.

        I joined APS just about the time it was born.  I have a friend from grad school who is one of the "founding" members.  I wasn't as quick as she...

        Je suis inondé de déesses

        by Marc in KS on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:36:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  well, I'm glad APS exists but (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Marc in KS

          I consider myself much more of a clinician than a scientist.  I really don't like doing research and if we're going to teach people to do psychotherapy we damn well better know how to do it. Very few academic psychologists actually practice.

          Anyway, I've read your comments for years now and never realized we were in similar fields.  Glad to meet you.  

          Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

          by juslikagrzly on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 01:12:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  My deal about research and practice is (0+ / 0-)

            that practice simply must be informed by the data.  

            I actually had a graduate class of to-be PhD clinical psychologists argue with me that they didn't need to know how people thought (I teach cognitive).  I asked them what they planned on basing their clinical judgments upon, "the fact that people like to talk to you??"

            And they all seemed absolutely fine with that.  I was freaked out.  I pressed them and asked, "Would you like your doctor to recommend surgery because he 'feels' that would be the best thing for you?"  That shamed them a little, but I'm still convinced that many in clinical practice actively disdain the science, and that sort of scares me.  People who disdain the science are people like Bass & Davis (and gullible therapists) who cause god-knows how much damage and pain because of their ignorance and arrogance.

            That's why I think the science is important, or at least having respect for the idea that what I do on the couch comes from something other than my own personality and good wishes for the welfare of my clients.

            I like the scientist-pratitioner model a lot.  You don't have to do the research, but you should be aware of the literature, be able to understand it, and be able to incorporate its results into your practice.  That's all I mean.  

            I don't like doing research all that much, either -- I teach at a small liberal arts college and am a teacher much more than a scientist.  But science is the only method we have for determining what works and what doesn't, and I would like to think that every therapist believes that.

            I've been reading your comments for years, too.  This is a strange community, isn't it?  I'm glad to meet you, too.

            Je suis inondé de déesses

            by Marc in KS on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 02:43:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Agree mostly :-). I can come across as (0+ / 0-)

              anti-science simply because I feel like a voice in the wilderness sometimes.  I'm not at all anti-science...would just like a broader definition.  And I do read and keep up with current literature.  What really chaps me though is the insistence on ESTs. I mentioned in another diary that meta-analyses are showing no differences at all between therapies, which brings us straight back to common factors as the agent of change.  I'm lucky enough to work with someone who does this kind of research and believe me, it is rigorous research.

              I relish the courses I had in cognitive/personality etc. and try to stay up with current research.  You're so right so ask your students that question.  And I think what I tell my students is important to--no matter what you know or how much you know it is YOU sitting there across from the client.  YOU are your best therapeutic tool along with the relationship you build with your client.  Scientific knowledge in and of itself does not make a good therapist.  I'm not sure our current model of training can ensure that we turn out good clinicians.  Good scientists maybe, but it's a crap shoot on the good clinicians.

              Where I believe I stray from the current state of scientific knowledge in our field is that we cannot hold to the medical model of research.  What we study is inferred from behavior very unlike looking at how a cancer cell reacts to a new drug.  We must teach our students critical thinking skills, clinical judgment, ethics, and help them understand that they view their clients through the lens of their own experiences, biases and assumptions.

              Thanks for the conversation - hope we have more.

              Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

              by juslikagrzly on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 04:08:24 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  The descent into hell (13+ / 0-)

    has  been completed. We now have professionals of the caliber of those at Auschwitz. Sue me for invoking Godwin's law.

    Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read. Marx (no not that one, Groucho)

    by marketgeek on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:33:48 PM PDT

  •  There will be an anti torture demonstration (17+ / 0-)

    On Sept 3rd during the RNC in Minnesota

    Stop Torture

    This activity hurts our nation, we should no longer tolerate the torturers hurting America

    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt

    by norahc on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:33:59 PM PDT

  •  But we didn't know what was happening. (7+ / 0-)

    Where have we heard this before?  This is so similar, and we must, must, must keep it front and center until all involved are exposed and put before the courts.  It is our only hope.

    Damn it. Enough. I've had enough. And boy, does that word enough look weird when you type it enough times.

    by klnb1019 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:34:24 PM PDT

  •  U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Diane M. Zierhoffer (8+ / 0-)

    Welcome to the spotlight. Hope it doesn't sting too much.

  •  Steven Reisner is running for the APA presidency (8+ / 0-)

    link

    Not surprisingly, unrest among APA members is growing. Many members, including the founder of the APA's Practice Directorate and the former head of its Ethics Committee, have resigned in protest.

    This month, ballots went out for a first-ever referendum to call a halt to psychologist participation in sites where international law is violated. And dissident New York psychologist Steven Reisner, a founder of the Coalition for an Ethical Psychology, is running for the APA presidency. His principal campaign platform is for psychologists to be banned from participating in interrogations at US military detention centers, like Guantanamo Bay, that violate human rights and function outside of the Geneva Conventions. In the nomination phase Reisner received the most votes of the five candidates.

    •  Thank you; first time I've seen it. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Horsefeathers, kyril

      Excellent art -

      Would make a great billboard in Boston.

      •  Thanks! (0+ / 0-)

        The whole issue of American torture punches me in the stomach each and every time I think of it, and I made this picture in response. I wish it would go viral, appear everywhere--attribution not required-- until some justice is served up and this country recommits to the Geneva Conventions.

        So pass it around!  

        •  This is accomplished work, (0+ / 0-)

          and your professional production makes it even more effective. Somehow I think you must be following Valtin's diaries - but if not, here's an example.

          Only 27 comments! Can no one bear to think about this?

          Just on a far-out shot, make sure the Obama campaign gets to see this image - nationally, and in your region.

  •  Not to pile on (but why not?) (5+ / 0-)

    how much has the ABA spoken out about the abuse of law by the DOJ?

    •  a little too late but some (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aunt Martha, kyril

      they had a report come out last yr that was pretty damning not that it changed anything. It may have hastened Gonzales departure by a few days but that is about it.

      President Theodore Roosevelt,"No man can take part in the torture of a human being without having his own moral nature permanently lowered."

      by SmileySam on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:27:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks. I'm waiting for them to recommend (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SmileySam

        disbarment, just like I'm waiting for the APA to recommend license suspension.  Oh, and I'm waiting for Godot as well.

        •  the APA, unfortunately, (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Creosote, juslikagrzly, kurt

          is not the grantor of the license.
          the APA is a professional association that has licensed members, charges dues, but doesn't do any licensing.
          psychs get their licenses the same way every other person practicing a "social" science does - through a state licensing board.
          pretty convoluted, but that's how it works.

          "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

          by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:53:17 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  best they can do is kick someone out (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Creosote, kurt

          and censure them.  Licensing is always up to state boards.  However, many state boards have apa ethics codes written into their regulations.  Most if not all require that someone file a complaint against the practitioner.  As I mentioned upthread, I'm not sure how one would go about filing an ethics complaint against a military psychologist.  I suppose she has to have her license from some state and an ethics complaint could be filed with that board.

          I'd sign the complaint as would others.  We just need to know what state she's licensed in.

          Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

          by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:51:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  i think they figure they don't need to. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote

      fall guy is available for the DOJ - monica goodling.
      here we've got another one - diane zierhoffer.
      the worm gets swallowed, the big fish is off the hook and swims away.

      real strange similarities croppin' up in the way these things play out.

      "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

      by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:51:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Doctors, psychiatrists, engineers (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joy Busey, suburi

    and any number of others have a code of ethics for professional conduct, it would be most encouraging to see them booted out, those who have involvement in killing and permanently maiming people physically and psychologically for all the wrong reasons.

    That would be a small measure of compensation. Padilla, Khadr, the list is quite long.

    We have to find the way back to the high road and torture of so many individuals is not the right way.

    Thank you Naomi Klein for your truth telling.

    Think Tank. "A place where people are paid to think by the makers of tanks" Naomi Klein.

    by ohcanada on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:41:13 PM PDT

    •  When Col. Morris Davis quit he had this to say (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, ohcanada, kurt, BYw

      I was the chief prosecutor for the military commissions at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, until Oct. 4, the day I concluded that full, fair and open trials were not possible under the current system. I resigned on that day because I felt that the system had become deeply politicized and that I could no longer do my job effectively or responsibly.

      Why The Gitmo Chief Prosecutor Quit , Justice AWOL

      What the next major scandal should be is Prisoner 650. Hers is a case yet to be made clear. She disappeared for 5 yrs and showed up shot and in a NYC Court room. A Ghost Prisoner who is appears tried to breakout with one of her missing children with her. Her other 2 children are still Ghost Prisoners as best we can find out

      President Theodore Roosevelt,"No man can take part in the torture of a human being without having his own moral nature permanently lowered."

      by SmileySam on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:33:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  well, at least no social workers are involved... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ohcanada

      as far as I know. So chalk one up for the underpaid minions who provide a big slice of the mental health care in this country.

  •  Is it Safe? (10+ / 0-)

    There's a reason why those seeking to use torture have always valued medical professionals lacking any moral compass.  These are the people who know where the buttons are installed. These are the people who know how to make someone ache beyond the ability to endure.

    •  And in so doing, (10+ / 0-)

      minimize the visible scars.

      They're pros.

      And they're beneath contempt.  People who study how to help others and then go on to harm them should be locked in a tiny room with Dick Cheney and a shotgun.

      Je suis inondé de déesses

      by Marc in KS on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:43:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They are sadists. Another 'profession' rife with (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aitchdee

        sadists is the clergy.  There are more than a few sadistic people drawn to the Helping/Healing arena because it offers them a destructive power over others and a veneer of respectability.

        "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

        by 417els on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:32:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  wow, that's a sweeping generalization (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Marc in KS, 417els, BYw

          I take issue with "rife" with sadists.  She deserves to be court-martialed, have her license revoked, and go to jail but to say the profession is rife with sadists is a bit much.

          Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

          by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:53:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, rife was too strong. But their are plenty (0+ / 0-)

            of them in the professions that are considered to be Helping/Healing.

            "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

            by 417els on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:05:25 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  there are "some" evil people in all (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Marc in KS

              professions, helping or otherwise.  Eg the government is run by evil people at the moment, but to say all government employees are evil is a fallacy.

              Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

              by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:08:17 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I did not say "all". "Many" does not mean "all". (0+ / 0-)

                Sadistic people who end up having harmful individual personal control over others, by means of joining the Healing/Helping professions, are particularly odious.

                "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

                by 417els on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 01:54:42 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  When I talk to my Intro Psych students (7+ / 0-)

      about the Milgram and Zimbardo experiments, I let them know about how torture does not give good information.  Some of them don't believe me.

      I then do some boasting.  I tell them, "Give me complete control over your life--eating, sleeping, bathroom "privledges," and all that--eventually, I could get any one of you to confess to having killed Abraham Lincoln.  In a matter of weeks, you will be making a videotape swearing that you are the reincarnation of John Wilkes Booth."  But I meant it.

      Now, I wouldn't actually DO anything like that--or assist other people in figuring out how to do that--but that is just what the BSCT psychologists did.

      Fucking assholes.

      To say my fate is not tied to your fate is like saying, "Your end of the boat is sinking."--Hugh Downs

      by Dar Nirron on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:05:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The evil of medical professionals who pervert (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, kurt

      scientific knowledge to do harm, to torture, is unbearably ugly.  Not at all charismatic, like Laurence Olivier's Dr. Szell, although they try to be.  

      I wish "Dr." Zierhoffer utter insignificance and scorn by decent people everywhere.  There is no constitutional amendment to protect against this.

      "There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life." Frank Zappa

      by zootfloggin on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:58:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  this is on par with doctors carrying out (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joy Busey, dancewater, kurt, Horsefeathers

    the death penalty; diane zierhoffer should be in jail.

    "The most common form of terrorism in the U.S.A. is that carried on by bulldozers and chain saws." Edward Abbey

    by timbuck on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:43:41 PM PDT

  •  Whatever happened to "do no harm?" n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joy Busey, kurt, Horsefeathers
  •  Observe what is happening now. (6+ / 0-)

    Because of what the United States government has done by invading another nation under false pretense, we have set a standard by which Russia can now bully its way into Georgia and there is nothing we can say about it except "we strongly object".

    Now think of what this means for our soldiers in the field and how they could be treated, since the Geneva conventions have been poisoned in the Bush administration's deep, dark well of torture.

    What else has been done in our name? We may never know.

    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

    by missLotus on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:44:48 PM PDT

  •  Oh the irony (21+ / 0-)

    The Fifth Amendment was created expressly to prevent people from being tortured into talking. And here we have somebody invoking the 5th to refuse to testify about whether or not she ordered torture? This is a new fucking low for these people.

    "All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent". - Thomas Jefferson

    by bobscofield on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:44:54 PM PDT

  •  Psychology is a disturbed artform (0+ / 0-)

    Psychology is not a science. Science is testable. There must be consistent testable results in science.

    Psychology is an artform at best. Entirely interpretive and it exists at a very primitive level. That's why there are so many untestatable conflicting theories.

    It is made up largely of disturbed people who are interested in POWER.

    The APA is not condemining psychologists who participate in torture...that is a reflection of the depth of the disturbance in psychology and among psychologists. Torture is an expression of the amount of power one person has over  another individual. The "therapuetic" relationship is most often a relationship of dependency and psychologists generally seek this dependency in their patients without understanding how to use that dependency in some kind of effective way, should that be possible. Instead it is the intention of psychologists in general...not in all cases...to develop dependency among patients and keep them dependent.

    Common sense is not so common among psychologists.

    Psychology is basically a perversion. It does not attempt to understand human behavior. It attempts to define disturbed behavior as normal. Conformity, homogenity and acceptable collective expression are hallmarks of what psychologists consider "normal".

    Psychology is a diseased attempt at science. It's a diseased artform.

    Psychologist spend a lot of time defining "abnormal" behavior....and very little time understanding normal behavior. Their preocupation is a symptom of the collective disorder of psychologists

    •  Bull. (10+ / 0-)

      Just bull. Go grind your ax elsewhere.

      "All of us -- as citizens and as a government -- have a moral responsibility to each other, and what we do together matters." J.R.E., 1/30/08

      by MaskedKat on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:51:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  John Travolta, is that you? n/t (7+ / 0-)

      I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:17:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Your Comment is a Disturbed Asertion (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      electric meatball, kathleen518

      Psychology is tested all the time in many ways, like any science. Its real-world experiments are peer reviewed, repeated to compare results, analyzed with common statistical analysis.

      Psychology has created a scientific understand of the mind that, although very new (came of age less than a century ago, while studying perhaps the most complex subject of all, but facing millennia of error and abuse by the most powerful institutions to overcome), has already helped both millions of individuals and global society as a whole.

      Your comment, by contrast, is a mass of unsupported assertions that are factually wrong.

      You might want to see someone about that.

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

      by DocGonzo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:38:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't need to see anyone (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eroded47095

        Psychology does not claim to be a science. That's a fact. The closest it's come to approach "science" were the experiments of B.F. Skinner with pigeons.

        You cannot control the variable, the enviornment in psychology...and therefore you cannot test it.

        It's a misunderstanding to call psychology science.

        Water boils on Earth in most locations at 212 degrees...that can be tested. There are no theories about whether water boils at 212 degrees....there are many theories in psychology about human behavior and they are in opposition to each other. Some say behavior and feeling are centered in  coginitive, enviornmental, some say in the emotional realm, some say all three...some say something entirely different. Again, though it's simplistic,....Water boils at 212 degrees in almost all locations on Earth.

        Paranoia or even anxiety cannot be tested they are internal states not open to observation, they have to be inferred.

        I think  I'm informed on the subject matter.

        To call these "assertions" factually wrong...is simply an expression of the kind of distortions that so many people are under.

        Look, the APA has not condemned the use of torture....that ought to be enough for anyone to understand that the field not only has "problems" but it is in effect and enabler of distrubance.

        Some people may be helped by psychologists. But those psychologists would certainly be working as outsiders. Main stream psychology is nothing more than a grouping of conflicting theories....

        •  Crazy Wrong (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          electric meatball, kathleen518

          OK, don't see anyone. But flailing your assertions in public just makes you look crazy.

          Psychology:

          Philosophical and scientific roots

          The study of psychology in a philosophical context dates back to the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece, China and India. Psychology began adopting a more clinical[1] and experimental[2] approach under medieval Muslim psychologists and physicians, who built psychiatric hospitals for such purposes.[3]

          Though the use of psychological experimentation dates back to Alhazen's Book of Optics in 1021,[2][4] psychology as an independent experimental field of study began in 1879, when Wilhelm Wundt founded the first laboratory dedicated exclusively to psychological research at Leipzig University in Germany, for which Wundt is known as the "father of psychology".[5] 1879 is thus sometimes regarded as the "birthdate" of psychology. The American philosopher William James published his seminal book, Principles of Psychology,[6] in 1890, while laying the foundations for many of the questions that psychologists would focus on for years to come. Other important early contributors to the field include Hermann Ebbinghaus (1850–1909), a pioneer in the experimental study of memory at the University of Berlin; and the Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936), who investigated the learning process now referred to as classical conditioning.

          See how I cited a reference, that in turn cites its own sources, when I stated what I claimed was a fact? That's different from your mere assertions. Even if you assert that I'm "factually wrong", that's just what is sometimes known technically as "a lot of hot air".

          The APA has not condemned torture. That political failure is totally irrelevant to whether psychology is a science.

          Now, at least link to some Scientology page as the source for your hatred of psychology. Or tell it to someone you're paying to listen.

          "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

          by DocGonzo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:06:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not condemning torture is crazy (0+ / 0-)

            There is nothing that says psychology is a science in your quote. That scientists who are not psychologists, study human behavior doesn't make psychology a science....

            Coginitve theory and Behaviorism for example are Psychological "theories"....that are diametrically opposed. That should tell you something about the state of psychology. I don't have to quote anyone. I am a source.

            The fact the APA has not condemned torture tells you something about the willingness of it's members to embrace contradiction and pretense in favor of truth for reasons of profit, power and fame.

            The APA as it nows stands is an organization that aids fascism.

            Any fool knows that torturing another living being is madness. There is nothing political about it, unless you accept that politicians are mad or that politics is mad.

            Psychology is not a negative field. It's an immature field. One that has not developed much in the last 100 years.

            It's very hard for people to study other people. There's too much prejudice involved for one thing. There are many other things that make it difficult.

            One of the other things is humans generally don't want to know the truth about what they are. And what they are, are very vulnerable beings not central to the universe, that die just like other beings.

            Anyway....maybe the APA is a little NUTS....I mean...not codemning torture?

            That's crazy.

        •  Put down the e-meter cans, bub (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kurt, kathleen518

          Your absurd screed is the best proof of Mark Twain's observation, about lies getting halfway 'round the world while truth is still getting its boots on, that I have seen since the last McCain ad I viewed. To refute all of it would require more attention than your views merit, and would almost certainly fall on deaf ears anyway.

          But let's start with this tripe:

          "Paranoia or even anxiety cannot be tested they are internal states not open to observation, they have to be inferred."

          The physical sciences are shot through with conclusions arrived at by means of inferrence, rather than direct observation. Perhaps nuclear physics is not science, in your esteemed opinion? Go ask a physicist if they have ever observed a tachyon. I'm pretty sure the periodic table of elements was in existence long before it became possible to observe individual atoms (which we still haven't quite got down yet). Dind't stop the chemists from inferring how atoms and molecules worked, did it? No one to this day has observed a black hole, have they?

          Yet all these findings, all these theories, are conditionally accepted (pending better explanations and/or evidence) for the same reasons many psychological theories are. See if you can tell me what those reasons are.

          "I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." --Marcus Aurelius

          by electric meatball on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:19:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Crazy (0+ / 0-)

            Look...all I'm saying is the APA is not composed of sceintists...it's composed of people who follow theories in psychology, some of whom are diametrically opposed to each other...and that tells you something right there.

            You cannot do anything sceintific with inference. It has to be observalbe to be tested...that's what science says...not me.

            Sociology is not science either....

            Anyone whose a sociologist or psychologist knows that...unless they weren't educated very well.

            What I'm saying is the APA is pretentious and it's dispicable and corrupt and insincere and some of it's members promote torture whether it be on animals or humans.

            That's crazy.

            •  Wow- (0+ / 0-)

              You cannot do anything sceintific with inference. It has to be observalbe to be tested...that's what science says...not me.

              Thank you- you've shown me what a sham particle physics really is...

              ...Ya moran.

              Stranger than fiction? At this point,the truth is stranger than japanese cartoons...

              by Remembering Jello on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 07:44:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  I appreciate Skinner (0+ / 0-)

          Why am I always aligned with the fringies?

          Oh yeah, I attribute it to my mom feeding me columns by Jack Anderson.

          Course anxiety can be measured, as I remember, it's the sudden rise of adrenaline, the constriction of smooth muscles, and vasoconstriction.

          Also galvanic skin response increases, as do respiration and heart rate.

          Anyway.

          Recced.

          "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

          by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:52:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  APA Psychologists involved in Torture (0+ / 0-)

            That's interesting. Skinner more than any other psychologist sought to make psychology a science. He did not suceed. He attempted to.

            Anxiety cannot be measured  scientifically. It's an internal sensation and experienced by the individual....it's private. It's not open to public inspection even if there are all kinds of wires attached to the person measuring their nervous system. The "feeling" isn't measurable...that's the problem with psycholgy...

            Feelings are central to understanding human beings....most psychologists have only the dimmest grasp....and it has to be intuitive....of what feelings are, 'how they are layered historically and therefore may appear (and actually be) in contradiction with each other, how they effect behavior, how central they are to "intelligence" and why they even exist.

            It's a gigantic problem. I don't think it will be understood any time soon.

            Only small numbers of people on the fringes sometimes grasp it in a generation...and then it can't be passed on. There is no language attached to it.

            Anyway....The APA ought to be condemened for not condemning torture.

            Only a few psychologists with some bit of conscience have resigned.

            An issue like this ought to dissolve an organization by having people leave it droves and reforming something else.

            There ought to be a category in the diagnostic manual for psychologists who are paranoid, violent and perverse...those who feel that torture is sometimes necessary...those members of the APA who have actually tortured people and animals...and one of those people is a past president of the APA.

    •  Is this Jeffry Mason? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      electric meatball, kathleen518

      hey psychology has its problems, like Rorhshach, and it is most assuredly a social science, not a natural one, but to deny that it helps a lot of people is untrue. period.We know a great deal about human behavior, largely due to psychology, and also sociology and anthropology. Come on, now. Be serious.

      •  Human Beings do not understand what they are. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eroded47095

        We know almost nothing about human behavior.

        If we did...we would understand that the world is half mad.

        All history is lies. Those lies are a part of the conciousness of human beings and in part the reasons why human beings are in general rather disturbed. Most cultures are disturbed.

        And you wonder why the American people have elected and allowed by hook or crook a person like Bush to continue for 8 years.

        And why the APA has not condemend torture. It's because the APA is filled with disturbed unprinicipled people who claim not to be distrubed and unprincipled.

        •  Among the dross, a nugget (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kurt

          of gold, even if unintentional.

          "We know almost nothing about human behavior."

          That may the the first sensible, factually accurate assertion you've made all thread.

          That's because we have only been studying human behavior and mental processes scientifically for a little over a hundred years. An awfully short time to spend on what is likely the most complex field science will ever encounter. To characterize the findings of psychology as 'knowledge' is inaccurate. Better to say that they reflect the most current state of our understanding, which is incomplete and likely to remain that way.

          Of course, scientific methodology is itself not much older than academic psychology, so in truth we know almost nothing about anything - at least not in proportion to what there is to know.

          Which makes your cocksure assertions even more laughable, ironically...  Certainty is the enemy of reason, always. It's no accident that those with the most certainty usually prove to be the most wrong in the end.

          "I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." --Marcus Aurelius

          by electric meatball on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:40:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Disagree. (0+ / 0-)

          It is because we have learned so much about human behavior that the media can so successfully manipulate the electorate. chomsky makes this point over and over; the same people who sell us products are hired to run campaigns. They know that slick advertising and negative campaigning works. Propaganda works. This is because we know so much about how people will react...the wolves ad in 2004 was just one effective demonstration of this in action. Along with some theft in Ohio, which may have delivered the presidency to Bush, but honestly, had Kerry won Ohio, he might not have won the popular vote ( from what I've read ) which means massive numbers still voted for Bush, laregly as a reaction to fear. And swiftboating, which is again being done to the current candidate, by the same people...now whether that makes people, or half the world , Mad, well that depends i guess...

      •  Nothing wrong with Rorschach (0+ / 0-)

        They took the ink blots, showed them to tons of people, recorded their answers, then showed them to other people and then compared their answers to the original set, and inferred shit.

        What's wrong with that?

        "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

        by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:57:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  well (0+ / 0-)

          because perfectly normal people come off looking pathological. It was anthropologists who first recognized that Rohrshach was kind of suspect, as they attmepted early on to use psychological methods to study cultures.There was one prominent folklorist, i forget his name, a giant in the field, who talked about how in Ukraine, I think it was, molten lead was dropped in water and the shapes that formed analyzed by local shamans ( for lack of a better term ). He thought this was just as valid as using Rohrshach to study a population, I mean, why not? This doesn't mean Rohrshach is totally useless, but it does have some problems; can youtrust the interpreter? Does he/she have a bias to look for certain problems? Does the subject give honest answers? The psychologists i work with don't like it and don't use it. Can't speak for anybody else, and as a social worker, ahem, I am not allowed to interpret test scores. Nor can a psychiatrist, only a psychologist is allowed to do that.

    •  jesus, I think you need to see a shrink! n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades

      Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

      by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:54:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Warcrimes and Crimes Against Humanity (0+ / 0-)

    Is there ever going to be any accountability.

    I don't expect it would happen, but would there be political fallout should a President Obama launch a South African style Truth Commission.

    Sell not virtue to purchase wealth, nor Liberty to purchase power - Benjamin Franklin

    by johninPortland on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:45:31 PM PDT

  •  Our Madame Speaker has not seen any (10+ / 0-)

    evidence of criminal behaviour on the part of the White House.  I guess she's turning a blind eye, or else she's a traitor.  Either way, WTF is she doing holding our entire country hostage while these torturing murderous scumbags keep collecting our tax dollars and raping our economy and destroying our military?  WTF is going on????

    Impeach, Convict, Imprison the traitors in our White House!

  •  nothing new (0+ / 0-)

    Is anyone here surprised, even a little bit?

    •  That isn't the point. nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CarolynC967

      "Its a grave digger's song, Praising God and State. So the Nation can live, So we all can remain as cattle. They demand a sacrifice..." -Flipper

      by Skid on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:06:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the point (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Odysseus, Skid, kurt, Lavocat

        The point is that what should be the world's strongest defender of human rights has become a torture state, and nearly half the people in this country either don't care or actively celebrate it.  The point is that what should drive the citizenry to open rebellion against the government has become so commonplace, that it barely even registers on the emotional radar anymore- it's sad, but true.  But the main point is that not a goddamn thing will change until January.

        •  I agree, but still... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          enzo

          it is BS and must be brought up for the BS that it is. Though many of my fellow Americans could give a shit, they'll never have a chance of giving a shit about this unless it is brought up for the BS it is.

          "Its a grave digger's song, Praising God and State. So the Nation can live, So we all can remain as cattle. They demand a sacrifice..." -Flipper

          by Skid on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:48:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Actually (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades, smintheus, kurt

      I'm always surprised when it comes to the issue of torture.  Each time it's reported on, it seems there is some piece of information or aspect that strikes me, or else the details I already knew sicken me all over again.

      "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good." --Samuel Johnson

      by joanneleon on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:34:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  One can still be shocked even if not ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      smintheus, kurt

      ...surprised. Details matter. They are the only thing that will ever bring us convictions, or, at least, closure in this matter.

      I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:44:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  What was the point of the torture, anyway? (8+ / 0-)
    Why didn't Bushco just go after the real people who were behind 9/11?

    The only logical reasoning behind it, from my perspective was sadism. There is no effing point to any of it, besides that.

    I don't get it.

    Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much. Oscar Wilde.

    by Krush on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 05:54:58 PM PDT

    •  Negative Propaganda Feedback Loop (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurt, electric meatball

      The whole ugly point of torture, the ungodly disturbing point, is specifically to elicit FALSE CONFESSIONS as a means to steal more of our civil rights.

      Upon eliciting the false confessions, they are to be trumpeted by The Bush League as TRUE CONFESSIONS through our highly consolidated and controlled media as 1) Our national security apparatus' raison d'etre and 2) They hate us, so we need to give more power to the Executive to further strengthen the already strong national security apparatus.

      See where this is headed?

      Repeat until there is not an ounce of democracy left and the Republic is dead.

      And all we have left is the very Nixonian tenet that "the law is what the President says it is".

      And we have always been at war with Oceania.

      " ... or a baby's arm holding an apple!"

      by Lavocat on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:06:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  for that, they could just lie (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        They could claim the detainee said whatever they wanted them to say, whether or not they actually did.

        I think the point of torture is sadism. Sadistic pleasure.

        God bless our tinfoil hearts.

        by aitchdee on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:33:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Utterly Confused (7+ / 0-)

    This is so outrageous that I don't know what to do or say but I must speak out.
    Our country is becoming a totalitarian state as evidenced by lessening human rights and ever increasing disregard for human dignity.
    And:
    Our country is being pushed toward fascism via corporate takeover. Behold that private corporations already control our energy and medicine, and are striving to take over Social Security. The more they control the poorer we become. When will it stop?

  •  Here is where the APA loses its teeth (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    juslikagrzly, kathleen518

    The main reason I left the APA is that it is nothing more than a professional guild and lobbying organization that also supports the publication of scientific journals. APA has an ethics code; training guidelines; accreditation procedures for training programs; and other things that make it seem like it also has authority over the practice of psychology. But, guess what?

    It does NOT have that authority. The APA does not - cannot - regulate the practice of psychologists. It does not grant licenses. It cannot take licenses away. That activity is regulated SOLELY by state boards. So if the APA decides to censure the activities of individual psychologists or psychologists as a group, the MOST it really can do is take away APA membership. It can support legal proceedings, and I imagine that a state licensing board would not be happy about a licensee who was censured by APA, but ultimately the ONLY real way to punish these military "mental health personnel" (short of throwing them in the brig, where they belong) is to take away their licenses and prohibit them from practicing psychology anywhere ever again.

    •  absolutely! we agree completely here! (0+ / 0-)

      As I said upthread, we'd have to find out what state issued the Lieut.'s license and then file an ethics complaint with that state's licensing board.  I'm unsure how military psychologists get licensed.  Maybe they can just pick a state.

      I'd sign it.

      Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

      by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:00:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Our Own Dr. "Josefina" Mengele (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Piotr

    War criminals.  The lot of them.

    They burn our children in their wars and grow rich beyond the dreams of avarice.

    by Limelite on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:30:14 PM PDT

  •  Physician, heal thyself. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kathleen518

    Only this should be in the plural.
    Psychologists can use their knowledge for good or ill.  The mind is an incredible, malleable structure, unlike anything else in our universe.  With their knowledge, psychologists can relieve emotional pain and confusion in order to make this world a better place, or they can use their knowledge to destroy their fellow men.  
    The APA has refused to condemn those that use the science of psychology to inflict unimaginable emotional pain on helpless victims. Because of this, they are complicit.

    One cannot deny the humanity of another without diminishing one's own. James Baldwin

    by CarolynC967 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:30:22 PM PDT

  •  Who the Hell is Your "Anonymous Source"? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, pablito

    But worst of all, according to a source familiar with the case who spoke with Daily Kos but asked not to be identified, the torture was ordered by Lieut. Colonel Diane M. Zierhoffer, a PhD psychologist operating as part of Gitmo's Behavioral Science Consultation Team (BSCT).

    One of the main reasons I read DKos, and don't read (or watch, or listen to) corporate mass media unless I can check it against the Web, is because DKos cites its sources.

    Was all that angry blogging through 2008, railing explicitly against anonymous sourcing in corporate journalism, just a hypocritical pose? Now that DKos is "the most trusted blog in news", are we supposed to stop caring about getting real citations of single sources for essential facts?

    Maybe "It's OK If You Are a Daily Kos"?

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:32:34 PM PDT

    •  I second this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DocGonzo

      Anonymous sources don't really seem to have a place here.

    •  I came to Daily Kos after 30 years in ... (8+ / 0-)

      ...journalism. I don't agree with the idea that one must always cite one's sources. Never have. Had I done so, there are 100 good stories - true stories - that I could never have written. If that rule had been followed by other great journalists, My Lai would not have been uncovered, Nixon would have finished his term, Iran-contra would not have been exposed.

      So I wasn't one of the people who railed against anonymous sourcing.  

      Ideally, of course, you cite sources. You urge sources to go on the record. You don't use anonymous sources when you don't have to. You decide whether the source or sources are trustworthy, whether they have malign ulterior motives. You also weigh whether a story is worth publishing if all you have are anonymous sources.

      As for reading people who use anonymous sources, you have to decide if the user him/herself is trustworthy and whether you trust her or his judgment about whether those sources are themselves trustworthy.

      I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:14:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Fair Enough, As Far As It Goes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Odysseus

        The problem is that those stories you cited were proven to be true later, while this new story has not been. So until it is, we don't know whether you have perhaps been fooled (there's always a first time), or whether there is another source you might have used that could be cited by name. There is a very skilled industry creating tainted evidence and disinformation to protect programmes like the Bush torture system, and I'm not taking an anonymous word for something like this.

        So until I see some stronger evidence, like someone willing to level such a serious and important accusation, I won't be able to put credibility in it. I look forward to being able to do so someday. The sooner the better.

        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

        by DocGonzo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:24:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  no reason why you're obliged to believe (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DocGonzo, kurt

          the source's allegation that Zierhoffer ordered the torture to continue. However the essential facts of the trial will be reported by others soon enough. And note that MB names the psychologist; if she disputes the facts, then we'll certainly hear from her, won't we?

          I also note that you don't seem to reject other information that MB includes in this report though it too is not sourced - for example, that Zierhoffer took the Fifth.

          •  So I Won't (0+ / 0-)

            Yes, I don't have to believe, so I won't. I happen to have the luxury of learning this story without utmost urgency. When there are testable facts, I'll be happy to learn more.

            As for my not rejecting other unsourced info, so what? I didn't post an exhaustive dissection of this diary. I posted a single comment on a single subject, and I haven't truly been contradicted in the essential point: the necessity of cited sources for accepting facts. That point of course applies universally. I'm here neither to praise MB nor bury him: just to point out that if he's not going to uphold his end of the journalist's bargain, reporting usable evidence, then I'm not going to uphold mine, believing the story.

            The jury isn't even out. If usable evidence comes across, I'll be interested in the verdict.

            "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

            by DocGonzo on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 07:21:02 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  "usable evidence"? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Meteor Blades

              If a credible reporter cites anonymous sources, then they're 'usable'. There are good reasons why responsible people won't go on record. Throwing out all stories that depend on anonymous sources leaves a lot of stories in the trash, including some of critical importance. Much of Knight Ridder's pre-war reporting, for example, depended on anonymous sources.

              My own report a few weeks ago that McCain had missed large numbers of hearings this year was based partly on anonymous sources, and also partly on documents that aren't publicly available. I didn't link to any document stating that McCain was absent from those hearings because it wasn't possible. Indeed there were many facts I reported in that piece without identifying where and how I learned them (though I could have pointed you to a lot of docs I did use and let you redo all my basic research). I saw no need to document laboriously each of these facts. I don't remember you challenging any of those facts.

              Do you really toss away any factual statement a credible reporter makes without producing "testable facts"? Does a reporter have to produce evidence that such and such a hearing was actually held on Capitol Hill, for example? Or is it enough to just report what the reporter knows?

              It's a question of evaluating (a) the reporter's credibility and insight, and (b) what a good reporter is capable of figuring out about facts.

              •  Pretty Much (0+ / 0-)

                Yes, when there's only a single source, and it's anonymous, I put it in the credibility rating of "hearsay". When the reporter is credible, that's better than gossip, but it's not "established fact".

                WcCain's record of attendance at hearings is not the kind of dramatic and counterintuitive fact that this diary reports. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. WcCain's nonattendance is not extraordinary. Exposing Zierhoffer's order to torture is a quite extraordinary claim. It requires extraordinary evidence. Better evidence than an anonymous "source familiar with the case.

                Even apart from that general basic principle of claims and evidence is a specific reason to be cautious here. We have seen specific proven examples of disinformation used to taint evidence that's partially true, to force throwing out the baby with the bathwater, as I already cited. These claims would create a liability so serious in a programme so large and damaging, a programme that was developed, staffed and operated largely by the CIA. Which is of course skilled in defensive disinfo.

                So right now I can accept that Meteor Blades heard from someone that Zierhoffer gave the order. I don't know whether that source is really credible - and I don't really know how skilled Meteor Blades is in determining the difference, or if they've ever faced a challenge that this anonymous source could represent. So I'll wait until some more extraordinary evidence supports that extraordinary claim.

                "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                by DocGonzo on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 06:21:05 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  why is this claim "counterintuitive"? (0+ / 0-)

                  We know that torture has gone on for years at Gitmo. We know that various forms of that torture involve prolonged abuse, such as prolonged sleep deprivation. We know that there are medical and psychological professionals at Gitmo overseeing these processes and examining the prisoners.

                  So...what is it about this situation that makes you think it's "counterintuitive" to say that one of these personnel on one occasion permitted this prolonged abuse to be prolonged further even after it was having its intended effect, to degrade the psychological state of the prisoner?

                  If the medical and psychological staff at Gitmo wanted to put a stop to this abuse, don't you believe they had it in their power to say "enough"? If so, then the fact that prolonged abuse became the norm at Gitmo is prima facie evidence that the medical and psychological staff were complicit in it.

                  •  Maybe "Counterintuitive" is the Wrong Word (0+ / 0-)

                    Sure, it might fit into "intuition". But that's all that supports it. It's a dramatic claim, of a different caliber than what we've heard before. We expect that people higher up, probably all the way through Bush and Cheney, gave specific orders. But we don't even have intuitive basis for speculating that Zierhoffer is the one who gave such an order. Such a specific charge is an outrageous charge,even if we've grown accustomed to them. It's an extraordinary claim: it needs extraordinary evidence. You have not responded to that simple principle of how to know things, because that is how it is.

                    So yes, this story about Zierhoffer feels right. But that's just truthiness without something more solid than an anonymous source. Believing truthiness instead of insisting on truth is what got us into this mess in the first place. I'm not joining those who abandoned their requirements for evidence just because they were ready to believe the worst of a president they hated and the team that worked for him, just because we're about to elect a president who will "change the tone". That way madness lies, and we need all the sane people we can get to se us through.

                    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                    by DocGonzo on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:21:33 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  to believe nothing attributed to anonymous (0+ / 0-)

                      sources makes internal sense. I don't dispute that. It's just not a productive principal for understanding the world...any more than it's useful to refuse to believe in anything one hasn't seen for oneself. Large numbers of important news stories depend upon anonymous sources.

                    •  Another tidbit ... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      DocGonzo

                      ...from the NYT Friday:

                      According to the documents, the psychologist, whose name has not been released, completed an assessment of Mr. Jawad after he was seen talking to a poster on his cell wall. Shortly thereafter, in September 2003, he was isolated from other detainees, and many of his requests to see an interrogator were ignored. He later attempted suicide, according to the filing, which asks that the case be dismissed on the ground of abusive treatment.

                      The Guantánamo court is reviewing the case. Military lawyers have denied that Mr. Jawad suffered any mental health problems from his interrogation. On Thursday, the psychologist in the case invoked Article 31 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, the military’s equivalent of the Fifth Amendment.

                      I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

                      by Meteor Blades on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 11:26:24 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Starting to Sound Like Corroboration (0+ / 0-)

                        Well, there's some evidence that your report is a classic case of reporting before a source can be identified or corroborated, in order to get the scoop early. I don't think that publishing a day earlier was worth the lowered credibility of a single anonymous source for the essential fact of Zierhoffer's order.

                        But where do those two corroborating facts come from? I'd assumed that the reporting on Zierhoffer "pleading the Fifth" ("the 31st", really) came from a reporter attending a public hearing, or some kind of reliable public record (still dubious given the military secrecy and coverup that defines Guantanamo). From where indeed does the NYT get the fact that "the psychologist in the case invoked Article 31"? And from where indeed do you get the fact that "Zierhoffer refused to testify under Article 31"? Is that public record? Was there a witness to the invocation of Article 31 who can also say that there was only one psychologist in this case invoking Article 31? If so, that confirmation would prove that the psychologist in question was Zierhoffer.

                        But only depending on the credibility of that single source.

                        Now, it's very unlikely that the disinfo would be that narrow and conclusive, so it's probably not disinfo. So the nature of the info tends to reinforce its own credibility. If the source is otherwise credible, like an official government record of those facts (I'm  not entirely paranoid ;), then this matter is no longer controvertible.

                        So who/what is the source for those two facts?

                        "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

                        by DocGonzo on Sat Aug 16, 2008 at 07:33:48 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Doc, as I said previously, if reporters depended (0+ / 0-)

                          ...solely on sources who could be named, we'd have never heard about My Lai, Nixon would have served out his second term, Iran-contra would have never been nickname, atomic veterans would never have made the news dozens of stories about toxic emissions and a whole lot more would never have been revealed.

                          Ron Suskind couldn't have written either The One Percent Solution or The Way of the World without using anonymous sources.

                          Is anonymous sourcing abused? Absolutely. Do bad ones take advantage of this practice to fabricate stories? They do. Do good reporters sometimes get manipulated or burned by such sources? Certainly. Just as they do by sources they name. Is anonymous sourcing sometimes essential to good reporting? It is. Most whistleblowers would simply not blow the whistle if their identities could not remain secret. Is that what you want?

                          The hearings in the Jawad case weren't public. And revealing the source of the information could mean, alternatively, lack of future information, job loss, or something more severe.

                          As I said before, as a reader you either trust YOUR source, the reporter/writer, after reading other stuff s/he has written, or you maintain skepticism or outright disbelief based on previous encounters with her or him.

                          I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

                          by Meteor Blades on Sat Aug 16, 2008 at 12:55:23 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

      •  Any whistle-blower against Bush would... (5+ / 0-)

        ...have to protect his identity. To do nothing less amounts to nothing less than suicide or a death wish on his part. The death of his career at best, and a very "unfortunate accident", or winding up on a ghost ship or some secret torture prison at worst. Look how Bush "protected" Valerie Plame Wilson, a covert CIA operative whom he outed in a time of war. If he thinks so little about someone of exemplary service and character like her, her life, her career and all of her co-workers, who must now watch their backs the rest of their lives, I can only imagine what he has in store for an anonymous source, who obviously loves the truth, justice, and America more than his own life. And just for the record MB, you and your anonymous source have more credibility with me than all of the sworn statements on a stack of bibles by Bush's henchmen combined!

        "Great men do not commit murder. Great nations do not start wars". William Jennings Bryan

        by ImpeachKingBushII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:22:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Interrogation is Tricky Business.... (0+ / 0-)

    when trying to obtain information that might save lives, it is critical to extract that information in a timely fashion, but also in a fashion that results in reliable intelligence.  Does anyone here think, in a war time situation, that interrogation has no value?  Of course not...if there is a potential threat to you, your family, friends or Country, you'd want to know the scope and nature of that threat.

    Stress positions and psychology are tools of the interrogator.  They are necessary tools and when employed correctly, yield measurable results.  Sometimes, though, they do not and the overzealous interrogator may turn up the pressure....where's the bright line between legitimate interrogation and torture?  

    In a vacuum, nobody wants to see another human being deprived of sleep, or kept in the cold, or the target of any of the other tools that wear down one's ability to resist questioning.  But those things aren't all the same as water boarding, electrocution, simulated drowning and other tactics that are more clearly over the line.

    The problem here is we aren't really in a war (at least not in the WWII sense of the word, where information has a short tactical shelf life) and these guys, if guilty, seem like something more than criminals, hence the reservation of extending constitutional procedural rights.

    I don't have the right answer, but I'll tell you I don't find it offensive that psychologists are involved in the process.  There is always some form of "harm" associated with interrogation.  The psychologist can provide a professional evaluation to mitigate the extent of that harm.  It aint perfect, but you can't get rid of interrogation, either.

    simplicity is the most difficult of all things

    by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:35:37 PM PDT

    •  Thinking like this is dangerous (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aitchdee, jhutson, kurt

      There are Laws against torture and one of the main reasons they exist is to keep our own troops safe when they are captured. They no longer have that safety.

      President Theodore Roosevelt,"No man can take part in the torture of a human being without having his own moral nature permanently lowered."

      by SmileySam on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:40:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I say this as a former interrogator (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt, SmileySam

        when that is your job....when your mission is to take prisoner X and find out what he knows, these lines become yours to find.  It's no longer theory.  Isolate the prisoner, check.  Observe the prisoner, check.  Figure out an initial psychological approach and engage the prisoner, check.  He spits in your face....do you spit back?

        You are right about the laws against torture....but there is a difference between interrogation and torture.  I just want to make sure that the one isn't always equated with the other in these debates.

        It's a real job, with a meaningful and important objective.

        simplicity is the most difficult of all things

        by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:48:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The lines have become too blurred (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aitchdee, kurt

          George Washington told his troops that we will not torture the Brits because to do so would bring us down to their level , making us exactly what we were fighting against.

          I'm sure you have had to think this all through for yourself and hopefully made the choices you can live with. I don't think that those tasked to do your job should be left to find the lines for themselves human nature being what it is.

          President Theodore Roosevelt,"No man can take part in the torture of a human being without having his own moral nature permanently lowered."

          by SmileySam on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:15:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  for what it's worth (0+ / 0-)

            we were trained NOT to torture ....trained in multiple proven psychological approaches and used "stress positions" mostly as training tools only on our own troops....and only to teach them how to deal with it.

            really this new approach to interrogation and tolerance of practices that we know are contrary to Geneva/Hague originate with this administration

            really, Bush, Rumsfeld, Gonzalez, Cheney....bunchapusssies who watched too many movies.

            simplicity is the most difficult of all things

            by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:52:06 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  so are you advocating the use (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kurt

              of "stress positions" i.e. torture, or not?

              As for "trying to obtain information that might save lives", that changes nothing about what the law permits and precludes. And fwiw, Salim Hamdan is said to have volunteered to his captors information about Osama bin Laden's whereabouts in Afghanistan. That info apparently was not acted on.

              •  I've employed stress positions (0+ / 0-)

                they have several practical applications....and no they are not always torture.

                stay awake....keep walking...shut your mouth....do what I tell you.....want some water? want a cigarette? here's a candy bar....you're pretty stressed aren't you? get them tired....keep them worried...then ask them questions....the more stressed and worried they are, the more their human nature leads them to cooperate.

                The psychological approach you choose for interrogation often goes hand in hand with the stress position....often employed by different folks in a mutt/jeff or good cop/bad cop way.

                Now, don't get confused....putting a guy on a stool, naked, with electrodes strapped to his nuts is NOT always JUST a stress position...that's intentionally demeaning.....but demeaning someone can be a valid psychological approach to interrogation in the right  circumstances (but not every circumstance).

                For example, you get the Billy Bad Ass Rambo wanna-be, the uber-tough guy, who thinks if only his hand cuffs were off, he could snap your fucking neck and everyone around you....and who would actually try to do so.  With that guy, you have to put  him in touch with his own mortality...teach him that he has no control, he is not superman, teach him the humility necessary to have a conversation....I'm not saying torture the guy....although it looks like that happens, too....but legitimately with a guy like that, who is a real threat, who poses a real risk, who has potentially important info, but who spits in your face every time you sit down with him....that guy needs to be humbled....period.

                Once you break him down, then you use other psychological techniques to extract the information.    There are many such techniques.  

                I know this is tough stuff to talk about, but war aint pretty and being a warrior isn't easy.  We have warriors faced with war that they did not choose.  They still have a job to do.  How should they do it...not at all?

                simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:11:02 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  you don't know what "stress positions" are (0+ / 0-)

                  in the Bush lexicon. Either that or you're deliberately trying to efface the ugly reality with semantic shifts. What Bush & Co. engineered is torture by international standards.

                  •  really? (0+ / 0-)

                    I don't disagree that BushCo has played fast and loose with the definitions and the law on this topic....no doubt.

                    I also don't disagree that they are trying to lump practices previously recognized as torture into the more innocuous category of "stress position."

                    But I think it a mistake for you....people on the left in general...to equate every stress position, every interrogation technique, with torture.  Some of these techniques are necessary.  I'm just urging everyone to be mindful of that...not to paint themselves into the opposite corner, expanding the definition of torture so broadly that it includes things that are not torture.

                    The important thing is that we, as a nation, get control. Restate our position and implement policies consistent with our values and treaty agreements....disavow torture.  I'd like to see some investigation and prosecution of Gonzalez for intentionally stretching these definitions to provide legal cover for what they obviously knew were illegal practices.

                    simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                    by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 01:08:39 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

    •  problem is (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades, kurt, Johnny Q

      that's not what they're doing.
      they're using their knowledge of psychology - these people are Ph.D.s, they've spent years doing nothing but pouring over psych theory - and their skill as therapists to inflict psychological pain, which goes completely against the ethics that govern the discipline.

      i know you're looking for a rationale in it somewhere, but there isn't one, unfortunately.

      "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

      by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:42:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  that may be, but not likely (0+ / 0-)

        the goal is not to inflict pain...that's easy.  The goal is to transform the mind of the subject.  Ideally, make him a willing and helpful partner....but that's exceedingly rare....particularly with religious fundamentalists....not impossible, but rare.

        The next goal is to wear down their defenses...get them to blurt...make a mistake....say something they tried to keep from you.   Once they do that, you use the mistake to keep the information coming.  The trick is how do you get there......sleep deprivation helps, physical stress positions help, noise bombardment helps, fear helps.....  is there "pain" involved?  sure.  But not usually simply for the purpose of inflicting pain.

        So the issue is whether information extracted under those circumstances is reliable......if you got it while the guy was delerious, you pretty much understand it is unreliable...so the guy rests and you come back later and ask him about it.....

        These interrogators, for the most part, are enlisted soldiers.   I think having a psychologist on hand could be a benefit.  Particularly in a situation such as this "endless war" scenario where there is no clear end in sight, where the battleground and enemy is so amorphous, where our government has eliminated habeus and other procedural safeguards.

        It doesn't change the fact that the job has to be done by guys on the ground and the question is whether it makes sense to have a trained psych. professional on hand...hopefully they don't succumb to sadism.

        simplicity is the most difficult of all things

        by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:55:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  this interrogator is a Lt. Col. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          juslikagrzly, aitchdee, kurt, Johnny Q

          and a Ph.D. and what she was doing is unethical.
          period.

          "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

          by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:01:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Was she doing harm (0+ / 0-)

            If she was guiding interrogation to mitigate potentially worse harm?

            simplicity is the most difficult of all things

            by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:03:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  keep reading... n/t (0+ / 0-)

              "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

              by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:08:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  i get yer point (0+ / 0-)

                and I agree with it....just discussing the general idea of whether a psychologist should EVER participate in interrogation because all interrogation results in some harm.

                simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:13:10 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  NO! And I also think having medical doctors (0+ / 0-)

                  present at executions is also unethical and immoral.  

                  Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

                  by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:05:59 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I would submit there is room for disagreement (0+ / 0-)

                    in this area....the border of right/wrong.   Nobody wants war (at least nobody should want war) but when war comes...how do you conduct it?

                    I think having a psychologist or doctor present and guiding a necessary process like interrogation does yield a benefit consistent with the hypocratic oath in that, at a minimum, it hopefully mitigates the harm that is necessarily going to be caused...with or without you.

                    simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                    by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:16:27 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I would agree with this ONLY if (0+ / 0-)

                      said professional (medical, psychologist, etc.) had the power to stop the interrogation at any point he/she deemed that harm was being done.  And it would require a certain personality to be able to even participate in interrogations/torture.

                      Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

                      by juslikagrzly on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 01:09:33 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  that would be nice (0+ / 0-)

                        but what if she doesn't....should she just walk away and let whatever happens, happen.  Or do her professional ethics require her to stay, to warn, to guide, to object...?

                        simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                        by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 04:25:06 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  our ethical code states that when confronted (0+ / 0-)

                          with law, regulations or administrative rules that contradict our ethical code we first attempt to change the situation.  If the situation is unchangeable, then we must leave the situation.  So, yeah, she should quit and make a big roaring stink about it to anyone who'd listen.

                          Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

                          by juslikagrzly on Sat Aug 16, 2008 at 07:05:46 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

          •  Actually, she wasn't the interrogator ... (5+ / 0-)

            ...but rather fulfilling the role RichardWoodcockII has posited for her and other psychologists. But that's not the role that the BSCT envisions for psychologists. That role is to facilitate interrogation, not to protect the mental health of the detainee. This is like having a doctor throw the switch at an execution, then put her stethoscope on the executed's chest to see if the heart is still beating.

            I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

            by Meteor Blades on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:05:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  thanks you say it better than i do n/t (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              jhutson

              "I aimed at the public's heart, and by accident I hit it in the stomach." - Upton Sinclair

              by kathleen518 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:07:15 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  what is "assisting interrogation?" (0+ / 0-)

              is it the assistance part that crosses the line?

              Is she assisting if she says to the interrogator "lay off, he's done."?

              Is she assisting if she says..."Ok, I think he's ready again."

              Is she assisting by observing "I think you should pry more in this area...he seems worried and concerned when you ask him about X."

              Is she assisting by offering no observations and leaving the interrogator to do whatever he/she thinks may be working?

              If you think she has an obligation to protect the detainee's mental health, what exactly does that mean?  Surely it doesn't mean to make sure he is well adjusted and happy during his detention experience.

              simplicity is the most difficult of all things

              by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:28:38 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  As noted in my commentary, large numbers ... (7+ / 0-)

      ...of NGOs, governmental bodies, human rights organizations, international conventions, the U.S. State Department and federal and state courts have drawn bright lines. And the U.S. crossed those lines. And in this case, at least, a psychologist actually overruled an interrogator worried about the detainee's mental health. Consequence: this underage person tried to off himself.

      I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land. -- Mark Twain

      by Meteor Blades on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:00:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Nope, not buying this. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurt

      The psychologist can provide a professional evaluation to mitigate the extent of that harm.

      We should not be involved in any way, any form in the torture or "interrogation" of any one at any time.  

      Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

      by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:03:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Aafia Siddiqui, Have you heard her story ? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    417els

    But in court Tuesday, all that seemed sure, given Siddiqui's obvious frailty, was that she had recently been shot. The wound, her lawyer Elizabeth Fink said, is still "oozing."

    Nothing else has been clear about the Pakistani neuroscientist since March 2003, when she disappeared in Karachi along with her three children, then aged seven, five and six months.

    No one has explained where Siddiqui, a diminutive woman who was once a star student at top US universities, has been in the last five years.

    No one has explained where her children are today

    The Judge in her case had to order the Gov. to see she got decent Medical Treatment .

    President Theodore Roosevelt,"No man can take part in the torture of a human being without having his own moral nature permanently lowered."

    by SmileySam on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:38:37 PM PDT

    •  the problem is lack of accountability (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, kurt, electric meatball

      the government should disclose who they've snagged, where they are being kept and the basis for the detention.

      That is the most egregious violation of human rights.

      simplicity is the most difficult of all things

      by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:56:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You're on the right track. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        inclusiveheart, Johnny Q

        Where it leads is:

        Until our government starts doing those things (and more), psychologists should stop assisting them, and the APA should censure those who do.

        I think that's the whole point of the diary.

        "I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." --Marcus Aurelius

        by electric meatball on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:53:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  kinda pollyanna (0+ / 0-)

          because the process goes forward regardless of your feelings about it....in other words, whether the government is following all the rules or not, these interrogations still take place....if the psychologists and other professionals turned their back on the process out of disagreement with the policy, the interrogations would continue without their guidance...potentially resulting in worse abuse....

          It's been a toughy for me.

          I see the problem with Islamic fundamentalism.  I understand the threat.  I want to help defeat that meme because it is a virulent threat to U.S. and Muslims.  But I can't seem to get motivated to quit my job and do shit because I feel like it would be a waste...like everything I might do would be undermined by the myopic malfeasance of this administration.

          It is frankly ridiculous to me that democrats struggle so hard to posit themselves as better military strategists and tacticians vs. this administration, which has screwed up everything they have touched...everything.

          THey are the fecal matter equivalent of King Midas....everything they touch turns to shit.

          simplicity is the most difficult of all things

          by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:59:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You can't kill Islamic Fundamentalism and (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus, kurt

            you can't expect anything but hard feelings to result from torture.  This isn't a toughy.  It is impractical and stupid - their whole approach is impractical and stupid.

            •  you can kill an idea (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              inclusiveheart

              they tend to die on their own in the face of a better idea.....the fundamental mistake of this administration is fighting an ideological "idea" war with conventional military strategy and tactics....compounding that fundamental mistake by invading another Muslim country (Iraq) under pretenses that most of the world understood were false, i.e., the attempt to equate the threat posed by Al-Qaida with Iraq.  In this "idea" war, the Bush administration played right into Al-Qaida's hands...hell, I don't think Bin Laden could have asked for more...we make ourselves out to be liars with oil motives while simultaneously plopping our Army in the middle of a destabilized Country ...a convenient target for easy attack.

              I absolutely agree that torture = hard feelings.  Which is why Abu-Ghraib and other HUGE missteps have only compounded our problems.

              The point you're missing, and the ONLY one I am trying to make, is that not all interrogation is torture.  Not all psychological pressure and prying is torture.

              simplicity is the most difficult of all things

              by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 08:53:13 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I am not missing your point. (0+ / 0-)

                I think the Administration however believes that interrogation without some element of torture is like having a cart without a horse.  The believe they need torture and my point was that they are wrong.

                •  we are in 100% agreement on that (0+ / 0-)

                  which is why it is dangerous to have chicken hawk wanna be tough guys living out their movie-based fantasies while in charge of our foreign policy and military.

                  These guys are wrong on torture....wrong not to denounce it categorically and wrong to practice it.

                  However, as I said before, not all interrogation is torture unless the definition of that term is applied very broadly, which is untenable in war.

                  simplicity is the most difficult of all things

                  by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:31:10 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Kinda defeatist (0+ / 0-)

            Because the whole point of Daily Kos, and the netroots, and the progressive movement in general, is to stop the process (as it currently exists) from going forward in the first place.

            Cleary you've put a lot of thought into this issue and I don't mean to denigrate your views. But there are no examples I can think of where abuse of power by government was made more acceptable, or brought to an end, by the participation of professionals whose function is to make that abuse more efficient or superficially palatable.

            No one ever got rid of tyranny by going along with it, in other words. Denunciation by the APA and refusal to participate by psychologists might bring things to the tipping point where the public, who still allegedly owns the government, may finally have had enough and demand an end to it.

            Hypothetical, certainly. But no more so than the worse abuse of detainees that you suggest might hypothetically occur, if psychologists and other professionals turn their backs on the process.

            "I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." --Marcus Aurelius

            by electric meatball on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:10:41 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  that's the pollyanna part (0+ / 0-)

              As Coolio says...whishing is for suckers.  

              Sure, I wish we'd never have invaded Iraq.  I did my damndest to stop it before it happened and got called an unpatriotic terrorist sympathizer for my effort.

              But here we are.  

              And the military is full of people who had no choice in the matter.  They can't just "walk away."  That's called desertion and you go to jail.  So they have a job to do and, unfortunately, they have to do it hamstrung by the myopia of this bungling administration.  But it doesn't change the fact that they have a job to do until THE PUBLIC can dictate a change in strategy and tactics.  So far, we've failed.  So would it be your preference, then, that the interrogators not have psychology professionals overseeing their activities?

              ........mmm, what's that we're eating....tastes like shit sandwich.....today's special at the Bushco delicatessen.

              simplicity is the most difficult of all things

              by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 08:58:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  The APA should be throwing these people (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kurt

          publicly and unceremoniously out on thier asses.

          I can't help but wonder what the Scientologists will do with these revelations.

          If nothing else, the APA should be paying attention to this stuff for its own self preservation.

          •  as mentioned above, the APA can do (0+ / 0-)

            nothing to someone who is not a member of APA and apparently this psychologist has not been a member for several years.  Only a state licensing board can revoke a license.

            Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

            by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:13:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  If they're so bent on fucking people up (0+ / 0-)

    Why do they have to have members of the APA do it?

    Why don't they train the military to do it?

    At West Point, for example.

    Skip it.

    Our country is shamed deeply by this which arose from the drumbeat of hysteria perpetrated against the American People.

    He won his bloody second term based on terror against America.

    There probably won't be that many comments on this topic.

    Most people will be watching "Baracky II."

    Who can blame then when it's a lot easier to be involved in humor than to be involved in this American human misery suffering and death whiplashed upon innocent people by a blood-shot President who had his citizens cowering on their knees?

    Just the fucking place he wanted them.

    And he put us on our knees with his terror, with personal glee, again and again and again.

    "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

    by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:41:41 PM PDT

    •  really it's the systemic and procedural offenses (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades, kurt

      that must be addressed and restored.  Hopefully, the new administration will make progress in that direction.  I see no reason why we can't know who is detained, where and why....or what has been learned in a given period of time.

      simplicity is the most difficult of all things

      by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:00:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  How did we interrogate the Nazis? (5+ / 0-)

        We played chess with them.

        For six decades, they held their silence.

        The group of World War II veterans kept a military code and the decorum of their generation, telling virtually no one of their top-secret work interrogating Nazi prisoners of war at Fort Hunt.

        George Frenkel, who interrogated Nazi POWs in World War II, rides with Dave Ostrander at a ceremony honoring the veterans.
        George Frenkel, who interrogated Nazi POWs in World War II, rides with Dave Ostrander at a ceremony honoring the veterans. (By Bill O'leary -- The Washington Post)

        When about two dozen veterans got together yesterday for the first time since the 1940s, many of the proud men lamented the chasm between the way they conducted interrogations during the war and the harsh measures used today in questioning terrorism suspects.

        Back then, they and their commanders wrestled with the morality of bugging prisoners' cells with listening devices. They felt bad about censoring letters. They took prisoners out for steak dinners to soften them up. They played games with them.

        "We got more information out of a German general with a game of chess or Ping-Pong than they do today, with their torture," said Henry Kolm, 90, an MIT physicist who had been assigned to play chess in Germany with Hitler's deputy, Rudolf Hess.

        http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

        But of course they were some people we could recognize as being like ourselves unlike these sad Muslims.

        And the Nazis were so much like us, we turned into them!

        What a glorious country to live in!

        I live in New York and I was attacked on 9/11 personally, and as a good American, I will always abhor Nazi tactics which are being perpetrated by Americans.

        I was raised that way.

        "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

        by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:13:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  interrogation isn't always torture (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Meteor Blades, kurt

          there's a book, I think it's called The Interrogator....was written by a Nazi interrogator, recounting all the information he got and the tactics he used to get it....no torture....same kind of thing...interaction, discussion, conversation, game playing...a slip here, a slip there.

          But not all Nazis were so masterful at subtle psychological prying.  

          Our big problem is the tough guy mentality of this administration and its cavalier attitude about war in general.....it infects the military leadership, filters down to tactical interrogation....people watch too many movies.

          simplicity is the most difficult of all things

          by RichardWoodcockII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:48:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  don't look down your nose at people who (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurt

      prefer something fun and lighthearted to reading about our government/military torturing people. It is distinctly unpleasant. People--kossacks--naturally feel they can't do much about it. They're largely right. They can't.

      I wouldn't call it "easier" to do something fun; I'd call it time spent less fraught with nightmare potential.

      God bless our tinfoil hearts.

      by aitchdee on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:49:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  don't tell me what to do (0+ / 0-)

        I've had it up to here with the condescending fucking shit I'm taking around here where ever I fucking walk.

        And the silly spin that has to accompany it.

        You don't think 170,000 kossacks camping in front of The White House against torture would solve anything?

        With hunger strikes?

        Seriously?

        You don't see me sprinkling the crap from a bull on a goddamn Baracky diary do you?

        Then don't sprinkle the crap from a bull on me, over here.

        Fucking bullshit.

        "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

        by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:57:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I won't say another word to you about (0+ / 0-)

          this or anything. Promise.

          God bless our tinfoil hearts.

          by aitchdee on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:03:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Plus I already made your case (0+ / 0-)

            Hey, just don't start a post with "don't."

            Here's me making your case, which I guess you didn't read.....

            Most people will be watching "Baracky II."

            Who can blame then when it's a lot easier to be involved in humor than to be involved in this American human misery suffering and death whiplashed upon innocent people by a blood-shot President who had his citizens cowering on their knees?

            Just the fucking place he wanted them.

            And he put us on our knees with his terror, with personal glee, again and again and again.

            Now, what you should have done, if you wanted the jugular, was to go after the fact that the original Psychologist in the diary was probably, like, a West Point graduate.

            Here's the evidence:

            Army Psychologist Pleads 'Fifth' in Case of Prisoner 900 Hotlist
            by Meteor Blades
            Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:25:14 PM EDT

            In a hearing Thursday to dismiss charges in the second war crimes trial at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp in Cuba, U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Diane M. Zierhoffer, a licensed psychologist who had ordered the torture of a juvenile detainee, refused to testify under Section 831, Article 31 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Article 31 prohibits compulsory self-incrimination as a right under the Fifth Amendment.

            I forgot the top of the article by the time I got to the bottom!

            You coulda really got me there.

            But instead, I got you.

            Happy trails!

            "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

            by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:11:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  doubt this! (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kurt

              probably, like, a West Point graduate

              .

              Military psychologist are usually trained in university Ph.D. programs, APA-accredited and do an internship in the military.  In exchange for higher-than usual internship pay, they sign on for a 3 year stint in the military.  They enter, at internship, a captain or equivalent rank.

              Eyes on the Prize - JedReport

              by juslikagrzly on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:17:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I wonder (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                juslikagrzly

                I don't know.

                I know the West Point people I know keep getting additional incentives and they keep taking them.

                But they're not in Psychology.

                "Only the PTA? You know what the PTA stands for? Three things I respect and fear: Parents, Teachers, and Associations." [Rob Petrie]

                by eroded47095 on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:21:58 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Wonder if Zierhoffer had any relatives working (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kurt

    for the SS back in WWII?? In any case, her mere refusal to criminally implicate herself should result in her being stripped of her credentials as a licensed psychologist.

    Talk about a disgrace to her profession.

    "we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex" Dwight D. Eisenhower

    by bobdevo on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 06:47:03 PM PDT

  •  Torture them for Jesus (2+ / 0-)

    Who's kidding who?

    The Air Force has already been taken over by the insane Christofascists - Guantanamo was "Left Behind?

    How much is enough, Gordon?

    by SecondComing on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 07:09:58 PM PDT

    •  that IS A REAL PROBLEM.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SecondComing

      there is an underlying Christian v. Muslim animus to this whole thing....and it really fucks with the dynamics at work.

      1. Bushco's evangelicals won't discuss separtion of church and state, a necessary component of a functioning democracy in any society with multiple religions.
      1. Engaging in sloppy Christian v. Muslim talk plays right into Bin Laden's hands....makes Muslims feel threatened and b/c we're out to get Muslims while Bin Laden is out to protect them...his power base grows while our ability to influence hearts/minds diminishes.
      1. On the topic of interrogation, it makes interrogation exceedingly difficult....who wants to debate whether the Koran or the Bible is correct?

      I hope Obama can make some categorical statements about the role of religion in our society, its role in our military, etc....to restore some sanity to this process.

      simplicity is the most difficult of all things

      by RichardWoodcockII on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 09:36:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I am going to email the APA to ask them what (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jhutson

    their official position is on torture, and if one of their members abets and sanctions torture...is there any reprimand from the Association.

    executiveoffice@apa.org

    Other contact info can be found at:
    http://www.apa.org/...

  •  and we wonder why the Russians laughed at us... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kurt

    ...when we talked about the immorality of invading "sovereign" nations, in condemning their invasion of Georgia, while we have occupied Iraq for the past 5 years. Hypocrites! We've lost our moral compass, no we've run over it and crushed it with a tank!

    And to think we who wrote the Nuremberg and Tokyo Protocols making their own use of torture war crimes, the penalty of which for such things death so no one else would dare commit such heinous, vile deeds again, have become under Bush the very same war criminals we once executed the Nazis and Japanese soldiers for torturing who carried-out the orders, even holding their government's leaders guilty severally and collectively, executing them as well for issuing the orders.

    "We were just following orders" wasn't a defense then, and it isn't a defense now!

    It boggles my mind how we can ever expect any other nation the rest of this century taking us seriously again, especially if we don't hold them all accountable to the rule of law. Bush erroneously thinks that in order to defeat the terrorists we have to become a little bit like the terrorists. Instead, Bush has single-handedly made America a state sponsor of terrorism, the very thing he is trying to defeat. It's almost as though he wants the world to gang-up on this lion like a pack of angry hienas and kill it. If so, then he has worked his work very well. A very, very sick man, indeed. Insane is too mild a word. A madman.

    "Great men do not commit murder. Great nations do not start wars". William Jennings Bryan

    by ImpeachKingBushII on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 08:51:38 PM PDT

  •  Prisoner of war (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jhutson, kurt, Amber6541

    This whole trial, like many, is a case of missing the forest for the trees:

    "The Pakistani-born Jawad, who was 16 or 17 at the time of his capture, allegedly tossed a grenade at a U.S. convoy in December 2002."

    The U.S. military was in Afghanistan as part of an illegal invasion. The people of Afghanistan, and that includes any Pakistanis or anyone else who was there, had every right under international law to resist that illegal aggression. Jawad is a prisoner of war, and even that's being generous, he is really a hostage of an illegal invasion.

    Eli Stephens
    Left I on the News

    by elishastephens on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:06:55 PM PDT

  •  Meteor Blades (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, jhutson, kurt

    Thanks so much for taking on this issue, and covering it so well, giving it the proper dose of fact and passion.

    I am glad to see some of the facts finally coming out, and I support PHR's call to the APA.

    As some here might know, I decided to leave APA, as the ties they have to the national security and military apparatus seem to go too deep for sincere change to happen now. I hope to be proven wrong.

    I see the situation in APA as a mirror of what is happening in the society at large, as many good organizations, even people, find themselves co-opted or compromised by adherence to the Bush/neo-con bogus "war on terror", which is primarily a way to convince the U.S. population to stay on permanent war footing, and constantly psychologically regressed by stimulation of fear.

    When I see this issue taken on so well by you and other front pagers, I become optimistic. As some here also might know, I've covered a lot of these issues at Daily Kos, and interested readers could click on my name to peruse those diaries (probably many dozen by now on torture, APA, etc.)

    War is the statesman's game, the priest's delight, The lawyer's jest, the hired assassin's trade Invictus

    by Valtin on Thu Aug 14, 2008 at 09:25:46 PM PDT

    •  APA will be shocked, shocked (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Valtin

      Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?

      Captain Renault: I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!

      [a croupier hands Renault a pile of money]
      Croupier: Your winnings, sir.

      Captain Renault: [sotto voce] Oh, thank you very much.
      [aloud]
      Captain Renault: Everybody out at once!

  •  File Zierhoffer's name in your long-term memory (0+ / 0-)

    and if her name ever comes up for employment or retainer, run like hell.

  •  Sad. Crazy. From all the (0+ / 0-)

    psychologists I've known, quite a few, I am unable to think of more than one perhaps who might possibly do anything as reprehensible as this. Disgustingly evil.

    IT TOOK five years, the deaths of 4,100 US soldiers... to make Iraq safe for Exxon. ~ Derrick Z. Jackson

    by Gorette on Fri Aug 15, 2008 at 10:22:08 AM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site