View Full Version : Messing with our heads

Ed Jewett
08-25-2009, 05:27 AM
Weaponized drugs: armed and delirous
http://www.mindhacks.com/blog/2009/08/weap...d_drugs_ar.html (http://www.mindhacks.com/blog/2009/08/weaponized_drugs_ar.html)


August 17, 2009
Standing together against combat trauma

There is probably no more hostile environment to mental health treatment than the military. Recently, a new treatment method has been widely adopted by the UK Armed Forces and, perhaps for the first time in history, officers are requesting it in droves.

In major wars since the 20th century more fighters have been lost to psychiatric casualties than bodily injuries but psychiatrists and psychologists are still mistrusted by the corps.

It was explained to me rather tactfully that "soldiers are not necessarily the most psychologically minded of individuals" and it is likely a combination of the macho culture and conditioning to deal with discomfort by sheer grit that casts mental strain as weakness in the military.

This has made both mental health problems and their treatment a source of significant stigma in one of the professions most likely to cause trauma and breakdown in its employees.

Trauma Risk Management or TRiM was first developed by the Royal Marines, one of the UK's most hardened battle corps, and trains key members to recognise signs of mental strain in their comrades and provides support at the level of the unit.

It's a wonderfully conceived approach as it takes advantage of the esprit de corps, the intense group bond that forms between fellow soldiers, but which also makes them wary of accepting help from 'outsiders'.

But it also avoids the practice of sending in outsiders to provide 'debriefings' after traumatic incidents which have been found, in many cases, to make the trauma worse.

A recent paper [pdf ... via link below] published in Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps outlines the TRiM approach. Non-medical mid-level soldiers are trained to assess their colleagues after a potentially traumatic event and look for risk factors for poor-coping, provide information on which psychological reactions to expect, give informal support and know when to refer to specialist medical staff.

More widely the approach aims to change attitudes to mental distress by making it both an acceptable topic and another form of operational training.

And it is clear that there is a currently a need for a different approach, particularly it seems, in the US military.

A recent review of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in soldiers deployed to Iraq found that, seemingly uniquely, US soldiers show increased levels of the disorder one year after returning from the war zone. This is exactly the opposite pattern to that which is typically seen in other soldiers and civilians.

Science writer David Dobbs has received a lot of flak for suggesting that the system that provides mental health treatment to US veterans is unintentionally encouraging long-term disability but the figures suggest he may be right.

TRiM could be an effective counter-measure to mental illness in the military and it is certainly popular. It is also being adopted widely in the civilian emergency services, but it remains under-researched.

The recent paper on TRiM notes that a trial is currently being run by the UK Ministry of Defence and preliminary results suggest cautious optimism although we still await the first published study its effectiveness when deployed on the ground.

In light of the lack of evidence, it's perhaps a little worrying that TRiM is being increasingly flashed around as a PR-friendly talisman of good practice whenever the military's mental health credentials are questioned and it has also now become the basis of a minor training industry.

Nevertheless, the simple fact that it has been accepted and requested by the armed forces themselves is a significant advance for military psychiatry.

http://www.mindhacks.com/blog/2009/08/stan...ogether_ag.html (http://www.mindhacks.com/blog/2009/08/standing_together_ag.html)


Weaponizing Psychology

Treating People Like Dogs

By Peter Chamberlin

August 24, 2009"ICH" -- Nearly all of the Pentagon’s counter-insurgency warfare doctrine has been based on distortions of the pirated theories of former president of the American Psychological Association, Prof. Martin Seligman. Now we learn that post traumatic stress disorder (ptsd) treatments for war veterans have been developed from his work as well.

The US military has totally embraced Seligman’s controversial theories, twisting them to suit their deadly purposes, basing their computer-modeled psyops plans, plans for homeland security, even their recruitment strategies, upon his theories of “learned helplessness,” looking for ways to bring-about its most debilitating form, learned hopelessness. Every one of these programs is geared towards finding and exploiting the human breaking point.

Seligman’s core observation is that people and animals tend to basically just give-up, when besieged by inescapable pain and cruel, relentless uncertainty—to quote another controversial work, “Silent Weapons for a Quiet War,” they reached a point of “capitulation.” (for those who categorically dismiss this “conspiracy theory” document, because of its iffy history, it nevertheless remains the defining explanation of the theory of econometric warfare and the accompanying psychological concept of “capitulation.”)

Investigative journalist Jane Mayer (author of The Dark Side) has revealed that Seligman’s work also inspired the CIA’s controversial torture/interrogation program. Mayer has traced the lineage of the ideas behind the “water-boarding” mentality (specifically, the electro-shocking of prisoners and treating them like dogs), proving that they were reverse-engineered from Seligman’s work.

In Six Questions for Jane Mayer, Author of The Dark Side, Scott Horton’s interview with Jane Mayer:

“You have patiently traced the torture techniques used by the CIA back to two psychologists, James Mitchell and John Bruce Jessen—you describe them as ”good looking, clean-cut, polite Mormons”—who reverse-engineered their techniques out of the SERE (survival, evasion, resistance, escape) program used to train U.S. pilots in self-defense. In Dark Side, you identify an approach called “Learned Helplessness” as the model they used, and you note that its author, Prof. Martin Seligman, made a visit to the SERE school…

Seligman and colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania pioneered work on a theory he called “Learned Helplessness.” He did experiments with dogs in which he used electric shocks to destroy their will to escape…

He and colleagues conducted experiments on caged dogs, in which they used electric charges to shock them randomly. He discovered that the random mistreatment destroyed the dogs emotionally to the point where they no longer had the will to escape, even when offered a way out.

Seligman’s theories were cited admiringly soon after by James Mitchell, the psychologist whom the CIA put on contract to advise on its secret interrogation protocol. Eyewitnesses describe Mitchell as quoting Seligman’s theories of “Learned Helplessness” as useful in showing how to break the resistance of detainees’ to interrogation. One source recounts Mitchell specifically touting the experiments done on dogs in the context of how to treat detainees…the detainees have described other ways in which they were treated like dogs—the use of dog cages and of a collar and leash.”

Now the Army has begun a traumatic shock and stress-related treatment program for all servicemen, based on Seligman’s treatment for “learned helplessness,” which basically amounts to a system for teaching auto-suggestion to the troops. It is teaching the opposite of helplessness, teaching the troops and their families to unlearn human nature and the exhaustion brought-on by the siege.

The wise men sitting safely on the Potomac think that real “men” and real “patriots” can just get over the trauma that they have witnessed or inflicted upon others, through a contrived simplistic form of auto-hypnosis. This is the same macho thinking common to all American military leaders and the entire population in general, during World War II and Korea, which led directly to the use of torture methods that were copied from the Nazis to treat ptsd and to break the wills of “inadequate” soldiers.”

Once the Real Warriors Campaign is fully operational, it is hoped, the stigma will have been removed from seeking psyche care and both the unstable as well as the unmanly soldiers who have been traumatized by the shock of modern warfare (organized slaughter) will learn to become “resilient” soldiers and veterans, always able to “suck it up” for God and country. Maybe then, the stain left by weak-willed returning veterans committing suicide and others going on shooting sprees will have been removed from the US Army’s image. Otherwise, our all-volunteer force will find it impossible to meet recruiting the goals required to expand the terror war.

The Pentagon has not had much success with their adaptations of Seligman’s work so far, there is no reason to think that the “resiliency” therapy is any more sound. The torture/interrogation regimen developed by CIA geniuses has produced no revelations or star witnesses to the 911 attacks, just as a large percentage of rehabilitated inmates from Guantanamo have again taken-up arms against US forces.

The bastardization of Prof. Seligman’s work has given military planners either a faulty understanding of the concept of “learned helplessness,” or mistaken notions of turning a form of temporary insanity into a useable weapon. Bringing together two virtual reality engineers from India, Dr. Alok R. Chaturvedi (an early developer of the sims program) and Shailendra Raj Mehta, with an Israeli psychologist Daniel Kahneman, an expert in behavioral economics, to adapt computer-modeling to the weaponized theories of Seligman, the result was SEAS, (synthetic environment for anlaysis and simulation).

The SEAS program is a hopelessness predictor. Running scenarios for the military, determining probabilities, it theorizes the outcomes of psychological warfare operations, predicting when people would be ready to break-down emotionally and when they were just borderline unstable.

The Sentient World Simulation (SWS) is a “synthetic mirror of the real world with automated continuous calibration with respect to current real-world information.” The SWS computer simulation allows military leaders to:

“develop and test multiple courses of action to anticipate and shape behaviors of adversaries, neutrals, and partners. By applying theories of economics and human psychology, its developers believe they can predict how individuals and mobs will respond to various stressors.”

Homeland Security and the Defense Department are already using it to simulate crises. They try to anticipate how stressed-out populations can be manipulated by increasing the fear and anxiety-induced helplessness, through the introduction of panic-causing events, like earthquakes, tsunamis and terrorist attacks. Sound familiar, to anyone? Sounds like the fear-mongering basis of the whole “war on terror,” doesn’t it?

“The intent is to ‘…test multiple courses of action to anticipate and shape behaviors of adversaries, neutrals, and partners. By applying theories of economics and human psychology, its developers believe they can predict how individuals and mobs will respond to various stressors…” They try to anticipate how stressed-out populations can be manipulated by increasing the fear and anxiety-induced helplessness, through the introduction of panic-causing events.

The Pentagon gamers have replicated the entire city of Baghdad in their simulated world. (See: Baghdad reduced to bytes) This program is the centerpiece of the new counter-insurgency program administered by Special Forces Gen. McChrystal is being used to anticipate sniper points and blind spots, as well as for predicting the breaking points of local Afghans and Pakistanis. By deftly predicting and avoiding terminal hopelessness in the locals, as well as predicting beforehand change points, when peaceful-seeming actions can be taken that might win over the locals and take advantage of the opposite breaking points by motivating “moderate” Taliban to give-up on the other end of the equation.

American planners would be well advised to take all of these psychological warfare programs that are based on exploiting and avoiding hopelessness a little less seriously. Perhaps they should further consult even more Israeli computer-modeling specialists and psychologists, to see how the computer-based psy-war programs of the IDF have worked-out so far. Both the 2006 invasion of Lebanon and last year’s destruction of Gaza were based on projections made by these experts. Israel failed to decisively win either war and emerged from each of them with their world image darkly stained, the only attainments being a temporary weakening of their adversaries.

Psychological warfare has replaced the need for real total war in the geostrategic calculations. The Silent Weapons technology which has been developed, has been employed as an economic weapon and a psychological weapon of terror, to herd the nations of the earth in America’s direction. A nation that would develop such technology with a malicious intent to use it upon the rest of humanity is capable of unspeakable evil.

This moves us beyond the realm of conspiracy theories into historical reporting of actual unfolding events, documenting crimes against humanity as they are, in fact, taking place. The fact that the beast which gave birth to this abomination allows word of it to circulate in the world airways is stark testimony that the adversary of humanity has grown bold, smelling the blood in the water of our anticipated capitulation.

Either the elite planners of mankind’s future have grown so confident in their coming victory that they have grown sloppy, or the inevitable free-flow of information that the Internet has made possible has become a torrent that they can no longer fully control. If this is the case, then they are running scared, fearful that all that they have invested in controlling the minds of Americans and the world have been wasted. Either truth means that they have become even more dangerous.always intended to create a state of learned helplessness, to be followed quickly by a state of mass hopelessness, the capitulation stage.

The more that we learn about the weapons that have been deployed against us the greater our odds become of defeating those weapons and destroying those who would dare to wage silent war upon us.



The Continuing Militarization of Biological Sciences (http://cryptogon.com/?p=10538)

August 24th, 2009 Don’t miss the last sentence.

Via: Nature (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v460/n7258/full/460950a.html):

In 2003, military analysts from the Counterproliferation and Technology Office of the Defense Intelligence Agency in Washington DC predicted that emerging biotechnologies were likely to lead to a “paradigm shift” in the development of biological warfare agents. They warned that it would soon become possible to engineer agents to target specific human biological systems at the molecular level.

This idea of identifying crucial biochemical pathways, and then designing compounds to disrupt them is a leap from the traditional model of biological-agent development. It expands the options: there are likely to be thousands of potential molecular targets and numerous ways of disrupting each one.

Frontiers of concern

Concerns about this kind of expansion of biochemical threats have since been reiterated by scientific and medical communities. For example, in 2006, the US National Academies produced a report called Globalization, Biosecurity, and the Future of the Life Sciences. The authors argued that recent advances in our understanding of how bioregulatory compounds work, of signalling processes and of the regulation of human gene expression — combined with developments in chemistry, synthetic biology and in technologies such as nanotechnology — have “opened up new and exceedingly challenging frontiers of concern”.

More recently, a 2008 US National Academies report entitled Emerging Cognitive Neuroscience and Related Technologies, similarly argued that in cases in which ‘agonists’ of a particular system have been found to enhance some cognitive trait, an ‘antagonist’ might be developed that could reduce it and vice versa. If dopamine agonists enhance attention, say, so dopamine antagonists might disrupt it. They also warned, among other things, that nanotechnologies could overcome the blood–brain barrier and “exploit existing transport mechanisms to transmit substances into the brain in analogy with the Trojan horse”.
Some researchers are actively facilitating the development of new chemical weapons. For example, a research group from Pennsylvania State University in University Park has identified several drug classes as potential non-lethal agents or ‘calmatives’, including benzodiazepines and alpha2-adrenoreceptor agonists, as well as individual drugs such as diazepam and dexmedetomidine.

The lack of engagement with this issue among life scientists in general is alarming. Some companies are already marketing oxytocin on the back of studies showing that a nasal squirt of the hormone increases trust in humans. Even though the effectiveness of commercial sprays is doubtful, such research opens up the possibility of a drug that could be used to manipulate people’s emotions in a military context. Discussions with more than 2,000 practising life scientists in 13 countries over the past few years have taught me that few have considered such possible uses of their work.

In my opinion, all use of novel non-lethal agents such as fentanyl for law enforcement should be prohibited, or at least heavily restricted. If, instead, we sit on our hands we must accept that new incapacitating agents are just the beginning. We will be, as the British Medical Association concluded in its 2007 study, The Use of Drugs as Weapons, “knowingly moving towards the top of a ’slippery slope’ at the bottom of which is the spectre of ‘militarization’ of biology” including “intentional manipulation of peoples’ emotions, memories, immune responses or even fertility”.


Jan Klimkowski
08-25-2009, 05:50 PM
I have interviewed two women who believe that, as children of military intelligence families in the post-WW2 years, they were subjected to the type of behaviourist experimentation conducted by Harry Harlow on monkeys.

Note details of Harlow's biography, with several similarities to that of MK-ULTRA shock therapist Ewen Cameron:

Harlow studied largely under Lewis Terman, the developer of the Stanford-Binet IQ Test, who helped shaped Harlow's future. After receiving a Ph.D. in 1930, Harlow changed his name from Israel to Harlow.

Directly after completing his doctoral dissertation, Harlow accepted a professorship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In terms of departmental development, his most significant achievement was his persuasion of the University to construct the Primate Laboratory, one of the first of its kind in the world. Under Harlow's direction, it became a place of cutting-edge research at which some 40 students earned their Ph.D.s.

Harlow received numerous awards and honors, including the Howard Crosby Warren Medal (1956), the National Medal of Science (1967), and the Gold Medal from the American Psychological Foundation (1973). He served as head of the Human Resources Research branch of the Department of the Army from 1950-1952, head of the Division of Anthropology and Psychology of the National Research Council from 1952-1955, consultant to the Army Scientific Advisory Panel, and president of the American Psychological Association from 1958-1959.


Harlow's extreme behaviourist beliefs led him to create the Pit of Despair for his monkeys:


The "Dark Side" of "learned helplessness" almost certainly has older scientific/psychological roots than Jessen and Mitchell. However, their alleged involvement as outlined above is fascinating.

Jan Klimkowski
08-25-2009, 07:27 PM
In Harlow's classic experiment, two groups of baby rhesus monkeys were removed from their mothers. In the first group, a terrycloth mother provided no food, while a wire mother did, in the form of an attached baby bottle containing milk. In the second group, a terrycloth mother provided food; the wire mother did not. It was found that the young monkeys clung to the terrycloth mother whether or not it provided them with food, and that the young monkeys chose the wire surrogate only when it provided food.

Whenever a frightening stimulus was brought into the cage, the monkeys ran to the cloth mother for protection and comfort, no matter which mother provided them with food. This response decreased as the monkeys grew older.

When the monkeys were placed in an unfamiliar room with their cloth surrogate, they clung to it until they felt secure enough to explore. Once they began to explore, they occasionally returned to the cloth mother for comfort. Monkeys placed in an unfamiliar room without their cloth mothers acted very differently. They froze in fear and cried, crouched down, or sucked their thumbs. Some even ran from object to object, apparently searching for the cloth mother, as they cried and screamed. Monkeys placed in this situation with their wire mothers exhibited the same behavior as the monkeys with no mother.

Once the monkeys reached an age where they could eat solid foods, they were separated from their cloth mothers for three days. When they were reunited with their mothers, they clung to them and did not venture off to explore as they had in previous situations. Harlow concluded from this that the need for contact comfort was stronger than the need to explore.

The study found that monkeys who were raised with either a wire mother or a cloth mother gained weight at the same rate. However, the monkeys that had only a wire mother had trouble digesting the milk and suffered from diarrhea more frequently. Harlow's interpretation of this behavior, which is still widely accepted, was that lack of contact comfort was psychologically stressful to the monkeys.

The importance of these findings is that they contradicted both the then common pedagogic advice of limiting or avoiding bodily contact in an attempt to avoid spoiling children and the insistence of the then dominant behaviorist school of psychology that emotions were negligible. Feeding was thought to be the most important factor in the formation of a mother-child bond. Harlow concluded, however, that nursing strengthened the mother-child bond because of the intimate body contact that it provided. He described his experiments as a study of love. He also believed that contact comfort could be provided by either mother or father. Though widely accepted now, this idea was revolutionary at the time.

Critics of Harlow's research have observed that clinging is a matter of survival in young rhesus monkeys, but not in humans, and have suggested that his conclusions, when applied to humans, overestimate the importance of contact comfort and underestimate the importance of nursing.[3]

Harlow first reported the results of these experiments in "The nature of love," the title of his address to the sixty-sixth Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Washington, D.C., August 31, 1958.

From around 1960 onwards, Harlow and his students began publishing their observations on the effects of partial and total social isolation. Partial isolation involved raising monkeys in bare wire cages that allowed them to see, smell, and hear other monkeys, but provided no opportunity for physical contact. Total social isolation involved rearing monkeys in isolation chambers that precluded any and all contact with other monkeys.

Harlow et al. reported that partial isolation resulted in various abnormalities such as blank staring, stereotyped repetitive circling in their cages, and self-mutilation. These monkeys were then observed in various settings. Some of the monkeys remained in solitary confinement for 15 years.[4]

In the total isolation experiments baby monkeys would be left alone for three, six, 12, or 24[5][6] months of "total social deprivation." The experiments produced monkeys that were severely psychologically disturbed. Harlow wrote:

No monkey has died during isolation. When initially removed from total social isolation, however, they usually go into a state of emotional shock, characterized by ... autistic self-clutching and rocking. One of six monkeys isolated for 3 months refused to eat after release and died 5 days later. The autopsy report attributed death to emotional anorexia. ... The effects of 6 months of total social isolation were so devastating and debilitating that we had assumed initially that 12 months of isolation would not produce any additional decrement. This assumption proved to be false; 12 months of isolation almost obliterated the animals socially ...[1]

The pit of despair is a colloquial term for the vertical chamber apparatus, a device used in experiments conducted on rhesus macaque monkeys during the 1970s by American comparative psychologist Harry Harlow and his students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.[1] The term was first used by Harlow himself to describe his intentions for its use, and was subsequently adopted by critics of his research. The aim of the research was to produce an animal model of human clinical depression.

The vertical chamber was little more than a stainless-steel trough with sides that sloped to a rounded bottom. A 3/8 in. wire mesh floor 1 in. above the bottom of the chamber allowed waste material to drop through the drain and out of holes drilled in the stainless-steel. The chamber was equipped with a food box and a water-bottle holder, and was covered with a pyramid top [removed in the accompanying photograph], designed to discourage incarcerated subjects from hanging from the upper part of the chamber. [2]

Harlow placed baby monkeys in the chamber alone for up to one year. Within a few days, they stopped moving about and remained huddled in a corner. The monkeys were found to be psychotic when removed from the chamber, and most did not recover.

Harry Harlow was also, visibly, from time to time, the US Army's Head of Human Resources Research and a consultant to the US Army Scientific Advisory Panel.

Let's just break that down. There were periods when Harlow officially ran the US Army's scientific research into "human resources"?


Yes. And more.

Ed Jewett
08-28-2009, 04:15 AM
Revealed: Docs Describe in Extraordinary Detail Process of ‘Rendition,’ Torture

By Jason Leopold (http://pubrecord.org/author/jason-leopold/)
The Public Record
Aug 25th, 2009

http://pubrecord.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/outlawed_rendition_torture_and_disappearance_detai l-300x225.jpg
Among the treasure trove of documents released Monday related to the CIA’s detention and torture program is a 20-page background paper (http://www.aclu.org/torturefoia/released/082409/olcremand/2004olc97.pdf) that for the first time describes in extraordinary detail the process of “rendition” and the torture prisoners are then subjected to when they are flown to “black site” prisons.
The document was turned over to the ACLU in response to the civil liberties group’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the government late Monday evening along with numerous others, including previously undisclosed Justice Department legal opinions.
The background paper clearly illustrates that the torture of detainees was systematic and micromanaged by the top officials at the CIA, the Justice Department, medical professionals, and likely the White House. Previously, the CIA has refused to disclose any details of its rendition program citing state secrets.
That the torture was overseen by medical professionals is a violation of international laws and treaties, and additionally, a breach of numerous professional ethical codes, including the United Nations Principles of Medical Ethics and the Declaration of Toyko.
The background paper says the use of torture at the CIA’s “black site” prisons “is essential to the creation of an interrogation environment conducive to intelligence collection.”
High-value detainees “are well-trained, often battle-hardened terrorist operatives, and highly committed to jihad. They are intelligent and resourceful leaders and able to resist standard interrogation approaches.”
The background paper reads as an instructional manual for interrogators on how and when to implement the “combined use of interrogation techniques” after a terror suspect is captured and “renditioned” to a “black site” prison in another country.
“However, there is no template or script that states with certainty when and how these techniques will be used in combination during interrogation,” the background paper states. “The interrogators’ objective is to transition the HVD to a point where he is participating in a predictable, reliable, and sustainable manner. Interrogation techniques may still be applied as required, but become less frequent.
“This transition period lasts from several days to several weeks based on the HVDs response and actions. The entire interrogation process outlined above, including transition may last for thirty days.”
The Dec. 30, 2004 document was prepared by the CIA for Dan Levin in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel. The background paper includes an unsigned note on the fax cover sheet that says, “Dan, A generic description of the process. Thank you.”
“The background paper is a profoundly disturbing document that illustrates, as well as anything could, how far the CIA strayed from the law and from values that are integral to our democracy,” said Jameel Jaffer, director of the ACLU National Security Project. “That the barbaric methods outlined in the paper were approved by the country’s senior-most officials is particularly appalling.”
“The purpose of interrogation is to persuade High-Value Detainees (HVD) to provide threat information and terrorist intelligence in a timely manner, to allow the US Government to identify and disrupt terrorist plots and to collect critical intelligence on al-Qa’ida,” the background paper says. “In support of information previously sent to the Department of Justice, this paper provides additional background on how interrogation techniques are used, in combination and separately, to achieve interrogation objectives.”
The background paper then describes what happens after a terror suspect is captured and turned over to the CIA. The background paper describes this as “rendition.”
“The HVD is flown to a Black Site…A medical examination is conducted prior to the flight,” according to the background paper. “During the flight, the detainee is securely shackled and is deprived of sight and sound through the use of blindfolds, earmuffs, and hoods. There is no interaction with the HVD during this rendition movement except for periodic, discreet assessments by the on-board medical officer. Upon arrival at the destination airfield, the HVD is moved to the Black Site under the same conditions and using appropriate security procedures.”
The so-called “Reception at Black Site” that follows involves a medical assessment and “administrative procedures.” Detainees’ head and faces are then shaved and they are photographed while nude to “document the physical conduction of the HVD.”
“The medical officer also determines if there any contraindications to the use of interrogation techniques.”
Contraindications is defined as a pre-existing condition or other factors that would increase the risk of either using a specific drug, carrying out a medical procedure, or engaging in a particular activity.
Detainees are then interviewed by psychologists who prepare a report about the detainees’ mental state and if there are any “contraindications to the use of interrogation techniques.”
At this point, interrogators begin to question a detainee–”in a relatively benign environment”– to gain an understanding of the prisoner’s “resistance posture” and if he would be willing to cooperate in providing CIA interrogators with immediate information about terrorist plots against the United States.
“The standard on participation is set very high during the Initial Interview,” the background report says. “The HVD would have to willingly provide information on actionable threats and location information on High-Value Targets at large—not lower level information—for interrogators to continue with the neutral approach.”
The interrogation process, according to the background paper, is broken down into three categories: conditioning techniques, corrective techniques and coercive techniques.
The background report the describes the detention conditions detainees are subjected to and states that while that is not considered an interrogation techniques the conditions of their confinement will have an impact when they are interrogated.
The next phase is referred to as “conditioning techniques” where a detainee is reduced to a “baseline, dependent state” as a result of a combination of tactics that leaves the detainee feeling he has no control over basic human needs. The “baseline state” is crucial, according to the background report, because it is supposed to make the detainee feel that his welfare is more important than the “information he is protecting.”
The combination of interrogation techniques, approved in Justice Department legal memoranda, to reduce a detainee to a dependent state includes nudity, sleep deprivation, and dietary manipulation.
The paper notes that merely introducing these techniques alone won’t bring immediate results. Rather, it’s the repeated use of these techniques and using their combined use “which achieves interrogation objectives.”
Clinical descriptions of how to effectively administer these methods is then described. The background says that high-value detainees remain nude for an indefinite period of time. Detainees then are deprived of sleep and are placed in the “vertical shackling position to begin sleep deprivation.”
“Other shackling procedures may be used during interrogations,” the report says. “The detainee is diapered for sanitary purposes, although the diaper is not used at all times.”
Dietary manipulation then follows whereby a detainee is fed Ensure Plus “or other food at regular intervals.” Detainees receive a “target” of 1,500 calories a day based on guidelines from the CIA’s Office of Medical Services.
A high-value detainee who, presumably is uncooperative, then goes through the “corrective techniques” phase, which involves the “insult slap,” “abdominal slap,” “facial hold,” and “attention grasp.” The report says these methods are not administered simultaneously during an interrogation, rather they are interchangeable.
The insult slap “is often the first physical technique used with an HVD once an interrogation begins.”
“As noted, the HVD may already be nude, in sleep deprivation and subject to dietary manipulation, even though the detainee will likely feel little effect from these techniques early in the interrogation,” the report says. “The insult slap is used sparingly but periodically throughout the interrogation process when the interrogator needs to immediately correct the detainee or provide a consequence to a detainee’s response or non-response.
“The interrogator will continually assess the effectiveness of the insult slap and continue to employ it so long as it has the desired effect on the detainee. Because of the physical dynamics of the various techniques, the insult slap can be used in combination with water dousing or kneeling stress positions. Other combinations are possible but may not be practical.”
The same methods are employed when an interrogator uses the abdominal slap, the attention grasp and the facial hold. The next phase involves what the report calls “coercive techniques,” some of which were first disclosed in Justice Department legal opinions released in April. Those methods include, walling, water dousing, stress positions.
Cramped confinement, according to the report and the CIA’s Office of Medical Services, calls for placing a detainee in a large box no more than eight hours at a time for “no more than 18 hours a day.” The report also said interrogators can use a small box no more than two hours at a time and no more than 18 hours per day.
Because of the “unique” aspects of “cramped confinement” it cannot be combined with other torture methods.
The process that follows next is a sort of checklist for interrogators, or as the report says it, “a day-to-day look” at the interrogation process.
Here’s what the report says:
A hooded high-value detainee is taken to the interrogation room and, under the direction of interrogators, is stripped, placed into shackles and positioned with his back to the “walling wall.” Interrogators approach the detainee, place the walling collar over his head and around his neck and stand in front of him.
The detainee’s hood is then removed and the interrogator explains to the prisoner that he will do “whatever it takes to get important information” from him. If the detainee begins to resist he is immediately slapped across his cheek. If that doesn’t work, the prisoner is then slapped on his stomach.
Once it became clear to interrogators that a detainee was “lying, withholding information, or using other resistance techniques,” the interrogator would repeatedly slam the prisoner head first into a wall. Then the detainee would be placed in the center of the interrogation room—nude– diapered, and shackled and deprived of sleep. White noise not exceeding 79 decibels would then be played to as a tool to keep the detainee awake.
“This first interrogation session may last from 30 minutes to several hours based on the interrogators’ assessment of the HVD’s resistance posture,” the background paper says.
Another torture session follows and the time lapse could be as short as one hour or as long as a day. Between the first and second sessions, medical and psychological personnel observing the torture must advise “there are no contraindications to another interrogation session.”
The second round of torture follows the exact same pattern as the first; the detainee is placed in front of the “walling wall” and asked a series of questions and depending on the answers is slammed into the wall, slapped on his face and stomach. Except during this session, a detainee who fails to respond in a satisfactory manner is doused with water for several minutes. Stress positions and wall standing are also integrated.
Sleep deprivation and dietary manipulation and white noise are repeated again if a detainee does not provide information his interrogators believe he has. The detainee is nude at all times.
And then the process is repeated for a third time with the methods and line of questioning becoming more intense. For example, slamming a detainee into a wall would be repeated multiple times. Or, if a detainee placed in a stress position and fails to remain in that position he would be slammed into the wall. The only way for a detainee to stop this brutal treatment, the background paper notes, is by “cooperating with interrogators.”
Interrogators can then decide, after the third round of torture ends, to put a detainee in either a large or small box if it will have “the appropriate effect.”
Sleep deprivation can then continue for five days straight, “or possibly beyond for the hardest resisters,” but it cannot exceed 180 consecutive hours.
“Sleep deprivation will end sooner if the medical or psychologist observer finds” it necessary,” the background paper notes. “On average, the actual use of interrogation techniques can vary upwards to fifteen days based on the resilience of the HVD.”
If interrogators need to exceed a 30-day pre-approved period, the interrogation team would need to submit a new interrogation plan to CIA headquarters in Langley.


Ed Jewett
09-14-2009, 04:03 AM
Bush's Interrogators Stressed Nudity

By Robert Parry

September 13, 2009 "Consortiumnews (http://www.consortiumnews.com/2009/091209.html)" -- The CIA shared with George W. Bush’s Justice Department the details of how an interrogation strategy – with an emphasis on forced nudity and physical abuse – could train prisoners in “learned helplessness” and demonstrate “the complete control of Americans.”

The 19-page document, entitled “Background Paper on CIA’s Combined Use of Interrogation Techniques (http://www.aclu.org/torturefoia/released/082409/olcremand/2004olc97.pdf)” and dated Dec. 30, 2004, contains repeated references to keeping suspected al-Qaeda captives – called “high-value detainees” or HVDs – naked as part of the strategy for breaking down their resistance.

The first of several “specific conditioning interrogation techniques” lists “Nudity. The HVD’s clothes are taken and he remains nude until the interrogators provide clothes to him.”

The CIA said the prisoner is kept nude (or occasionally dressed in a diaper) while being subjected to other “conditioning techniques,” sleep deprivation and a bland diet of Ensure. Nudity continues while interrogators apply other more aggressive techniques designed to emphasize a prisoner’s helplessness.

The background paper, which was prepared for the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel and released last month in response to an ACLU lawsuit, described in bureaucratic wording the process used to interrogate a suspected terrorist after his capture and “rendition” to a CIA-run “black site.”

“During the flight, the detainee is securely shackled and is deprived of sight and sound through the use of blindfolds, earmuffs, and hoods,” the report said. “There is no interaction with the HVD during this rendition movement except for periodic, discreet assessments by the on-board medical officer.”

From the start, the goal was to dramatize the prisoner’s vulnerability.

“The HVD is subjected to administrative procedures and medical assessment upon arrival at the Black Site,” the report said. “The HVD finds himself in the complete control of Americans.”

Initially, that control is underscored by an ominous coldness of the reception.

The report said: “The procedures he is subjected to are precise, quiet, and almost clinical; and no one is mistreating him. While each HVD is different, the rendition and reception process generally creates significant apprehension in the HVD because of the enormity and suddenness of the change in environment, the uncertainty about what will happen next, and the potential dread an HVD might have in US custody.”

The prisoner is next subjected to a dehumanizing process in preparation for the interrogations.

“The HVD’s head and face are shaved,” the CIA report says. “A series of photographs are taken of the HVD while nude to document the physical condition of the HVD upon arrival. A Medical Officer interviews the HVD and a medical evaluation is conducted to assess the physical condition of the HVD. … A Psychologist interviews the HVD to assess his mental state.”

Then, if no “contraindications” are found, the interrogations begin, with continued emphasis on stripping the prisoner of his clothing, his self-respect and his ability to resist.

‘Learned Helplessness’

“Effective interrogation is based on the concept of using both physical and psychological pressures in a comprehensive, systematic, and cumulative manner to influence HVD behavior, to overcome a detainee’s resistance posture,” the CIA report said.

“The goal of interrogation is to create a state of learned helplessness and dependence conducive to the collection of intelligence in a predictable, reliable, and sustainable manner.”

The report said a typical “session one” would start as “the HVD is brought into the interrogation room, and under the direction of the interrogators, stripped of his clothes, and placed into shackles.”

After a round of questioning – that would include some slaps and slamming the prisoner against a wall – sleep deprivation and dietary manipulation (which along with nudity are regarded as “conditioning techniques”) are begun.

The report said: “The interrogators, assisted by security officers … will place the HVD in the center of the interrogation room in the vertical shackling position and diaper the HVD to begin sleep deprivation. The HVD will be provided with Ensure Plus … to begin [U]dietary manipulation. The HVD remains nude.” [Underlines in original.]

In the next session, “coercive techniques” are brought into play. The nude prisoner is doused with cold water, repeatedly slammed against a wall and forced into stress positions before being returned to the shackling position for more sleep deprivation and more dietary manipulation, with the recurring advice, “the HVD remains nude.”

Summing up this second session, the CIA wrote, “the following techniques were used: sleep deprivation, nudity, dietary manipulation, walling, water dousing, attention grasp, insult slap, and abdominal slap. The three Conditioning Techniques were used to keep the HVD at a baseline, dependent state and to weaken his resolve and will to resist.”

For session three, the CIA also noted that the prisoner “is nude” before more abusive techniques are added to the mix and then applied in combination. The report stated:

“Interrogators will often use one technique to support another. As an example, interrogators would tell an HVD in a stress position that he (HVD) is going back to the walling wall (for walling) if he fails to hold the stress position until told otherwise. … This places additional stress on the HVD who typically will try to hold the stress position for as long as possible to avoid the walling wall.”

According to the report, wall slamming, which involves putting a harness around a prisoner’s neck and whipping him into a wall, “is one of the most effective interrogation techniques because it wears down the HVD physically, heightens uncertainty in the detainee about what the interrogator may do to him, and creates a sense of dread when the HVD knows he is about to be walled again. …

“An HVD may be walled one time (one impact with the wall) to make a point or twenty to thirty times consecutively when the interrogator requires a more significant response to a question. During an interrogation session that is designed to be intense, an HVD will be walled multiple times in the session.”

After the end of the third session, the prisoner is put back “into the vertical shackling position to resume sleep deprivation. Dietary manipulation also continues, and the HVD remains nude,” the report said.

Cramped Confinement

In later interrogations, the prisoner could also be locked in boxes for differing periods depending on the size of the box. Under guidance from the CIA’s medical personnel, “the duration of cramped confinement limits confinement in the large box to no more than 8 hours at a time for no more than 18 hours a day, and confinement in the small box to 2 hours,” the report said.

According to the report, “sleep deprivation may continue to the 70 to 120 hour range, or possibly beyond for the hardest resisters, but in no case exceed the 180-hour time limit.”
Although “the entire interrogation process outlined above … may last for thirty days,” the report said, “if the interrogation team anticipates the potential need to use interrogation techniques beyond the 30-day approval period, it will submit a new interrogation plan to HQS for evaluation and approval.”

The Bush administration insisted that its “enhanced interrogation techniques,” which earlier also included the near-drowning of “waterboarding,” were effective in eliciting valuable intelligence about al-Qaeda and its plans, but FBI and some military interrogators opposed the techniques as counterproductive.

As early as spring 2002, FBI agents objected to the CIA’s brutal treatment of badly wounded al-Qaeda captive Abu Zubaydah, only to be informed that the tactics had been approved “at the highest levels,” according to a Justice Department Inspector General’s report (http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/washington/20080521_DETAIN_report.pdf) that was released last year.

FBI interrogators claimed that they achieved better results from rapport-building and other non-violent techniques with Zubaydah than the CIA did later with its use of torture.

For instance, author Jane Mayer in her book The Dark Side wrote that the two FBI agents, Ali Soufan and Steve Gaudin, “sent back early cables describing Zubayda as revealing inside details of the [9/11] attacks on New York and Washington, including the nickname of its central planner, ‘Mukhtar,’ who was identified as Khalid Sheikh Mohammad. …

“During this period, Zubayda also described an Al Qaeda associate whose physical description matched that of Jose Padilla. The information led to the arrest of the slow-witted American gang member in May 2002, at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago. …

“Abu Zubayda disclosed Padilla’s role accidentally, apparently. While making small talk, he described an Al Qaeda associate he said had just visited the U.S. embassy in Pakistan. That scrap was enough for authorities to find and arrest Padilla.

"These early revelations were greeted with excitement by [CIA Director George] Tenet, until he was told they were extracted not by his officers but by the rival team at the FBI.”

Soon, a CIA team arrived at the secret CIA detention center in Thailand where Zubaydah was being held and took command, adopting more aggressive interrogations tactics, Mayer wrote. The Bush administration approved the full battery of harsh tactics, including waterboarding, in mid-summer 2002.

Mayer's account was backed up last April by one of the FBI agents, Ali Soufan, who broke his long silence on the topic in an op-ed in the New York Times, citing Zubaydah's cooperation in providing information about Padilla and KSM before the CIA began the harsh tactics.

"It is inaccurate ... to say that Abu Zubaydah had been uncooperative," Soufan wrote. "Under traditional interrogation methods, he provided us with important actionable intelligence." [NYT, April 23, 2009 (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/23/opinion/23soufan.html?_r=1&ref=opinion)]

After taking office in January, President Barack Obama issued an executive order closing the "black sites" and prohibiting the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation techniques.” The Obama administration also has released documents describing how Bush’s Justice Department issued legal opinions that permitted waterboarding and other torture techniques.

Last month, the Obama administration released a 2004 CIA Inspector General’s report, which was critical of the CIA's abusive interrogations. The CIA background paper detailing how the methods were used in combination was part of the package of documents made public at that time.
Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. His latest book, Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of George W. Bush, was written with two of his sons, Sam and Nat, and can be ordered at neckdeepbook.com (http://www.neckdeepbook.com/). His two previous books, Secrecy & Privilege: The Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq and Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & 'Project Truth' are also available there.


Jan Klimkowski
09-14-2009, 05:51 PM
Ed - many thanks for posting that.

The "High Value Detainees" are clearly being subjected to "High Value Behaviourism" - of the most unethical and abusive sort.

This is genuine psychological reverse engineering.

Rather than psychiatrists and doctors using their hard earned knowledge of the human condition to treat or even cure psychosis and trauma, the deep black doctors are creating psychosis and trauma.

Once the prisoner is sufficiently traumatised, he or she will then be coercively interrogated. The prisoner's only hope of ending his or her torment is to tell their interrogators what they want to hear. In such circumstances, the prisoner's comments are of no evidential or other value whatsoever.

This is criminal and grossly unethical behaviour. All psychiatrists and doctors involved are prima facie in breach of the Hippocratic Oath and should be immediately struck off.

However, history suggests that today's Ewen Camerons and Jolly Wests are likely to be much honoured leaders of their fields, holding prestigious positions both in universities and in scientific academies & industry bodies.

The deep black doctors lecture future generations of doctors on ethics and truth one minute, and then proceed to torture and traumatize in the name of a Big Fat Lie.

Oh the horror.... the horror....

Jan Klimkowski
09-14-2009, 05:57 PM
The Hippocratic Oath allows no ambiguity as to the use the doctor makes of their knowledge:

I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgment and never do harm to anyone.