December 14, 2014 11:00 am -

[su_right_ad]Medical doctors who take the Hippocratic oath to “do no harm” ignored it as they enabled the CIA’s torture techniques, reveals the Senate’s torture report.

Staff physicians from the CIA’s Office of Medical Services served as observers, with little evidence in the report that they intervened to stop the use of harsh interrogation methods.

In some cases, they warned that interrogation sessions, both planned and underway, risked exceeding guidelines they had compiled. But in most instances documented, medical personnel appear to be enablers — advising that shackles be loosened to avoid extreme edema while a detainee was subjected to prolonged standing or stress positions; covering a wound in plastic during water dousing; and administering “rectal feeding” and “rectal rehydration,” which one medical official described as an apparently effective way to “clear a person’s head” and get him to talk.

Prior to the interrogation of the first detainee in 2002, alleged al-Qaeda facilitator Abu Zubaida, the report noted, “CIA headquarters, with medical personnel participation, stated that the ‘interrogation process takes precedence over preventative medical procedures.’ ”…

[su_thin_right_skyscraper_ad]Medical ethicists have expressed outrage at the participation of medical personnel at the sessions ever since descriptions of their role emerged in CIA and Justice Department documents released by the Obama administration in 2009.

“To some degree it’s a higher-resolution view,” Steven Miles, professor of bioethics at the University of Minnesota Medical School, said of the Senate report. “Things including the withholding of care are much more graphically displayed.”…

The American Medical Association, in a statement Friday, said that “the participation of physicians in torture and coercive interrogation is a violation of core ethical values.”


D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

14 responses to Medical Doctors Enabled Torture

  1. edmeyer_able December 14th, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Paging Doctor Menegle…..Josef Mengele?

    • neworleans878 December 14th, 2014 at 12:17 pm


    • Carla Akins December 14th, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      I disagree here. No doubt it was torture, I’m appalled and the culprits should see prison time. But for what we know for now, it in no way rises to Mengele standards. Please understand, in no way is this an excuse or a defense of what happened but we need to be accurate and take the higher road.

      • edmeyer_able December 14th, 2014 at 2:32 pm

        You’re correct I should have added an……./s

        • Carla Akins December 14th, 2014 at 2:33 pm


        • Carla Akins December 14th, 2014 at 3:10 pm

          My apologies, I should have noticed the snark. I had just finished going all “Bad Carla” on some jackass on Facebook for a similar comment. Think I had my dander up!

  2. rg9rts December 14th, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    As long as they wrapped themselves in the flag while torturing …it was OK.

  3. Red Eye Robot December 14th, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    “Medical Doctors Enabled Torture” Another story about Obamacare?

    • neworleans878 December 14th, 2014 at 12:34 pm

      Walk away, Red..

      This ain’t your world.

      See ya at the polling booths.

  4. MaryJane Mccarthy James December 14th, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    The sick part is that everyone is acting like The have not known for years that Torture was going on…

    • burqa December 14th, 2014 at 4:12 pm

      Part of the good news is that when the scandal broke, Guantanamo was cleaned up and then Abu Ghraib was.The following is from Colonel Larry C. James, the chair of Psychology Department at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, Hawaii and former chair of the Department of Psychology at Walter Reed Medical Center. He was assigned to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and then to Abu Ghraib to straighten out interrogation practices there after the scandal broke.

      “My tour at Gitmo flew by as we continued making progress in righting the wrongs that had brought me there. The interrogators and MPs came around to the incentive- and respect-based approach, seeing for themselves that they could get better results than they had been getting with the methods that danced on that knife edge of what was acceptable and what was abusive.”
      – FIXING HELL An Army Psychologist Confronts Abu Ghraib, by Col. (ret.) Larry C. James with Gregory A. Freeman (Grand Central Publishing, 2008), page 66

      “Most interrogators were outright shocked and surprised when I would recommend going to the cafeteria and getting food, fruits and vegetables, desserts and sodas and bringing them to the interrogation room. Most of them simply just wanted to go into an interrogation room and start yelling and screaming at the detainee. Eventually they would learn that building rapport was the way to go and that if you treated most detainees with decency and humanity, they would talk to you. Building rapport and establishing a relationship would soon take hold like it did in Cuba – it became the way to get detainees to talk and provide accurate and reliable information. It wasn’t that we were giving them fruit and sodas to be nice to them; we were doing it because that is the way to get the information we wanted. Did they enjoy the treats we provided? Yes, but I didn’t care as long as we were getting the intel. I’d rather be accused of coddling the detainees and getting useful intel than showing [185] how badass and tough we were and not getting any information out of the prisoners.”
      – FIXING HELL, pages 184-185

  5. eyelashviper December 14th, 2014 at 1:24 pm

    The docs, and the two “psychologists” who were paid $81 million are ghouls, and should be drummed from their professions and prosecuted for their behavior.

  6. burqa December 14th, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    “The American Psychological Association’s (APA) position on torture is clear and unequivocal:

    Any direct or indirect participation in any act of torture or other forms of cruel, degrading or inhuman treatment or punishment by psychologists is strictly prohibited. There are no exceptions.
    Clear violations of APA’s no torture/no abuse policy include acts such as:

    * Waterboarding.

    * Sexual humiliation.

    * Stress positions.

    * Exploitation of phobias”

    • burqa December 14th, 2014 at 3:52 pm

      Here is a selection from the ethics of the American Medical Association:

      “… (1) Physicians may perform physical and mental assessments of detainees to determine the need for and to provide medical care. When so doing, physicians must disclose to the detainee the extent to which others have access to information included in medical records. Treatment must never be conditional on a patient’s participation in an interrogation.

      (2) Physicians must neither conduct nor directly participate in an interrogation, because a role as physician-interrogator undermines the physician’s role as healer and thereby erodes trust in the individual physician-interrogator and in the medical profession.

      (3) Physicians must not monitor interrogations with the intention of intervening in the process, because this constitutes direct participation in interrogation.

      (4) Physicians may participate in developing effective interrogation strategies for general training purposes. These strategies must not threaten or cause physical injury or mental suffering and must be humane and respect the rights of individuals.

      (5) When physicians have reason to believe that interrogations are coercive, they must report their observations to the appropriate authorities. If authorities are aware of coercive interrogations but have not intervened, physicians are ethically obligated to report the offenses to independent authorities that have the power to investigate or adjudicate such allegations. (I, III, VII, VIII) ”