Psychologists Helped Develop the CIA’s Torture Techniques

Dandelion Salad
Democracy Now!
4.21.09

The Story of Mitchell Jessen & Associates: How a Team of Psychologists in Spokane, WA, Helped Develop the CIA’s Torture Techniques

We broadcast from Spokane, Washington, less than three miles from the headquarters of a secretive CIA contractor that played a key role in developing the Bush administration’s interrogation methods. The firm, Mitchell Jessen & Associates, is named after the two military psychologists who founded the company, James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen. Beginning in 2002, the CIA hired the psychologists to train interrogators in brutal techniques, including waterboarding, sleep deprivation and pain. We speak with three journalists who have closely followed the story. [includes rush transcript]

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Mark Benjamin, National correspondent for Salon.com.

Katherine Eban, Investigative reporter and writer for several national publications. Her July 2007 article for Vanity Fair, “Rorschach and Awe.”

Karen Dorn Steele, a local investigative reporter who covered Mitchell and Jessen for The Spokesman-Review. She won a George Polk Award for a 1994 newspaper series on squandered money in the $50 billion Hanford Nuclear Reservation cleanup, the nation’s most polluted nuclear weapons production site.

via Democracy Now! | The Story of Mitchell Jessen & Associates: How a Team of Psychologists in Spokane, WA, Helped Develop the CIA’s Torture Techniques.

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Ten Terrible Truths About The CIA Torture Memos, Part 1 by Andy Worthington

Senior Bush figures could be prosecuted for torture, says Obama + Prosecution possible for those who OK’d torture

Torture on Dandelion Salad

Gitmo

Ten Terrible Truths About The CIA Torture Memos, Part 1 by Andy Worthington

Updated: 21 April 2009 added points 3-5

by Andy Worthington
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
www.andyworthington.co.uk
Originally posted at the Future of Freedom Foundation
20 April 2009

Andy Worthington, author of The Guantánamo Files, analyzes ten particularly disturbing facts to emerge from the four memos, purporting to justify the use of torture by the CIA, which were issued by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in August 2002 and May 2005, and released by the Obama administration last week.

The OLC, as the New York Times explained in September 2007, holds a uniquely influential position, as it “interprets all laws that bear on the powers of the executive branch. The opinions of the head of the office are binding, except on the rare occasions when they are reversed by the attorney general or the president.” The legal opinions were, therefore, regarded as a “golden shield” by the administration, although, as lawyer Peter Weiss noted after I last wrote about the Bush administration’s war crimes, “it cannot be binding if it violates the constitution, or a jus cogens prohibition of international law, e.g. torture, or, perhaps, if it was made to order for the executive, as you demonstrate it was.”

1) The “torture memos” (August 2002)

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