PHR and TASSC International held a briefing at the Capitol entitled “Psychological Torture in Detention” in recognition of Torture Awareness Month. The discussion centered on the use of psychological torture on individuals in detention through practices such as prolonged indefinite detention and abusive solitary confinement.
Is it torture to waterboard a person, slam them against walls, deprive them of sleep, and force them into stress positions until they cry out for mercy? Close your eyes and imagine this is being done to your husband, your sister, or your child; it would seem to be an easy question to answer.Yet today, some are asking whether such “interrogation techniques” are effective. Here’s the answer of Senator John McCain, who was tortured: “under torture a person will say anything he thinks his captors want to hear — true or false — if he believes it will relieve his suffering.
Eighteen years after the United States ratified the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment, we are still engaging in illegal and immoral practices all over the world.
The House Appropriations Committee reverses sensible changes in immigration detention policy in the Obama Administration's budget and allocates over half of ICE's budget for detention and removal.
In the recent volume of the Annals of Internal Medicine, Dr. Sondra Crosby—a PHR volunteer physician—describes her experience treating a former Guantánamo detainee who she calls “Rashid.” Rashid is a survivor of US torture.