• Jeff Kaye commented on the blog post The Roundup for April 14th, 2014

    2014-04-15 10:51:48View | Delete

    I wonder. Certainly doesn’t help the weak Kiev govt to tell the world how links they are to the CIA.

  • Jeff Kaye commented on the blog post The Roundup for April 14th, 2014

    2014-04-15 10:50:47View | Delete

    I only noted b/c it’s a big deal to have WH confirm, or that Brennan even went in the first place. People must know it is not possibly Russian paranoia or misinformation.

  • Thanks so much for writing this eloquent statement about the evil the US government, and by extension US society, has done by the torture of Shaker Aamer and countless others.

  • Jeff Kaye commented on the blog post The Roundup for April 14th, 2014

    2014-04-15 07:10:46View | Delete

    Thanks for all the great updates. But as regards “reports out of Russia” about Brennan’s visit to the Ukraine this last weekend, the White House has confirmed that fact, as ABC news and other outlets reported.

  • Mahalo, CT, and thanks. A very small piece of my anguish over the tremendous suffering our society countenances is thereby relieved. Until tomorrow.

    Even for those not tortured, the presence of such inhumanity is a horror.

  • @reader – One does wonder what still is so sensitive after over 50 years it must still be censored. If I reflect upon what was originally held back — the work with foreign intelligence services on “illegal” detention sites; the existence of defector interrogation centers; the doctoring of tapes, etc. — then I can only imagine what is even worse.

    @Wendy – That’s a great quote from the “old” days. For one thing, Obama didn’t close down the black sites; the Bush administration supposedly did that before Obama came into office. So that was a lot of posturing by Obama — just as he postured about ending torture, or withdrawing all the Bush-era torture memos. He actually didn’t do that either, as I’ve repeatedly pointed out… but it’s hard to buck “accepted wisdom” and the mainstream narrative.

    As for detention, there is of course JSOC, or FBI, or others who could technically “run” such facilities. But as the KUBARK document points out, it seems quite likely they simply have for the most part fallen back on old practices, and use foreign intel services and prisons to front for CIA’s own detainee detention-cum-torture site. There’s some security issues in doing this, as the new material discusses, but, hey, it also offers an opportunity for the U.S. spooks to spy on the host country’s intelligence services as well (as the newly unredacted material in the KUBARK document explains)!

  • Jeff Kaye commented on the diary post When it Comes to Torture and Assassinations, Life Imitates Art by Barry Eisler.

    2014-04-10 08:03:28View | Delete

    Actually, the elimination of prisoners who were inconvenient was something practiced on a mass scale by the Japanese Imperial Army and the Kempeitai in occupied China and Manchuria. Prisoners were interrogated (tortured) then sent to the Unit 731 medical experiment prison complex where they were used as guinea pigs for biological and chemical warfare tests. [...]

  • Jeff Kaye commented on the blog post When Does the Torture End?

    2014-03-13 23:19:00View | Delete

    Glad you wrote this, Peter. But you may have missed the many, many articles I’ve written here and at other sites exposing the fact the Army Field Manual itself, especially, but not only, in its infamous Appendix M, still allows torture. This is not my view, but that of Amnesty Intl, CCR, ACLU, Physicians for Human Rights, Human Rights First, the Constitution Project, and… IMAP, to name just some of those who’ve pointed this out.

    My most recent article on this was at The Guardian: “Contrary to Obama’s promises, the US military still permits torture – The Obama administration has replaced the use of brutal torture techniques with those that emphasize psychological torture”

    The forms of torture in the Army Field Manual are even more pernicious than those you exposed because 1) they are backed by presidential executive order, and 2) they are therefore institutionalized.

    The military and their supporters in Congress and the press have done an incredible job in selling the AFM as something humane, or lacking torture. That is simply a lie. I hope you will read up on this and include it in your future articles on this subject.

    Thanks, Jeff

  • The former APA president who worked with Mitchell-Jessen’s company was Joseph Matarazzo. See http://phrblog.org/blog/2009/06/14/new-yorker-former-apa-president-worked-with-cia-and-on-board-of-mitchell-and-jessen/

    Of course, there was also former APA president Martin Seligman, who we know met with Mitchell at least two, and likely three times, and whose exact contribution to their work is still a matter of controversy.

    —> Thanks, @bluewombat, for the typo fix! And your comments.

  • I don’t know. That’s a very good question. I’d think it a possibility, though while some European countries (Italy, and lately Lithuania, of course, Spain) may pose problems for ex-CIA torturers, I have not heard of anyone from DoD being charged, as yet. If I’m wrong, I’d like to be updated by any readers out there.

  • Thanks, DW, I think your point about the APA serving as a “front” for the security state is correct. The instituion was corrupted, and I’d think that began as early as the Cold War. But that’s another story for another day….

    Meanwhile, to @raisedbywolves: I believe the APA you are referring to it the American Psychiatric Association, the publisher of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals (DSM), with lots of links to the pharmaceutical industry. The two APAs, the psychiatric and the psychological, are distinct and separate organizational entities. I know it can be confusing to those outside the field. In the case of the article above, I am writing of the American Psychological Association. The American Psychiatric Association has taken a stronger stand forbidding its membership to participate in interrogations, but to my knowledge, has never enforced that policy.

    Finally, it is serendipitous, but today Inside Higher Ed has published a story about another Guantanamo psychologist associated with charges of torture, Larry James. See “Northern Arizona Won’t Interview Former Army Psychologist With Ties to Abu Ghraib.”

    Larry James, a former Army psychologist and associate vice president for military affairs at Wright State University, won’t be invited to campus to interview for a position at Northern Arizona University, a spokesman said late Tuesday. The announcement came after a week of protest from students and faculty over the fact that James was in the running to become the new dean of the College Social and behavioral sciences. Protesters raised concerns about his role as a process evaluator for interrogations at Abu Ghraib prison during the Iraq War and at the military detention center at Guantanamo Bay….

    James also sparked student protests and raised faculty concerns last year during his candidacy for division executive director in the College of Education at the University of Missouri at Columbia.

    Bravo to those students, faculty and activists who are trying to make accountability for torture a living practice, especially as both the state and civil institutions have failed at upholding even the most basic of human rights, the right to humane treatment when held by the state, something that was fought for by the original American and French revolutionaries over 200 years ago.

  • Jeff Kaye commented on the diary post In Which Bluewombat Engages in Colloquy With Former CIA General Counsel John Rizzo by bluewombat.

    2014-01-17 14:50:33View | Delete

    The CIA are practiced liars, and Rizzo is an exemplar of the breed. The man is an apologist for waterboarding, fer Gawd’s sake, and echoes John Yoo in stating that to amount to torture one must essentially be dismembering someone, pulling parts off the body of the victim. “Enhanced,” indeed. Personally, I am not for [...]

  • Yes, ChePasa, you’re absolutely right. The torture goes a lot deeper and is lot more embedded in this society than I even imagined when I started publicly opposing the torture. On one hand, I should not be surprised, as the culture is deeply rent by inequality and racism, and the imperialist hauteur that leads to indifference towards those this nation’s army, navy and air force have slaughtered over the decades has seeped into the public’s own consciousness, deadening it. The ongoing incarceration of tens of thousands in this nation’s solitary confinement cells, and hundreds of thousands more living in debased and dangerous prison conditions, is a key indicator of how unjust and desperate the real existence of millions in this country actually is.

    I concentrate on the Army Field Manual because it has high visibility, and as the main exemplar for the treatment of prisoners in this society, it only makes sense to concentrate any attempt to reform upon it. Should reform prove impossible in regards to installing basic ethical standards that were established centuries ago on this issue, and even the best (Greenwald) turn their heads away on this, then I leave it to readers to decide what to do about that. How we as a society solve this remains to be seen.

  • Glenn Greenwald has been exactly as you describe him on every issue BUT torture. He stood up against the torture aimed at Bradley Manning, but failed repeatedly to make the extension over to the Army Field Manual.

    The question of torture is paramount to a society, of at least equal importance as the surveillance issue. Thus far, Glenn has leant his authority to give credence to the Army Field Manual as a humane document. That’s just wrong. He could spend about one-half hour of his life making the opposite point, probably even less, but he chooses not to do that. He has been aware of the issue, I know, for some time, way before Snowden came upon the scene. Perhaps he just doesn’t consider it that important, and that’s his right. I disagree.

    Glenn’s authority could go a long way towards breaking the consensus view from the authorities that the US does not torture and that the Army Field Manual protects prisoners from that.

    I’ve waited literally years before calling him out on that. So let me ask you, why don’t you find it unacceptable that Glenn would be on the wrong side here. No one is above criticism, and I certainly give him his due otherwise as a positive if not leading member of the press fighting for our civil liberties.

  • A personal note: I still remember that late summer day, September 2006, when, hearing about the great new Army Field Manual that had finally become the standard and would end torture in the CIA and the military came out. And how, a few days later, or maybe the next week, I sat down at my buggy laptop to read the document itself. Much to my surprise, it still had torture in it. Clearly. But the press and authoritative persons were telling me otherwise. Was I going insane?

    It was with a breath of fresh air and a sigh of relief that I saw that Physicians for Human Rights had noted the same thing and were quickly out of the gate with a denunciation of Appendix M. Only later… much later… as I kept researching, did I see more and more wrong with the document. It was a few years before I examined the AFM again and saw the wording had changed on use of drugs. Others, like former interrogator Matthew Alexander, noticed language banning stress positions had been taken out of the document. It only looked worse the more you examined it.

    But with all the hullaballoo around waterboarding, and CIA advocates claiming the AFM techniques were too soft for what they needed to interrogate the “terrorists,” the problems with the AFM got buried.

    At first, I thought, back in 2006, that PHR would be heard, that bloggers like me, then at Daily Kos, educating people about how the Bush Administration had pulled a fast one with the AFM, would also be heard, and a huge scandal would bring down the offending document.

    But that’s not what happened, and here I am 7 years later (and a few months) and nothing really has changed. Yet progress has occurred. Almost all the human rights groups have come out by now against Appendix M and called for changes. They haven’t made the campaign a priority however. Meanwhile, the press, including many of the “progressives” you know are anti-torture, have either done nothing, or still tout the line about the “gold standard” for the Army’s manual.

    When you’ve worked with torture victims, if you are open enough to sit with their agony and let some of their experience seep into your bones, into your soul, then you know that you cannot ever give up fighting to stop this evil. Maybe 2014 will be the year torture will finally be legally overthrown in America. Perhaps it will have to await a larger, and deeper period of overall social change, as some have insisted to me. But one cannot do nothing.

  • Continuing to believe that we can somehow force the Ruling Class to do the right thing is a dangerous illusion that leads nowhere.

    To wayoutwest: I wrote the words I did some five years ago, and even then I would have to say I agreed with you. But back then, I hoped that for the sake of those being tortured, some movement by civil society was still possible that would in fact help those who daily suffered. It is a strange thing to say that one cannot end torture without changing the entire social and economic system and defeating the ruling class. Yet, here I am five years later, and there has been almost no change on this, though some of those tortured have escaped one way or another, and are terribly broken men in most cases.

    Today, I’d have to say that the ruling class — not you or I — is making the case that torture will not end without radical change in the system itself.

    And, greenharper, your point is well-taken!

  • I hope any interested readers come to Stanford University tomorrow, 1/13, where from 5:30 to 7:30pm at Old Union, Room 200 I’ll be on a panel with journalist Andy Worthington, who most of you know has been chronicling Guantanamo for many years. He worked with Wikileaks in parsing the Guantanamo Detainee reports, and is the author of The Guantanamo Files: Stories of the 774 Men Held in Guantanamo.

    Also at the event will be Michael Kearns, a former top member of SERE, who worked with both Mitchell and Jessen, and who a few years back passed on to Jason Leopold and me important notes about torture written by Jessen.

    For more information on the event, see this link.

  • Yes, it could be. Or it could be Chang ingratiating himself with those among whom he in general operates.

  • Chang has worked closely with intel agencies before. As I tweeted to Glenn, and he retweeted (and worth following the link):

    @ggreenwald Chang "has given briefings at the National Intelligence Council, the CIA, the State Dept, & the Pentagon" http://t.co/do5Ev8aQ5I— Jeffrey Kaye (@jeff_kaye) January 3, 2014

    Here’s the link to Chang’s World Affairs Council bio, if you can’t click through from the embedded link:

    http://t.co/do5Ev8aQ5I

  • Yeah, I noticed that. Of course, it’s self-serving, but recent investigations have found other results. As here, from SF Gate:

    Soon after the spraying, 11 people came down with hard-to-treat infections at the old Stanford University Hospital in San Francisco. By November, one man had died. ….

    As the news surfaced, doctors started wondering whether the Army experiment that seeded the Bay Area with serratia two decades earlier might be responsible for heart valve infections then cropping up as well as serious infections seen among intravenous drug users in the ’60s and ’70s, said Dr. Lee Riley, a professor of infectious disease at UC Berkeley.

    Before the 1950 experiment, serratia was not a common environmental bacteria in the Bay Area nor did it frequently cause hospital infections, Riley said.

    Some people now speculate that descendants of the Army germs are still causing infections here today, he said.

  • Load More