Monday, July 07, 2008
Where the U.S. learned to torture
Here is the Register's editorial on how the U.S. developed various torture techniques after 9/11. As I had mentioned previously, those who follow such issues had thought they had been adapted from the training U.S. military and CIA people in resisting torture, or at least being aware of what might be coming. The techniques tended to be what could be expected to be encountered in the Cold War with communism, and informed by the torture ("brainwashing," we preferred to call it back then) U.S. servicepeople encountered when captured by the North Koreans. So we were essentially copying the communists. Now the NYT has tracked down an old article describing Korean communist torture techniques, published in 1957, with a chart describing the techniques and their effects. The precise chart-- with the title removed -- was used to train interrogators at Guantanamo. So the communization of the U.S. military and intelligence services accelerated under a Republican president. Cheered on by people who in the old days called themselves anti-communists. Ah, the joys of Empire!