Guantánamo detainees drugged and then interrogated
jeffrey kaye and jason leopold posting at truthout...
Detainees in custody of the US military were interrogated while drugged with powerful antipsychotic and other medications that "could impair an individual's ability to provide accurate information," according to a declassified Department of Defense (DoD) inspector general's report that probed the alleged use of "mind altering drugs" during interrogations.
In addition, detainees were subjected to "chemical restraints," hydrated with intravenous (IV) fluids while they were being interrogated and, in what appears to be a form of psychological manipulation, the inspector general's probe confirmed at least one detainee - convicted "dirty bomb" plotter Jose Padilla - was the subject of a "deliberate ruse" in which his interrogator led him to believe he was given an injection of "truth serum."
Truthout obtained a copy of the report - "Investigation of Allegations of the Use of Mind-Altering Drugs to Facilitate Interrogations of Detainees" - prepared by the DoD's deputy inspector general for intelligence in September 2009, under a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request we filed nearly two years ago.
[Leonard Rubenstein, a medical ethicist at Johns Hopkins Center for Public Health and Human Rights and the former president of Physicians for Human Rights] said the failure to inform prisoners what drugs they were given means "some basic principles of medical ethics were cast aside, especially those requiring a doctor to explain his or her recommendation and seek consent for it as an affirmation of the dignity and autonomy of the patient."
"Even where consent is not forthcoming and involuntary medication is allowed after voluntary medication is not accepted, it should never take place unless this process is followed," Rubenstein said.
The cumulative effects of indefinite detention, interrogations, use of drugs, and other conditions of confinement also appear to have taken a toll on the detainees' mental state and impacted the DoD watchdog's ability to conduct a thorough investigation.
Indeed, when the inspector general sought to interview the attorney representing one detainee who claimed he was given mind-altering drugs during interrogations, the attorney responded, "at this state of his incarceration, [redacted] memory is severely compromised and, unfortunately, we are skeptical that he can provide you with any further details ..."
The investigation also found instances where "chemical restraints" were used on detainees "that posed a threat to themselves or others," which Rubenstein said, "is contrary to US Bureau of Prison regulations, decisions of the US Supreme Court and to medical ethics principles that forbid subordinating the patient's medical interests to prison security."
The inspector general's yearlong probe was launched in June 2008, two months after the publication of a Washington Post report in which some detainees claimed they were forcibly drugged and coerced into making confessions.
One of the detainees at the center of The Washington Post report, Adel al-Nusairi, a former Saudi policeman who was imprisoned at Guantanamo from 2002 to 2005, is prominently featured in the inspector general's report and identified as "IG-02."
According to his attorney's notes cited in The Washington Post, al-Nusairi claimed he was injected with an unknown medication that made him extremely sleepy just before he was interrogated in 2002. When his captors awakened him, he fabricated a confession for US interrogators in hopes they would leave him alone so he could sleep.
"I was completely gone," al-Nusairi told his attorney, Anant Raut. "I said, 'Let me go. I want to go to sleep. If it takes saying I'm a member of al-Qaeda, I will.'"
and you can be sure, if it happened at guantánamo, it also took place at bagram and all the other black sites...
Labels: Al Qaeda, Bagram, black sites, Defense Department, drugs, enhanced interrogation techniques, Guantánamo, indefinite detention, Jason Leopold, Jeffrey Kaye, Jose Padilla, medical ethics, torture, TruthoutSubmit To Propeller