A Tortured Twist on Ethics

By Yosef Brody

Photo: Staff Sgt. Jon Soucy, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Photo: Staff Sgt. Jon Soucy, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Why isn’t the American Psychological Association pursuing ethics charges against psychologist John Leso for abuses he helped carry out at the Guantánamo prison?

George Orwell wisely observed that our understanding of the past, and the meaning associated with it, directly influences the future. And as the unprecedented public feud between the CIA and Congress makes clear, there are still significant aspects of our recent history of state-sponsored torture that need examination before we put this national disgrace behind us.

Important questions remain unresolved about the U.S. torture program in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. And the four-year, $40 million Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture is unlikely to provide sufficient answers, even if it’s ever declassified and released.

For example, what will be done about doctors who helped create U.S. torture programs and participated in their implementation? And is there any evidence that cruel, inhuman, and degrading practices continue under official policy, even to this day?

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