The CIA + torture = death of our values

by , under Enrique Tessieri

An interesting spin that the media has echoed about the CIA’s torture program on Tuesday is that all these terrible things happened recently. They neither happened recently nor involved “some folks” as President Barack Obama pointed out, but have been going on for decades. 

Wake up USAmerica.

The Guardian writes:

There are stories in the CIA torture report of “rectal rehydration as a means of behavior control”, threats to murder and “threats to sexually abuse the mother of a detainee” – or cut a mother’s throat. There are details about detainees with broken bones forced to stand for days on end, detainees blindfolded, dragged down hallways while they were beaten. There were even torture sessions that ended in death. The list goes on and on, and on and on.

One of the most incredible matters about the CIA torture report is how its being played played down by the White House.

The CIA torture report exposes once again what we’ve feared to known: we torture as well and behave like the “bad guys.”

One of the outcomes of 9/11 is that it brought home the real face of USAmerican foreign policy. There is no longer a Mr “CIA” Hyde that acts recklessly abroad and a Dr Jekyll that behaves within our borders. Mr Hyde resides in the US today and for a very, very long time.

Dan Mitrione (1920-1970) was one of many CIA agents that worked in Latin America during the Cold War. He advised the Uruguayan police about torture techniques. He used to say that when one tortures it’s important to apply “precise pain in the price place at the precise time.”


Manuel Hevia giving testimony in Havana, Cuba, in 1978: “Several street beggars were picked up whose disappearance would attract no attention. This was a technique that Mitrione had developed or rather perfected in Brazil. Using these beggars, experiments were conduced with different forms of interrogation letting the student see the effects of different voltages on different parts of the human body male and female. All those unhappy people died without really knowing why they were undergoing this pain, without even having the cowardly solution of answering any questions because they were not asked questions. They were simply guinea pigs.”


Calls for the Obama administration by human rights groups like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch to prosecute US officials responsible for the CIA torture program should be heeded.

The so-called war on terror declared by George W. Bush was a colossal mistake that we’re paying a dear price in the form of credibility and the erosion of our values inspired by the Enlightenment.

The only matter that can save the United States from itself and dealing with its murky CIA past.