Tag Archives: Intelligence Committee

Report Claims Medical Professionals in CIA Torture Program May Have Committed War Crimes

On Tuesday, Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), an organization that examines human rights violations in the medical field, released a report that called for a federal investigation into the health professionals who were involved in the torture methods that were used on terror suspects.

The request was sparked by the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s 500-page summary of its 6,7000-page report on the torture techniques used by the CIA on al-Qaeda hostages, following the terror attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.

The report from PHR states that the health professionals who aided the CIA in carrying out certain techniques “betrayed the most fundamental duty of the healing professions” and should be investigated for committing war crimes:

Health professionals, given their ethical and legal obligations to protect the health and welfare of all individuals, have historically represented one essential barrier to the inhumane treatment of detainees and prisoners,” stated the report. “The complicity of health professionals themselves in such abuse indicates that egregious violations of public trust, ethics, and law have taken place.”

The report went on to state that the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s torture report summary “confirms that the United States systematically tortured” the terror suspects detained after 9/11, and shows that the “practices were far more brutal than previously acknowledged.”

The Executive Director of PHR, Donna McKay, said that after more than a decade of covering up the truth, the report finally shows the extent to which health professionals were involved in torturing detainees.

The report confirms that health professionals used their skills to break the minds and bodies of detainees,” said McKay. “Their actions destroyed trust in clinicians, undermined the integrity of their professions, and damaged the United States’ human rights record, which can only be corrected through accountability.

PHR also states that not only did health professional play an essential role in carrying out the program, they were also the ones who “designed, supervised, and implemented” the techniques, they were “paid enormous sums for their efforts,” and they “monitored those being tortured and used their expertise to certify detainees’ fitness for torture and worked to enable and enhance the pain inflicted.”

One of the methods used on detainees by health professionals was the practice of forced rectal feeding. RT reported that this practice was used, despite “officials having not found any medical necessity” in the practice, and despite the fact that as a result, “detainees suffered from rectal prolapses and other after-effects.

The report from PHR states that the Senate’s torture report shows that rectal feeding was used “without medical necessity” and to “control and/or punish the detainees,” and that according to PHR experts, “Insertion of any object into the rectum of an individual without his consent constitutes a form of sexual assault.”

Dr. Vincent Iacopino, PHR’s senior medical advisor, called for the health professionals involved to be held accountable for their involvement in the torture program.

Health professionals played a pivotal role in the abuse and brutality exposed in the CIA torture report and they must be held accountable,” said Iacopino. “They were complicit at every step, including designing the torture techniques, monitoring the infliction of severe physical and mental pain, and failing to document clear evidence of harm.”

PHR released a statement calling for an investigation of the professionals who betrayed their ethical duties, and inflicted harm on patients they were supposed to be protecting:

PHR calls for the investigation and prosecution of all those complicit in the torture and ill-treatment of detainees and the revocation of licenses for any health professionals who participated. PHR also repeats its call for transparency, and for the U.S. government to clarify the extent to which U.S. officials and those acting at the government’s direction violated the U.N. Convention against Torture and the U.S. Constitution.”

Republican-Led Committee Finds No Interference from Obama Administration in Benghazi Attacks

On Friday, the United States House of Representatives’ Intelligence Committee released a report, regarding its investigation of the terrorist attacks that occurred on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012.

The report stated that it was meant to “serve as the definitive House statement on the Intelligence Community’s activities before, during and after the tragic events” that led to the death of four Americans: U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, Foreign Service Officer Sean Smith, and CIA Contractors: Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty.

According to the report, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence “conducted a comprehensive and exhaustive investigation into the tragic attacks against two U.S. facilities on Benghazi, Libya, on September 11-12, 2012.”

The report, which came as a result of a nearly two-year investigation, found that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) “ensured sufficient security for CIA facilities in Benghazi,” and that there was “no intelligence failure prior to the attacks.

It also claimed that after the attacks, the “early intelligence assessments and the Administration’s initial public narrative on the causes and motivations for the attacks were not fully accurate,” and that the attackers seemed to come from a range of backgrounds:

The Committee finds that a mixed group of individuals, including those affiliated with Al-Qa’ida, participated in the attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, although the Committee finds that the intelligence was and remains conflicting about the identities, affiliations, and motivations of the attackers.”

The report concluded that the Committee found no evidence that the CIA “conducted unauthorized activities in Benghazi,” that the Intelligence Community “shipped arms to Syria,” or that any of the officers were intimidated to destroy information or change their accounts of the events:

The Committee found no evidence that any officer was intimidated, wrongly forced to sign a nondisclosure agreement or otherwise kept from speaking to Congress, or polygraphed because of their presence in Benghazi.”

While this report states that there was no interference, Benswann.com reported claims from former Deputy Assistant Secretary Raymond Maxwell, in September 2014, which stated, “Allies of Hillary Clinton removed potentially damaging documents before handing over files to the Accountability Review Board.