Torture on CIA detainees

by Kamal Koushal on November 13, 2014 - 11:38pm

The article “ CIA tortured terror suspect ‘to point of death’” written by Peter Foster on September 8th, 2014, on National Post denounces the CIA and their use of torture on prisoners. Especially after 9/11, the CIA has been accused to torture detainee that they suspect for the event. In this case, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is one of these prisoners that is suspected to be the mastermind behind 9/11. The CIA acted upon their suspicions and used the waterboard interrogation technique against him, which is a form of torture. More precisely, it mimics the physical and mental effects of drowning, which are very distressing.  Foster emphasizes the testimonies of first-hand witnesses that the torture was cruel and the CIA might have gone too far. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, according to reports, was “drowned” 183 times, and a doctor was present each time to ensure the relative safety of the operation. The torture used by the CIA is a means to obtain information, so it raises a few ethical dilemmas. For instance, is it ethical for the CIA to torture Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, whether he is a suspect of not, as a means to obtain information? Or is it ever ethical to bring harm to a human being if it might have a good impact on other lives?


Hi Kamal, I am doing a response for my mental health psychology class.

I can agree with Mr. Fosters article that i think as well as the CIA can be going to far because we should all have our human rights, no one should be harmed in any psychical or mental way. On the other hand i do believe in utilitarianism, which is the maximized total benefit of a situation. I believe if this one man holds information that can be good to help many people or even save many people that the CIA must do whatever it takes to obtain that information. So are they going to far or are they just trying to protect everyone else? Thats my opinion on this topic

My assignment: I can now relate this post to a mental health concern. These CIA men, doctors and witness's that have seen or have to watch a man be tortured. The beating, the actions, the aggression and everything that has to do with torture can have a correlation and link to post-traumatic stress disorder in those people's lives. This torture to the enemy could be causing mental health issues to themselves. Being a witness of these events just as your job can be causing helplessness, horror, fear, nightmares, disruptive responses and other bad situations. It is the same example for what a soldier can go through or even someone with an abusive family being apart of these torture events. My opinion is that even though they probably won't stop with torture and everything they do behind close doors, but i would suggest to them to take proper action in preventing post-traumatic stress disorder in these peoples lives.

We can be preventing and treating this disorder by things like the following things: Trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapy: Exposing yourself to your thoughts, feelings and situations that remind you to the trauma. Family therapy: This therapy can help make families understand what the person is going through and can help communication. Medication: Antidepressants given to help feel less sad, worried, on the edge but they do not treat the causes of PTSD.

If you are unaware or would like to know more about PTSD i have posted a few links that have helped me with my assignment in the past. This is something that should be taken very seriously and hopefully prevented. No one deserves to go through anything traumatizing but i do hope for the future people understand so they can help those who need it.

Thanks, James Hughes-Scavone

If it is proven beyond a reasonable doubt that this man had something to do with 9/11 then I believe torture was ethical. for those who argue that harm to humans is unnecessary and unprovoked i encourage you to visit the 9/11 memorial as I did. there you will see about 3000 names of innocent people that this man wanted to kill to send some sort of message. As well as thousands and thousands of family members with tears in their eyes and furry and anger in their hearts. As much as we all would like to believe that violence is unnecessary, unfortunately it is necessary. Justice needed to be served and it was. The world is made up of people, some good, some bad. But when a tragedy like this occurs because a bad person decided to take action. we need to do what is necessary to make sure they don't do it again, and in this case we needed to take every measure possible to gather information on possible future attacks in order to save the lives of more good people. Is the value of one BAD persons life equal to the value of 3000 GOOD peoples lives? that is the real question to ask here. People who are shielded form the realities of the world may not understand why anyone need to be tortured. But when reality sets in anyone with common sense knows you cant fight terrorism and save lives by smiling and politely asking questions. That is an unrealistic wish of a utopian society were everyone holds hands and hums along. I believe torture is a terrible thing yes, but it is suppose to be a terrible thing because it is intended for terrible people.

Inflicting methods of torture on prisoners in unethical, as it does not bring any means of happiness to any party involved in the act. It does, however, cause a lot of pain and worry to the prisoners in the sense that they would be concerned with what method of interrogation they might receive. It can also cause negative psychological effects in the long term. In this post made by The Justice Campaign, it tells of torture methods used in Guantanamo Bay, and how they lead to different outcomes as well as the effects the methods had on the prisoners.