The American Psychological Association Finally Says No to Torture While UK Spy Org GCHQs JTRIG Unit and US Government Still Says Yes

IMAGE SOURCE: The Atlantic

IMAGE SOURCE: The Atlantic

By Cheri Roberts, of Challenging the Rhetoric and Cheri Speak

In a damning report published by, The Intercept, UK psychologists are taking some heat over helping UK spy agency, GCHQ’s JTRIG unit use alleged unethical psychological tactics against targets. Sound familiar? It should! This falls on the heels of last months American Psychological Association (APA), review in the United States of their involvement in US torture tactics. The APA is the largest professional organization of psychologists in the US with more than 130,000 members.



The APA’s long-awaited review was conducted by former assistant US attorney, David Hoffman, over concerns medical professionals wrongfully aided in designing and implementing torture practices against detainees. The report released after the review revealed metal health professionals were complicit and had lied and covered up their extensive involvement in the US torture practices against detainees since 9/11.


According to a July 11, 2015 report in, The Guardian,

Evidence in the Hoffman report, sources believe, may merit referral to the FBI over potential criminal wrongdoing by the APA involvement in torture. The findings could reopen something human rights groups have urged for years: the potential for prosecutions of people involved in torture. The definition of “collusion” adopted by Hoffman is said to be similar to language used in the federal racketeering statute known as Rico.

The Senate Torture Report, that was released mid-December 2014, alluded former President, George W. Bush, wasn’t in the know about torture happening under his watch. That Report said, Bush had been “insulated” from the unsavory details of his own torture program although Bush’s good pal, Karl Rove went on the record saying the former President was in fact “fully briefed” stating,

He [Bush] was briefed and intimately involved in the decision.”


The Guardian article states the APA will not be addressing the George W. Bush administration or members of the US Military and any blow-back or ethics charges will be within their own ranks instead of those who hired them.

” … [If an investigation opens up], it would not be American military or intelligence interrogators themselves under investigation, nor the senior officials who devised torture policy in the Bush administration, but the psychologists who enabled them.”

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) welcomed last months APA decision to ban psychologists from participating in national security interrogations and advising on their confinement conditions, but some APA and government officials are criticizing the reforms and calling to cease any sort of “witch-hunt” before the APA’s upcoming convention.

When government’s deploy psychological tactics created by real mental health professionals, the ethics of the trade itself, and those in it, will always be in question. What they can use on others they can use on you too.



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