We have a word to describe the common individual human personality disorder characterized by abnormal behavior and a seeming absence of a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience: sociopath.
Torturers are sociopaths. Torture, although a common practice among human beings, is not normal human behavior. Torture is sadistic behavior. Torture is abhorrent behavior. Normal people don’t torture other people. Normal people have a sense of moral shame.
Individuals who torture lack normal empathy for their fellow human beings. People with a normal conscience and sense of morality cannot bring themselves to torture others, whether physically, emotionally, or psychologically. Torture is morally and ethically wrong. The very idea of inflicting pain on another human being for whatever reason is unthinkable to most of us.
Modern times have brought laws and solemn conventions among civilized nations against the barbarous practice of torture. Information acquired by means of torture has been scientifically proven to be no more reliable than that obtained by less aggressive means of interrogation. Our judicial system has long recognized that confessions obtained through torture are inadmissible because they are unreliable as evidence.
September 11, 2001, the government of the , as far as I know, recognized international conventions against the practice of torture. After 9/11, the Bush administration began to secretly sanction torture methods of interrogation against “War on Terror” detainees, and when the secret policy became public, attempted to justify the practice as legally and morally permissible. United States of America
The Bush administration sanctioned water boarding, forced nudity, sleep deprivation, temperature extremes, stress position and prolonged isolation as "safe, legal, ethical, and effective" enhanced interrogation techniques which were previously considered torture and forbidden by the United Nations Committee Against Torture.
Now, according to
ABC News and a study conducted by Physicians for Human Rights, torture is not only common practice on prison detainees, the prison doctors are going along with and covering it up -- so much for basic medical ethics and the Hippocratic Oath in service to the Guantanamo government. United States
"What was so striking in our investigation," said Dr. Vincent Iacopino, co-author on the study, "was that it's clear the Department of Defense clinicians provided medical care in the way you'd expect at any hospital or clinic, except that whenever an injury implied the possibility of intentional harm or psychological symptoms suggesting torture, the cause of those symptoms were completely ignored."
Doctors at Gitmo, the study found, didn’t record in the medical records or follow up with their detainee patients on obvious symptoms of torture, including bone fractures, lacerations, and symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. Claims by detainees of severe beatings were supported by evidence of fractures on X-ray but were not investigated, or if investigated, not reported in their medical records.
Government medical professionals failed to inquire about or document the cause of physical and mental symptoms of detainees that suggested the possibility of torture. One of many detainee’s who displayed classic symptoms of severe post traumatic stress disorder upon physical examination was given antidepressants and told that he needed "to relax when guards are being more aggressive," his medical records show.
"I don't think these doctors were bad people,” said Dr. Iacopino. “It's a mindset of a military base and the system doesn't support their independence as physicians. But it is our oath, as doctors, to treat, irrespective of who we are treating."
"When you're an insider, the group think can take over and you begin seeing things as others do. In a sense, that's more of a process of denial, that you yourself don't see the truth," adds Dr. Stevan Hobfoll, chair of behavioral sciences at
in Rush University Medical Center . Chicago, IL
This study describes perfectly a statist government political system, in this case a military system, devoid of ethics and conscience at the top and in the rank and file.
They explain the social mechanics of how entire countries can become nations of sociopaths.