Originally posted at Firedoglake
The great novelist William Faulkner famously wrote, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
With all the controversy over the use of Survival, Evasion, Escape, Resistance, or SERE, psychologists in the interrogation of “high-value detainees” — most recently detailed in a fascinating melange of an article in last Sunday’s Washington Post — everyone seems to assume that terrible chapter is a thing of the past. Recent documentation that has come to my attention suggests otherwise.
The reasons no one until now has noticed the current activities of SERE psychologists in offensive military operations are that, one, no one has cared to look, and two, a specious narrative ending in the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) report, “Treatment of Detainees in U.S. Custody,” released last April, that appeared to conclude the episode was over. In its Executive Summary, the SASC concluded that, in September 2004, “JFCOM [U.S. Joint Forces Command] issued a formal policy stating that support to offensive interrogation operations was outside JPRA’s charter.” And that, presumably, was that.