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Torture Doesn’t Work, Says an Expert with 30 Years Experience


Mark Fallon wrote a piece in Politico called “Dick Cheney was Lying.”

I’m sure you’ve never heard of Mark Fallon, so this is how he was described in the Politico piece: “Mark Fallon served as an interrogator for more than 30 years, including as a Naval Criminal Investigative Service special agent and within the Department of Homeland Security, as the assistant director for training of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.”

Here’s a quote from his piece that explains why torture doesn’t work: “Yes, torture makes people talk—but what they say is often untrue. Seeking to stop the pain, people subjected to torture tend to say what they believe their interrogators want to hear.”

What DOES work, and sometimes amazingly well, is to befriend the detainee and offer him positive reinforcement for just talking, about anything that you want to talk about. The shock and relief of being treated well loosens the tongue and makes the detainee want to be helpful, rather than making him try to guess what you want to hear so the pain will stop.

Here’s a link to his piece:

And here’s a quote that I’ve seen several times in the last few days:

“Should any American soldier be so base and infamous as to injure any [prisoner]. . . I do most earnestly enjoin you to bring him to such severe and exemplary punishment as the enormity of the crime may require. Should it extend to death itself, it will not be disproportional to its guilt at such a time and in such a cause… for by such conduct they bring shame, disgrace and ruin to themselves and their country.” – George Washington, charge to the Northern Expeditionary Force, Sept. 14, 1775…

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