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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Shawn Vestal: Torture book by Spokane psychologist is MIA

A Spokane psychologist who developed and implemented the Bush administration’s torture program has co-authored “Enhanced Interrogation,” which was slated by Crown Publishing for a May 10 release. The book has been shelved.

Torture case against Spokane psychologists may continue, judge rules

The American Civil Liberties Union earned a victory in court Friday as U.S. District Court Judge Justin Quackenbush ordered attorneys for Spokane psychologists Bruce Jessen and James Mitchell to cooperate in producing documents related to the pair’s methods of interrogation, which have been called torture. Jessen and Mitchell argue they were acting under authority from the CIA and should be legally immune.

ACLU sues psychologists over CIA interrogation tactics

The American Civil Liberties Union on Tuesday sued two former Air Force psychologists who designed a CIA program that used harsh interrogation techniques to elicit intelligence from suspected terrorists, saying the pair endorsed and taught torture tactics under the guise of science.

Shawn Vestal: Local psychologists had high-level backup for torture role

It’s not news that two Spokane psychologists were instrumental in developing, teaching and employing firsthand the torture program that the U.S. adopted in years immediately following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. But an exhaustive new report makes the case that the professional gatekeepers of psychology – as represented by top officials in the American Psychological Association – colluded with military leaders in developing a permissive and vague code of ethics regarding the participation of psychologists in interrogations, and actively thwarted efforts to develop policies that would have prohibited it.

Shawn Vestal: Comments offer insight into key player in CIA storm

James Mitchell – considered one of the men who built a torture empire from Spokane – has started speaking publicly. And though he mostly dances around the shocking and specific allegations that have arisen against the work he did, Mitchell still manages to find a lot to say.

Public was misled on extent and effect of torture

How much water was involved in America’s waterboarding of terrorism suspects? If that sounds glib, it’s not meant to be. As the massive and much-battled-over “torture report” by a Senate committee inches toward public disclosure, a British newspaper is reporting that the waterboarding employed against three top al-Qaida suspects far exceeds the widespread understanding of what happened. It is the latest trickle from the iceberg surrounding that report, all of which suggest that the torture program was even worse than it was thought to be – that the tactics were harsher and the results negligible, and that the CIA misled a lot of people about it.

Fairchild’s torture ties extend their reach

Ten years ago this month, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was considering the approval of aggressive interrogation techniques for “high-value detainees” being held at Guantanamo Bay. The techniques had roots in the survival school training conducted at Fairchild Air Force Base and elsewhere, where service members are taught to resist the worst the enemy might do. The methods became the foundation for an interrogation program that proceeded, sometimes officially, sometimes not, through various incarnations of the “war on terror”: from secret CIA prisons to Guantanamo Bay to Abu Ghraib.

Officials: CIA gave waterboarders $5M legal shield

The CIA agreed to cover at least $5 million in legal fees for two contractors who were the architects of the agency's interrogation program and personally conducted dozens of waterboarding sessions on terror detainees, former U.S. officials said.

CIA fires Spokane psychologists’ firm

WASHINGTON – The CIA has fired a firm run by two Spokane psychologists who helped introduce waterboarding and other harsh methods to the agency’s interrogation techniques, according to a news report. CIA Director Leon Panetta in April fired Mitchell, Jessen & Associates and all other contractors that aided the CIA in its interrogations of alleged terrorists, the New Yorker reported this weekend.