Study: Gitmo Doctors Ignored Signs of Torture

Officials Shrugged Off Data Suggesting Beatings

A newly released study details a number of cases in which government doctors at Guantanamo Bay ignored strong evidence of torture and other signs of detainee abuse. The study cited nine cases in particular where the “enhanced interrogation” was in line with torture, all of which doctors explained away as “personality disorders.”

That was every day life in Guantanamo Bay, it seems, where doctors shrugged off broken bones, didn’t ask about lacerations and nerve damage, or other signs of savage beatings. Even hallucinations were “routine” and the doctors just assumed they were “temporary.”

The report concluded that the evidence documented by the doctors was largely consistent with the detainee’s claims of torture, beyond that fact that the doctors dismissed the conclusions. The report has spawned new criticism of the detention center and the mistreatment of detainees therein.

Pentagon officials have yet to comment on the report. Officials have constantly maintained that the treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay has always been within the letter of the law (such as it is for extralegal detentions), but these claims always revolved around the doctors’ assertions. With those in doubt, officials will need a new justification for the sordid behavior at the facility.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.