FBI Interrogation Primer Encourages Prisoner Isolation

Today, the ACLU released a 2011 FBI “primer” on overseas interrogation that calls into question whether the FBI is adhering to its own policy prohibiting coercive techniques. The 2011 primer was obtained by the ACLU and colleague organizations through Freedom of Information Act litigation. It was written by an FBI Section Chief within the counterterrorism division, and is ironically titled “Cross Cultural, Rapport-Based Interrogation,” – ironic because it encourages FBI agents to request that detainees in foreign or military custody be put in isolation to prolong the detainee’s fear for interrogation purposes. Isolation was a key component to many of the abusive interrogations that took place in Guantanamo, Afghanistan, and in secret CIA black sites after 9/11, in some cases causing extreme psychological trauma. This morning, we wrote to the FBI Director Robert Mueller expressing their concerns with the primer.

The 2011 FBI primer recommends that FBI agents ask the detaining authority to isolate a detainee “several days before you begin interrogation” as well as during the “multi-session, multi-day [interrogation] process.” The primer also repeatedly cites and encourages FBI interrogators to read the 1963 CIA KUBARK manual, a highly controversial document long disavowed and disparaged for its promotion of severe prisoner abuse, including through the use of isolation. Even the KUBARK manual explicitly recognizes the use of isolation in interrogation as a “coercive technique” with profound psychological effects, such as hallucinations and delusions.

The use of isolation as described in the 2011 FBI primer would appear to violate FBI policy. The FBI’s special agents’ handbook explicitly recognizes isolation for interrogation purposes as a form of coercion. During the Bush administration, when FBI agents appeared confused about whether or how isolation could be used for interrogation purposes at Guantanamo, senior FBI officials clarified that it was impermissible and that they should avoid even being consulted on such decisions. Such advice is consistent with U.S. Supreme Court precedent that identifies the use of isolation as an indicator of coercive interrogation and notes the “inevitable disquietude and fears” that isolation engenders.

FBI agents should not be asking foreign governments or other agencies to engage in conduct that FBI agents are prohibited from engaging in. This is especially true when that conduct—like the use of isolation interrogation—raises serious human rights concerns and could lead to violations of international and domestic law.

Recognition of the harmful impact of isolation on the physical and mental wellbeing of prisoners has recently led both the U.S. Senate and the United Nations to more carefully scrutinize the use of solitary confinement. Scientific studies demonstrate that even short-term isolation can have profound negative psychological impact, including severe anxiety, hallucinations and an inability to concentrate.

Today’s letter urges Director Mueller to make clear that FBI policy does not permit the use of isolation in interrogation. The letter also urged the FBI to immediately cease using the primer, investigate how it came to be used, and to provide remedial training for any agents previously provided the primer. The FBI must send an unequivocal message to its agents and its international partners that it is committed to non-coercive interrogations and will not tolerate prisoner abuse.

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Yikes. .. The Feds breaking their own policies, but yet they all in my business!!!


April DeJarlais

It is illogical for isolation would be classified as a “rapport-building” interrogation technique – how can rapport possibly be constructed when an individual is kept alone and in fear? Thanks to the ACLU for urging the FBI to discontinue use of its primer and torture tactics like isolation. April DeJarlais


Americans generally have no clue as to the inhumane spy activities of fbi/cia.

But the rest of the world does.

The fbi/cia cannot get away with their continuing global murder & torture & crime spree.

Operation destroy fbi/cia is on.Here's why: Re: torture & murder of humans.


Most are not awakened to the reality of the macabre usa global program; some don't care; others rejoice in the carnage; while many others participate in the slaughter. USA is among the youngest gov with about 200-400 years in existence, Egypt 5000 years and itself is a dangerous place to try to live, European countries (France and Britain) are about a thousand years in the making of their sickening kingdom/oligarchy, and China in three thousand years still can't respect fundamental human rights including the right to live. In a sense the Oligarchy also rules the USA today and encourages the barbarity that we witness.

Thus, all nations are ruled by tyrants and sociopaths. The youngest nation on the world stage (pitiful & godless usa)propels all other countries to accept the war ethic because the economic & military forces of usa demand carnage. Even peacemakers are forced at birth to prepare for war against his brothers, and I see no remedy to correct the inhumanity that envelopes us all, especially as the fbi/cia assassins are in complete control here and to a degree abroad.




ACLU has nothing to address fbi/cia torture of our own vets:
"The US is losing even a bigger war at home where a veteran dies by suicide every 80 minutes."

The types of crimes committed by the fbi/cia/dod,etc., as I have witnessed over the course of my lifetime are not new to mankind; indeed, for as long as man has walked on the face of the earth he has been confronted with his own savagery and inhumanity to fellow man. War has become legal; fbi/cia covert intelligence operations (including mass murder and other assassinations & tortures) are well known by many but never spoken about in polite conversations because they are also legal by awful custom. Thus, the end game for man is now being shaped by the most barbaric feature of his character: man's criminal urge to destroy one another for myriad purposes. Mark Twain perhaps captured this truth as he said,

" A crime preserved in a thousand centuries ceases to be a crime, and becomes a virtue. This is the law of custom, and custom supersedes all other forms of law."

The recent wars are paid for largely by the lives of (and taxed on the backs of) the poor .

Send the senators (like Lindsey Graham, et al) into battle on the front lines to remove the hidden bombs and see how long the war would last.
Other candidates for the proposed congressional bomb squad battalion are found in the marble hallways of Congress and specifically from here:


War not worth fighting by a USA not worth defending

The awful irony of our time is that the three official branches of government are now overthrown by the unofficial fourth branch, Administrative Agencies.












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