Does Torture CREATE Terrorists Via Trauma-Based Conditioning…?

Iraqi Detainees at Camp Bucca, Iraq
(AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)

The interesting thing about torture – aside from its ineffectiveness in information-gathering – is that it is, conversely, regarded as highly effective in a completely different regard: as a form of mind control or psychological conditioning.

Trauma-based mind-control is a subject that has been explored at length by various researchers and whistleblowers, often in reference to the secret ‘Monarch’ and ‘MK Ultra’ programs. There are numerous texts that can be looked up for anyone interested in those subjects. Kathy O’Brien’s book Tranceformation of America is a particularly good thing to look up.

The idea of these techniques and programs for the creation of Black Ops agents or patsies has also been explored in various research (some of it touched on in this older post).

But in the context of those ideas and the science of trauma-based conditioning, it seems to me that you could very likely *create* radicals and terrorists via focused torture practises and trauma-based conditioning.

I’ve often thought about this in regard to how many Guantanamo inmates were openly admitted to have been innocent of any crime (which, it turns out, is a lot of them: some having been detained illegally for fifteen years), coupled with curious little things like Muammar Gaddafi claiming that “former Guantanamo inmates” had been involved in the Libyan ‘uprising’ against his government in 2011.

As far back as 2009, an ex-Bush official admitted that most of the Guantanamo inmates were innocent, acknowledging that ‘Many detainees locked up in Guantanamo Bay were innocent men swept up by U.S. forces unable to distinguish enemies from noncombatants’.

 US soldiers torturing Iraqi prisoner 

I’m not suggesting at all that innocent detainees eventually released from the illegal Guantanamo prison will have been mind-controlled into radicalism: but that some individuals held in the Cuban facility, and moreover many individuals subject to US ‘extraordinary rendition’ and ‘black site’ torture practices in various locations, may have been tortured for the purposes of MK-Ultra-style trauma-based conditioning.

The purpose perhaps being to create the very terrorists that the CIA and the Neo-Con regime *needed* to be in operation in order, perversely, to justify the continuing ‘War On Terror’ and all the illegal practices involved.

Along similar lines, I wonder not just about the radicalization effects of Abu Ghraib and its role in the rise of (and brutality of) ‘ISIS‘ fighters, but also the fact that most of the ‘ISIS’ leaders – including the elusive ‘Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi‘ – were kept in the infamous, American-controlled prison ‘Camp Bucca’ for some time.

At least nine members of the Islamic State’s highest level of command are said to have done time at Camp Bucca, according to the terrorism research firm Soufan Group, which noted that ‘though it’s likely the men were extremists when they entered Bucca, it’s certain they were when they left.’

I mentioned yesterday the fact that the ISIS execution videos always have the victims garbed in the orange jumpsuits – a direct reference to Guantanamo Bay.

I argued that this symbolism is probably designed to hold up a perverse mirror to the US and remind them where the idea came from.

 Islamic State terrorists in Libya

Protesters in orange jumpsuits, protesting Guantanamo Bay 

And that is probably what I believe to be the case; however, it also occurs to me that – if any of these psychopaths involved in ISIS barbarism were also subject to US torture programs, black sites or extraordinary rendition – a lot of this symbolism might actually represent a warped, twisted ‘acting out’ of ideas or symbols deeply embedded in their own psychological experiences.

Admittedly, I think the first explanation is more likely than the second. But these elements cannot be underestimated: and the depravities that went on in Abu Ghraib should never, ever be separated from the depravities that have subsequently gone on with ‘ISIS’ (the pictures below are two of the tame ones, compared to some of the Abu Ghraib images that were widely circulating around the Arab world). Abu Ghraib, among other things, had been the nail in the coffin of any hint of moral justification the US had ever had concerning the decision to illegally invade Iraq.

 Torture photos from Abu Ghraib prison

Abu Ghraib torture 

Which is why what Donald Trump has said about torture practices is both so stupid and so uneducated. If his ‘solution’ to ‘ISIS’ is some of the very same thinking and perversion that led to the creation of ‘ISIS’ in the first place, then we’re going to be stuck in this vicious circle forever.

But from the curious case of the drugged and barely conscious ‘underpants bomber’ to the odd, eccentric features of the Sydney Cafe ‘terrorist’, I have often wondered whether the American torture activities, Black Sites and Guantanamo Bay, were all part of a secret operation to psychologically *create* useful radicals and terrorists to act as proxies. Almost everything about the situation in the post-9/11 Middle East (and beyond) was manufactured – from 9/11 to the invasion of Iraq and the wars in Syria and Libya – and so it isn’t much of a stretch to wonder if half of the ‘terrorists’ themselves have been manufactured too: and not just as an unfortunate by-product of terrible foreign policy decisions but as a deliberately sought-after covert operation.

In that model, you would only have to manufacture certain key figures and numbers of the ‘terrorists’ – just enough to create the situations and the momentum into which other, ‘real’ terrorists and jihadists will soon be inspired to step into and get involved in.

The ‘War on Terror‘ of course wasn’t anything of the sort, but was more a War to Expand Terror – and which necessitated that there be a constant renewal in the numbers of radicals and terrorists for the Good Guys to claim to be fighting against.

As previously noted, the 2014 Senate Torture Report – that exists only because of the efforts of Democrats – was never made completely available: large parts of it remain classified, which suggests that there’s some very, very grim secrets contained in them. This might also explain why the CIA Inspector General’s office ‘accidentally’ deleted the CIA’s only copy of the document and also why, for example, in 2005 the CIA Director of National Clandestine Service authorised the burning of almost 100 tapes that showed some of the torture practices being conducted.

This sense I’ve always had that the US intelligence agencies have been deliberately *creating* terrorists all along seems to be reinforced virtually every time there’s a major attack. The most recent incident – the Fort Lauderdale shooting – is a perfect example. The shooter was widely reported – including in mainstream news outlets – to have been ‘hearing voices’ in his head, telling him to join ISIS, and was known to have had contact with the FBI. Various tell-tale oddities in his story are highlighted here.

But it’s a familiar story by now; and the details of the case could easily lend themselves to a story of trauma-based mind-control no doubt involving torture.

Again, we know about things like the CIA’s MK Ultra programme from previous decades; as well as ideas like ‘Monarch’ programming and various coercion or control techniques. One can’t help but wonder how many of the apparent terrorists or false-flag patsies in recent years have been essentially programmed.

I might be drawing the wrong conclusions, of course: as genuine as all of this information is, the conclusions may be incorrect.

But everyone can decide that for themselves. And can also decide for themselves whether it’s a good thing (for “security”) or a bad thing that the new US President – and many of those he has brought in around him – happen to be major torture enthusiasts or advocates.

S. Awan

Independent journalist. Pariah. Believer in human rights, human dignity and liberty. Musician. Substandard Jedi. All-round failure. And future ghost.


  1. Yes – of course, but not so, in reality and comparative to the overwhelming false/hoax-flagging and double-agent’s running ‘Islamic terror’. The question is; will admitting, sanctioning and presumably increasing perpetrating it, add to a counter-uprise? Suppose it must, relative to the plethora of less ideologically political motivations. It’ll certainly knock the righteous stuffing out of US etc troops, ex-ones and all, who hold their specific ‘war crimes’ are generally more limited due to our civil bulwark. Turn torture the crime, into humanitarian necessity and keep pump-up/pump-up the anti-Islamic volume to mix out of our consciences.

    Described by most as metaphysical speculation – for me – ‘unseen war’ the crucial ground is; Truth or lies? This matters more than materially and psychologically might suggest. It’s like evils’ food, lies damned lies – a kind of death and killing. Light sapping. An aim in itself. Not-lying so much – esp. those publicly on T.V. – is more health and hope-wards. But hey, perhaps we’ve just got to get to darkest days for some dawning. Unable to watch Trump and all, and ALL them we look at lot, mocking us in knowing the ‘9/11 etc pretext’ is bogus. Soon as I hear or see this sick sincerity and connection to Isis etc, literally turn off and tick off, temporarily or permanently, and viewing/them. Maintain one, could-bring worthy upset, is the awaking to this terror in disguise. Yet, we’ve somewhat hit a wake-up ceiling and clarity about manufactured terror. With masses considering ‘better to be right than know otherwise’ (the ‘educated’) and “so-what, nout we can do…” among less conscientious and world affairs.

    Torture can get anyone saying most anything. Ideal to build more deception. Trump in: Seems to be strongly playing with the con and for-him-ish Press, raising the chorus that ‘immigration is about terrorism/safety’ when there’s plenty else could more fairly argue borders -and- Isis overseas must be stopped by effort one way, never so much talk and the supplies/demand side.

    Insightful article – a make me think-er. Maybe the wider and more pronounced strategy is all about back-here-home, ‘form(s) of mind control or psychological conditioning’? I get the Manchurian candidate thing but with say, Fort Lauderdale, there’s much to suggest the gunman played a part among other paid players. Either way; more trouble than resolve, invasions abroad and false-flags back home will be this new (or same-as?), US/UK etc regime’s main barometer of bad vs good.

  2. I would just like to say that its common knowledge that the leader of isis is a mossad agent and all this about him being detained is a fib!!

    • I’ve covered the Baghdadi-as-Mossad-agent angle elsewhere, Rafiq – but I’ve never been 100 percent certain if this is true or not, as the source for this story is difficult to reliably verify. I accept, however, that the Camp Bucca internment of ‘Baghdadi’ might be a red herring – I also accept that, as one US General has said, ‘Baghdadi’ might not even be a real person and never existed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.