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An Interrogation Center at Yale?

Proposed Pentagon Special Ops Training Facility at Yale School of Medicine Sparks Protests

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MICHAEL SIEGEL: Well, again, the—there’s two different issues here. The study that you’re talking about is one that was already conducted, and that’s different from what will happen at the center. The center involves interviewing, and the study involved actual advanced interrogation. And I think there’s a larger issue here. And the larger issue is really: What are legitimate uses of medicine, and what should medicine be involved in? And I think, with that, Yale has now crossed a line. There are nefarious purposes to which medicine can be used. I mean, for example, one could use medicine to design biological weapons. Clearly, everyone would agree that the Yale School of Medicine should not be involved in helping to achieve that military objective. But I think that using the practice of medicine and medical research to help design advanced interrogation techniques, or even just regular civilian intelligence-gathering techniques, interviewing techniques, is not an appropriate use of medicine. The practice of medicine was designed to improve people’s health. And the school of medicine should not be taking part in either training or research that is primarily designed to enhance military objectives. That’s not an appropriate use of medicine. And the bottom line is, I think it’s a perversion of medicine, and that’s the greatest harm that I fear that is coming from this.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you so much for being with us. Michael Siegel, Boston University professor of psychiatry, a 1990 graduate of Yale medical school, has written a letter to Yale medical school saying he will not support the school anymore if they do open this center. Nathalie Batraville is a Yale graduate student, and Alex Lew, Yale sophomore; both wrote an op-ed piece in the Yale paper protesting the establishment of this center. And we will continue to follow the controversy, so stay tuned. This is Democracy Now! We’ll be back in a minute.

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