If you were going to play the songs from a children’s television show over and over at high volume to get your enemy to spill his guts, you’d definitely go with songs from Dora the Explorer, right? I mean, hearing “I’m the map, I’m the map, I’m the map, I’m the map, I’m the map!” even once a day is enough to drive any sane parent bonkers; imagine what it would do when applied in a torture situation? If for some reason you couldn’t get the songs from Dora (I think Nickelodeon hates giving rights away for causes like war), maybe you’d use the sound of Curious George’s voice, or the Blue’s Clues jingle. But nope. Those aren’t what U.S. officials used to torture inmates at Guantanamo. What show did they use?
According to The Huffington Post, “prisoners at the U.S. detention camp at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base were forced to wear headphones blasting music from Sesame Street on repeat for hours or days on end.” Christopher Cerf, one of Sesame Street‘s composers, told Al Jazeera, ”My first reaction was this just can’t possibly be true …. but it was much worse when I heard later that they were actually using the music in Guantanamo to actually do deep, long-term interrogations and obviously to inflict enough pain on prisoners so they would talk.”
HuffPo has a 45 minute documentary on the subject at the link above if you’re interested. I’m not sure sunny days will ever be the same again!
Image via iStock