Letter to President George W. Bush

Feb. 15, 2008

President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20050

Dear Mr. President:

On behalf of the American Psychological Association, we are writing to call upon you to definitively outlaw waterboarding and several other so-called "enhanced" interrogation techniques by signing the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 (H.R. 2082).

As the world's largest scientific and professional organization of psychologists, APA unequivocally condemns the use of torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment under any and all conditions, including the detention and interrogation of both lawful and unlawful "enemy combatants," as defined by the U.S. Military Commissions Act of 2006. Enactment of H.R. 2082 would be an important step toward ensuring that detainees in the United States and at U.S. facilities abroad will not be subjected to the eight interrogation techniques that are defined as cruel, inhuman or degrading by the Army Field Manual. This would be an important step forward in protecting the rights of detainees.

As psychologists, we believe such "enhanced" interrogation tactics are unethical, ineffective and highly likely to result in inaccurate information. Furthermore, the use of any information obtained through torture or other abusive techniques should not be permitted in any U.S. court.

We remain available to answer any questions or provide additional information to you.


Alan E. Kazdin, PhD

Norman B. Anderson, PhD
Chief Executive Officer