“He’s not talking, sir. It looks like we’re going to have to bring in Big Bird.”
Citing the Freedom of Information Act, the press was able to obtain a list of artists and songs used in interrogating inmates political detainees at Guantanamo Bay. Many of them are what you would expect: Marilyn Manson, AC/DC, and Rage Against the Machine to name a few. Unfortunately, Limp Bizkit is also on there giving Fred Durst a reason to open his mouth again. Damn you CIA!
But there is some music on there I certainly didn’t expect. I wonder what went through the minds of the overpaid scientists who thought these would be good instruments of torture.
Sesame Street theme song
Detainee torture rating (out of 10): 3
This almost seems useless because Afghanistan is an arid desert. There are no clouds to sweep away and the air is definitely not sweet. And I don’t know how well the detainees spoke English before they were taken to Gitmo, but if they were allowed to watch full episodes at least they will leave knowing some basic Spanish, count while laughing like Vincent Price, and be tortured for the rest of their lives trying to figure out exactly what a Snuffleupagus is. Hmmm… maybe they have something here.
The Star Spangled Banner
So I guess this would be like rounding up a bunch of UCLA students and making them listen to the USC fight song over and over. Or continuously telling a Yahoo! employee to “Google it”. Or… oh nevermind, you get the picture.
The Bee Gees
Torture rating: 7
There is a reason disco went out in the 70’s. And I’m not sure it would be good to play a song about staying alive to someone who is supposed to think that they’re close to death. Of course, Barry Gibbs’ voice would probably start to wear on your eardrums after a few hours. Yeah, now that I think about it…
Torture rating: 0
James Taylor? Are they trying to threaten the detainees with death by boredom? I hope sleep deprivation was not part of the plan. I wonder if they’re playing “How Sweet It Is ( To Be Loved By You)”. That would be the one to make me talk. At least the detainees will leave with a new love of granola.
Torture rating: 4
Nothing like making a Muslim extremist squirm by playing a song by a famous Jewish guy about people wanting to come to America. No word on whether the perimeter guards heard consistent “DAH DAH DAH’s” coming from the compound during the “Sweet Caroline” hour.
The Stanley Brothers
Torture rating: 6
Who? I had to look these guys up. Here’s what I found.
I don’t know about you, but after I heard this I would tell them everything and request political asylum in Kentucky. That would be the only way I could knock out a few of my teeth, buy some overalls, hop in my 1978 Trans-am with a trunk full of moonshine, and run from the law. Oh them Dukes, them Dukes.
The Barney Theme Song
Torture rating: Unknown
I don’t know how much damage the song would do, but if they paired it with the video it would cause irreparable harm. These guys would never be able to look at their camel again without seeing a hideous purple dinosaur.
“Meow Mix” commercial jingle
Torture rating: 10+
Brilliant. There are reasons other than PETA that people in other countries eat cats. If they made me listen to that song, I would tell them everything they wanted to know just to see my dog again. Try to listen to the first 15 seconds of this 100 times in a row:
Did you start crying and wish that the Mayans had picked 2009 instead? If you say you didn’t, you’re a prime candidate for deep cover operations. But you would also be a prime candidate for liars anonymous, because we all know you did.
You can click here for the complete list of music used by interrogators.