One Conscientious Objector at Gitmo Is Great – But It’s Not Enough

Vice News

Natasha Lennard

The international medical community has long maintained an ethical line against force-feeding. As infectious disease specialist Kent Sepkowitz has written, “Without question, it is the most painful procedure doctors routinely inflict on conscious patients… The procedure is, in a word, barbaric.”

Yet in Guantanamo Bay, it is daily procedure for a reported 18 hunger striking detainees. Every day medical professionals watch strapped-down inmates gasp, gag, and choke with streaming eyes as rubber tubes are snaked through sensitive nasal passages into empty stomachs. Despite urging from institutions including the American Medical Association and the New England Journal of Medicine, Gitmo prison medical staff continue to participate, all of them just following orders. All but one. [Full text]

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