A man questions everything - his faith, his morality, his country - as he recounts his experience as an interrogator in Iraq; an unprecedented memoir and "an act of incredible bravery." (Phil Klay)
Consequence is the story of Eric Fair, a kid who grew up in the shadows of crumbling Bethlehem Steel plants nurturing a strong faith and a belief that he was called to serve his country. It is a story of a man who chases his own demons from Egypt, where he served as an Army translator, to a detention center in Iraq, to seminary at Princeton, and eventually, to a heart transplant ward at the University of Pennsylvania.
In 2004, after several months as an interrogator with a private contractor in Iraq, Eric Fair's nightmares take new forms: first, there had been the shrinking dreams; now the liquid dreams begin. By the time he leaves Iraq after that first deployment (he will return), Fair will have participated in or witnessed a variety of aggressive interrogation techniques including sleep deprivation, stress positions, diet manipulation, exposure, and isolation.
Years later, his health and marriage crumbling, haunted by the role he played in what we now know as "enhanced interrogation," it is Fair's desire to speak out that becomes a key to his survival. Spare and haunting, Eric Fair's memoir is both a brave, unrelenting confession and a book that questions the very depths of who he, and we as a country, have become.
One of the interrogation booths at Abu Ghraib has comfortable chairs. I like to use this booth because there's a small space heater inside that cuts through the chill of the Iraqi winter. There's even a hot plate to boil water for tea, but it only works when you run an extension cord from the generator, and that prevents you from closing the door all the way. I'm interrogating an Iraqi general today, so I make the tea.
It's hard to schedule this booth because everyone wants to use it, and we're only supposed to use it when we have someone important to talk to. It's always a good thing if you're interrogating a former Iraqi army officer, especially a major or a colonel. And if you get a former general, like today, then the booth is yours for sure.
The comfortable interrogation booth is designed for an approach called change of scenery. The prisoner is supposed to think he's somewhere else; he's supposed to be ...
Although the author writes from a strongly Christian point of view, the book isn't a sermon on the evils of torture, nor does it delve into philosophical discussion. It remains a highly personal account throughout, focusing on actions, events and people. It's unlikely most readers will learn more about conditions in Iraq during the latest war there but they will gain a greater understanding of the permanent psychological impact such a war can have on those who participate.
(Reviewed by Kim Kovacs).
Full Review (875 words).
Consequence author Eric Fair first prepared for his role as an interrogator by enrolling in the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC).
According to its website, the DLIFLC is the "premier school for culturally based foreign language education and training, with classroom instruction, mobile training teams, and online materials tailored for students at all levels of required proficiency or performance." It's located on the Presidio in Monterey, CA. Although the Presidio is a U.S. Army post and the DLIFLC is run by the Army, it's considered a "joint-service" school and is attended by members of all branches of the military service as well as select individuals sponsored by government agencies such as the National ...
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