Psychology Professor, Coral Dando was interviewed by BBC Radio London for the programme ‘Inspirit with Jumoke Fashola’ on the use of torture to illicit information and following Donald Trump’s pro-torture statements.

In her interview on the 29th of January, Professor Coral Dando was asked whether some forms of torture such as waterboarding worked to get information from suspected terrorists in regards to national security.

Professor Dando answered: “No, it does not work, it is much more likely to do exactly the reverse of what you are looking to do when you talk to someone”. She added that damaging people mentally and physically would actually interfere with people’s use of their cognition and would then prevent the mental process of signing and verbalising information. She explained: “when the human brain is in a painful and stressful situation, it does affect the way that we make decisions as well as our memory”.

In regards to Trump’s position in favour of torture, Professor Dando stated: “the problem is that when you are surrounded by people who tell you that it works, rather than asking for a balanced opinion, it is then very unfortunate […] The problem is about who leaders surround themselves with, and it is clear that Trump surrounds himself with people that are proponents of torture, and it does appear that he does not offer the opportunity for those who have a different view point to provide him with information which will allow him to make a balanced vision”.

Listen to the full interview on BBC iPlayer from 2:10:07.

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