A recent documentary produced by Al Jazeera has made explosive accusations implicating such beloved Sesame Street characters as Big Bird, Cookie Monster, and Elmo. While it was widely reported in 2008 that the U.S. Military tortured terrorism suspects by repetitively exposing them to heavy metal songs such as Metallica’s “Enter Sandman,” it appears that U.S. officials have since expanded their enhanced interrogation techniques and now force detainees to wear headphones playing Sesame Street songs for hours or even days on end.
The documentary, entitled Songs of War, follows award-winning composer Christopher Cerf as he learns that many of the Sesame Street songs he composed for educational purposes were used to torture detainees. ”In Guantanamo they actually used music to break prisoners. So the idea that my music had a role in that is kind of outrageous,” Cerf says. ”Of course I didn’t really like the idea that I was helping break down prisoners, but it was much worse when I heard later that they were actually using the music in Guantanamo to actually do deep, long-term interrogations and obviously to inflict enough pain on prisoners so they would talk.”
As Moazzam Begg, a former detainee at Guantanamo Bay and Bagram explains, “The music was so loud. And it was probably some of the worst torture that they faced.”
Other torture victims were witnessed leaving the interrogation chambers screaming “No, I can’t tell you how to get…how to get to Sesame Street!!!! I’ve never even heard of this Sesame Street of which you speak!!! I swear on Allah, I cannot tell you how to get to Sesame Street!! Please, stop asking me!!”
One former detainee, who asked to remain anonymous, told reporters “The grouchy one, he was the worst. Always popping out of trash cans to frighten us.”
Other detainees claim that some of the interrogators would actually restrict food intake as a means of torture. As one stated, “The big blue one, he would always take my food. Some of the nicer guards would give me a cookie if I was hungry, but the big blue monster would come and take it away, screaming ‘Me want cookie! Me eat cookie! Nom, nom, nom, nom, nom!’ One time, the monster even ate my shoe. It was horrible.”
Photo attribution: USO/flickr
political humor news satire borowitz maher colbert comedy jokes politics democrats republicans liberals conservatives