Nov. 12, 2016
Sheri Fink published a third piece in the New York Times as part of a series on the lasting effects of abusive interrogations:
Every day when Lt. Cmdr. Shay Rosecrans crossed into the military detention center at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, she tucked her medical school class ring into her bra, covered the name on her uniform with tape and hid her necklace under her T-shirt, especially if she was wearing a cross.
She tried to block out thoughts of her 4-year-old daughter. Dr. Rosecrans, a Navy psychiatrist, had been warned not to speak about her family or display anything personal, clues that might allow a terrorism suspect to identify her.
Patients called her “torture bitch,” spat at her co-workers and shouted death threats, she said. One hurled a cup of urine, feces and other fluids at a psychologist working with her. Even interviewing prisoners to assess their mental health set off recriminations and claims that she was torturing them. “What would your Jesus think?” they demanded.
Dr. Rosecrans, now retired from the Navy, led one of the mental health teams assigned to care for detainees at the island prison over the past 15 years. Some prisoners had arrived disturbed — traumatized adolescents hauled in from the battlefield, unstable adults who disrupted the cellblocks. Others, facing indefinite confinement, struggled with despair.