Report: Musicians Demand Release of Songs Used to 'Torture' Gitmo Detainees

A number of high-profile musicians -- including members of Pearl Jam, R.E.M. and the Roots -- pressed the government Thursday to name the songs it blasted at the Guantanamo detainee center to coerce or punish prisoners held there, the Washington Post reported Thursday.

The songs were said to be played for hours -- sometimes days, a practice the musicians say amounted to torture, and one the Obama administration says has been discontinued.

In an effort to declassify all records related to what they say was the use of music as torture, several musicians have endorsed a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the National Security Archive, according to the newspaper.

"I think every musician should be involved," singer-songwriter Rosanne Cash, daughter of Johnny Cash, told the Post. "It seems so obvious. Music should never be used as torture."

"The fact that music I helped create was used in crimes against humanity sickens me," Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, said in a statement, according to the Post. "We need to end torture and close Guantanamo now."

Thomas Blanton, executive director of the National Security Archive, claimed in a press release Thursday that the U.S. government "turned a jukebox into an instrument of torture."

"The musicians and the public have the right to know how an expression of popular culture was transformed into an enhanced interrogation technique," Blanton said.   

A White House spokesman reportedly told the newspaper that music is no longer used as a method of torture at the terrorist detention center.  President Obama signed executive orders on his second day in office to shut down Guantanamo Bay within a year and to ban harsh interrogation techniques.

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