A Research Discussion Presentation Identifying Human Rights Violations – Ritual Abuse Torture
This transcript is from a presentation by Jeanne Sarson & Linda MacDonald at The Sixth Annual Ritual Abuse, Secretive Organizations and Mind Control Conference, August 8 – 10, 2003 at the DoubleTree Hotel in Windsor Locks, CT. Survivors may want to read this with a support person or therapist. The conference is educational and not intended as therapy or treatment. All accusations are alleged. Our providing the information below does not necessarily constitute our endorsement of it.
This page has been put on the web by S.M.A.R.T., P O Box 1295, Easthampton, MA 01027 E-mail: email@example.com
This web page may be very heavy for survivors. It describes different types of torture and mind control.
Jeanne Sarson and Linda MacDonald will be speaking today at the Sixth Annual Ritual Abuse Secretive Organizations and Mind Control Conference in Connecticut, August 2003. Some of the topics discussed may be triggering for survivors. The conference is educational and is not intended as therapy or treatment Photographing, audio-taping and videotaping without written permission from SMART are prohibited. Audiotapes of all speakers will be available. Please remember this presentation is being recorded so that anything you say during the presentation will also be recorded. Thank you for coming to Jeanne and Linda’s presentation.
Jeanne and Linda both have Degrees in Nursing, Master’s Degrees in Education, Certificates of Interdisciplinary Studies Related to Family Violence, Certificates in Self in Context – Feminist Theory in Practice, and have done workshops on ritual abuse. They are writing a book, The Torturers Walk Among Us, based on their work and have a website http://www.ritualabusetorture.org. Their topic today is “A Research Discussion Presentation Identifying Human Rights Violations – Ritual Abuse Torture.”
And now I would like to introduce Jeanne and Linda.
Thanks Neil I am Linda, and this is Jeanne. We wanted to thank Neil for inviting us to come to this presentation. It is very thrilling for both Jeanne and I to be able to present the work which we have worked so diligently on over the last ten years to develop, and we would also like to thank the three women who were references for us to be here today We are never anywhere without someone else’s help.
We are going to be using some overheads and we do it for ourselves as well as hopefully it might give you more visual images, mostly word images, for you to understand our research.
We started our work in 1993. We started a private practice working with relational violence, and one woman came to us who had experienced ritual abuse-torture from birth onward, and through that work we decided that it was a very difficult topic for us because neither one of us had known very much about it previous to that. We had taken a few workshops, and I had a friend who was born into a ritual abuse family but she had really not disclosed a lot to me so it was a whole new world for us. After working with the woman for about 7 years we decided that what we would do was interview some other survivors, if we could find the, in our province. We come from Canada, from Nova Scotia, so we bring a Canadian perspective. And we did find some survivors so we carried on 2 ½ years of research and we are compiling all this into the book Neil mentioned, The Torturers Walk Among Us and we started our website in November. We have pamphlets over there and also some literature if you are interested in purchasing it or you can go into our website and see what our research has taught us.
I want you all to remember that this is our knowing–it is not necessarily what you know or what even fits for you, so I hope you don’t think we are trying to tell anyone anything other than what we have learned and how we have come to understand ritual abuse-torture for ourselves. Feel free to ask questions.
We also have an evaluation form that we put on your chairs and if you wouldn’t mind filling those in at the end that would be great–that would add to our knowledge and to the body of knowledge we hope will continue on ritual abuse-torture.
[Overhead: Truro, N.S. – tulips]
We wanted to start with beauty because in healing there is beauty and in knowing there is beauty. In this work we found beauty in the clarity that we have gained in understanding more abut the rights of children and hopefully make a difference for children. This is an image of our town, Truro, where we come from in Nova Scotia–we have a Tulip Festival every year–just to give you a sense of our own community.
[Overhead: Truro, N.S. – Bench]
And this is a bench where we met the woman we started working with for the first time. The shrubs are a bit overgrown there–it didn’t look exactly like that when we started working. It’s where our lives changed forever on that bench, sitting and talking to her, and talking about coming to start working with
[Overhead: Concrete form – Part of Berlin Wall – Truro, N.S.]
For some reason, we have some of the pieces of the Berlin Wall in our town. We really don’t know how that happened except a young man bought some, and brought them to our town. We have used it as a powerful metaphor for ourselves in what we see we are doing with ritual abuse- torture. The analogy we use really is that the wall of ritual abuse-torture has to come down; the silence of the wall has to come down. In many ways it’s the same kind of behaviour–with ritual abuse-torture, the victims are always told they will never leave, they will never be able to get out–just like the wall that encased the Germans in East Berlin.
There are many guard towers–we see those as family therapists or professional therapists who have used their professional skills to keep the victims silent, keep them medicated, keep them believing they are crazy, keep them within the family.
There are other guards–“friends” used to trick and attract the victims and they are followed by guards, the same as within the Berlin Wall. There are landmines–such as hospitalization and being told that you are crazy–that’s a huge landmine. There are automatic machine guns like programmed suicide, programmed emotional abuse, blackmail, guilt and harassment. There’s imprisonment–believing that there is no way out, that you are a captive adult. And we know that behind the Berlin Wall many people were killed. From what we have been told, there have been many people tortured and killed in ritual abuse-torture families as well.
President Truman ordered the Berlin airlift in 1948 and then Gorbachev tore the Wall down in 1999. What we are saying now is we have to tear down the wall of ritual abuse-torture and start listening, and believing and really supporting victims to stand in society and know that their human rights have been violated.
[Overhead: Relationships: A Global Standard–Excerpts from United Nations Declaration of Human Rights]
This is the perspective we come from. It is a very strong belief in human rights–that human rights are global and that we have a Human Rights Declaration and that we don’t see ritual abuse-torture as anything to do with mental illness. We see it as a crime. We see it as a human rights violation. So if you see yourself as someone who has had their human rights violated by pedophile crime it is very different than seeing yourself as someone who is mentally ill–it takes that crazy label right away.
Of course with the Human Rights Declaration we know that it recognizes dignity and worth of the human person … that is fundamental to human rights–well, this is what we are expecting with ritual abuse-torture survivors . That no one shall be held in slavery … that’s part of the Human Rights Declaration. We know from the stories we have been told that there are many captive adults in slavery, and children also. That no one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment … that’s part of the Human Rights Declaration. Well, in all the stories that we have heard there’s been torture involved–so, that’s a human rights violation. Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law … that’s not what ritual abuse-torture survivors are experiencing–they are not experiencing being treated as persons at all.
Everyone has duties to the community which allow the free development of his or her personality as fully as possible. Well, with ritual abuse-torture the goal is to destroy the personality–that’s the extreme violation of human rights. I hope that gives you a little idea of how strong we are about human rights.
[Overhead: United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child]
Now if you take it a little bit farther, we are talking about children because all the experiences we have heard all started in childhood. We have a Human Rights Convention on the Rights of the Child, and in that there are many things recognized that children who have experienced ritual abuse- torture have been violated in.
Article 19: To protect the child from all forms of physical and mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment, or exploitation, sexual abuse while in the care of parents, legal guardians and any other person who has the care of the child. The majority of the victims that we interviewed all had pedophile parents. They all experienced some form of exploitation, definitely maltreatment and sexual abuse. So their rights to be upheld in Article 19 are not being respected.
Article 33: To protect children from the illicit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances as defined in the relevant international treaties, and to prevent the use of children in the trafficking of such substances. From our research, drugs are a very strong tool used to keep children silent, keep them confused, keep them from remembering, keep them still, keep them enduring atrocity–so that is another Article that is being violated.
Article 34: To protect children from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. For these purposes state priority shall in particular take all appropriate national, bilateral and multilateral measures to prevent the inducement or coercion of a child to engage in any unlawful sexual activity; the exploitive use of children in prostitution or other unlawful sexual practices and the exploitive use of children in pornographic performance and materials. Of course, the women when we interviewed them were speaking of their childhood and many were involved in child pornography and we are seeing much more about it in the world in general around the internet and that is a human rights violation.
Article 35: To prevent the abduction or sale or traffic of a child for any purpose. Most of the women were trafficked as children–they talked about it as ‘renting’ instead of ‘selling’ because they weren’t sold permanently to another person–they were rented to that person for 5 minutes or 5 hours or whatever the pleasure was of the perpetrator. So this is certainly a violation of Article 35.
Article 36: To protect the child against all forms of exploitation prejudicial to any aspects of the child’s welfare.
Article 37: To ensure that no child shall be subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. All the women that we interviewed experienced child torture. That’s one of the things that we have been trying to lobby the Canadian government–is to expand the definition of torture to include non-political–because we see this form of torture ritual abuse-torture as non-political.
Article 39: To promote physical and psychological recovery and social integration of a child victim of any form of neglect, exploitation or abuse, torture or any other form of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Recovery and integration shall take place in an environment that fosters the health, self respect and dignity of the child.
I know of no places in Canada that are identified as ritual abuse- torture healing centres for children or adults. There is a torture centre in Toronto but ritual abuse-torture victims are not recognized a people who can access the centre. In fact one of the women we interviewed contacted the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture in Toronto and told them that she was a ritual abuse-torture survivor in Canada. They told her that they didn’t feel that she applied to their Centre. There are really very limited, if any, services available.
The state party shall take all effective and appropriate measures with a view to abolishing traditional practices prejudicial to the health of children.
This is a global document, and in our opinion, from what we have been told in our research, it appears like it is a global reality so it is a very powerful document if we ever could mobilize the U.N. to the reality of ritual abuse-torture for what it really is.
[Overhead: Adult-Child Relationship continuum]
Everything we do is framed in relationships. We have a strong belief that everyone is born with a relationship with themselves. That’s in the personal. And in the social we have different elements of relationships. We start with the extreme which is torture, and the political torture that we all are aware of in the world, and what we call non-political torture which would be child or spousal torture and youth torture. Youth torture is one thing we forgot to add on our website. We’ve gotten some e-mails from youth on our website and of course they are a different group than children.
We believe that historically ritual abuse-torture has been present forever and is just becoming more visible in society. This is a belief we have. Of course we don’t have a lot of research on ritual abuse-torture in a global humankind context yet–but that’s what we believe will be uncovered. And then we flow through to abuse … and hopefully some day all children will be respected for the rights that they are inherently born with. If we go down to the bottom half of the model we see the link between terrorization, exploitation and horrification. From our experience, the women all experienced abuse, they all experienced terrorization, some of them experienced exploitation, all of them experienced horrification. So it’s that cycle of the relationship of ritual abuse-torture and how it affects their lives.
[Overhead: Prevalence map]
These are all images that we created to help us understand … this is from our website–it’s the RAT prevalence map–and we have asked people who have experienced ritual abuse-torture to put a dot on the map where their original site of torture or trauma occurred, and we have fifty dots on there. We started in April. There’s a booklet on the counter that has a write-up of their stories, and where it occurred and emails, some of them who were brave enough to put that information out. We are starting to hopefully gain some global prevalence information. I know there’s lots of other people out there doing research too so maybe some day we will get it all together and have a much more concerted effort around the prevalence of ritual abuse-torture.
I have here a very important document; it’s called Changing the Landscape – Ending Violence and Achieving Equality. It’s a Canadian document. There was a national panel in 1993 that went totally across the whole country and listened to survivors and in every region of Canada, a ritual abuse-torture survivor disclosed–every region of Canada. This is a Canadian government document that’s been in print since 1993 and there has been really nothing done since then, in what we have found anyway. The more we can use government documentation–unless the government wants to say that they are crazy–it’s more evidence for the victims. That’s a Canadian perspective.
[Overheads of a socio-cultural image: The RAT torturers who walk among us]
If we go to our experience in Nova Scotia, what we learned and why we are calling the book The Torturers Walk Among Us, is that the perpetrators do walk among us. And how do they do that? They have status quo roles and they have co-culture roles. We call it a co-culture because a subculture is not hidden and this co-culture is really hidden. It’s visible only if you know what you are looking for. Who are they? They are mothers, fathers, grandparents, extended family members, family friends, nurses, doctors, social workers, psychologists, police, lawyers, politicians, pilots, mechanics, farmers, railway workers, fishermen, teachers, professors, clergy and anyone who belongs to the RAT family group. That’s been our experience that’s who the alleged perpetrators are in our province, and from talking to others here and reading literature it seems to be consistent with what other people have said too.
[Overheads: Depicting the sites, the structures, and institutions RAT torturers live/work in]
They do walk among us. They are not hidden away in some secret place where they don’t mix with us. These are some of the sites where they work. They work in churches and schools and government offices, any place where there’s a structure with power because of course power gives them more power–more power so people aren’t going to believe the victims.
[Overheads: Modus operandi of RAT perpetrators; Chaos image; Model of Ritual Abuse-torture]
From 1993 until 1997 we kept listening to stories and the chaos was ever-present because, of course, that’s what perpetrators want to do–create chaos in the victim’s mind. This is what it looked like from what we could see and we tried to put it together in a visual model so it would make sense to you. It made sense to us. So that’s what we developed. If you look at the centre, the fundamental principle is that there is an Ideology of Evil. We took … Staub’s work around the roots of evil–that really, evil is rooted in a belief in superiority and an intention to do harm. We believe that evil is a wilful human act and it’s the root of all the behaviours that we heard about.
There are 3 main goals: to develop power, for pleasure and entertainment, and money for themselves. We tried to focus really very firmly on the perpetrators so we could understand their motives because the victims’ stories were very clear, but the perpetrators are often invisible in the process, so they are the ones you have to understand, in my opinion. Not that the victims aren’t important, but as a society if we don’t understand the perpetrators they are never going to be held accountable for what they’ve done.
Their third goal is pleasure. The second one is power and control–and totalitarianistic control not just mild power–but total control; firstly to maintain a closed and secretive co-culture. That’s the Berlin Wall again.
Then we took all the different experiences that we’ve heard and divided them into a section on abuse, and then a section on what we see as torture. Those are the two pink areas there, and we’ll talk about those in more detail. And of course it’s all held together with evil beliefs, whatever the unique family has, and we learned the beliefs of the families that we were listening to, but we have heard of many different beliefs here, and read about different beliefs–so that beliefs can be unique to that group. You have to have the evil beliefs, whatever they are. And of course the evil behaviours. They are what really keeps the group together.
We have the co-culture–this is all part of criminal activity and the impact on the victimized person with a life-long legacy if a person doesn’t get out. This is really an image of the co-culture.
[Overheads: Human evil & the RAT torturer/family/group; RAT torturers seek–3P’s; The organization of RAT co-culture]
So we have said that evil is a pleasure and entertainment, power and control, profit and greed, and that the goal is really destruction of the victim. Destroying their human-ness, violating their human rights, their dignity and self-worth, their capacity to fulfill basic material needs, destroy the ability to be happy. It’s just a tragedy that this is still going on. The organization of the co-culture is home-based–they function within their own home, they have in-home, off-street child prostitution–that’s a label that we’ve heard “off-street”. There’s a lot of children on-street–but there’s many in their own home–off-street. How do they connect? They are like-minded and they find each other. From our research they find each other in many ways. They are transgenerational. They could be related either through blood or just through the belief as pedophiles in the pleasure of having children. They are loosely interconnected–regionally, nationally, internationally and transnationally. One quote is, “I have always understood the family to have connections worldwide.” That’s what one of the women told us. They are gender-biased, very misogynistic, closed and secretive, in-house terroristic enforcement, totalitarianistic power and control as I mentioned before, and rampageous mispaidia. That’s a word that we coined–misogyny is the hatred of women–and we really believe that in order to really harm children with such barbarous brutality it has to be rooted in the hatred of children. In my mind, it is nothing else, so that’s why we call it mispaidia.
Individuals can hold specific roles such as the high priest or priestess, dramatized satan, guards, recruiters, trainers, programmers, or the chosen one. They organize their family group violence into RAT gatherings–we call it ritual abuse torture or RAT gatherings and ritualisms. That’s the basics of the general overall model, and now Jeanne is going to go into it in more detail.
[Overhead: Model of ritual abuse-torture]
I am going to try to run through the model on a surface level so it’s not too triggering. When Linda had the confusion or the chaos part of the model up first, that’s how we felt. If we hadn’t each other to talk to, I don’t know if we would still be here. We would laugh at ourselves when our brain felt like it was out to here. When Linda said we come from Truro, Nova Scotia–when we met the lady who came to us for support–when we went looking for support, we couldn’t find one person to help us out. Tomorrow we will talk about the roadblocks that we faced in order to provide the ongoing support.
The person who alleged her victimization also was alleging that she was still a captive adult, meaning that she was still in the family. She was in her thirties and still had not been able to exit, so she was living a dual life. When she came to us we went through trying to help her–the good news is she has exited. She and all the women we talked to helped us understand ritual abuse-torture so that we could make sense of it, so that if we wanted to educate anyone–how would we present our reality in a way that was organized, and clear enough to say ‘this is what we know’. As Linda said, everything we are saying today is what we know from our experience.
Going around the model, Linda has brought you to their goals and she has started with organization on the outer pink margin–with each group we found. We interviewed six women–one of the interviews took 2 years, some of them took a few months. The woman we helped was a 10 year process. From each one of those, there were differences. Their organization was different. Some aspects about the perpetrators were different, which really in the context of everyday society–you read about torturers–many torturers have a very unique style so I don’t think what we heard varied from each torturer except they had their own styles, their own preferences. Terrorization–each one of those terrorizations–animal cruelty for example–as we go around the model–we see these as a tactic. When we looked at terrorization, we see it as intentional. When someone says to you, “My perpetrator wants to see terror in my eyes for pleasure”, you know that’s where they are heading. That’s what they want to see. We see terrorization as a tactic used by the perpetrator to get their pleasures, their power.
When Neil talked this morning about education and he mentioned the word re-programming, for us it is like re-educating ourselves. Like Linda said, even though we come from a history of family violence, our knowledge about ritual abuse-torture was in the realm of having no in-depth knowledge at all–when we tried to take our brains from ‘out here’ into a cognitive, clear perspective–we found that we had to go to the literature to help us define what some of these tactics were.
This definition of terrorization came from some of the terrorization literature, and this tactic meaning that a person from infant to captive adult ‘endures the torturous, deliberate attempts to create terror’. That’s a tactic that is intentional, that’s what the perpetrator’s aim is. This is what the person who has been victimized feels–that paralyzing terror, or just even the fact that you think that you are going there. That is the impact on the victim, the person victimized, and that’s what the torturer is looking for. Terrorization–how do they do that? Threats or intimidation or actual actions–they use symbolism, life-threatening horrification acts that just tells the women we spoke to that many times they really did not know if they would survive. That was the tactic of terrorization as we came to understand it–the perpetrator, the impact on the victimized person, and the trauma that results from it.
[Overhead: Human-animal Relationships]
Animal cruelty–we saw that repeatedly used as threats like “If I kill your pet then you are the next on the list”. If you look at the literature on violence and abuse to use animals, even for spousal violence, to threaten is very common. It’s to make that link between spousal and child abuse and to the issue of ritual abuse-torture. What we looked at is the fact that the human-animal relationship–just like Linda had spoken earlier of the adult-child relationship–human-animal relationships fit in here. We saw the use of animals for all kinds of torture, whether it was for mind-spirit torture, sexualized torture–certainly it was a way of reaching their goal of keeping people threatened so much that they would not speak. We also see animal cruelty used in violence against children–the violation and abuse of animals is abuse of animals.
[Overhead: UN Torture definition]
Then you go around the circle to torture–Linda said “when we spoke to the women they said to us that ritual abuse doesn’t do it for us” so we had an accountability to listen to them. What are you telling us? The literature is talking ritual abuse, but they said “we were more than abused”. As we listened to them, we realized that we had to go to the torture literature and Linda has defined already, briefly, what torture means in the political sense. This comes from the U.N.
This morning Neil was talking about deciding for yourself what you think and that was a constant conversation that Linda and I had. If we are listening, and if people are listening to us, we have to be very clear with our boundaries and say to people “you have to decide what you think–you have to know–you can’t say that Jeanne and Linda told you–we really went searching for universal, global perspectives that say okay this is what the world is saying–relationships in the world are saying it doesn’t matter what religion you belong to, what race you are, who you are–this is what the world as we have developed to date is saying. We took the U.N. definition of torture to people and that’s what they said–it clicked right in and “yes, that’s what has happened to me”. That’s where the term ritual abuse-torture has come from.
[Overhead: 3 forms of torture]
So then we had the dilemma of how do we understand the stories and the traumatization and the victimization acts for ourselves? How would we educate somebody else about our research, what we know, and about the women’s voices and their experiences? So we broke the tortures down into physical, sexual and mind-spirit. It’s a way of organizing our thinking and organizing the stories we were hearing. Then we took each one of those and said, physical tortures–under the U.N., under all the torture literature we could read and process what we saw is that physical tortures are broken down into tortures that cause extreme and excruciating pain. We heard about prolonged beatings, whether it is in the political or the non-political–we did not hear anything of military ritual abuse-torture from the women we spoke with, that’s why we have gone to non-military. I am hearing what everyone else has said here today. For us in Nova Scotia, the women we talked to did not have a connection with military.
[Overheads: Forms of physical torture; Tortures examples]
When we looked at physical torture in the literature, we looked at severe beatings, falanga–that’s a word from the torture literature–that’s where we educated ourselves some more. Falanga is a recognized word in the literature–it’s the beating of the soles of the feet. It causes very severe and prolonged pain that goes up the legs to the lower back, and it can last a long time. Some of the torture literatures says it is the pain that lasts the longest. And irritant torture–like pepper being blown in people’s eyes, burning–those kinds of physical tortures that cause extreme pain.
The second grouping that we heard was fear of immediate death, and here again you have electrical shock, suffocation, drowning, Russian Roulette, anything to do with knives and guns that threaten a victimized person.
The third grouping includes exhaustion, the extreme exhaustion–we heard very clear definitions of especially captive adults who worked all day and then had to work all evening for the family–not only physical work, but sexualized exploitation. We heard that people gave money to the family, captive adults who did not understand that the money they made was theirs; they were left in poverty because everything went to the family or the group they were connected with. Then we heard about tortures that cause permanent disability–fractured bones that might leave limps; torture language talks about telefono–that’s when perpetrators hit both of the victim’s ears at the same time which punctures the ear drums so people are left with hearing disability. For women–hysterectomies.
[Overhead: Sexualized tortures]
Sexualized torture–here again, how do we educate, how do we understand, how do we care, how can we listen and not be confused and get pulled into the confusion. We separated the sexualized torture into sexualized physical torture. From our perspective you cannot have sexualized torture without physical involvement–the rape, gang rapes, the assaults. Sexualized exploitation–we broke it down in two aspects–“in-house” that Linda very quickly referred to earlier. Every time a perp takes their own child to a group gathering, in our opinion, that’s trafficking, that’s transportation, and that’s exploitation. We have to see it as an in-house family or group activity. When the family does pornography for in-house use, which we heard, that’s exploitation of children. Then we heard about “off-street”, which Linda talked about, the renting and sale, the trafficking of children across Canada to different cities.
And sexualized horrification–what we found is the persons who talked to us; their greatest horror came from being involved with sexualized exploitation. Those were horrors that sent coldness that was bone-chilling, a shivering that cause tremors, that caused speechlessness, and I am reminded of the Vietnam Vets who tried to talk about the horrors they experienced, but were rendered speechless. We spoke with a prisoner-of-war and with a Holocaust survivor in our research; they spoke about being rendered speechless by some of the horrors.
[Overhead: Mind-spirit tortures]
Mind-spirit tortures–this we found the most complex and you have already heard from Carol Rutz how to make sense of mind-spirit; for us we have lumped in emotional, cognitive, sense of being a person (which they try to destroy)–all those intimate aspects of self Schooling, for some groups, was very organized. The persons who talked to us said they had insider schools that they went to–they were taught how to withstand torture. For example, a lot of programming tactics–drugging all the time–drugging from infancy. Some spoke about feeling that drugs were put in their nursing bottles. Certainly they were taught enforced dissociation tactics. They talked about being children and taught how to dissociate.
De-spiritualization tactics–how one destroys a child’s personhood–rendering a person thinking they are a non-person, they are an object, that they are an “it”. We heard that repeatedly and how the perpetrators manipulate the environment–lock a child in the trunk and drive around in the night-time and then take them out; shine bright lights on them to totally disorient them. Over and over again, what we are sharing with you are the stories–the common themes that we heard over and over again, and how we made sense of this.
[Overhead: RAT conditioning cycle and distortions]
We did this cycle and as Neil was talking this morning–he talked about programming and conditioning and how we have to decide for ourselves what we saw, over and over again, is how the conditioning and the programming influence beliefs and values. We heard that the families taught children that they were adults at seven years of age, and even though we were speaking to someone who was thirty-five, they still held that belief system. They had to go in and look at that and say to themselves, as Neil discussed earlier, ‘Is this real? Is it true? Am I really an adult at seven? Should I have expected myself to withstand what I had to withstand?’
Fundamentally, a lot of the healing had to occur at belief system level and how that changed. We heard about beliefs like The Chosen One and realized that was a perceptual definition of how the child defined themselves. As we listened to The Chosen One–chosen for what? To be tortured and how that got distorted to think you were special because you were taken to the gatherings to be tortured by pedophiles. That affects your thinking, your emotions and one clear example–they talked about the conditioning that happened–emotional–one woman talked about when she was called to go to the gatherings, she remembers having an adrenaline rush, she remembers getting excited–so part of de-conditioning ourselves is understanding our body. That’s what the physiological cycle is there–the adrenaline rush that our body gets, serotonin starts numbing us out and the opiods prepare us to withstand the pain. That is what we saw–the physical, the stamina one’s body develops; the healing abilities that we saw that people had to heal so quickly–how that affected their behaviour. Neil talked about the information in society–and how they controlled that information was important.
[Overheads: Pedophilic ritual abuse-torture (RAT); Necrophilism; Death chant]
From our perspective the pedophilic torture was a given. There wasn’t anyone who spoke to us who didn’t describe pedophilic torture. After that we have the necrophilia. If any of this is triggering, please be careful. What we saw over and over again is death. The people we talked to said, ‘you know, yesterday died–tomorrow doesn’t even exist.’ How they view the world is always through that vision that the world was dead, that they felt dead, and programming (I think it was Carol who talked about suicide programming)–this woman said that this chant started very, very young and she is not sure if it was sung to her in infancy. We share this with you because not only is it an example of the necrophilia that seemed to exist consistently or whether it was death within or the drugging during the sexualized torture rendering the victim immovable. This also shows how they are taking [this part of the transcript is missing due turning over the tape]
[Overhead: Deep brain-programming]
young child and created one. I lose my identity and I become the family. This was one of the programs that she shared with us.
We have ritualisms on the wheel and we looked at ritualisms–the way we looked at ritualisms–when we looked at it, we had to say ‘well, everything we are hearing infers that the ritualism was done in group gatherings.’ We went to the literature asking ‘what does an organized ritual mean?’ We took a definition from the organizational culture, organization of businesses, organization of politics–there were four attributes that defined it–that ritualisms are planned group gatherings with a purpose and a leader. We saw that over and over again.
Ritualisms involve and normalize and reinforce a groupthink–everybody thinks the same. So, if you are going to be as perpetrator of ritual abuse-torture everybody in the group thinks this is great because if anybody doesn’t, then you are not going to belong. This normalization and reinforcement that everybody has to think the same, creates a bonding–we’re going to keep the secret, we’re going to belong to the family, and this is a good thing. We’re superior, the outsiders are inferior. We heard that belief system stated repeatedly.
The other aspect around ritualism is that it designs power in relationships and we saw that–adults certainly had power over children, and we saw misogyny–that males had powerful positions over women. That doesn’t mean that male children aren’t horribly victimized, but there seemed to be (from the women we spoke with) that it is often a rite of passage for men to be perpetrators, which is a tragedy in itself.
[Overhead: Ritualisms: Organized RAT gatherings]
This talks about how the ritualism was organized–what we heard from the insiders around rituals and ceremonies–some examples–we heard about sacrifices, the killings–and we heard about cannibalism as routine and frequent experiences.
Exposure to horror–we put horrification as a separate characteristic also–here again listening to the women and just trying to make sense for ourselves–we felt that the perpetrators planned the horror, it just doesn’t happen spontaneously. They do what they do for pleasure and power and profit. We were asked by some of the women we talked to, ‘How do you define horrification?’ This is, in the end, what we put together, what we saw–that it goes beyond terror–because they told us it goes beyond terror–they told us that it was that exposure to–not fearing what was coming, but the actual seeing, hearing, the whole sensory experience of the horror. We saw that it involves ordeals so horrendous as to be without verbal language–beyond description–speechlessness, voicelessness, stuttering, shivering, coldness and also in our work, we started thinking that some of the seizure-like responses may have been compounded by electric shock torture as people re-experienced some of their trauma. It’s important that people know if they lost their voice, go into speechlessness, stuttering–that they are normal. This might be horrification.
The suicidality–we found this in almost every big issue we had to deal with – this is the wheel again. What we struggled with is making sense of suicidality. As we listened and listened, we came to understand that we were seeing different realities of suicidality–the sacrificial suicide–talked about–to sacrifice herself to their all-powerfulness satan figure was a privilege. Knowing that, we had to respond differently to that belief system if we were going to hear and understand and be helpful. We also saw that non-sacrificial suicide was an issue. It came up with children who were programmed to self-cut, never to tell. We also saw it when people tried to get out–that they encountered “helping” professionals [who were really therapists for the RAT family/group] would try to re-program them and tried to teach them how to commit suicide. Self-directed suicide–just that sometimes it seemed so painful and it seemed like a way out.
[Overhead: Exploitative use of the child by adults]
The exploitation was the last theme we put on our wheel. Here we put the sex trade–we heard that over and over again–involvement in the sex trade and pornography, prostitution, bestiality, sex tourism (perpetrators came to Nova Scotia to buy or purchase a child for the summer). Enslavement (we get these categories sex trade, enslavement from the United Nations)–we heard repeatedly that little children, 4 and 5 years of age had to do work–clean, cook, scrub and beaten while they were doing it, and then sexually exploited.
Slavery–the UN would define this as ‘modern-day slavery’, and we heard about drug trade. In a recent Washington Post article, it is thought that the profit from the sex trade will override profit from gun-running and weapons sales and the drug trade in the next ten years … there is huge money in the trafficking, exploitation and violation of children. In Canada the literature review tells us that 93% of criminal organizations are linked together, 83% of them are linked at a national level, and 83% maintain trans-national links. In our perspective, when listening to the women, there is no reason to think these RAT family/groups are any different. I think we are deluding ourselves if we do not go there around the criminality of the torturers.
[Overhead: Take care]
Questions for 3 minutes:
1.Book ‘Reefer Madness’ – a book about the exploitation of children written in the USA – Finders organization – customs report – Cathy O’Brien – Republicans – intelligence communities are involved in trafficking of women and children
A, Globalized pedophilic violence – we have to recognize that ritual abuse-torturers are part of that network; Human Rights Convention on the Rights of women.
2. Suicide programming–when program starts breaking this emerges.
A. Absolutely–that’s under non-sacrificial suicide on the wheel.
3.Rights of the child–children have a right to decide what happens to their bodies–pedophiles [NAMBLA] legitimize what they are doing.
A Yes there’s no doubt about it–and every time you go to the ‘healthy’ there’s going to be the backlash to keep it in the negative–I think we have to be prepared for those kinds of arguments and not to be pulled into them.
*Note: A participant at the conference kindly shared her knowledge suggesting the word childogny was incorrect so following further research we offer the word mispaidia from the Greek “mis” meaning hatred and “paidia” meaning children.
Jeanne Sarson and Linda MacDonald both have degrees in Nursing, Master’s in Education, a Certificate in Interdisciplinary Studies related to family violence, a Certificate in Self-in Context Feminist Theory and Practice and have done workshops on ritual abuse-torture. They are writing a book “The Torturers Walk Among Us” based on their work and research and have a website, http://www.ritualabusetorture.org. Their topics are “A Research-discussion Presentation Identifying Human Rights Violations: Ritual Abuse-Torture” and “The Risks of Being an Effective Anti-violence Carer”.