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­US used 'Christian heavy metal' to torture Iraqi militants

Published time: February 13, 2013 15:30
Edited time: February 13, 2013 19:30
U.S. Army soldiers escort former Iraqi prisoners out of Abu Ghraib prison  (Reuters / Ceerwan Aziz HH / JV)

U.S. Army soldiers escort former Iraqi prisoners out of Abu Ghraib prison (Reuters / Ceerwan Aziz HH / JV)

Torture doesn't necessarily have to deal with physical pain. The US military have used Christian heavy metal music by the band Demon Hunter after rockers Metallica asked they stop using their recordings on prisoners.

The US Navy SEAL involved in the killing of Osama bin Laden told Esquire magazine that prior to using Demon Hunter recordings, the commandoes used Metallica music to pull information out of Iraqi prisoners.

“When we first started the war in Iraq we were using Metallica music to soften people up before we interrogated them,” the spokesperson said. 

James Hetfield, lead singer and guitarist of US rock band Metallica (AFP Photo / Petras Malukas)
James Hetfield, lead singer and guitarist of US rock band Metallica (AFP Photo / Petras Malukas)

However after the band, who is totally opposed to violence, asked the US military to stop using their music at interrogations, the commanders chose Demon Hunter.

“Demon Hunter said, ‘We’re all about promoting what you do.’ They sent us CDs and patches. I wore my Demon Hunter patch on every mission – I wore it when I blasted Bin Laden,”
the Navy SEAL added.

“Part of me is proud they chose Metallica, and then part of me is bummed about it. We’ve got nothing to do with this and we’re trying to be apolitical as possible – I think politics and music, at least for us, don’t mix," Metallica front man James Hetfield said in 2008 commenting on the news that US military used the band’s music for the interrogation of Guantanamo prisoners.