To lead with the conclusion: social isolation is a human rights violation – which is on par with torture and other war crimes.
Indeed, social isolation is the primary protocol deployed against enemies in times of war, regardless of time period or country in question.
This is due in large part to the fact that it is so successful in psychologically destroying the individual, without need of more bloody and difficult physical interventions.
The studies of social isolation against enemies of state began in the 1950’s and 1960’s by the CIA:
“In 1960, one of the agency’s most active contractors, Lawrence Hinkle of Cornell, confirmed the significance of Hebb’s research for the CIA mind-control effort. Through a comprehensive review … ‘for the purposes of intelligence,’ Hinkle found Hebb’s work [on social isolation], in light of the neurological literature, the most promising of all known techniques.”
It has long been the custom of captors, police, and inquisitors, to isolate their prisoners. But which of these methods, Hinkle asked, is most effective? All the standard interrogation techniques have varying… impacts on the brain’s functioning…. [But] of all the possible techniques, isolation is the ideal way of “breaking down” a prisoner….
Hebb’s work found that “the effect of isolation on the brain function of the prisoner is much like that which occurs if he is beaten, starved, or deprived of sleep.” A Question of Torture: CIA Interrogation, From the Cold War to the War on Terror, p. 41-42, by Alfred McCoy.
The power of social isolation in contexts of war and hostage-taking was reviewed in an earth-shaking expose released by the New Yorker some years back. In the article, the author reviewed journalist Terry Lyons’ ordeal, who was held hostage back in the 1980’s, in Lebanon, over a period of years:
Anderson was the chief Middle East correspondent for the Associated Press when, on March 16, 1985, three bearded men forced him from his car in Beirut at gunpoint. He was pushed into a Mercedes sedan, covered head to toe with a heavy blanket, and made to crouch head down in the footwell behind the front seat.
A month into his confinement, he recalled in his memoir, “The mind is a blank. Jesus, I always thought I was smart. Where are all the things I learned, the books I read, the poems I memorized? There’s nothing there, just a formless, gray-black misery. My mind’s gone dead. God, help me.”
He dozed off and on constantly, sleeping twelve hours a day. He craved activity of almost any kind…. He had a Bible and tried to read, but he often found that he lacked the concentration to do so. He observed himself becoming neurotically possessive…. flying into a rage at guards…. He brooded incessantly, thinking back on all the mistakes he’d made in life, his regrets, his offenses against God and family.
Anderson was given a reprieve from social isolation in the middle of 1986, but then made to return to full-time social isolation in September of that year. After a few weeks of isolation, he again felt his mind slipping away:
“I find myself trembling sometimes for no reason,” he wrote. “I’m afraid I’m beginning to lose my mind, to lose control completely.”
One day, he snapped. He walked over to a wall and began beating his forehead against it, dozens of times. His head was smashed and bleeding before the guards were able to stop him.VACCINE IMPACT https://vaccineimpact.com/2020/children-have-0-00-chance-of-dying-from-covid-but-are-harmed-for-life-by-social-distancing-which-has-its-roots-in-cia-torture-techniques/