The Truth behind Torture and Counterterrorism: Exploring Evidence-based Practices with Mark Fallon.

Truth Be Told

Apr 3 2024 • 57 mins

In this conversation, counterterrorism expert Mark Fallon discusses the evolution of interrogation techniques and the importance of building rapport in obtaining accurate and reliable information. Fallon provides insight from his experience in high-profile terrorism investigations including the USS Cole and World Trade Center bombings as well as interrogations at Guantanamo. He highlights the shift from confession-driven methodologies to relationship building techniques, emphasizing the role of empathy in high-pressure interrogations. Fallon also addresses the need for improved interview training in law enforcement and the recognition of inept practices that have led to miscarriages of justice. Overall, the conversation emphasizes the importance of effective and ethical interrogation practices in obtaining actionable intelligence. This conversation explores the consequences of interrogational abuses, the opposition to coercive methods, the need for research in interrogation, the importance of depressurizing the interrogation environment, and the integration of science into practice.


  • Building rapport and treating suspects with respect is essential in obtaining accurate and reliable information during interrogations.
  • Empathy is a crucial trait for interrogators, as it helps to establish trust and disarm resistance strategies.
  • The shift from confession-driven methodologies to relationship building techniques has proven to be more effective in obtaining actionable intelligence.
  • Law enforcement agencies need to prioritize interview training and embrace the body of research available in the psychological sciences to improve interrogation practices.
  • Interrogational abuses can lead to unreliable information and intelligence.
  • Opposing coercive methods is essential to protect human rights and uphold the constitution.
  • Research plays a crucial role in improving interrogation practices.
  • Depressurizing the interrogation environment can lead to more effective and truthful information.
  • Integrating scientific knowledge into interrogation training can enhance effectiveness.
  • Policing with virtue is a step towards community-embraced policing.