Jason Leopold and I have written an investigatory report for Truthout on the mass administration of the controversial antimalarial drug mefloquine (brand name Lariam) to all Guantanamo detainees through 2005. The drug was applied without regard to whether or not a detainee had malaria, and despite the fact there was no malaria in Guantanamo.
Mefloquine has been a controversial drug since it received FDA approval in 1989, as evidence grows regarding its neurotoxicity and propensity to cause very serious neuropsychiatric side effects. “Adverse events” associated with mefloquine include depression, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, intense rage, hallucinations and anxiety. An Army public health physician told us that use of the drug was akin to “pharmacologic waterboarding.”