The United States has been, and may again be, under terrorist threat and attacks or other similar incidents. Torture can be used to prevent these terrible incidents and save the lives of many people. Torture in the United States has been a debatable subject for many years now but after resent tragedies, the idea of torture of many American citizens has changed. It has also been debated over more after the attacks on September 9, 2001 than any other time in American history. Many fight the legalization of torture for moral and civil reasons but the truth is that torture is a lesser evil that can be used for a greater good.
What is Torture?
Torture may have different meanings ...view middle of the document...
S. has a worldwide system of detention centers where prisoners are tortured. Using the “War on Terrorism” (Peterson, Kim), the U.S. has twisted international laws for tis own selfish goal. The government has discarded international protection from war prisoners and made a new designation not provided in international law. By doing so, the U.S has sent a dangerous sign to the rest of the world that it is easy to slip through international laws.
Democracy and life-saving torture have existed side by side for years. Governments usually ignore the interest of its people for the greater good but even if it didn’t, most Americans have supported the use of torture to stop terrorist attacks. Many democratic countries that use torture for a greater good have been stable and not fallen into a barbaric state as many anti-torture supporters say the U.S. will.
Many democratic countries such as France, Britain, and Israel all have used torture under extreme circumstances over the past fifty years and none has sunk into barbarism, or ceased to be a law-government democracy. History of humankind has shown many times that when societies are threatened; they choose the common good over individual interests.
Torture and 911
Before, the U.S. Army Field Manuals used to teach the soldiers the Geneva Conventions and U.S. policies, which prohibited certain acts of violence or intimidation. Any kind of torture threats were not to be used during an interrogation but after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, an argument on how torture should be defined arose after former president George W. Bush’s attempt to fight terrorists by pushing the boundaries of what actions constitute torture. The meaning of torture changed in some aspects after 911. For example, a memo was issued that stated coercive interrogations can actually torture only if suffering equal, in intensity, to pain from serious injuries or even death and is caused intentionally by the Justice Departments Office of Legal Counsel in 2002.
Who Supports Torture
The majority of America, 58%, supports the use of torture to stop and fight terrorism and other crime, under certain circumstances. But, when asked about other Americans being tortured in other countries, all opposed torture. This showed that torture is approved only in rare instances. “When forced to choose between two evils, we always elect for the lesser evil. Notions of individual rights go missing in the process” (Clarke, Bagaric; Mirko; Julie). Poll results raise many questions such as who defines terrorism or, especially, can torture be justified when the terrorists are resisting an illegal invasion. Most poll results have shown support for justifiable torture in rare instances.
An example of fuzzy thinking is that it is okay to kill someone to save lives but saying it’s extremely wrong to inflict pain on someone to prevent them or others from doing wrong and possibly saving more lives. Some people believe that torture is...