Why Not Torture Terrorists?: Moral, Practical, and Legal Aspects of the Ticking Bomb Justification…

Paperback | March 25, 2010

byYuval Ginbar

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This book addresses a dilemma at the heart of counter-terrorist policy: is it ever justifiable to torture terrorists in order to save the lives of others, the so-called 'ticking bomb' scenario? The book opens with an analysis of the pure moral argument from the standpoint of the individual as torturer. It then looks at the issues that arise once a state has decided to sanction torture in certain situations: how to establish factually that the situation is urgent, deciding who to torture,training people to carry out torture, and the efficacy of torture as a means of gathering information. The final part examines attempts to operate legal systems which tolerate torture; how they relate to the criminal law notion of necessity and to international human rights norms. After examining the utilitarian arguments for torture, and the impact on a society of permitting torture, the author presents a powerful argument for maintaining the absolute legal prohibition.

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This book addresses a dilemma at the heart of counter-terrorist policy: is it ever justifiable to torture terrorists in order to save the lives of others, the so-called 'ticking bomb' scenario? The book opens with an analysis of the pure moral argument from the standpoint of the individual as torturer. It then looks at the issues that ...

Yuval Ginbar serves as a legal adviser to Amnesty International and a senior adviser to the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:480 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:March 25, 2010Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199571236

ISBN - 13:9780199571239

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Table of Contents

Sir Nigel Rodley: ForewordIntroductionPart I: Private Morality: Is it Morally Justifiable for an Individual to Torture a Terrorist in Order to Save Many Innocent Lives?1. Introduction2. The wider moral Issue: Do consequences or 'no go areas' determine what is ethical in an extreme situation?3. Consequentialist argument for torturing in a ticking bomb situation4. The minimal absolutist approach I: anti-absolutism as morally untenable5. The minimal absolutist approach II: Arguments for an absolute prohibition on torturePart II: Public, Practical Morality: Is it Morally Justifiable for a State to Torture in Order to Save Many Innocent Lives?6. Introduction7. Is there a 'public morality' that is distinct from 'private morality'?8. 'Slippery slope' and other dangersPart III: Legalising Torture 1 - Four Models9. Introduction10. The Landau model in Israel11. The 'torture warrants' model12. Israel's High Court of Justice model13. The USA's 'high value detainees' modelPart IV: Legalising Torture 2 - Three Issues14. Introduction15. Is it (internationally) legal? Is it torture?16. The 'defence of necessity' model as legal grounds for torturePart V: Conclusions