Is Torture Ever Justified?

The Senate’s CIA Torture report was released today.  I am deeply ashamed.  I grew up believing that torture was something used by Barbarians, the Inquisition, Nazis and Stalinists. 
Americans do not torture.


Dutch woodcut shows “The Water Torture”.  Was this during the Inquisition?  Or were these government officials seeking information?  We do not know.  The man writing in the book appears quite calm, as he waits for the words of the man being tortured.  He is documenting the interrogation, it seems.
Torture Paintings - Massacre of Christian missionaries by Theodore De Bry





Moving on to modern times, this World War II poster starkly pronounces the difference between the Allies and the Axis.  Implicit in this work is the assumption that good guys don’t torture, only the evil do.

The Flagellation of Christ, Caravaggio


Abu Graib



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