Torture, can be described as a situation where an individual is subjected to suffering or pain, this can either be physically or mentally inflicted. It can be conducted for the purpose of coercion, punishment for a acts one has committed, or can be used as a tool to get information through a confession. In the history of mankind there have been numerous instances of torture from the medieval times, to the torture which is sponsored by the state that today society experiences. There have also been torture instances that are based by sadistic people who do it to satisfy their evil selves.
Under the international law and in most countries in the world, torture is prohibited and is considered as a c crime and also categorized as a crime that violates on the human rights of individuals. About 147 nations in the world have ratified a declaration by the United Nations on torture even on armed conflicts. In the United States, torture is illegal and not permitted in the society.
There are various forms of tortures which include beatings whey they cause physical pain to an individual. Another form of torture is by the use of solitary confinement for a long time, this is where one is denied access to other people, light at times even food. In the medieval period there were very many forms of torture which were very cruel and cause a lot of pain and suffering to the people being perpetrated to.
But there are serious controversial debates in regards to torture. Much of these debates relate to the constitutionality, morality and role of torture in the society. Conflicting arguments have been advanced to try and explain the case for torture. Much of these views have been subjective and one-sided. This paper will therefore focus on the controversies surrounding torture of criminals by objectively exploring the permissibility of torture in the enlightened societies, its justifiability and the role it plays in maintenance of law and order in society.
The paper will focus on case where torture can be justified in a society and in which instances. The study will focus on addressing the controversial issues surrounding the case of torture by responding to three key research questions. The study will explain the permissibility of torture in the enlightened society, whether or not there are circumstances when torture can be justified. It will also discuss the role that torture plays as a punitive measure against criminals.
In order to objectively understand the case of torture, its intentions must also be objectively explored. An objective exploration of the intentions of torture leaves one with a non-subjective opinion that there are circumstances that can justify this act. Instead of focusing subjectively on the “rights” of terrorists for example, it is vital to consider the rights of the victims of terrorism.
In 2004 in Iraq’s Abu Graib prison there were reports of use of torture by American soldiers and also other government agencies such as CIA as a means of interrogation. This led to a huge public outcry and even a loss of jobs and criminal prosecutions of some officers who were even sent into prison for their involvement in these activities. This and other recent activities raises questions whether torture can be used to deal with terrorist and others whose intentions are evil and are after destruction of human life and property. Can torture be used to save lives from a terrorist? In the days we are living in, the American society has been targeted by many terrorist who do not care, some are suicide bombers and others have very dangerous weapons meant to hurt a lot of people. If this people are caught can torture be used to protect the people? This and other questions are what this paper will mean to address.