- Title Pages
- Special Dedication
- Table of Cases
- Table of Treaties and Statutes
- List of Abbreviations and General Notes
- 1 Part I—Introduction
- 2 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 Situation
- 4 The Minimal Absolutist Approach I: Anti-absolutism as Morally Untenable
- 5 The Minimal Absolutist Approach II: Arguments for an Absolute Prohibition on Torture
- 6 Part I—Conclusions
- 7 Part II—Introduction
- 8 Is there a ‘Public Morality’ that is Distinct from ‘Private Morality’?
- 9 ‘Slippery Slope’ and Other Dangers
- 10 Part II—Conclusions
- 11 Part III—Introduction
- 12 The Landau Model in Israel
- 13 The ‘Torture Warrants’ Model
- 14 Israel's High Court of Justice Model
- 15 The USA' ‘High Value Detainees’ Model
- 16 Part III—Conclusions
- 17 Part IV—Introduction
- 18 Is it (Internationally) Legal? Is it Torture?
- 19 The ‘Defence of Necessity’ as Legal Grounds for Torture
- 20 Part IV—Conclusions
- 21 Conclusions
- Annex The ‘Ticking Bomb’ Scenario—a Few Examples
- (p.89) 6 Part I—Conclusions
- Why Not Torture Terrorists?
- Oxford University Press
This chapter concludes the discussion of the ticking bomb question as a one of pure individual morality. For the purpose of defending an absolute prohibition on torture a minimal absolutist position, rather than a wider moral theory, is sufficient. The overwhelming strength of the ‘numbers’ in the torture-justifying argument is also its moral downfall, among other things because it must allow the torture of the innocent, making each of us, potentially, a victim of torture — as well as a torturer. The qualities of character needed for one person to inflict unimaginable cruelty upon another cannot sit easily with our concept of a good character. A torture-justifier would indeed commit atrocities, where necessary, to save us, but only if we belong to a large enough number of potential victims. The minimal absolutist, in contrast, would always do anything humanly possible to save innocent lives.
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