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Does Torture Work?$
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John W. Schiemann

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190262365

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190262365.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 14 June 2021

Benchmarking Interrogational Torture

Benchmarking Interrogational Torture

(p.40) 3 Benchmarking Interrogational Torture
Does Torture Work?

John W. Schiemann

Oxford University Press

This chapter draws on legal and philosophical justifications of interrogational torture in order to sketch the proponent’s ideal model, including both its criteria of success and its limits on torture. A review of CIA documents and a comparison of the Bush interrogational torture program with the ideal model reveal the close approximation of the former to the latter, so a test of the CIA program is simultaneously a test of the more general philosophical defence of interrogational torture. Distilling the key goals, limits, and constraints, the chapter identifies four benchmarks, each simultaneously a prediction about what should be seen from the game theoretic model as well as a standard or criteria of success against which whatever outcomes are actually seen are compared in this chapter: high information reliability, low torture frequency, low torture severity, and the ideal outcome torture proponents argue justifies the practice.

Keywords:   CIA, Bush, interrogational torture

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