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Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics

Volume 28, Issue 1, Spring/Summer 2008

Scott R. Paeth
Pages 163-181
DOI: 10.5840/jsce200828131

"Dirty Hands" Revisited
Morality, Torture, and Abu Ghraib

This essay considers the morality of torture in light of Michael Walzer's argument in "Political Action: The Problem of Dirty Hands." Walzer argues that, under certain conditions, actions such as torture may be politically necessary but should never be given moral justification. This argument is analyzed in light of the question of responsibility in Christian ethics and in light of current U.S. policies on torture.

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