As I’ve said before, I’m opposed to the use of torture because I consider it to be a moral evil, one that does more harm to a nation’s soul than any terrorist attack could ever hope to accomplish. As a country, we responded to the attacks on 9/11 with torture because contrary to Jesus’ instructions, we feared those who are able to “kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul” (Matthew 10.28).
Tuesday’s release of a report by the Senate Intelligence Committee has revealed that torture was far more widespread than previously admitted while confirming that it was spectacularly ineffective. The Washington Post has a summary of twenty key findings that references the committee’s report. Christians may disagree about whether the report is impartial, but the acts of torture themselves are not disputed, and there are no sustainable Christian arguments for the acceptability of torture. As John McCain argued Tuesday, the use torture has “stained our national honor.” The release of the committee’s report was an act of confession, I pray that we, as a nation, can find the moral fortitude to repent.