President Obama has signed an executive order that will shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention center. This detention center has come under frequent attack during the Iraq war with accusations of improper treatment of detainees there. It is alleged that the CIA has used torture in an attempt to gain intelligence in the war on terror.
Here is an article discussing Obama’s executive order: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090122/ap_on_go_pr_wh/obama_suspected_terrorists
I have posted a few entries on this blog discussing how Christians should feel about the use of torture. This discussion also led into the discussion of whether there is ever a time a Christian should be supportive of war.
While it is my opinion that there are times and circumstances which justify the use of war, I do not believe that the use of torture is ever appropriate. The Bible, which is the Christian guide, tells us that ALL people are created in the image of God. To torture a person is to treat them as sub-human. I do not even think it is ever appropriate to torture an animal. Torture of any kind degrades the fact that everything is the creation of our God. We should seek to honor Him with how we treat His people and His creatures.
Also, the U.S. has agreed to abide by international law, which condemns the use of torture. Whether or not one can justify torture for any reason, the U.S. has said they will not use these methods. If we say it, we should abide by it. Scripture is clear that when you enter into a covenant, even an improper one, you should seek to honor that covenant.
Lastly, as someone commenting on this blog stated, there is really nothing to gain from the use of torture. The intelligence we need can be gained from less severe methods. Why damage our international image by using such methods?
It is interesting to me that a Democratic president seems to be the one taking the moral high road in this situation. Maybe this should be a reminder to us all that their is not a Christian political party and that we need to be willing to hold our leaders accountable (even Republicans) to do the right thing.
What are your thoughts?