Unspeakable Acts, Ordinary People: The Dynamics of Torture

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9780679419181: Unspeakable Acts, Ordinary People: The Dynamics of Torture
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Investigates three incidents of torture in the Western world, in Chicago, Israel, and Northern Ireland

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Review:

"A Chicago journalist's gripping, disturbing inquiry into torture and human nature."--"Chicago Tribune

From the Publisher:

A shocking and compassionate book
In the western world we consider torture to be a practise confined to the developing world and the Middle Ages. However, torture is used by the military and the police all across the so-called developed world. This shocking and compassionate book looks at specific cases in the UK, the US and Israel where torture was used by governmental forces, and examines how and why it happened.

Author John Conroy has deliberately chosen cases that were taken to court and proven. In this way, there is no doubt that torture took place, enabling him to freely examine the motivation behind the torture, and why it was allowed to happen. In Chicago, a division of the police force routinely tortured suspects with electrodes. In Belfast, army officers tortured innocent Irish Catholics in order to practise before questioning IRA suspects. In Israel, soldiers were ordered to torture Palestinian men, to deliberately inspire fear in the local community.

This is a unique book in that it interviews both torturers and their victims, and establishes the facts of each case, without casting judgement. Written with the pace and suspense of a thriller, the book examines what enables torturers to commit atrocities others find unimaginable. Conroy poses the question how do such ordinary people commit such unspeakable acts?

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