Dilemmas in Military Medical Ethics Since 9/11
Howe, Edmund G.
Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 2003 June; 13(2): 175-188
The attack on the United States by terrorists on 9/11 and the war with Iraq have raised new ethical questions for the military and for military physicians (Herman 2002; Elshtain 2003). How and when attacks may occur now is less predictable. Planes have been hijacked, and persons dressed as civilians may carry bombs to blow themselves and others up. These dangers pose an increased threat, and, thus, there is a need for new defensive measures. How far these measures should go is, however, greatly open to debate. One of the most difficult ethical question raised for the military and military doctors by these developments is what interrogation methods are permissable when questioning captured terrorists. The licitness of different interrogation practices is, however, only one of the ethical problems potentially encountered by military physicians now having to treat terrorists and POWs. The following discussion presents the major concerns regarding this and other issues.
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