The outset of mental torture. Through the lens of the Ticking Time Bomb Scenario
Alberdi Ezcurdia, Leire
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No doubt shall be placed when qualifying torture as one of the cruellest crime offences against human beings. It is widely known that the first torture practices go back to the Middle Ages, where torture mechanisms and devices were used as a legitimate means of punishment, extraction of confessions or executions. Brutal techniques such as ‘Judas Cradle’, ‘The Rack’ or the ‘Rat Torture’ were indeed, the ones commonly used. Moreover, some centuries onwards, torture warrants were permitted and authorised by Privy Councils in legislations such as the English one. However, examples like that were the only ones which public accountability was given to, whereas off-the-book practices remained in silence in other countries for long lasting years. Nowadays, in the 21st century, there are innumerable enforced laws and provisions that prohibit the act of torture, to be precise, physical and psychological torture. Nonetheless, not only are these legislations necessary for fighting torture, but also ad hoc courts and specialised committees continuously report the existence of this crime offence.