Main content


President Donald Trump has claimed that torture “absolutely” works. But what evidence is there of this? And can its use ever be justified?

In his first TV interview as US President, Donald Trump claimed that torture “absolutely” works and said the US should “fight fire with fire.”

But what evidence is there that torture is an effective method of obtaining valuable intelligence? And can the use of torture ever be justified?

Becky Milligan hears from a former interrogator who worked at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and now calls himself a torturer, a former political prisoner who was tortured in the notorious Evin prison in Tehran, and a neuroscientist who has studied the effects of torture on the brain.

(Photo:Man sitting in chair with hands tied together behind his back with a bucket on the floor. Credit: Rommel Canlas/Shutterstock)

Available now

18 minutes

Last on

Mon 6 Feb 2017 07:32GMT



  • Fri 3 Feb 2017 19:32GMT
  • Fri 3 Feb 2017 20:32GMT
  • Fri 3 Feb 2017 21:32GMT
  • Sun 5 Feb 2017 11:32GMT
  • Mon 6 Feb 2017 02:32GMT
  • Mon 6 Feb 2017 03:32GMT
  • Mon 6 Feb 2017 04:32GMT
  • Mon 6 Feb 2017 05:32GMT
  • Mon 6 Feb 2017 07:32GMT

Get the podcast

Get the podcast

Subscribe or download individual episodes for free

Why do we look the way we do?

Why do we look the way we do?

Tattoos, trainers, jeans, hair, ties ... why?