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Thread: US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

  1. #1
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Wink US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

    I love that.. they didn't bother adhering to the articles of war, brutalized, raped, murdered Iraqi citizens and were basically the violent arm of a rogue nation as a result,...and then people would freak out when US troops were found murdered and mutilated in retaliation?

    Amazing. How can the upper management of the military be so dense?

    Jul. 12, 2006. 01:00 AM
    THOMAS E. RICKS
    SPECIAL TO THE STAR


    WASHINGTON—The biggest effect of the Pentagon's acceptance of a recent Supreme Court ruling that requires it to abide by the Geneva Conventions on the treatment of prisoners probably won't be at the Guantanamo prison camp or in U.S. courts but on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, military lawyers and other experts said yesterday.

    Experts said the justices' ruling removes much of the ambiguity about what sort of protections detained Iraqis, Afghans and foreign fighters enjoy and what rules apply to the actions of U.S. troops.

    "It's a significant change in my view because the troops on the ground in Iraq have never been sure it was a requirement" to observe the Geneva rules, said Gary Solis, a former Marine Corps infantry commander who is an expert on the law of war. "It sets the philosophic tone for our soldiers and Marines.''

    Before yesterday's announcement that all detainees in the war on terror held at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere will be protected under the Geneva Conventions, the Bush administration had labelled terror suspects enemy combatants, refusing to legally recognize them as prisoners of war covered by the international accords.

    The murkiness of the policy has been cited by some critics of the administration's operations in Iraq as contributing to a culture of abuse that led to inhumane treatment of inmates at Abu Ghraib prison and other sites.

    Some human rights groups weren't persuaded the policy change would have any practical impact on about 450 Guantanamo detainees, including Canadian Omar Khadr.

    "I welcome it as a policy statement, but I think the real issue is, are they now going to change conduct and not just their words," Washington lawyer Muneer Ahmad told the Toronto Star's Michelle Shephard yesterday.

    Ahmad represents Khadr, Canada's only detainee at Guantanamo. Khadr, 19, is accused of throwing a grenade that killed a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan in 2002.

    The Toronto teenager was one of 10 "enemy combatants" charged with war crimes and scheduled to be tried before a military commission, before the Supreme Court overturned those hearings as unconstitutional last month.

    Indeed, in the short term, there probably will be few changes at the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, a senior military lawyer predicted. That is primarily because some practices that clearly would violate the conventions' ban on "humiliating and degrading treatment," such as putting underwear on detainees' heads, were abandoned long ago, mainly because they were found to be ineffective, the lawyer said.

    But, the lawyer added, the lack of definition in the conventions could make the new policy a rich area of litigation for defence lawyers, especially in a cross-cultural environment. For example, a Muslim prisoner might argue that in his culture being interrogated by a foreign female is an outrage on his personal dignity, and therefore inhumane.

    "I think we've got to go back and start from scratch" in terms of defining how to apply the Geneva Conventions to detainees, said Scott Silliman, a former military attorney who teaches law at Duke University.

    No matter how the Bush administration tried to present it, he said, "It's definitely a reversal of policy.''

    http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/Con...l=968350060724
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    Default Re: US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

    I know I'm going to get bashed for saying this, but I really don't have that much extra respect for soldiers than I do for anyone else.

    Firefighters, policemen (some), yeah.

    Maybe it's because I've never really felt my freedoms were being attacked by something that needed fighting or war.

    Maybe because I hear about this crap 24/7.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

    Now see, if like.. Nazis were invading and carrying on with their little eugenics program then yeah, it would take some bravery so go out there and shoot at them.

    Helping protect people in other countries from being killed and persecuted is also respectable, as well as peacekeeping and humanitarian work..

    In the end, it's still a job they get paid to do. I suppose it would be much more noble if you didn't get paid and went off to fight evil purely for the goodness in your heart..
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    Silver Member hotmommy's Avatar
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    Default Re: US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

    Okay...my husbands a soldier in the Army so here goes:
    Putting a blanket judgement on ALL US Servicemen is moronic. When you have that many men and women all working (and I'll use this term for arguments sake) for the same company, you're bound to get good employees and bad employees. Unfortunatley, the bad employees go ape-shit and really hurt innocent people. Please don't forget the good guys out there! The ones who bust their ass to help other people, who leave their families (and pleanty DON"T WANT TO GO!), and get stuck in mortal danger by a bunch of egotistal morons in fancy uniforms who sit in the AC all day and don't risk their necks at all. When word gets out that a soldier did something terrible over seas, don't think for a second that the innocent guys don't know what ya'll think of them. But they do their job anyway. I've heard stories about what goes on over there in Iraq (alot of the people in our neighboorhood on base were there) and you can't fathom what they go thru.
    Please try to give the majority of the soldiers at least a little respect on occasion...that's all I ask.
    Also, please don't go ape-shit on me for writing this.
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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Default Re: US troops were 'unsure' whether to adhere to Geneva Conventions in Iraq

    This is the type of knee-jerk defense that has absolutely nothing with the topic at hand.

    The topic at hand is that US troops were unsure if they needed to adhere to the Geneva Conventions, something that was caused by conflicting information that came from the top of the command chain. That's what we're going on about.

    The only part that relates to the soldiers in any way is when said conventions are ignored, but the Dubya admin screams its head off when their soldiers are treated badly.

    yes there are bad apples, but most of them are rotting at the top of the tree.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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