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Nancy Pelosi is Thrilled that Terrorists' Rights are Protected

Nancy Pelosi is thrilled with the Supreme Court's ruling that the terrorists can not be tried in military tribunals and that, as they plot to attack the US, they can do so with the knowledge that, should they be captured, their rights will be protected by the Geneva Conventions:

WASHINGTON, June 29 /U.S. Newswire/ -- House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement today following the United States Supreme Court decision that trying Guantanamo detainees before military commissions violates U.S. law and the Geneva Conventions:


"Today's Supreme Court decision reaffirms the American ideal that all are entitled to the basic guarantees of our justice system. This is a triumph for the rule of law.

"The rights of due process are among our most cherished liberties, and today's decision is a rebuke of the Bush Administration's detainee policies and a reminder of our responsibility to protect both the American people and our Constitutional rights. We cannot allow the values on which our country was founded to become a casualty in the war on terrorism."

That sounds like a great slogan for November and on to 2008: Vote for the Democrats. They're the party for terrorists' rights.


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Comments (94)

Kim - The reason f... (Below threshold)
lowellfield:

Kim -

The reason for having trials is to prove that the detainees ARE terrorists. It is sort of "something we do" as a society, even when the people are very bad.

I didn't know that our laws... (Below threshold)
Rich:

I didn't know that our laws covered people that weren't Americans. Remember these terrorists are not from US so how does US law cover them?

We don't need to decipher t... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

We don't need to decipher the Dems' motivation. Their actions indicate that they are happy when Bush "loses", even when the terrorists win. So the bottom line is that they practically side with the terrorists because if the terrorists lose, Bush wins. No surprise here: dems rooting for the terrorists to win.

I agree! They seem to thin... (Below threshold)
pjaykc:

I agree! They seem to think the battle is with President Bush instead of the terrorists.

I think the detainees shoul... (Below threshold)
snowballs:

I think the detainees should be put in front of some judgement, but I wonder if they are going to be tried under the civilian orders, or as POWs, or as terrorists? Does not the Geneva convention state that terrorists and or terrorists are prohibited?

whoops, that's terrorists a... (Below threshold)
snowballs:

whoops, that's terrorists and or terrorism ^

This ruling will, in my opi... (Below threshold)
vero:

This ruling will, in my opinion, come back to bite the left-wingers in the backside. Their support for anything other than this countries best interest is appalling. I know that the Democrats are anti-military, anti-church, anti-family, anti-business and anti-common sense. Nancy is a turd.

No matter who attempt to sk... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

No matter who attempt to skirt the laws of democracy, Dem or Repub, there are many of us who will call them on it.
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(1) As you admitted, the laws of the land do not apply to these terrorists. So no skirting of the laws, here? Why trying to impugn? FDR used his constitutional duty far more forceful than Bush, and I don't think the Dems minded at all.

(2) Clinton didn't go through the UN in bombing Serbia, and the left was fully behind him. Surprised isn't it?

(3) The terrorists spit at the "laws of democracy"? I don't see the left call them on it.

Far from it. Many Americans... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Far from it. Many Americans, both Democrats and Republicans, feel that the rule of law is tantamount, the rule of democracy is tantamount, to that of the President. Whoever he may be.
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In other words, the right of the terrorist is far more important than the lives of Americans. Thanks for letting us know.


Wow. Well, this "fact" will... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Wow. Well, this "fact" will certainly be a shock to those millions of registered Democrats who go to church, raise their families, send their kids to school and raise them as good people and citizens, own their own businesses and try to live their lives in the best way they know how.
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These Dems should run away from the Dem party as fast as they can since the Dem party stands against all what they believe.

Sorry to hear that you are ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Sorry to hear that you are so removed from reality and devoid of any shred of common sense and so deep into your own head full of hatred.
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Why are you full of hatred towards a fellow American. I don't see you express that kind of hatred towards the terrorists.

...the laws of a democra... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

...the laws of a democracy like the USA should apply to those we decide to prosecute, even non-citizens.

"Should" apply and "do" apply are two entirely different matters. "Should" is idyllic and utopian; "do" is what the law is. And despite the weak and wrongheaded interpretation of the Article 3 of the GC by SCOTUS as interpreting AQ as being some sort fighting entity under a country that is a part of the GC, terrorists' "rights" "do" not apply under our laws...or even under the rules of the GC, IMHO.

The terrorists didn't sign ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

The terrorists didn't sign the GC, didn't abide by the rule of warfare (no uniform), didn't have any regard for civilians. They spit at the "laws of democracy". I am still waiting the the left to call the terrorists on it.

yeah, the ~50% of this coun... (Below threshold)
Lint:

yeah, the ~50% of this country which votes Democratic is a bunch of Godless, duplicitous snakes who want to secretly turn control over to a bunch of Islamists.

Hmmm, let's dissect the logic behind this:

1. Islam strongly protects gay marriage. After OBL becomes president, thanks to the Dem. party, Gay marriage will be legalized.

2. Islamists love marijuana, and will legalize the good herb as soon as the dems give control of the Supreme Court to the mullahs.

3. Arab countries actually have no oil, but have plenty of excess capacity of Toyota Priuses. So, after Zawahiri starts to run the DoT -- thanks to the Dems -- we'll all be driving hybrids.

Yep, the dems have all the incentive in the world to get Al Qaeda to control the US. You guys figured us out. We can't pull one over you smarties.

I did not say the laws of t... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

I did not say the laws of the land do not apply to the terrorists. I said they were designated in a manner and placed in an area in which the laws do not matter. There is a difference.
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The laws of the US do not apply to the terrorists, period.


I never said that the "left" wasn't deep into following their leaders blindly. They are, just as much as the "right". It goes both ways. That was my point actually, if you care to pull your head out of the "us versus them" argument for one minute. Can you do that? Somehow, I seriously doubt it.
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I can play this game of trying to be neutral etc... THis is the old moral equivalency game: you cannot defend the Dems and the left, so you have to resort to this meme: the right is as bad. Not true.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2006/06/bushs_decency_highlights_democ.html
Bush's Decency Highlights Democrats Incivility


Abolutely. Any suspected terrorist who is tried via our rule of law and judged to be guilty should be thrown into the deepest darkest hole available.
(Although, I do not support the death penalty for convicted terrorists for I feel it plays into the martyr syndrome to heavily.)
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How about Russian approach: give them the death penalty and wrap their bodies in pigs' skin? Are you for it, then?


But, all suspected terrorists should be tried via the very system of rule of law and deomocracy that we fight to protect.
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This is what caused 9/11. In an open trial of the WTC bombing in 1993, we disclosed intelligence secret that helped Bin Laden escaping our monitoring. Besides, these are enemy combatants captured on battlefields.

The Supreme Court simply usurp the authority given to the president by the constitution.

Are you opten in the habit ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Are you opten in the habit of assuming what people think?
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I simply looked at what people did.

I always see the Dems happy when the terrorists win or sth bad happen to the US. That 's what they did.

I simply read your post expressing hate towards a fellow AMerica while I haven't read the same kind of post towards the terrorists. That 's all. Your actions speak louder than your words.

No. The rule of law is tant... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

No. The rule of law is tantamount. Don't you read what is written or do you just read the words you understand?
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The Supreme Court doesn't respect the rule of law or the constitution in usurping what belongs to the executive branch. So much for respecting the rule of law.

Again, the rule of law applies to the US citizens, not the terrorists who do not abide even by the basic human decency.

"We do only good. THEY do o... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

"We do only good. THEY do only bad."
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So you dare not say the US is a good and great country and the terrorists are evil. Can you say out loud that the US is good and North Korea is bad?

Let's all watch the greatest democracy in the world NOT practice what it preaches.
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We are treating them better at Gitmo than they were in their own countries. Why are you so desperate in slamming your very own country

By skirting the rule of law, yes, even for terrorists, we become what we fight.
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In other words, the Bills of rights should apply to the terrorists as well. In other words, the Dems are working for the terrorists' Bills of right. Sweet.


You did say that all the Demorats should leave their party right?
Unbelievable.
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You simply didn't practice what you preached. I simply said the Dems who go to church, raising a family etc... should leave the Dem party. It is secular and godless now. The Dem spits at the values of the church-going Dems. That 's a fact.

It's not a game you know.</... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

It's not a game you know.

And, this little statement is proof that the right has fascist twats just like the left does:
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Good point. The war on terrorism is not game. IT 's a shame that the Dems are treating it as a political game.

BTW, fascism has more in common with communism. They both share the ideological root of secular statism. So it is more accurate to say the fascist left.

I support Lieberman, a Dem who is serious about protecting the country. The modern Dem party is corrupt to the core. YOu should run from them as fast as you can

All you have seen are my wo... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

All you have seen are my words! What actions? Oh. I get it. The actions you IMAGINE that you see me doing! Got it. Carry on. DOn't let me interrupt your fantasy.

Wait! There's even MORE fanstasy!
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Your action (ie. how you express your hate) shows where your heart is.


The Supreme COurt is given the poewr to interpret the law, NOT THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH. You have it backwards. But, of course, being a brainwashed tool who parrots what he hears, I do not expect any less from you at this juncture. You know, if you revered that statement, you'd be a brainwashed moonbat! How funny is that?!!!!! One and the same.
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The executive branch has the power to establish military tribunal in time of war. The law of the US do not apply to the terrorists, period. The SC has no respect for the rule of law and you are fully supporting them.

Now, you are fully spouting out your hatred. Again, I don't see you express that kind of hatred towards the terrorists in your writing yet (now I hope you understand the word "action")

Easy predictions: ... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

Easy predictions:

(1) fewer terrorists will be captured...alive
(2) the "accident" rate among those that ARE captured will go up dramatically

and as for "trials"...hmmm? how about the old Middle Ages "trial" method. Tie a great big rock around 'em and toss 'em in a pond. If they sink: they were innocent (sorry, Achmed)...and if they float: they're GUILTY (and so must be shot).

works for me!

p.s. I am not kidding either

So you dare not say the US ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

So you dare not say the US is a good and great country and the terrorists are evil. Can you say out loud that the US is good and North Korea is bad?

You dumb wingnut. I was talking about right and left, moonbats and wingnuts. You are a piece of work.
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Now you are revealing you hatred and name-calling.
So look at the actions of the Dems and Reps. The Reps are happy when we win in Iraq and elsewhere. The Dems are happy when the terrorists win. Can you see the difference?


So, what you are saying is that that Dems who go to church, even the ones who are active in the DNC, and raise children, they are Godless and secular? I see. How do you know this? I think it will be a great surprise to thsoe Dems who beleive in God and have strong families and work to keep it so, even the ones who are active in the DNC.
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The agenda of the Dem party is godless. The church-going Dems may be fooled by these secular leftists. They should abandon this corrupt party because it has no respect for their values. That 's fact. Show me some facts to demonstrate that the Dem party respect the values of the church-going Dems

It's not fact. It's propganda. The reality is Dems go to church just like Repubs. They beleive in God just like Repubs. This hatred talk is similar to that of the Germans during [email protected] who clained that the Jews were Godless and theiving.

You are as bad as the moonbats who go on and on about the right being ALL fascists.

Yes, there are fascists on the left. There are fascists on the right.

YOU ARE PROOF OF THAT>
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BTW, the modern left is the home of anti-SEmitism. so your talking point is a little old.

BTW, are you a Dem? Why are you so exercised about the fact that the Dem party is corrupt to the core?

If you are honest, I am not asking you to support the Rep. But at the very least, you should run from the DEm. Their agenda is godless and corrupt. You read too much leftist propaganda.

Plixola: "Saying those r... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

Plixola: "Saying those rights are only for "ctizens" makes us no better than the Soviets who preserved right to trial (if it even went to trial) for party loyalists."

Wow! Look, Comrade, we offer TONS of "rights" to a whole lot of people who are not citizens (see the raging illegal immigration debate on a blog near you). But offering "rights" to people whose sole (and LOUDLY proclaimed) purpose in life is to destroy us is suicidal!

So how many of these monsters would YOU personnallhy be willing to take into your home and nurse back to health after their "horrible treatment" at Gitmo?

p.s. the average weight gain for these "abused" morons is just under 20 pounds!! first "torture center" in history that is run like a freaking CRUISE SHIP!!

Plixola, Your post... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Plixola,
Your post is full of name calling. SO I know for sure that you don't have the facts and the logic on your side anymore. That 's why you have to resort to this cheap name-calling at the end.

Good bluffing though. Have fun.

Just look at the facts again: the Dems are happy when the terrorists win or when sth bad happen to the US.

You don't even dare to use the strong language (you are using against your fellow Americans on this thread) against the terrorists. That 's the leftist defintion of bravery. Enjoying the freedom and safety provided by the US military while working for the terrorists' bills of right.

Good luck, leave the Dem party as soon as you can.

Plixora, you sure do talk a... (Below threshold)
kirktoe:

Plixora, you sure do talk a lot but what you say is utter stupidity.

"Let's all watch the greatest democracy in the world NOT practice what it preaches".

You indicate by this statement (and others you've made) that you believe that the prisoners at Club Gitmo deserve the same rights that Americans have to our court system and taht our constitution covers them.

Wow.

You are just a sick person (as are most liberals these days). To even hint at some kind of equivalence betweeen American citizens and terrorists is so utterly insane as to defy description.

You need to go get some therapy. And if I were you I'd do it before November when the Democratic party gets their butts handed to them again. Because that is exactly what is going to happen.

Plixola:You are obviously a... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Plixola:You are obviously a moonbat but do you really live on the moon? Are you SURE a terrorist attack won't touch you? If a terrorist attack leaves you blinded and drowning in the fluid filling your lungs will die peacefully knowing that-above all-the principal of judicial supremacy was upheld? Why you silly a$$-I want us to defeat the terrorists most of all because I want to live.Don't you? If you don't already think this is a better country than that of our enemies-say because we don't murder rape victims-than you have more serious issues than a silly idea about how warfare should be conducted.I find it pathetically amusing that you confuse the ruling of five unelected lawyers-at least one of whom could not vote for pope if he was a cardinal(he's too old)with the outcome of a democratic process.Pry your head out of your anus moonbat and think about what the consequences could be if a terrorist attack wiped out the elected government-say if Washington was nuked-and left the country with a choice between lawyers who think like you and generals who don't.Do you really think the survivors would side with you? I don't.

Those of you discussing the... (Below threshold)
Tim in PA:

Those of you discussing the need for due process to determine if some of these detainees are terrorists are missing the point; the laws of land warfare (the Geneva conventions, etc.) do not apply to an enemy who flaunts their terms.

For example, fighting in civilian clothing and using civilians as shields; attacking under a flag of truce or red cross/crescent; launching attacks from safe havens such as hospitals, churches or mosques; boobytrapping bodies; and so on. If you are caught on the field of battle doing these things, you have no protections or rights whatsoever.

The laws of land warfare are rather unique; when they are followed it is only because each side thinks they will gain something (not having to fear atrocities committed by the enemy) without lessening their own chance of victory. Unlike the bulk of so-called "international law", the laws of land warfare actually have teeth; they can be enforced by the soldiers on the ground.

Our military has decided to treat prisoners in a certain manner even if they are captured while they are violating the laws of land warfare. I think this is a serious mistake. If someone is detained because they are suspected of being a terrorist, then fine, you obviously need some sort of proceeding to determine whether they actually are one. I really don't care if they use our legal system or some sort of hashed together military court. However, anyone caught in the act of committing blatant violations - and if I'm not mistaken more than a few detainees in Gitmo fall under that category - should be shot immediately, on site. It obviously lacks some of the safeguards against abuse that our civilian legal system has, but doing otherwise simply leads to the sort of drawn out mickey mouse bullshit we've seen the last couple of years in Iraq. An enemy that fights like a bunch of barbarians needs a bullet in the head, not a happy meal.

What I find completely absu... (Below threshold)
Proud Kaffir:

What I find completely absurd is the notion that this conflict is not of an "international nature". We have the armed forces of several countries fighting against the armed forces of the Taliban, who controlled most of Afghanistan, and Al Qaeda terrorists who originate from countries all over the world. Yet this war is not of an "international nature" until aL Qaeda can take over a country? How absurd is that?

Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions relates to civil war within a single signatory. In order to get at his decision, Stevens has to ignore the Taliban, ignore the fact that some of the captives were captured outside Afghanistan, and redefine international to a meaning clearly not meant in the Conventions. He also has to ignore other parts of the Conventions that deals with nonuniformed, illegal combatants.

Even if his defintiion is plausible, the Supremes have taken it among themselves to interpert treaties signed by the Executive and ratified by Congress, a step never before taken. The only issue would be if Bush's own interpertation, as the CiC, was reasonable. The Supremes have totally overstepped their contitutional role.

I guess this is one more st... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

I guess this is one more step into the 'One World Government" the dumocrats are angling for. The Constitution of the United States just became the constitution of the world. BS BS BS One more giant leap to an armed revolution in the U.S. and then Hang the SCOTUS.

Soldiers are calling the talk shows and saying what i think. 'No more prisoners' from the battle field. Give them justice on the spot, right after you deliver justice to any reporter within 20 miles.

The only out they left the president is that he never has to release another terrorists prisoner until the war on terror is over. That should allow all of them to die at Gitmo.

Cancel all planned releases and tell them they will be there for life, thanks to the nut and his lawyers that took this to the supreme dummies. See how long his buddies let him live.

And, I'm a regsitered Indep... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

And, I'm a regsitered Independent. In my eyes, both parties are lost and full of clowsn.
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For all the bluffing and huffing on behalf of the Dems, Plixola doesn't have the courage and honesty to admit who he is. Again, the liberals cannot be honest about who they are.

Plixolar has nothing left b... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Plixolar has nothing left but name-calling and bluffing. Yet another example of the intellectual maturity of the left.

Plixola:You silly fool-is t... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Plixola:You silly fool-is this the same justice system that took FIVE YEARS to reach a final verdict in the case of Zacharias Moussoui? Remember O.J Simpson? This system can't protect the Americam people from simple murderers-how any sane person can think it will stop people eager to die so long as they can kill some of us is something I don't see.The justice system isn't designed or intended to deal with military threats to the United States-that's why we have an army,navy and air force.Relying on lawyers to do the armed forces job is one reason why there's a big crater in lower Mannhattan.That news reached you on the moon didn't it?

so u are so thrilled that a... (Below threshold)
ntalker:

so u are so thrilled that american's liberty can be throw away by republicans, and you are so thrilled that american lower themselve to the same level as terrorists, say, like, kidnapping their kids to make them open the mouth.

Do you really believe that ... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Do you really believe that progressives are cheering "terrorists rights?" You may not believe this, but that's not it at all.

We want some reins on the government--the feds, especially the executive branch--are trying to expand their power. But the founders created a limited government to prevent tyranny that often accompanies concentrated power. This is why we protect free speech, even unpopular speech. We may not like when people say offensive things, but if the government can silence these people, they can silence all of us.

Similarly, if the executive branch can unilaterally determine that the detainees are terrorists, then all of us can be detained, silenced, perhaps tortured...in secret.

Concentrated power is dangerous. That's why, nationally, I vote for democrats. The Republicans control all three branches and cannot help but be tempted and intoxicated by the power. Similarly, locally I vote Republican because the democrats have had a lock on power too long, and need to be kept in line.

In any case, all but 2 of the Court's members were appointed by Republicans; even with Robert's not participating, the majority of those that did were appointed by Republicans. This isn't a democratic court. But, this time, the court ruled to put the reins on the administration's attempt to overreach it's authority.

Ntalker, So you wan... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Ntalker,
So you want the bill of rights for the terrorists? In applying for citizenship, I need to check the box that I don't have any affiliation with the communist party. At least I swear allegiance to the constitution of the US.
Another cheap attempt at moral equivalency, making the US the same as the terrorists.

ntalker what in hell are yo... (Below threshold)
Luke:

ntalker what in hell are you smoking?

Publicus, Sorry tha... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
Sorry that I would rather look at the actions than the words. The progressives are too willing to give all the benefits of the doubt to the terrorists while little or none to its government. That 's just a fact.

Publicus, BTW, the ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
BTW, the progressives, ie liberals, simply hate Bush. So they want Bush to fail. Bush is fighting the terrorists. So if the terrorists win, then they can claim that Bush fails. They simply put their own political power above the national interest, even when that means the terrorists win.

Maybe I'm atypical of progr... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Maybe I'm atypical of progressives; I've never been typical of anything. But I don't want Bush to fail. I want him to stop the terrorists. But I also want him to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. That's his job. In fact, that's also OUR job as Americans.

We are a democracy with power purposely divided to prevent dictatorship. And if Nazi's get to march in Skokie and alleged enemy combatants get to have a trial to protect ALL of our rights, so be it. That doesn't mean I'm pro-Nazi or pro-terrorist.

I am originally from NYC and was there Sept. 10th. I watched the horror on a big-screen projection TV. I cried. I knew one of the victims. I supported attacks on Afghanistan. But I never became so sad or so angry or so fearful that I was willing to give up on America. However imperfect we are, many American's have always strived for the best we can be--with our government serving us, not ruling us.

So, those of you safely ensconced in red states that the terrorists have never heard of, how DARE you attack those of us who actually faced the terrorist attacks and are most likely to do so again should they mount another attack.

Note: I was in NYC on Sept.... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Note: I was in NYC on Sept. 10th and decided not to stay overnight -- but the view of the Towers was fresh in my mind the next day...

Plixola:Let me repeat:You s... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Plixola:Let me repeat:You silly fool! Do you understand what happened in New York and D.C. is NOTHING compared to what could happen? It's not just fear you idiot it is a rational appreciation that something needs to be done to prevent what happened on 9/11 from happening again.You want to prevent that don't you? The pre-9/11 approach to terrorism was to send the FBI-was that successful? You say you were there-was it successful? I don't think is was.I want to take measures to prevent another attack and I know what has been done-while successful in preventing attacks on the continental US so far-is insignificant compared to what was done vis-a-vis civil liberties in EVERY previous war this country has fought.For example Abraham Lincoln suspended Habeus Corpus-yet the republic survived.This time our enemies want to nuke us-if they had done that on 9/11 you wouldn't be here to whine that wannabe mass murderers aren't getting trials, moonbat.

Publicus, Compared... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
Compared to Dem presidents, Bush has done a lot more to preserve our rights even during this perilous time of the unconventional war on terror.
FDR interned the Japanese. Clinton didn't care a wit about the UN. Bush took 2 years and 2 resolutions from Congress before going to Iraq.
You happen to live in NY. That 's all. It doesn't confer any special status on you. The people who volunteered to serve in the army deserve to speak more than you do. They are upset about this ruling, which basically make their jobs more difficult and their lives more dangerous.
I am using your own standard now: how dare you who live in the comfort and safety of the US and wax eloquent about the bill of rights even for the terrorists while people are risking their lives for your right to abuse this freedom.

Publicus, If you ar... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
If you are untypical progressive, then you need to speak out strongly against the typical progressives.

BTW, The SC or the ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

BTW,
The SC or the court is exceeding its constitutional role. If you truly care about gov ruling you, judicial tyranny is what you should worry about: 9 unelected people who can intepret the law to according to their own will.

Plixola, We believe... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Plixola,
We believe you. You are a liberal independent, where the Dems are not liberal enough for you. Fair enough?

In the end, only one of the two major parties will win most of the major elections. Which party you would rather have?

If you have problems with t... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

If you have problems with the SCOTUS not being elected, take it up with Madison and Jefferson. That was their decision.

Madison and Jefferson realized that being elected isn't enough to preserve liberty. That's why they didn't give all the power to the president. They had just fought off a monarchy.

Neither I, nor any progressive I know, approve of the FDR's internment of Japanese Americans during WWII. Do you?

I don't know why you're so hot and bothered about the (REPUBLICAN) Supreme Court. The President is LEGISLATING from the Oval Office--with his signing statements and choosing the interpret every law by himself as he would like it to be.

Publicus:How DARE you tell ... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Publicus:How DARE you tell me I am not in danger from a terrorist attack! If you know when and where the next terrorist strike will be tell someone who can stop it! If the attack on NY wasn't enough of an attack on all of us to allow me to opine about what I think should be done to prevent another attack,then why the hell should I care about that hole in Mannhattan? I want my government to serve me by killing terrorists-like we killed Nazis-not putting them all on trial and then letting them go to kill more of us.In any previous conflict these Gitmo killers would have already been shot-yet amazingly the republic survived that.If your assessment of the motives of the GOP is correct we'd already have been a dictatorship and there would be no independent court to rule on this case.

Jefferson and Madison were ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Jefferson and Madison were concerned about judicial overreach for sure. That 's their major concern when the justices don't have self restraint. I just try to point out that systematically, that is the major area of government abuse. IF you claim to care about gov ruling you instead of serving, this is one area you should be mainly concerned about. Why don't we start an amendment process to limit the judicial overreach. The SC cleary exceeds its constitutional role this time. Bush as commander in chief has the constitutional authority for military tribunals.

Dems didn't complain about Clinton not going through the UN when bombing Serbia, a country didn't attack us. Bush has exercise far more restraint so far.

The supreme court right now is liberal. We do have liberal Republicans too. Still the fact is that the court has the greatest potential for abuse of power since they are unelected. So if you claim to care about that, you should work to restrain the court more.

Xennady:If it make... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Xennady:

If it makes you feel better, you may indeed be a victim of a terrorist attack. I clearly don't know either where you are or where they could attack next. HOWEVER, it is well-known that NYC is a popular target for the terrorists...

I was not "assessing" the motives of the GOP. I was, and will continue to believe, that power corrupts...and if Bush gets his way, the Presidency will have such power that he--or some future successor, of ANY party--will be tempted to become a dictator. I don't want this to happen.

Xennady, Using Publ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Xennady,
Using Publicus 's standard: this ruling has the most effect on the military. And they are furious.
The bottom line is that Nancy Pelosi seems to want the bills of right for the terrorists. So it is fitting to say that the Dems are working on the terrorists' bills of right. Their action speak for itself, not the words. The communists claimed to care for the poor also, but we know better. So untypical progressive like Publicus should prove his words by strongly condemning me people like Pelosi and the NYT for example.

Publicus, You have ... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
You have a good point. Power corrupts and the SC has amassed too much power. This ruling is just another example of their amassing power without accountability. We should work together to limit the court 's overreach. You can vote on your pres every 4 years. This complaint is a little old for me.

This REPUBLICAN Supreme Cou... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

This REPUBLICAN Supreme Court has not amassed too much power. As Alexander Hamilton noted in Federalist 78, it is the "least dangerous" branch of the government. Why? Because it has neither the "power of the purse" (legislative) nor the power of "the sword" (executive).

If you feel threatened by the Court, it's because you disapprove of this ruling. I'm sure you like the court when it makes rulings that you like...

Again, if you've got problems with the power of the SCOTUS, take it up with the founders--Madison, Jefferson, Hamilton. Neither democrats, nor progressives had anything to do with this ruling.

Odd that you would bring up... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Odd that you would bring up the internment of the Japanese since Earl Warren-famed "progressive"- was governor of Ca. when it happened.You know who Earl Warren was don't you? Why do you assume that the future will think any more highly of progressives current adventure in civil liberties than they do of that one? Before Alito and Roberts got through 7 of 9 justices were appointed by GOP presidents-but 5 of those 7 were filtered through a Democratic controlled senate.I have a serious difficulty with a court that usurps power because it disagrees with the views of the two elected branches of government-which is what happened today.I do not accept your assessment of the president.And I do approve of the internment-even though it was done by progressives(as liberals call themselves today).I wasn't there-who am I to judge what was done six decades ago to win that war-and who are you judge them?

The court can order the exe... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

The court can order the executive to fund the public schools for example and it did happen in St. Louis for example. Thanks for pointing out that the court isn't supposed to have the power of the purse, but it did usurp the power of the legislature. One example of the court amassing power for itself. Eminen domain is another one, amassing the power for the gov to take over private properties. Now it interferes with the executive funtion of using the sword. So the court has usurped the power belongs to the legislative and the executive branches.
And you cannot vote them out. So any objective person would conclude the court is most prone to abusing power. So again, if progressives truly care about limiting the gov power, it should work to limit the court. That 's why the actions of the progressive don't seem to fit with their words. The elected branch can be changed regularly.

Yes, progressives had NOTHI... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

Yes, progressives had NOTHING to do with the SCOTUS overstepping its bounds. How utterly silly of somebody to even think that. THe Warren Court didn't remotely invent laws out of thin air with virtually no actual legal justification.

In any case, all but 2 of the Court's members were appointed by Republicans; even with Robert's not participating, the majority of those that did were appointed by Republicans. This isn't a democratic court. But, this time, the court ruled to put the reins on the administration's attempt to overreach it's authority.

Yes, David Souter is SUCH a virulent right-winger. Damned near a John Bircher.
-=Mike

Alito and Roberts are again... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Alito and Roberts are against this ruling. The Dems fought against the confirmation of both while they fully supported people like Ginsberg and Breyer for example. Yes they have everything to do with this ruling. They cheered on these liberal justices. At the very least, we should be honest enough to admit that much.

The founders INTENDED that ... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

The founders INTENDED that nominees to the Supreme Court be "filtered through" Congress. That's the way they wrote the Constitution. And, I understand that you disagree with the Supreme Court and think it has usurped power. But you are wrong. They have done their job. They make rulings about the law. I often disagree with their rulings; you may fear that this ruling will do more harm than good. But they have not usurped power.

An interesting note about Earl Warren. He was an Eisenhower appointee...

I think Bush has done his j... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

I think Bush has done his job and the SC has usurped its power. Why am I wrong and why are you right? So you simply asserted that we are wrong? I have shown you clear examples of the court usurping the power of the purse, the sword, making treaties etc.. These belong to the legislative and executive branches, not the court.

If you are concerned about gov power, the court is where we can all work together. How about an amendment process to limit their power for example? More power to the people, right?

The founders intended SC ju... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

The founders intended SC justices filtered throught Congress. THat 's why the Dems and liberals have everything to do with this ruling. They wanted the people to rule this way since they cannot win through election anymore.

Publicus:The courts have on... (Below threshold)
Xennady:

Publicus:The courts have on many occasions usurped both the power of the purse and the power of the sword-most recently today.Alexander Hamilton has been dead a long time-what he wrote then is relevant to what should happen not what does happen.When the court makes a ruling I like but that exceeds what I think their power should be I pray that liberals-pardon me "progressives"- will join me in my appreciation of the danger to the Republic of illicit rule from the bench.Invariably I am disappointed.

MikeSC -The Republ... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

MikeSC -

The Republican's don't have enough power to satistfy you yet? I think Bush feels the same way. Of the 8 justices ruling in this case, 6 were appointed by Republicans. Not enough? You don't like the idea that there is OPPOSITION? Well, that's pretty much a big part of democracy...

BTW, if you think David Souter is too liberal, take it up with the President's dad. He selected him.

Kind of OT here and I apolo... (Below threshold)
Pothus:

Kind of OT here and I apologize, however, I think I need to clarify for those spouting "Democracy", We do NOT live in a "Democracy", we live in A Republic. I give you our "Pledge of Allegiance": "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to The Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
Apparently you don't know or remember our Pledge of Allegiance, or care to forget that small little part.
Now back to our scheduled rantings
Pothus

A lot of words by a bunch o... (Below threshold)
Mark A. Flacy:

A lot of words by a bunch of people who haven't read either the Geneva Conventions or realize what problem it was attempting to solve.

The Geneva Conventions were designed to punish combatants who fight in such a way that you cannot tell them from the civilian population. The Geneva Conventions allows field tribunals by the military to determine if someone is in violation of the Conventions or not. If they are not, they can be executed on the spot.

I am aware that Hamilton is... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

I am aware that Hamilton is dead. It's unfortunate, because we need him badly.

As for the relevence of these old leader's words...

I believe that the founders are as relevant as ever. I recommend reading Federalist 47--Madison's words are as fresh as today's headlines.

Pothus --Thank you... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Pothus --

Thank you for your clarification. You are, of course, correct! (As the hour becomes later, I fear some sloppiness is setting in...)

Mark A. Flacy -I h... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Mark A. Flacy -

I have NOT, indeed, read the Geneva Convention...at least not recently.

I feel confident that ALL of the Justices on the Supreme Court are familiar with it, and they all have very smart clerks to provide all the details they need.

I HAVE read, repeatedly, the Constitution of the United States and the Federalist Papers. Both are highly recommended.

Mark A. Flacy -I h... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

Mark A. Flacy -

I have NOT, indeed, read the Geneva Convention...at least not recently.

I feel confident that ALL of the Justices on the Supreme Court are familiar with it, and they all have very smart clerks to provide all the details they need.

I HAVE read, repeatedly, the Constitution of the United States and the Federalist Papers. Both are highly recommended.

I will admit I don't unders... (Below threshold)
cate s.:

I will admit I don't understand why we have to prove anything to the terrorists about why this is such a great country. They should not be entittled to the rights of US Citizens. Perhaps we should just shoot them from now on as others have suggested. Those who rejoice in this ruling like Pelosi can wrap herself in that comfort the next time an attack happens because we can't be perfect 100% of the time unfortunately.
The terrorists are laughing at us I'm sure. BTW where were the Geneve Conventions for PFCs Tucker & Menchata? I think that if we are going to give terrorists Geneva Convention rights we should insist that our side receive it as well.

Publicus, The found... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Publicus,
The founders gave us the tool to limit judicial overreach. We have demonstrated with clear examples how they have usurped the powers belonging to the other two branches. This ruling is just another example in the long list of their abuse of power. The power to make treaties belong to the executive and legislative branches. Congress can exercise its power to limit the court overreach. But we need more Reps to do so. Another tool is the amendment process where we can vote to limit their terms to 15 years for example. I guess progressives should want more power given to the people, right? I guess we have election this year and 2 years from now. PRogressives would rather have the people limit the power of their elected gov, right?

LoveAmerica Immigrant --</p... (Below threshold)
Publicus:

LoveAmerica Immigrant --

I haven't yet heard from you why this decision is "judicial overreach".

I think the Constitution, as written, has gotten it right. It is the President who is legislating from the oval office, with his signing statements. And, what different does the Supreme Court ruling matter if the President ignores it?

Well, since Congress specif... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

Well, since Congress specifically passed a law legalizing this in Dec. 2005, it seems like overreach.

BTW, if you think David Souter is too liberal, take it up with the President's dad. He selected him.

After the hatchet job the Dems did on the honorable Robert Bork --- a man more suited for the SCOTUS than more than half of its membership --- he was worried and made a mind-bogglingly horrible choice.

I feel confident that ALL of the Justices on the Supreme Court are familiar with it, and they all have very smart clerks to provide all the details they need.

The Conventions are quite explicit as to what one must do to QUALIFY for the protections. The terrorists don't meet the requirements.

Try and grasp the basic logic of HAVING the Conventions --- it was not just to make sure POW's were treated nicely. By any stretch.
-=Mike

Fuck you in the fucking ass... (Below threshold)
you douchebag:

Fuck you in the fucking ass. That's all; no civility for you, dipshit.

Is sucks so bad that Bush c... (Below threshold)
brad:

Is sucks so bad that Bush can't torture people anymore. Nothing gives me a more massive hard-on than thinking about him making those camel jockies beg for mercy. Mmmmm.

Except "torture" isn't real... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

Except "torture" isn't really "defined" by "you".
-=Mike

Why oh why are our dear con... (Below threshold)
Tano:

Why oh why are our dear conservatives seemingly so incredibly dense as to not understand that the Constitutional protections are not designed to "protect criminals" (or terrorists), it is to protect INNOCENT people who the government mistakenly BELIEVES are criminals and terrorists.

Human beings make mistakes, and that includes police, prosecutors, intellegence officials, military folks, just like you and me. The Constitutional safeguards are there as a check to make sure those mistakes are caught, and innocent people dont get screwed.

I will assume that everyone reading this, and their loved ones, are innocent of any terrorist acts. God forbid that someday, somehow, through some bizarre set of circumstances, you or your loved ones is fingered as a terrorist or sympathizer. Were that to happen, this veil of ignorance as to the importance of our Constitution that hangs over the thought processes of so many conservatives, would disappear real quick.

God forbid that someday,... (Below threshold)
American Mother:

God forbid that someday, somehow, through some bizarre set of circumstances, you or your loved ones is fingered as a terrorist or sympathizer

No one that I love would ever be or sympathize with a terrorist- that sort of thing is for our dear liberals...remember all that about being judged by the company one keeps?

Why oh why are our dear ... (Below threshold)

Why oh why are our dear conservatives seemingly so incredibly dense as to not understand that the Constitutional protections are not designed to "protect criminals" (or terrorists), it is to protect INNOCENT people who the government mistakenly BELIEVES are criminals and terrorists.

True.

Our Constitutional protections are designed to protect individuals from an overreaching government.

However, are those protections intended to protect those who are, or are acting as, a government themselves ... and overreaching to deny us our inalienable rights, most notably our right to live?

The definition of terrorism is the use of violence to foment political change.

By the above definition, terrorism is not an individual crime ... it is an act of war. Its perpetrators are acting, not as individuals, but as agents of a government in violent opposition to our own.

Applying Constitutional protections meant to protect individuals from an overreaching govenrment, to those clearly acting as a government themselves, is a misapplication of those protections that, IMO, is not what the Constitution's authors intended at all.

They were not meant to protect one government from another.

------------

The above notwithstanding, this SCOTUS ruling is not what Ms. Pelosi thinks it is:

http://wizbangblog.com/2006/06/29/the-hamdan-decision-explained.php

http://www.blackfive.net/main/2006/06/froggys_hamdan_.html

So, the moonbats better not crow much ... or they will be eating same.

I thought convicted felons ... (Below threshold)

I thought convicted felons HAD no rights...

I think the Constitution, a... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

I think the Constitution, as written, has gotten it right. It is the President who is legislating from the oval office, with his signing statements. And, what different does the Supreme Court ruling matter if the President ignores it?
---------------------------------------------------
Using your own standard: the SC has usurped the power of the purse and in this case the power to execute war (the sword). The president has the power to establish military tribunals as done in the past. What laws of the US have he ignored in this case? AS pointed out by Rich, the terrorists are not protected by the US constitution. And the job of the SC is to respect the US constitution. It is not their job to deal with international laws etc...

Since you want to go back to the constitution: the constitution clearly expects the court to be the least intrusive branch of gov. I have shown several examples of how the court has usurped the powers belonging to the legislative and executive brances. That is a clear disrespect of the constitution. No system is perfect and the founders were quite correct about the possibility of judicial overreach. So if you are truly concerned about gov ruling instead of serving the people, your primary focus should be on the court. It is the greatest risk theoretically (un-elected lifetime appointment) and practically (several examples provided already).

"Plixola" mashes reality as... (Below threshold)

"Plixola" mashes reality as follows:

In theory, the laws of a democracy like the USA should apply to those we decide to prosecute, even non-citizens.

Under civil/criminal law, yes.


That is why those captured have been deemed "enemy combatants" and put in Gitmo in the first place.

They were called "enemy combatants" and placed in a military detention center because they were [are you sitting down for this?] ENEMY COMBATANTS, and not subject -- by even a superficial reading of international law -- to the civil/criminal code of the detaining nation. ...until they are in custody.


The designation allows that they are in a grey area, IE: not covered by laws of the land

The "grey area" is wrapped up in the fairly undebatable fact that the vast bulk of those in Gitmo were participating in hostile action as a member of one or more paramilitary groups acting as agents of, and being afforded the protection of, the Afghani government ... and they were not in a recognizable form of uniform while playing soldier -- as international law requires they be -- and as such, the rules don't apply to them. Deliberately, as a matter of fact. The GenCons were deliberately written to exclude certain people from "humane treatment". Specifically: soldiers who dress as civilians to wage war [which most of these people are], and civilians who play soldier but try to hide it [which some of these people are]. If you're a civvie, you can play war, but you're not allowed to hide the fact.


and Gitmo is not officially US territory

This is patently false, and I seriously wish the dweebs who want to criticize would find something relevant for once. Gitmo IS "official US territory". And has been since the end of the Span-Am War.


it is a military base, therefore the laws of the USA do not apply

Partly incorrect: civil/criminal US code does not apply -- usually. US Military law does.

Essentially, no matter how you slice it, it's an end around on the rule of law of our democraxy.

Like I said: please make your criticisms relevant. The US is bound to its treaty obligations, one of which is the body of international law known as the Geneva Conventions. Plural, yes; there's more than one. And part of those GenCons define the treatment that we are obliged to give combatants, and another part defines to whom we are obliged to give it. I find it ironic [and not a little disingenuous] that the majority of the USSC cited Article 3 which generally describes treament, but completely ignored Article 4 which defined who is entitled to that treatment.

People talk about Rule of Law ... this is Rule of Cherry Pickin's.

The fact is, if Clinton had done this, many of you so-called Republcians would be screaming from the hills. But, because it is "your guy", it's all right.

You aren't a believable source for speaking of "facts", Mr and/or Ms "Plixola". You haven't gotten much of anything correct yet.

In fact, the USSC, in rewriting international law to essentially throw out Article 4, has redrafted the Constitution to declare Congress to be co-CinC. Now, I personally had problems with military tribunals for enemy combatants under these circumstances, for they would be, essentially, charged with "being a member of a paramilitary organization at war with the United States" which is not a crime ... but is, instead, war. And the GenCons state that captured combatants can only be tried while in captivity for things that are crimes -- and being a driver for the enemy's commander isn't a crime; it may be low expectations and a poor career choice, but it's not a crime. But, as CinC, Bush is authorized.


Are you opten in the habit of assuming what people think?

It's funny, very funny, that you asked this question of another, particularly since you yourself said: The fact is, if Clinton had done this, many of you so-called Republcians would be screaming from the hills. But, because it is "your guy", it's all right.

Very very very very very funny.

And, unlike others, I will make my judgment of you from simply your words: you are an ignoramus speaking about a subject in which you are clearly unknowledgable though, undoubtedly, very sincere.

It is your "we are obliged to impart our rules of Democracy on the great unwashed of the world and lead by example" cacapoopoo that is one of the two main causes of third world outrage at the US: we believe we're so much better than they are that we have the moral obligation to impose our rules on them on our will. Your whining on the "end around on the rule of law of our democracy" is just a latter-day version of White Man's Burden, and Manifest Destiny.

Our rules apply to us; when we delve into international affairs, different rules apply. Other nations, and the people therein, get very very testy when we attempt -- as you are advocating, and which the USSC did not even demand -- that our "Rule of Law" applies to anyone coming in contact with an American, irrespective of circumstances.

A lot of blather here about... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

A lot of blather here about what the Geneva Conventions say, with very little understanding of same. Here's my attempt to help [ps- my comments will look like this]:

"Art 3. In the case of armed conflict not of an international character [i.e. not a World War, though I admit I'm not sure why that matters] occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties [i.e. in any country which is a signatory to the Conventions], each Party to the conflict [which typically means a signatory, but as Art4 shows "Party" can also mean any sub-governmental group that is not a signatory] shall be bound to apply, as a minimum, the following provisions:

(1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria. To this end the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons:
(a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;
(b) taking of hostages;
(c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment;
(d) the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples.
(2) The wounded and sick shall be collected and cared for.

An impartial humanitarian body, such as the International Committee of the Red Cross, may offer its services to the Parties to the conflict.

The Parties to the conflict should further endeavour to bring into force, by means of special agreements, all or part of the other provisions of the present Convention [i.e. all sides, whether signatories to the Conventions or not, should make all attempts to abide by them].

The application of the preceding provisions shall not affect the legal status of the Parties to the conflict [i.e. the humane treatment of prisoners in no way alters their guilt or innocence, as determined by a legitimate legal authority or process]."

So, assuming you understand what the above is saying, the Supreme Court did focus on the relevant section in it's recent ruling.

Next up, Article 4 ...

I'm posting the whole artic... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

I'm posting the whole article for the sake of completeness, but it is long. The relevant definitions to what's being discussed here are found in Sections A3, A6, and B1. Feel free to skip ahead, but of course I recommend reading the whole thing:

"Art 4. A. Prisoners of war, in the sense of the present Convention, are persons belonging to one of the following categories, who have fallen into the power of the enemy:

(1) Members of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict, as well as members of militias or volunteer corps forming part of such armed forces.

(2) Members of other militias and members of other volunteer corps, including those of organized resistance movements, belonging to a Party to the conflict and operating in or outside their own territory, even if this territory is occupied, provided that such militias or volunteer corps, including such organized resistance movements, fulfil the following conditions:[
(a) that of being commanded by a person responsible for his subordinates;
(b) that of having a fixed distinctive sign recognizable at a distance;
(c) that of carrying arms openly;
(d) that of conducting their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.

(3) Members of regular armed forces who profess allegiance to a government or an authority not recognized by the Detaining Power [this section can reasonably be applied to combantants such as the former Bathists in Iraq, or the Taliban in Afghanistan, since both had been part of what was considered "regular" forces before the governments were toppled by the US - in otherwords, they are forces professing allegiance to authorities no longer "recognized by the Detaining Power"].

(4) Persons who accompany the armed forces without actually being members thereof, such as civilian members of military aircraft crews, war correspondents, supply contractors, members of labour units or of services responsible for the welfare of the armed forces, provided that they have received authorization, from the armed forces which they accompany, who shall provide them for that purpose with an identity card similar to the annexed model.

(5) Members of crews, including masters, pilots and apprentices, of the merchant marine and the crews of civil aircraft of the Parties to the conflict, who do not benefit by more favourable treatment under any other provisions of international law.

(6) Inhabitants of a non-occupied territory, who on the approach of the enemy spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading forces, without having had time to form themselves into regular armed units, provided they carry arms openly and respect the laws and customs of war [Here is the section that would be applicable to combatants of the type like the Sunni & Shiite insurgents in Iraq - they spontaneously formed in order to resist US occupation - the only question would be how much weight is put behind "non-occupied" vs occupied territory, and the significance of a timeline & cause/effect regarding the same].

B. The following shall likewise be treated as prisoners of war under the present Convention:
(1) Persons belonging, or having belonged, to the armed forces of the occupied country, if the occupying Power considers it necessary by reason of such allegiance to intern them, even though it has originally liberated them while hostilities were going on outside the territory it occupies, in particular where such persons have made an unsuccessful attempt to rejoin the armed forces to which they belong and which are engaged in combat, or where they fail to comply with a summons made to them with a view to internment [This section can also be applicable to Taliban and former Iraqi Bathist armed forces].

(2) The persons belonging to one of the categories enumerated in the present Article, who have been received by neutral or non-belligerent Powers on their territory and whom these Powers are required to intern under international law, without prejudice to any more favourable treatment which these Powers may choose to give and with the exception of Articles 8, 10, 15, 30, fifth paragraph, 58-67, 92, 126 and, where diplomatic relations exist between the Parties to the conflict and the neutral or non-belligerent Power concerned, those Articles concerning the Protecting Power. Where such diplomatic relations exist, the Parties to a conflict on whom these persons depend shall be allowed to perform towards them the functions of a Protecting Power as provided in the present Convention, without prejudice to the functions which these Parties normally exercise in conformity with diplomatic and consular usage and treaties.

C. This Article shall in no way affect the status of medical personnel and chaplains as provided for in Article 33 of the present Convention."

More on the jump ...

All of the above indicates ... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

All of the above indicates that (numerically speaking) most of the people the US is fighting in the War on Terror, at least in the Middle East, would be covered under Geneva. Since that group makes up the vast majority of those interred at Gitmo, it is also clear that the prison's location, or the labeling of the prisoners (as "enemy combatants" for example), is of no relevance; the US, as a signatory must not only treat them humanely, it must also provide for a legal process that establishes that they are indeed worthy of imprisonment & punishment. As stated in Article 3, section 1 (d), "... the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples" is NOT permitted.

The only grey area is in regard to Al Quaida. They didn't spontaneously form in response to US invasion in Afghanistan, but it certainly can be argued that was the case in Iraq. They weren't duly constituted 'regulars' in the former governments of Iraq, but in Afghanistan they had a long history as a military arm, going back to when the US funded them as Mujahadin 'freedom fighters' against the USSR. Yet, since they can't be easily defined, does this fact itself mean Geneva doesn't apply to them after all?

Not quite.

"Art 5. The present Convention shall apply to the persons referred to in Article 4 from the time they fall into the power of the enemy and until their final release and repatriation.

Should any doubt arise as to whether persons, having committed a belligerent act and having fallen into the hands of the enemy, belong to any of the categories enumerated in Article 4, such persons shall enjoy the protection of the present Convention until such time as their status has been determined by a competent tribunal."

One more jump ...

Unless the SC has CLEAR and... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Unless the SC has CLEAR and OVERWHELMING evidence of executive overreach, the court should defer to the executive and legislative branch in the matter of national security. This is a clear example of judicial arrogance and judicial overreach.

Good summary from NRO

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZTYwOTYzMWY5NGZlNDM0MTg2MDc3ZjkxYmI4ZmY4NmU=
The Supreme Court's decision to impose by judicial fiat a treaty that no politically accountable official would dare propose -- a one-sided compact wherein the United States gives elevated due process to al Qaeda's terrorists while they continue slaughtering civilians and torturing their captives to death -- is an abomination.

Before I forget, you can fi... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

Before I forget, you can find the text I've been referencing here:
http://www.icrc.org/ihl.nsf/7c4d08d9b287a42141256739003e636b/6fef854a3517b75ac125641e004a9e68

The Supreme Court made it's judgement based on all of the above, whether specifically sited in the ruling or not. Upon reading all of what they had to consider, it is clear they did not overreach. And they did indeed have to consider all of it, b/c Geneva is a treaty the US has signed, and as per our own Constitution (Article VI, Clause 2) "... all Treaties made ... under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding."

Also, as per the Constitution, the Supreme Court is the final arbiter, even when military tribunals are used. A military tribunal is considered an "inferior court", and the Supreme Court has jurisdiction over what they do and how they do it. The Congress can create them, but as with any law Congress passes, it must pass constitutional muster as adjudicated by the Supreme Court, or it is invalid. This would be US's legal and traditional version of "the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples" that is expressly laid out in the Geneva Conventions. Basically, what the treaty we have signed is saying is that, if we are going to hold these people, then they are to be subject to our legal process & the same kinds of protections afforded to any who are born under it. Specific courts can be created, and unique procedures inacted - yet if at anytime those courts & procedures don't pass muster with the SC, then they are invalid.

On a personal note, I too believe that the US is in danger of losing this war, but not because of weakness inherent in our system of divided powers and gauranteed rights. We could lose it precisely because we don't have enough faith in it's power. Its not perfect, but as a vehicle for Justice as well as Fairness, its the model of the world.

We shouldn't let anger or fear allow us to trash it.

Later.

The Supreme Court has trash... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

The Supreme Court has trashed the constitution as you mentioned. AlQ is not a signer of the Geneva convention. The court does not have the OVERWHELMING and CLEAR evidence of executive overreach. In fact, it simply threw out the 1942 precedence for military tribunals. Also Congress just passed a law to exclude the court from this area of jurisprudence. Congress has constitutional power to limit the court's jurisprudence. The liberal justices simply ignore Congress as well as the executive branch.

This is an example of judicial overreach no matter how you slice it. Especially for an enemy that shows no respect whatsoever for basic human decency. For your own sake, I repeat the summary here from NRO

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZTYwOTYzMWY5NGZlNDM0MTg2MDc3ZjkxYmI4ZmY4NmU=
The Supreme Court's decision to impose by judicial fiat a treaty that no politically accountable official would dare propose -- a one-sided compact wherein the United States gives elevated due process to al Qaeda's terrorists while they continue slaughtering civilians and torturing their captives to death -- is an abomination.

To begin with, the Court had no business deciding this case at all. Not only did it target the president's commander-in-chief authority to determine what is militarily necessary in wartime, it also imperiously slapped down the U.S. Congress. In last December's Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), Congress -- acting on its constitutional prerogative -- rescinded the unprecedented jurisdiction that the Supreme Court, in the 2004 Rasul case, had tried claimed over alien enemy combatants captured in wartime and held outside the U.S. (that is, outside the jurisdiction of U.S. courts). This Court, however, acknowledges no limits on its powers -- whether imposed by Congress or by the English language, which it had to torture in order to construe the DTA's unambiguous limitation of its jurisdiction as an invitation to meddle.

And meddle it did. It rewrote legislation that clearly authorized the military commissions for captured terrorists that President Bush ordered in late 2001. It rewrote the Geneva Conventions. And it claimed for itself the mantle of final authority over both international relations and military necessity -- matters in which it is wholly lacking institutional competence and which the Framers committed singularly to the chief executive.

The result was somehow to find that the military commissions are unauthorized under federal law and unfair under international law. Never mind that they guaranteed our enemies the rights to counsel, to the presumption of innocence, to proof beyond a reasonable doubt before conviction, to the privilege against self-incrimination, to confront the government's witnesses and summon witnesses in their defense, and to prepare a defense with broad discovery of the government's evidence and investigative file.

How could this conceivably be insufficient due process for alien combatants with no legitimate claim on Bill of Rights? The Court fretted that the procedures might not permit captives like Salim Ahmed Hamdan -- the driver and bodyguard of Osama bin Laden -- to be present at every stage of their trials. This is perhaps the most deplorable of the excesses endorsed in Justice John Paul Stevens's majority opinion (joined by Anthony Kennedy, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer). First, the concern is sheer speculation. There hasn't been a commission trial yet, and there is no way to know whether Hamdan would have been excluded from any part of a trial, much less whether the degree of exclusion would have been unjustifiable. Second, the rules allow for the combatant's military lawyer to be present even when he is not. But third, and most fundamentally, safeguarding national security is the highest obligation of government. The commissions wouldn't have guaranteed Hamdan's right to be present at every stage of the trial in order to preserve the government's ability to conceal from the enemy, during wartime, our national-security secrets, as well as our methods of obtaining them. Protecting Americans from attack depends on that ability. But five justices of the Supreme Court, completely unaccountable to the Americans whom the government is obliged to protect, have subordinated that obligation to the hypothetical interests of enemy operatives who have no judicially enforceable rights under American law.

In deciding as it did, the Court also ignored its own venerable precedent -- of over a half-century's standing -- that the Geneva Conventions, even when they do create binding obligations on governments, do not create judicially enforceable rights for individuals. Disputes over their application are, rather, to be worked out diplomatically, among the political representatives of sovereigns. Moreover, the Geneva Conventions were irrelevant to Hamdan's case. He is a terrorist combatant who fails to meet the conventions' definition of a prisoner of war; consequently, he is not entitled to the conventions' POW protections. In order to get around this inconvenient fact, the Court had to invoke (and distort) "Common Article 3" of the conventions, which applies only to civil wars taking place within the territory of a single country, as opposed to international conflicts. The Court argued, absurdly, that because al Qaeda is not a nation, it cannot be in an international conflict: so the global War on Terror is not "international," despite having been fought in the United States, Somalia, Yemen, Kenya, Tanzania, Afghanistan, and Iraq. As for Article 3's requirement that the conflicts to which it applies be confined to a single country, the Court's majority found an easy way to get around it: by ignoring it.

Odyssey, YOur arg c... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:

Odyssey,
YOur arg confirmed my observation that the left works hard to give maximum benefit of the doubt to the worst enemies of America (and even mankind in general) and the minimum or no benefit of the doubt to its own gov/military.
The liberal justices on the SC have just demonstrated their arrogance and the same attitude I observe. You seem to fully endorse that attitude.

Another one from NRO<... (Below threshold)
LoveAmerica Immigrant:
Odyssey,YOur arg con... (Below threshold)
newreader:

Odyssey,
YOur arg confirmed my observation that the left works hard to give maximum benefit of the doubt to the worst enemies of America (and even mankind in general) and the minimum or no benefit of the doubt to its own gov/military.
The liberal justices on the SC have just demonstrated their arrogance and the same attitude I observe. You seem to fully endorse that attitude.
Posted by: LoveAmerica Immigrant
-------------

Immigrant -

I'm a right winger from way back. I've read all your posts & most of your links. You're clearly an idiot, so I don't see why Odyssey or anybody else should care much what your "observations" are. Go back to where ever you immigrated from.

Good post, O67. It was a tough read, but I stuck with it & you bringing in the source material really helped clear things up.

Thanx

The relevant portion for yo... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

The relevant portion for you, Odyssey:
"Art 4. A. Prisoners of war, in the sense of the present Convention, are persons belonging to one of the following categories, who have fallen into the power of the enemy:

(1) Members of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict, as well as members of militias or volunteer corps forming part of such armed forces.

(2) Members of other militias and members of other volunteer corps, including those of organized resistance movements, belonging to a Party to the conflict and operating in or outside their own territory, even if this territory is occupied, provided that such militias or volunteer corps, including such organized resistance movements, fulfil the following conditions:[
(a) that of being commanded by a person responsible for his subordinates;
(b) that of having a fixed distinctive sign recognizable at a distance;
(c) that of carrying arms openly;
(d) that of conducting their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.

Note that people HAVE to actually fulfill certain obligations.

The terrorists do not fulfill a, b, c, OR d.

THEREFORE, they are NOT covered.

It's actually really clear language with no real room for debate.

Read Clause #2 a little more closely.
-=Mike

MikeSC - I appreciate you t... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

MikeSC - I appreciate you taking the time to read what I posted (you too newreader), but I'm afraid I must disagree. You are picking only a few sections and clauses that simply don't deal with the problem we are discussing here, while ignoring the ones that do.

First, when you mention "clause 2", I'm not sure if you mean section 2 (cited above) or Article 2 (not cited). If you mean the former, and are trying to emphasize it's importance, I can only tell you that section 2 is no more or less important than any other section - the Geneva Conventions are meant to be read as a whole. Keeping that in mind, I say again that the relevant definitions to what's being discussed here are found in Art 4, Sections A3, A6, and B1, as well as all of Article 5.

A3 - "Members of regular armed forces who profess allegiance to a government or an authority not recognized by the Detaining Power."

*This section can reasonably be applied to combantants such as the former Bathists in the Iraq army, or the Taliban in Afghanistan, since both had been part of what was considered "regular" forces before their governments were toppled by the US. They are forces professing allegiance to authorities no longer "recognized by the Detaining Power".

A6 - "Inhabitants of a non-occupied territory, who on the approach of the enemy spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading forces, without having had time to form themselves into regular armed units, provided they carry arms openly and respect the laws and customs of war."

*Here is the section that would be applicable to combatants of the type like the Sunni & Shiite insurgents & militia in Iraq - they spontaneously formed in order to resist US occupation - the only question would be how much weight is put behind "non-occupied" vs occupied territory, and the significance of a timeline & cause/effect regarding the same. I'd also accept debate regarding whether they all are respecting "the laws and customs of war", since suicide bombing typically does not endear to that idea. However, it's hard to determine just who is doing that in the militias (probably few) vs Al Quieda (certainly many), and I might add that the Japanese did establish suicide attacks in the form of Kamakazi planes as a 'regularized tactic', so objectively speaking it could be argued either way.

B1 - "The following shall likewise be treated as prisoners of war under the present Convention: Persons belonging, or having belonged, to the armed forces of the occupied country, if the occupying Power considers it necessary by reason of such allegiance to intern them, even though it has originally liberated them while hostilities were going on outside the territory it occupies, in particular where such persons have made an unsuccessful attempt to rejoin the armed forces to which they belong and which are engaged in combat, or where they fail to comply with a summons made to them with a view to internment."

*This section can also be applicable to Taliban and former Iraqi Bathist armed forces.

Art 5 - "The present Convention shall apply to the persons referred to in Article 4 ... [however] Should any doubt arise as to whether persons, having committed a belligerent act and having fallen into the hands of the enemy, belong to any of the categories enumerated in Article 4, such persons shall enjoy the protection of the present Convention until such time as their status has been determined by a competent tribunal."

*Clearly there is such doubt, otherwise we wouldn't be having a discussion regarding the president & SC being at odds on this. And of course, there was plenty of warning from the vast majority of respected national & international legal scholars that the president was treading the wrong side of the line on this issue. And, finally, the SC has the final say on what constitutes a "competent tribunal" by dint of their position as the highest court in the land, answerable to all "inferior courts", of which a military tribunal is one. There is no pass on this just because the Pentagon THINKS it's outside the US legal system - in fact, the UCMJ and all tribunals under it only have force only insofar as the Supreme Court checks of on the constitutionality of what they are doing.

ON THE OTHER HAND >whew

"Art. 2 In addition to the provisions which shall be implemented in peace time, the present Convention shall apply to all cases of declared war or of any other armed conflict which may arise between two or more of the High Contracting Parties, even if the state of war is not recognized by one of them.

The Convention shall also apply to all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party, even if the said occupation meets with no armed resistance."

*Iraq & Afghanistan are both High Contracting Parties (both signatories to the conventions), so what this means is that whatever the US is doing in their territories is subject to the Conventions on that basis. But the real kicker is what follows:

"Although one of the Powers in conflict may not be a party to the present Convention, the Powers who are parties thereto shall remain bound by it in their mutual relations. They shall furthermore be bound by the Convention in relation to the said Power, if the latter accepts and applies the provisions thereof."

While Al Quieda brings an element of interpretation to this, it's a fairly small element in that all that is in dispute is basically what label to put on them. As I mentioned before, the name you give them ("enemy combatants" or what have you) is irrelevant, based both on Article 5 AND now this, Article 2, as well - the invading power is obliged to follow the Conventions REGARDLESS if their opponent is a signatory to it or not.

This is definitive - a well understood foundational idea of the Conventions from the beginning. Their whole purpose is to eliminate torture, indefinite detention, and kangaroo courts. Only the most base of dictatorships & totalitarian regimes have ever disputed it's meaning, and usually only after they transgressed against it. I don't intend on drawing a backhanded comparison to the Bush administration by saying that - it's simply a fact. Keep in mind, terrorism DID exist when the Conventions were formulated; just check how the Jewsish militants acted owards the Brits in Palestine, or how WWI got started in the first place (Serb nationalist/terrorist assassinates the Head of State of Austria-Hungary). Now, had the tactic of terrorism been the same level of threat back then as it is today, no doubt there would be even more specificity regarding it. Yet there is also no doubt that the basic outline of the Conventions would be the same - eliminating the worst aspects of violence and warfare - as they have no purpose otherwise.

Thanks

Correction:"elimin... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

Correction:

"eliminating the worst aspects of violence and warfare"

should read "eliminating the worst aspects of violence and warfare, as far as that's humanly possible"

I meant to elaborate on that, as obviously that's always the fly in the ointment of ANY law (let alone one that intends to bring justice into the most chaotic of enviroments). However, just b/c enforcing an ethical code is difficult is no reason not to do it. If that were true we'd have no laws at all.

Sorry for the mistake - It's late ;)

Odyssey, the section clearl... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

Odyssey, the section clearly lays out who is covered.

One of the KEY reasons for even having the Geneva Conventions was for BOTH sides to actually "play by the rules", for wont of a better term.

That means the protections are only offered when you ALSO play by the rules.

You hide amongst the civilians, you have no identifying marks indicating you're a soldier, you have no chain of command for some accountability --- then you are not protected because your actions are deemed a major problem by the int'l community.

The Nazi Army, loathesome as they were, warranted protections since they DID wear uniforms and DID differentiate themselves from the general populace.

Terrorists do not.

*This section can reasonably be applied to combantants such as the former Bathists in the Iraq army, or the Taliban in Afghanistan, since both had been part of what was considered "regular" forces before their governments were toppled by the US. They are forces professing allegiance to authorities no longer "recognized by the Detaining Power".

There is no command structure whatsoever. There is no uniform. They, therefore, are not a military.

*Here is the section that would be applicable to combatants of the type like the Sunni & Shiite insurgents & militia in Iraq - they spontaneously formed in order to resist US occupation - the only question would be how much weight is put behind "non-occupied" vs occupied territory, and the significance of a timeline & cause/effect regarding the same. I'd also accept debate regarding whether they all are respecting "the laws and customs of war", since suicide bombing typically does not endear to that idea. However, it's hard to determine just who is doing that in the militias (probably few) vs Al Quieda (certainly many), and I might add that the Japanese did establish suicide attacks in the form of Kamakazi planes as a 'regularized tactic', so objectively speaking it could be argued either way.

Except there is a sovereign Iraqi government now with a sovereign Iraqi military. The "insurgents" do not represent anybody. That cannot be used to protect the insurgency as they never represented anybody. They were no legitimate or valid a group as those idiot militias in numerous US states during the 90's.

*Clearly there is such doubt, otherwise we wouldn't be having a discussion regarding the president & SC being at odds on this. And of course, there was plenty of warning from the vast majority of respected national & international legal scholars that the president was treading the wrong side of the line on this issue. And, finally, the SC has the final say on what constitutes a "competent tribunal" by dint of their position as the highest court in the land, answerable to all "inferior courts", of which a military tribunal is one.

And they made a poor decision. It would not be the first incredibly poor decision SCOTUS has made --- probably not even the worst this decade (Kelo gets that nod). Just because SCOTUS rules in a manner directly in opposition to how the Congress passed a rather specific law is immaterial. The SCOTUS has simply, unilaterally, decided to interpret the law as they see fit, ignoring the actual wording of the law and the intent of the law.

Something, mind you, Bush gets quite a bit of heat over.

While Al Quieda brings an element of interpretation to this, it's a fairly small element in that all that is in dispute is basically what label to put on them. As I mentioned before, the name you give them ("enemy combatants" or what have you) is irrelevant, based both on Article 5 AND now this, Article 2, as well - the invading power is obliged to follow the Conventions REGARDLESS if their opponent is a signatory to it or not.

My argument is not that the terrorists don't warrant protection because their former government didn't agree to the Conventions. It is a valid point on some level, but it is not my argument.

I argue they do not deserve them as their actions are explicitly condemned by the Conventions and they do not pass the most rudimentary definition of a militia or military.

The Conventions were passed to give parties a reason to not engage in the type of utter brutality that was the hallmark of warfare from the War Between the States here (not being cute --- the US Civil War does not actually qualify as a "Civil War") up until the atrocities BOTH sides committed in WW II (I will not justify the Dresden firebombings).

They were passed to make all parties realize that if they avoid intentionally inflicting grievous harm upon innocent civilians and refuse to torture POW's, they will not have to worry about THEIR captured soldiers being tortured. It is not just a blanket to protect all people in conflict, but to specifically protect people who engage in "lawful conflict" --- again, for wont of a better term.
-=Mike

Hi Mike -You're as... (Below threshold)
Odyssey67:

Hi Mike -

You're assertion that anyone who is not playing by the rules of Geneva doesn't get to benefit from Geneva is just not the case. It doesn't matter who the US rounds up, or what they did - the US as a signatory to Geneva is bound by Geneva. I've already cited the portions of the Conventions that say that explicitly, so I won't be redundant here. I will just point out the rational for it: Two wrongs don't make a right.

I know that sounds childish & simplistic, but that basic lesson we all learned in Sunday School is at root why those sections of Geneva are even there. You see, the Geneva Conventions weren't formulated ONLY to protect captured soldiers and civilians - it was also designed to protect the beligerents too, from their own worst impulses. What more than a century of 'modern warfare' (meaning from about the US Civil War-Crimean War timeframe on) finally drove home to those nations who helped devise the Conventions over many decades, is that the fever of war can do as much damage to the powerful as it does to the powerless ... just in different ways. Ways like crossing moral lines that, once the fighting is over, can't easily be re-crossed back over again (as an individual or as a nation).

Tortured people can't be un-tortured. The dead can't be re-animated. A condemed man who is innocent, but convicted anyway due to an inadequate tribunal system, never gets the lost years of his life back. And memories of doing horrible things to any human being may be rationalized, or even repressed, but they never ever leave us. Some sick individuals can live with it regardless - like the terrorists - but some GI Joe who just left the dairy farm, or a suburb somewhere ... those are the ones who are scarred for life. Geneva tries to protect against all of that. How well it suceeds is purely a function of how closely we, as a nation and a government, adhere to it's words and it's spirit.

I will say that you do make a good point regarding the fact that there is now a new Iraqi government, but an equally good counter-point is that all civil wars have duly constituted governments fighting against rebels, and even forces allied to former governments (both scenarios happened in pre & post-revolutionary China for instance). And also, as mentioned, Geneva clearly accounts for those circumstances. Again, no matter who is doing the fighting or winning or losing, any signatory to the Conventions is expected to follow them, even if their foes are not signatories, and even if there is dispute as to exactly what catagory they fall under (stated most plainly in Art. 5). In other words, the only legitimate way for the US to argue that it is not bound by Geneva, under any circumstances, is to withdraw from Geneva. And as far as seperate international law is concerned, even withdrawing wouldn't protect US officials & soldiers if their ensuing transgressions were ever serious enough to be brought before any kind of regional or international court. But that's another issue we hopefully will never face.

You are right Mike; Bush does get quite a bit of heat for interpreting laws as he sees fit, ignoring the actual wording of laws, as well as their intents. And this is a pretty good example of all that. But even if you believe that the SC made a poor decision in trying to stop that here, what got this thread going (for the most part) was the idea that they overstepped their bounds in trying to do so. That's just not true. Everything from the Conventions treaty (as "law of the land") to the Congressional resolutions that the president is claiming authority from - all are under their jurisdiction to rule on. While you may not like what they said, there was no overreach here by any interpretation of our system that actually preserves our system - this how our it was designed to work. If the president wants a tribunal, the Congress has to establish it, and the SC will in turn insure that it operates in accordance with the standards we've already set as a 'civilized society' (again, as per Geneva, but also as per our own Constitution). However, the president cannot wave his hand and say "Off with there 'eads!" on his own. Our Founding Fathers would never have approved of that under ANY circumstances!

Like I said, Geneva is designed to protect us from ourselves at times. Since so many seem so eager to throw away everything that makes us Americans, apparently for no sure purpose other than some measure of revenge and/or indeterminiately effective safety blanket, this strikes me as one of those times. Our grandchildren will probably look back on this period and, with deep sympathy & understanding no doubt, say "Thank God, for the Supreme Court, the US Constitution, AND the Geneva Conventions ... together they saved our ancestors' mortal souls."




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