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Afghan prisoners
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grufty jim
grufty jim
1940 posts

Re: Watch that Pariah, it'll be you next
Jan 21, 2002, 16:01
Let me reiterate a point i made previously, and which is still being resolutely ignored by defenders of the current US treatment of those in Cuba.

Either these prisoners are POWs (which i tend to consider them) in which case it is simply ILLEGAL to treat them in any manner which contravenes the Geneva Convention (to which the US is a signatory)...

Or they are "terrorist suspects" in which case it is ILLEGAL to deny them the same rights as any other suspected criminal (however dreadful the crime of which they are accused).

Donald Rumsfeld does not have the legal authority to simply invent another category ("unlawful combatants"). No such thing exists under international law.

Now, there has been no evidence presented to any court connecting any of those prisoners with the events of September 11th. This makes them POWs - plain and simple. At least until a time such evidence is presented - when they become "terrorist suspects".

CraigR, Joe Chip and any others who feel that the treatment of those prisoners is "morally" justified are entitled to that opinion. However, it is NOT legally justified. If you feel it is fine for the US to simply ignore international law - and yet insist upon its enforcement for any other nation or group - then your argument is clearly irrational and/or incoherent.

The other possibility is that you believe it is justifiable for ANY nation or group to break international law if they feel the situation requires it. That would be a rational and coherent stance - just one that i personally find morally reprehensible... i don't think our planet is made a better place by rampant vigilanteeism by those with the biggest guns.
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