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Author Topic: Election 2010: Hello to gridlock ... and goodbye to recovery?  (Read 26224 times)
sailor_tech
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« Reply #75: November 18, 2010, 04:25:53 pm »

If I'm understanding you right, that would mean that everyone in Gitmo is a lawful combatant, and this BS story about them being "unlawful combatants" (which is the stupidest term ever, IMO) is just that...


Yes, if we were signitory to that treaty they'd be lawful combatants, aka POW, entitled to all the rights, privileges and such of a POW. Downside is that we would not be allowed to try any of them for the attacks on the WTC, embassy in Africa or such. Upside is that there is no need to ever release them until such time as hostilities are over. Since it's terrorism, that means never. Kind of simple since the standard for determination of status is fairly low on purpose.


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So... telling them not to starve a bunch of civilians is equivalent to telling them to kill them all?  Because I'm pretty sure that wantonly murdering your way through a village is also a war crime.


Wantonly murdering is a war crime. Clearing a building during an assault of a city / town / etc, is neither wanton nor murder, hence not a war crime. It's consider a proportional response.

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Assuming you mean:  I fail to see how that's an injunction to "kill the Jews", especially seeing as there are a shit-ton of colonial and alien occupiers, as well as racist regimes. 

Not everything has to be all about Israel.


It's not an injunction to kill only Jews in Israel. It would apply to Africans killing whites and asians in South Africa. The key is that it gives a pass to killing civilians that are in the territory. At the time it was written there were only two countries considered racist or colonial regimes, South Africa and Israel. 
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Pyperlie
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« Reply #76: November 19, 2010, 01:11:43 pm »


Yes, if we were signitory to that treaty they'd be lawful combatants, aka POW, entitled to all the rights, privileges and such of a POW. Downside is that we would not be allowed to try any of them for the attacks on the WTC, embassy in Africa or such. Upside is that there is no need to ever release them until such time as hostilities are over. Since it's terrorism, that means never. Kind of simple since the standard for determination of status is fairly low on purpose.

I'm confused by the whole damn thing, frankly.  If they're not considered soldiers, you'd think they'd be civilians, and as such you'd think they'd all be tried in civilian courts, and treated like the common criminals that they are.  Ted Kaczynsky was a terrorist, and he didn't spend a decade plus in a military prison before being put before some bullshit made-up fairy tale of a courtroom called military commissions.

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Wantonly murdering is a war crime. Clearing a building during an assault of a city / town / etc, is neither wanton nor murder, hence not a war crime. It's consider a proportional response.

How the hell is it proportional to slaughter an entire village, particularly if the civvies are hiding out in their homes or other buildings so as to not be blown to pieces?

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It's not an injunction to kill only Jews in Israel. It would apply to Africans killing whites and asians in South Africa. The key is that it gives a pass to killing civilians that are in the territory. At the time it was written there were only two countries considered racist or colonial regimes, South Africa and Israel. 

Wait, weren't there a bunch of such regimes in the 70's?

As to giving a pass to killing civilians, it looked to me like it gave civilians the right to fight back against oppressive regimes; it says nothing about killing civilians.
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« Reply #77: November 19, 2010, 04:45:56 pm »

I'm confused by the whole damn thing, frankly.  If they're not considered soldiers, you'd think they'd be civilians, and as such you'd think they'd all be tried in civilian courts, and treated like the common criminals that they are.  Ted Kaczynsky was a terrorist, and he didn't spend a decade plus in a military prison before being put before some bullshit made-up fairy tale of a courtroom called military commissions.

How the hell is it proportional to slaughter an entire village, particularly if the civvies are hiding out in their homes or other buildings so as to not be blown to pieces?

Wait, weren't there a bunch of such regimes in the 70's?

As to giving a pass to killing civilians, it looked to me like it gave civilians the right to fight back against oppressive regimes; it says nothing about killing civilians.

Under the GCs, other than the Additional Protocol, a soldier gets certain protections for following the laws of war (aka Geneva Conventions). Civilians get different protections for not engaging in hostilities. Hence somebody who is engaged in fighting but is not following the GCs is an unlawful combatant. Or to put it another way, a person who is engaged in fighting is not a civilian. Upon determination of such status, they may be excuted after 180s days.

A soldier, aka lawful combatant, can not be held for killing people (so long as it's in accordance with the GCs) since the purpose of a soldier is to kill other combatants.

If you don't like the idea of military commisions, I guess we could still be hearing the cases in US Federal court for the 175,000 POWs we captured during the first Gulf War.

You don't understand the meaning of propotional under the GCs. The death of civilians has to be proportional to the military neccesity of the target being taken or destroyed If there is a war crime being committed, it's being done by the defenders.

Name another regime in 1977. You might be able to put the US and Canada since the native american population isn't in control of the country.

Remember, civilians get protection by not being engaged in hostilities. If civilians are allowed to fight, there are no more civilians. At that point they can all be attacked. 

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« Reply #78: November 19, 2010, 05:59:40 pm »

Or, y'know, it could be that people are interested in getting a look at who she really is purely because of her very-outsize influence on our politics. 

Which is not to say that TV hasn't gone to shit; Two and a Half Men is either the death knoll of network TV, or of American society and civilization, I haven't decided which.


Well, if that were the case then I could go ahead and stretch it to say that people watch Jersey Shore to see what kind of values people like Snooki and "The Situation" have. And, that people watch Dancing with the Stars because they're interested in brushing up on their dance moves, or that they watch American Idol for the Earth shattering talent.

We knew very well who Sarah Palin was before this show hit the air waves because she's never stopped reminding us about her background as "just a hockey mom from Alaska", her dog sledding and her hunting and fishing. She's never let us forget that she really does believe she's just "one of us" except for the fact that she happens to be a blood sucking politician. We knew about her kids, her grandkid, her daughter's relationship problems. Those people don't have private lives, they're like the royals in England and everything they do will be picked at by every mainstream media buzzard in the business.

I think everyone can agree that the best thing about Jersey Shore is what a trainwreck it's stars are, the reason we watch dancing with the stars is to see who gets voted off this week and the best thing about American Idol is the auditions, particularly the really bad ones that we can all post YouTubes of on Facebook later on.

I frequent a survival forum(I was raised by conservative survivalists) and the reason most people on that forum are watching Sarah Palin's show.....is to see the Alaskan wildland scenery......that and see "that hot minx Sarah".

But, I shall admit that there are likely people out there who do want to know what she's like outside of what she's already said. A few anyway.

I don't even know what Two and a Half Men even is....I suppose that shows how much TV I actually watch.
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Pyperlie
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« Reply #79: November 22, 2010, 12:45:05 pm »


Under the GCs, other than the Additional Protocol, a soldier gets certain protections for following the laws of war (aka Geneva Conventions). Civilians get different protections for not engaging in hostilities. Hence somebody who is engaged in fighting but is not following the GCs is an unlawful combatant. Or to put it another way, a person who is engaged in fighting is not a civilian. Upon determination of such status, they may be excuted after 180s days.

A soldier, aka lawful combatant, can not be held for killing people (so long as it's in accordance with the GCs) since the purpose of a soldier is to kill other combatants.

Thanks.

Quote
If you don't like the idea of military commisions, I guess we could still be hearing the cases in US Federal court for the 175,000 POWs we captured during the first Gulf War.

I wasn't aware we had any PoWs from the first Gulf War.  I was in kindergarten, and the only thing I remember about it is the nighttime bombings of what I think was Bagdad.

Quote
You don't understand the meaning of propotional under the GCs. The death of civilians has to be proportional to the military neccesity of the target being taken or destroyed If there is a war crime being committed, it's being done by the defenders.

Not having been in the military, maybe I just don't appreciate all this, but that seems pretty stupid to me.  Just on common sense grounds, I don't think you can really have a problem with people defending themselves.  If I'm involved in an attack on a town, I'm sure as hell not gonna be surprised when these people want me dead.  And if I'm in the town being attacked, I'm not gonna just sit back and let them kill my friends and family, and they're fools to expect otherwise.

Quote
Name another regime in 1977. You might be able to put the US and Canada since the native american population isn't in control of the country.

Well, leaving aside for the moment North America, Australia and New Zealand (and most of South and Central America, for that matter), and assuming we're not counting China and it's occupation of Tibet, I can't think of any off the top of my head.  But, that doesn't mean there weren't any, it just means I'll have to look into it. Smiley

Quote
Remember, civilians get protection by not being engaged in hostilities. If civilians are allowed to fight, there are no more civilians. At that point they can all be attacked. 

I thought they were civilians by virtue of the fact that 1.) they aren't full-time soldiers with the training and governmental support that comes with it, and 2.) they're not armed to the teeth with crap-loads of weapons, many of which are incredibly destructive and only available to soldiers. 
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              -----Richard Feynman

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« Reply #80: November 22, 2010, 12:59:00 pm »


Thanks.

I wasn't aware we had any PoWs from the first Gulf War.  I was in kindergarten, and the only thing I remember about it is the nighttime bombings of what I think was Bagdad.

Not having been in the military, maybe I just don't appreciate all this, but that seems pretty stupid to me.  Just on common sense grounds, I don't think you can really have a problem with people defending themselves.  If I'm involved in an attack on a town, I'm sure as hell not gonna be surprised when these people want me dead.  And if I'm in the town being attacked, I'm not gonna just sit back and let them kill my friends and family, and they're fools to expect otherwise.

Well, leaving aside for the moment North America, Australia and New Zealand (and most of South and Central America, for that matter), and assuming we're not counting China and it's occupation of Tibet, I can't think of any off the top of my head.  But, that doesn't mean there weren't any, it just means I'll have to look into it. Smiley

I thought they were civilians by virtue of the fact that 1.) they aren't full-time soldiers with the training and governmental support that comes with it, and 2.) they're not armed to the teeth with crap-loads of weapons, many of which are incredibly destructive and only available to soldiers. 

question, would you consider national guard or reserve civilians?  They aren't full time soldiers either, (although I will admit that they do have the training, government support and arms)
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« Reply #81: November 22, 2010, 01:04:09 pm »

 

I admit to having very little knowledge on this topic. However, my understanding is that the dichotomy is not between civilians and soldiers, but rather civilians and combatants, a combatant being one who has entered into the combat, whether as part of the military or otherwise. Someone who knows more about the subject will have to correct me if I have this wrong.
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« Reply #82: November 22, 2010, 01:12:42 pm »




I wasn't aware we had any PoWs from the first Gulf War.  I was in kindergarten, and the only thing I remember about it is the nighttime bombings of what I think was Bagdad.



The conscripts surrendered by the thousands in some situations - and I would think they were all officially POW's.  The biggest problem for our people - besides the sheer numbers - was separating the conscripts who surrendered so they wouldn't dies from the Republican Guard (who needed to be dealt with differently. 
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« Reply #83: November 22, 2010, 04:45:51 pm »


Not having been in the military, maybe I just don't appreciate all this, but that seems pretty stupid to me.  Just on common sense grounds, I don't think you can really have a problem with people defending themselves.  If I'm involved in an attack on a town, I'm sure as hell not gonna be surprised when these people want me dead.  And if I'm in the town being attacked, I'm not gonna just sit back and let them kill my friends and family, and they're fools to expect otherwise.

I thought they were civilians by virtue of the fact that 1.) they aren't full-time soldiers with the training and governmental support that comes with it, and 2.) they're not armed to the teeth with crap-loads of weapons, many of which are incredibly destructive and only available to soldiers. 

Part time such as National Guard is still a legal combatant. A legal combatant does 4 things:
1 - they wear a distinctive uniform or other fixed distictive sign visiable at a distance.
2 - they are commanded by a person who is responsible for their actions
3 - they carry their arms openly
4 - they, individuall and as an organization, conduct themselves in accordance with the customary laws of war.

It has nothing to do with how they are armed. If it did, then all the Taliban would be non-combatants.

It has nothing to do with training, although discipline and following the customary laws of war is required. If it did, then basically only Western armies would be combatants.

The GCs were written this way to provide protection for the groups like the French Resistance or Partisians of Russia, Yogoslavia, etc in the aftermath of WWII. During the war, any armed person not in an official uniform could be executed on the spot.

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sailor_tech
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« Reply #84: November 22, 2010, 04:49:10 pm »

I admit to having very little knowledge on this topic. However, my understanding is that the dichotomy is not between civilians and soldiers, but rather civilians and combatants, a combatant being one who has entered into the combat, whether as part of the military or otherwise. Someone who knows more about the subject will have to correct me if I have this wrong.

Mostly right. The catagories are 1) civilian and 2) lawful combatant & other protected persons. Other protected person would include for example USO entertainers who are traveling with the troops.

An unlawful combatant is an inherant status that if you have lawful combatants and civilians, you are saying that there have to be unlawful combatants.

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« Reply #85: November 22, 2010, 04:52:40 pm »

The conscripts surrendered by the thousands in some situations - and I would think they were all officially POW's.  The biggest problem for our people - besides the sheer numbers - was separating the conscripts who surrendered so they wouldn't dies from the Republican Guard (who needed to be dealt with differently. 

Anybody who surrenders is treated as a POW until they go before a military tribunal to determine their status.
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« Reply #86: November 22, 2010, 04:59:25 pm »


Thanks.


Not having been in the military, maybe I just don't appreciate all this, but that seems pretty stupid to me.  Just on common sense grounds, I don't think you can really have a problem with people defending themselves.  If I'm involved in an attack on a town, I'm sure as hell not gonna be surprised when these people want me dead.  And if I'm in the town being attacked, I'm not gonna just sit back and let them kill my friends and family, and they're fools to expect otherwise.

Well, leaving aside for the moment North America, Australia and New Zealand (and most of South and Central America, for that matter), and assuming we're not counting China and it's occupation of Tibet, I can't think of any off the top of my head.  But, that doesn't mean there weren't any, it just means I'll have to look into it. Smiley


Civilians get protection because they are not fighting. If a military unit moves into a town and a significant number of people who are not wearing uniforms or such start attacking, that makes everybody in the town a legitimate target. That kid who is 400 meters away and is lying on the ground? She can be shot without questions because the town has made it clear that there are no civilians in the town, just combatants, legal or otherwise. At that distance, you couldnt' tell if they are armed or not.   

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« Reply #87: November 23, 2010, 12:41:20 pm »

Civilians get protection because they are not fighting. If a military unit moves into a town and a significant number of people who are not wearing uniforms or such start attacking, that makes everybody in the town a legitimate target. That kid who is 400 meters away and is lying on the ground? She can be shot without questions because the town has made it clear that there are no civilians in the town, just combatants, legal or otherwise. At that distance, you couldnt' tell if they are armed or not.   

It seems to me that that is ripe for abuse.  Accidentally shoot someone/shoot someone for fun?  Well, just claim you heard gunshots; it's a war zone, it'd be damn difficult to prove otherwise.  In fact, I don't really know much about Vietnam, but isn't that one of the scandals that came out frequently at that time?
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« Reply #88: November 23, 2010, 04:56:18 pm »

It seems to me that that is ripe for abuse.  Accidentally shoot someone/shoot someone for fun?  Well, just claim you heard gunshots; it's a war zone, it'd be damn difficult to prove otherwise.  In fact, I don't really know much about Vietnam, but isn't that one of the scandals that came out frequently at that time?

Frequently during Vietnam, not that I'm aware of. Mai Lai, yes, and the US prosecuted that as a war crime as required under the Geneva Conventions.  The saying "we had to destory the village to save it" probably had a bunch of truth. When the troops march in and start taking fire, they'll fire back. Since the VC wore civilian cloths, and not a distinctive uniform, it's going to end up with a bunch of dead civilians. Those deaths, and the war crime associated with it lay with the VC.  As such, any VC that was captured, could legitimately be executed after a tribunal. We didn't do that since it would look bad.

It's not just hear gunshots and open fire on anybody you please. Re-read what I wrote. If a significant number of the civiliians in an area participate in combat, it effectively makes everybody a target. Also, military forces don't patrol alone, so you'd have to get a bunch of people to be willing to break the law. 
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