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War crimes act, who needs it?

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posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 05:39 PM
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The Supreme court ruled that the president could not authorize torture and that his military courts were illegal. The courts considered them illegal because of the War crimes act criminalizing Geneva convention violations. In response the current Administration has formulated a new draft amendment to the War Crimes Act, limiting the scope of prosecutorial power in regards to certain people within the Military and Government. While the official version has not yet been published the Washington post did speak to two insiders and received copies of the drafts.
 



www.washingtonpost.com
The Bush administration has drafted amendments to a war crimes law that would eliminate the risk of prosecution for political appointees, CIA officers and former military personnel for humiliating or degrading war prisoners, according to U.S. officials and a copy of the amendments.

Officials say the amendments would alter a U.S. law passed in the mid-1990s that criminalized violations of the Geneva Conventions, a set of international treaties governing military conduct in wartime. The conventions generally bar the cruel, humiliating and degrading treatment of wartime prisoners without spelling out what all those terms mean.

The draft U.S. amendments to the War Crimes Act would narrow the scope of potential criminal prosecutions to 10 specific categories of illegal acts against detainees during a war, including torture, murder, rape and hostage-taking.






Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Dear god in heaven.... i remember reading Val's little diatribe about "give me a law I need a law"... but this is just too much.... this is rewriting the Geneva convention... how can we reasonably expect that this will make us safer.... Will this not just show to the rest of the World that America will not be bound by their treaties ... that she will do as she wishes.... how will that make us safer.... how is allowing my government to torture going to make us safer.... how is not prosecuting the slime bags who bring down the ethical quality of our leadership make us a "freer" more "democratic" nation...

I sincerely hope that this was just put out to keep the fear in place... that its not real... that's it just more smoke and mirrors... but if its not... if this administration attempts to get this ghosted through congress on a military expenditure bill that is already over due... kind of like the connection between the estate tax and a minimum wage raise... is that the plan... is that why they mysteriously weren't able to get the bills past before their break.... and now this.... what has our country come to when it is contemplating removing or lessening the reach of the WAR CRIMES act.... something is wrong... fundamentally wrong.....



Related News Links:
www.commondreams.org

[edit on 9-8-2006 by Elsenorpompom]

[edit on 9-8-2006 by Elsenorpompom]



[edit on 9/8/2006 by Mirthful Me]




posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 07:58 PM
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Pathetic...

The only word that comes to mind.... :shk:



posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 08:04 PM
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It does make us safer!!!


Well actually if you happen to be a CIA officer in a dark dank cellar with car jacks connecting them to some Arabs genitals, then it makes you safer.

For the average citizen just another way our proud democracy slaps the world in the face. Long live freedom!



posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 08:22 PM
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Originally posted by loam
Pathetic...

The only word that comes to mind.... :shk:


I agree with you, people will agree with this administration doings without even taking their time to research on what the impact of such actions will have.

Rockpuck you need to research on why the supreme court make illegal authorize torture and military courts.

Bush wanted to go around Geneva convention when denied the Geneva rights to the prisoners in Guantanamo.

But then it turned around and wanted to use military tribunals that fall under Geneva convention guide lines to prosecute them.

That Was illegal




[edit on 9-8-2006 by marg6043]



posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 08:44 PM
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What, why do I need to research anything?

Did I say something to upset you? I am in no way supporting this..... You have me at a loss here please explain.



posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 09:10 PM
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Originally posted by Rockpuck

Did I say something to upset you? I am in no way supporting this..... You have me at a loss here please explain.


My apologies Rockpuck I misunderstood your post I guess.



posted on Aug, 9 2006 @ 09:17 PM
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Just being sarcastic.


I admit I can be heartless but to support our government openly supporting what would end up being mass torture just isn't right, or as poster said fundamentally wrong.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 05:05 PM
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Why don't we just crown the suckers, say they're God's chosen - and just get it over with?

Accountability? Not here.




Good find btw.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 06:17 PM
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actually sofi... Georgee already said that he thought God wanted him to be president... so the religous part is already sunk.... i imaine though that it wont be King as the title... to loaded a word.... I imagine they will either elect him to a new office... or more likely just make an amendment or exec order okayed by courts extending term limit or postponing general election until such time as the Country is not at War/underthreat/etc



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 06:46 PM
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Convenient that a "thwarted terror attack" is breaking news when stories like this come out.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 06:58 PM
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Sounds as if this adminstration wants impunity in the future for anything that may lay accountability and responsiblity upon them. This is sad, by changing the language of a universaly respected treaty, they can continue to disregard human rights and employ more violations steadily.

Luxifero



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 08:46 PM
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elsenorpompom

I must admit that I am torn on this one...

You have persuaded me to look long and hard at where my loyalties are, you and others of course, for I have always said, "A Closed Mind is an Empty Mind."

Let me ask a question:

Hypothetically now.... Your the Ruler of all things. You must decide this on your own and you only have the two choices.

1. Allow an innocent American Citizen to burn to death in an explosion

or

2. Allow the torture of a Suspected Terrorist

Which would you choose?


I know how I would have chosen prior to meeting all of you wonderful open minded people that have opened my eyes to a lot I was blind to before. Now I am not so sure.

Is this not what it really boils down to though?
Tough choice...

I still am sure how I would choose, but I am not very confident in giving the Administration this choice....

Semper



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 09:19 PM
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Originally posted by semperfortis
Let me ask a question:

Hypothetically now.... Your the Ruler of all things. You must decide this on your own and you only have the two choices.

1. Allow an innocent American Citizen to burn to death in an explosion

or

2. Allow the torture of a Suspected Terrorist

Which would you choose?


I don't think it's one or the other.

For instance you have choice number three:

3. Allow the torture of an innocent American citizen who is suspected of being a terrorist, follow up on the false information he gave you in order for you to stop torturing him and while you're doing that a real criminal gets away with a crime because your resources were misallocated.

Or you could go with choice number four:

4. Allow the government to be above the law, essentially circumventing the rule of law, in order to better "protect" it's citizens. Allow the president or figurehead to arbitrarily define laws and ignore laws set by past administrations however he sees fit (as is happening with this legislation, the violation of the FISA act, etc, etc...).

And eventually this could all lead to choice number five:

5. Torture and intern all dissenting voices, ESPECIALLY those that believe in 9-11/WACO/JFK/NWO/Rothschild/Federal Reserve conspiracies, because these people are the most likely to challenge an authoritarian government and become revolutionaries.

So you see, this is not a simple decision to either allow terrorist attacks or allow our government to torture terror suspects. It is not a choice between "Al-Qaeda or America" as some government officials have so tactlessly defined it.

If you really want to look at it as a binary issue, it's a choice between having the Rule of Law or living under an Authoritarian government.

[edit on 10-8-2006 by ShakyaHeir]



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 09:56 PM
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Oh boy, I see that this has become a runaway train, let me try to add a little something here.


The Bush administration has drafted amendments to a war crimes law that would eliminate the risk of prosecution for political appointees, CIA officers and former military personnel for humiliating or degrading war prisoners, according to U.S. officials and a copy of the amendments.


See here, they want to remove criminal prosecution for "humiliating and degrading" treatment NOT torture and not physical abuse. They want to do this because this is a very general topic and category, various people can interpret this in different ways, and it limits the interrogators in what they can do when they don't know what a specific law means.

The things listed below would still be consisted war crimes.


The draft U.S. amendments to the War Crimes Act would narrow the scope of potential criminal prosecutions to 10 specific categories of illegal acts against detainees during a war, including torture, murder, rape and hostage-taking.


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


Left off the list would be what the Geneva Conventions refer to as "outrages upon [the] personal dignity" of a prisoner and deliberately humiliating acts...


See that statement above. WTF does that even mean? And that's the problem, its too general and ambiguous? So before anyone gets carried away read what the proposed changes are, the entire War Crimes Act is NOT being abolished.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 10:50 PM
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I don't think it's one or the other.

For instance you have choice number three:


NO!!!

It was my question, it was hypothetical and there are only the two 2 choices.

Anyone can answer any question if they get to change the rules. That requires no intellectual effort at all.

Semper



posted on Aug, 11 2006 @ 11:26 AM
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okay semper first.... Semper I would allow the person to die before I would torture another human being... who am I to mess with the divine plan(secular)... while that doesnt mean that I wouldn't try and do all i could to save that persons life... but to torture another person is to completely undo/illegitimize any positive action you take.

West point... have you SEEN or heard Alberto Gonzales definitions of torture and degrading human behavior.... this is too much... and the MAJOR problem with it is that its retroactive... it essentially allows for the to be stripped naked... made to wear women's clothing... cornered by angry growling dogs... made to stand in stress positions ... these are ALL things that Alberto Gonzales said in BOTH of his depositions before the Senate Judiciary Committee are less then torture....so this is a BIG deal.... a REAL big deal... any soldier who violates the Geneva Conventions must be punished regardless of whether or not they were ordered too.... and before it comes that im some anti-army person, or that I dont understand the military... my father was in the Armed forces for eleven years... and if he tortured a civilian or even an enemy combatant.. I would not want him to get off... Torture and degradation are not the tactics a democracy such as the United States should use.... and those military officers and Civilian Political leaders who advocate for it must be charged as War Criminals under current US law... we dont even have to use the International Court....

thanks everyone for checking out my thread... this is an important issue and something needs to be done about it... I can only hope that the latest "quote" "terrorist" attack doesn't sway the American People back towards Authoritarian Conservatism....


[edit on 11-8-2006 by Elsenorpompom]



posted on Aug, 11 2006 @ 12:40 PM
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The geneva convention is worthless anyway.

Its a good thought but worthless the enemy doesn't follow it in the end all it does is hamstring our intelligence and abillity to fight a war.

War is not nice any attempt to make it nice only prolongs its duration. I don't care if it makes someone feel better on the inside.

I don't advocate cutting people to pieces or rape or making someone watch harm done to their love ones but I don't give a rats ass about a guy caught shooting at our troops being put in stress postions or being rediculed or subjected to extreme temperatures or sleep deprivation or having a dog bark at them. My neighbor's dog barks at me sometimes does that mean he is torturing me can I sue him...

Torture real torture is mutilating someone not causing them to catch a cold or feel embarresed cause some chick laughed at a guys small pecker.

If it works go for it. And just so you know it does work, if it didn't it wouldn't be done.

Unfortunately war is not like some stupid police show where evidence always shows itself and there isn't always a trail of clues... Sorry its just not that cut and dry.


[edit on 11-8-2006 by American Madman]

[edit on 11-8-2006 by American Madman]



posted on Aug, 11 2006 @ 12:52 PM
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Originally posted by semperfortis

I don't think it's one or the other.

For instance you have choice number three:


NO!!!

It was my question, it was hypothetical and there are only the two 2 choices.

Anyone can answer any question if they get to change the rules. That requires no intellectual effort at all.

Semper


OK either your question relates to the real world or it is irrelevant.

In the real world there are more than two choices. By restricting the options available you are being intellectually dishonest and setting up false polarities.

Besides which, there are any number of highly experienced people within the defense establishment who are perfectly prepared to admit that TORTURE DOES NOT WORK. If you can find a real-world example of serious intel coming out of torture, please post it for our education and edification. I suspect you won't be able to.

Torture doesn't work because a) if the person is innocent they'll do or say anything to stop the torture, and b) if they're guilty, the organisation to which they belong will make all the adjustments it needs to to invalidate any information that the suspect gives away. There is no justification for torture, but the USG has advocated its use for decades, only recently coming "out of the closet" on it.

SOAwatch is an organisation that monitors the activities of the School of The Americas, which trains South and Central American militaries in counter insurgency and torture.


On September 20, 1996, under intense public pressure, the Pentagon was forced to release training manuals that were used at the School of the Americas for years. These manuals advocated torture, extortion, blackmail and the targeting of civilian populations. A Washington Post article by Dana Priest broke the story.

The release of these manuals proved what SOA Watch, thousands of Latin Americans and numerous human rights organizations had been saying for years: that U.S. taxpayer money had been used for the teaching of torture and repression.


It's nothing new. The US is now trying to legitimise something it's been doing clandestinely for years.



posted on Aug, 11 2006 @ 01:11 PM
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"If you can find a real-world example of serious intel coming out of torture, please post it for our education and edification. I suspect you won't be able to. "

Show me it doesn't.

Yes an innocent person may just start blabbing about stuff they don't know just for it to stop. And yes a group may change its details if its known someone named names...

Thats why information is reviewed cataloged and then checked with other data. Thats also why they try to keep the raids and arrests secret for as long as they can so as to not tip off the next link in the chain.

Having said that I've seen a news report about egypt being able to wake a person up in stages at one point they can answer questions but are still not concious and have no defense mechanism to lie or distort.

I would imagine that the US governemt with all its tech money drugs and experience have found ways to make people talk without physically abusing them. I wouldn't be surprised if the torture talk is disinformmation to keep people blind to whats going on.

Hell give a terrorist enough ecstasy and he'll talk. Drugs are wild things.



posted on Aug, 11 2006 @ 03:26 PM
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Originally posted by American Madman
Yes an innocent person may just start blabbing about stuff they don't know just for it to stop. And yes a group may change its details if its known someone named names...

Thats why information is reviewed cataloged and then checked with other data. Thats also why they try to keep the raids and arrests secret for as long as they can so as to not tip off the next link in the chain.



Ok, so we torture John Q. Innocent and he finally cracks. He provides false info to get the torture to stop. Time, money and resources are waisted running down checks to verify/ disprove said info. Info turnes out to be false and now the interrogators have reason to believe that he lied about the false info and that he has something to hide - why else would he lie, right? John Q. Innocent continues to be tortured until credible information can be extracted........... which it never will becuase John Q. Innocent doesn't know jack...
Point - There is no way to know for sure if someone is guilty or not. Why are we wasting our time on potentially false info? You dont force info out of someone, it doesn't work. Period. Everyone has a breaking point, but there is no way to know if the info obtained during the breaking point is valid or not. Thus, more money time and resources are wasted.

Above all else, I dont give a damn what other countries do. We are supposed to be the greatest country in the world and you want us to sink to our enemies level. I dont care what other nations do or dont do, the US does NOT commit torture. Anyone who does should be tried accordingly.

That is the most illogical way to obtain info.



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