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Bush's Fight with Congress over Torture Defines Our Character

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posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 08:33 PM
Common Article 3 — found in each of the four Geneva pacts approved in 1949 — prohibits torture and cruel treatment. Unlike other parts of the Geneva agreements, it covers all detainees, whether they are unlawful combatants or traditional prisoners of war

This what the president has a problem with muaddib.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 08:48 PM
torture is against US law, and I believe it is against international law, since the us law was written so we were in compliance with international treaties and laws. it doesn't matter who the torturer is, or who the victim is, or where it takes place if the torturer claims american citizenship, they are breaking US law. if they were waterboarding prisoners, they were breaking US law...more than likely the geneva convention also. and if someone in the Bush regime was the one who came up with the idea, they were also breaking the law!
pick apart the geneva convention all your want, but well, it isn't the only thing that forbids torture. waterboarding people is illegal.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 08:57 PM
I agree dawnstar.

The War Crimes Act of 1996, passed by a Republican Congress, makes it a felony to violate the Geneva Conventions. But the Bush administration authorized techniques to handle and interrogate prisoners that clearly break the rules, like prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures, long periods in stress positions, strapping prisoners to metal contraptions and force-feeding them.

Already the government can be hold liable for violating Geneva convention rules. That is why Bush is so adamant to get his way or he will disband the whole thing.

Because he can be hold resposible for what he already is doing.


posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:25 PM

Originally posted by marg6043
Common Article 3 — found in each of the four Geneva pacts approved in 1949 — prohibits torture and cruel treatment. Unlike other parts of the Geneva agreements, it covers all detainees, whether they are unlawful combatants or traditional prisoners of war

Have you even read the article?

It's also worth noting that it seems to directly state that it is applicable primarily in the instance of civil war.

> semi-conscious

[edit on 18-9-2006 by apc]

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:41 PM

That is the whole point what it means inhumane treatment we all know what inhumane treatment is and so the Bush administration.

Is already defined.

What the Bush administration wants if to apply an American legal principle, to keep on using abusive interrogation techniques at the secret prisons run by the Central Intelligence Agency. And it wants to make interrogators and those who give their orders immune from prosecution.

The Geneva convention Protect us Americans also if the US change it to use as discretion for the treatment of foreign detainees it will apply to us also.

That will be to much for our own troops to pay is they become prisoners.


posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:44 PM

Originally posted by marg6043
That will be to much for our own troops to pay is they become prisoners.

I still can't believe I keep hearing that argument over and over again.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:47 PM

Originally posted by apc

I still can't believe I keep hearing that argument over and over again.

As an American I make it into an argument.

And beside when you have the own Government party members disagreeing with what Bush wants to do it should be a red flag as to the extend of what Bush wants to do.

Occurs I will make it an argument anytime.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 10:15 PM
Maybe there is an argument that can be made that "terrorists" are not fighting for a country and do not wear uniforms and therefore are not covered by the Geneva Convention. To me that is really a word game due to the fact that when this portion of the document was written, this sort of conflict was not thought of.

So since these combatants are not part of a countries armed forces, I do believe that they would be civilians then. And then, being a civilian, they should be protected by the Bill of Rights once they are captured for crimes against the US.

US Constitution

Amendment VIII
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

These prisoners would have to fall into one catagory or the other, civilian = protected by the Bill of Rights, or military = protected by the Geneva Convention. Either way the are protected from torture, or cruel and unusual punishment, or inhumane treatment, .... , whatever you want to call it.

Geneva Convention

Article 5

Where, in the territory of a Party to the conflict, the latter is satisfied that an individual protected person is definitely suspected of or engaged in activities hostile to the security of the State, such individual person shall not be entitled to claim such rights and privileges under the present Convention as would, if exercised in the favour of such individual person, be prejudicial to the security of such State.

Where in occupied territory an individual protected person is detained as a spy or saboteur, or as a person under definite suspicion of activity hostile to the security of the Occupying Power, such person shall, in those cases where absolute military security so requires, be regarded as having forfeited rights of communication under the present Convention.

In each case, such persons shall nevertheless be treated with humanity, and in case of trial, shall not be deprived of the rights of fair and regular trial prescribed by the present Convention. They shall also be granted the full rights and privileges of a protected person under the present Convention at the earliest date consistent with the security of the State or Occupying Power, as the case may be.

[edit on 18/9/06 by Keyhole]

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 11:20 PM
I know that there are those for whom the facts are difficult to digest, but the administration is trying to legalize torture and the prisoners in question are not covered under the Geneva Conventions.

I respect those who oppose the Bush plan. Their primary argument is that if we use the measures outlined in the Bush plan, our troops will be exposed to inhumane measures if they are captured.

I don't really recall that terrorists have a history of treating prisoners humanely.

I think the stakes are high and that our president putting his behind on the line to protect the US from future attacks.

I say bully for him.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 11:34 PM
I think Bush is doing this to cover himself from the storm of war crime charges that are no doubt on their way. The problem is that this is, IMO, an obvious cover up. These jails, and these practices have been going on for a long time - it is only now that the public is on a mass scale aware of it. What happened is clearly illegal, and Bush while still being able to effect some change will use his power to "get off" himself and his croney's.

I am simply in awe that normal people would condone torture. It is times like these that the line between good and bad become equal shades of grey.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 11:35 PM
Suppose Bush is convicted of war crimes. Will his cabinet also be punished, or just him for following their orders?

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 11:51 PM

good question, but I doubt anything will get them. It would take another huge lie to be accepted by the masses for there even to be the start of enough political will to hang them out to dry. America will get through this because America is filled with good people, albeit, with a short attention spans so that by the time Bush leaves office(As long as nothing happens to make throwing him out likely) I would think the majority of Americans would just want to put it all behind them and move forward trying to forget.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 03:22 AM
Tortured should not be legal under the GC, VC or any other type of convention.

With that said, torture should only be used in extreme circumstances if there is unquestionable evidence that the person being tortured is guilty and if by torturing him/her lives will definately be saved.

Classic 9th inning play, bases are loaded, full count.....something's about to happen and people will die. The only way to stop it is to torture the one man who know's wtf is going on. Yeah, I know it's the stuff of movies

Let's face it, wether it's legal or not and if put into a situation like that I think anyone would give the green light...especially if it would save their own backside.

[edit on 19/9/2006 by SportyMB]

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 04:29 AM

Originally posted by marg6043
The bill has more hidden agendas that because the so call secrecy involving the present administration we will never know.

It is a reason why even Republicans are oppose to it and we should listen to the warnings.

Also nobody is questioning the unrestricted spying by the present administration on American citizens.

How come nobody is complaining about that one.

Exactly Marg - why do you seem to be the only one who sees this? The Republicans that are bucking the status quo are prominent with a lot to lose politcally within their own party, thereby seriously jeopardizing their future propects, and yet they risk this anyway. These are serious warning signs that should have people's skin crawling.

As for the sources of information and the legitimacy of the cliams being made about this bill, (including the Geneva Convention section quoted), it seems people are still arguing this fact about the proposals. I had hoped my link in my last post would clear that up, but apparently not everyone is reading the entire article, or even what I chose to quote.

Anyway, I applaud the efforts of few Republicans that are stepping forward, not a lot of them, but enough to place the voting in a precarious position.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 04:47 AM

There were reports of death in prison due to torture (see Section 1.a.).

During the year, HRAS reported numerous cases of security forces using torture on prisoners in custody, including the case of five Kurdish students detained by the police in April and reportedly beaten and subjected to electric shocks for 3 days (see Section 5). The torture of political detainees was a common occurrence. AI reported the case of four young men arrested in April of 2003 in Daraa and held in Saidnaya prison where they were subjected to various forms of torture and ill-treatment, including having their fingers crushed; receiving beatings to their face and legs; having cold water thrown on them; being forced to stand for long periods of time during the night; hearing loud screams and beatings of other detainees; being stripped naked in front of others; and being prevented from praying and growing a beard.

Former prisoners and detainees, as well as the HRAS, reported that torture methods included administering electrical shocks; pulling out fingernails; forcing objects into the rectum; beating, sometimes while the victim was suspended from the ceiling; hyperextending the spine; bending the detainees into the frame of a wheel and whipping exposed body parts; and using a backward-bending chair to asphyxiate the victim or fracture the victim's spine. Torture was most likely to occur while detainees were being held at one of the many detention centers run by the various security services throughout the country, particularly while the authorities were attempting to extract a confession or information. For example, in July, a Syrian-Canadian citizen reportedly was tortured while being questioned by security services (see Section 1.e). for the PRESUMED TERRORIST TIES:

““I am able to say categorically that there is no evidence to indicate that Mr. Arar has committed any offence or that his activities constitute a threat to the security of Canada,” O’Connor wrote. "

gee, just wondering is the ba'ath party that runs syria the same as the one that had saddam in power in Iraq..they sound rather similar in so many ways. so why are buddy buddy with syria, even giving them victims for thier torturers to play with, but we overthrew saddam? I'm sure he wouldn't have been glad to accept a few donations for his torturers also.

as far as that goes, why are we so buddy buddy with the emirants, that we give them control over our ports, when it seems the people running the country have a habit of stealing children from their families in other countries and importing them in as slaves for their entertainmant pleasure in camel racing? are they gonna set up shop here and begin importing our kids also?

ya, they're doing all they can to ensure our security, sure!!! but back on topic...

this guy was found to be innocent people, canada sounds like it's a little irked about being misled, and we, the people of the US have played a role in him enduring the type of torture described above for close to a year.
and this isn't to "preserve our values, morals, or honor" as some are claiming this is contrary to everything we have stood for for the last 50 or 60 years or longer. this is done to save their hides, to preserve their lives, out of fear. fear, if not checked with reason can lead on to do some very stupid things.

as far as giving the troops what they need to fight this mean like body armor, armored transports, working guns, and the like....because they failed miserable there, until of course people here started a big deal out of it and force them to do something. but it's my understanding that the men in uniform really don't want the geneva convention messed with, they don't want the prisoners tortured....they wanted the body armor, the guns, the armored transports, more troops on the ground, ect...

the whole war on terror is full of inconsistancies, shams, scams, doubletalk, and just plain illogical. it leads to one conclusion for many....we are being scammed!

my energy goes into my work, my work earns me money, a part of that money goes into our government, our government used part of that money to torture prisoners, or hire someone to torture them, my energy went into torturing people. in MY RELIGION, this is very, very bad!!!

[edit on 19-9-2006 by dawnstar]

(mod edit to reduce page stretching url to shorter link)

[edit on 19-9-2006 by pantha]

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 05:15 AM
I'm as revolted as I expected to be by the people who are attempting to justify torture on this thread. It doesn't work, as is well known by most of the professional intelligence officers, and therefore is not justifiable.

However, as a means of repression, torture is well-known to have been taught and practised by the US for decades. It was a staple of the course at the School of the Americas (which has since been renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security and Co-operation because of the reputation it had earned) and the US funneled funds to torturers across Central and South America since the fifties. The US also trained, for example, the SAVAK secret police in Iran, for whom torture was not to much a tactic, more a way of life.

So actually, torture has defined the US character for decades. What is changing is that the political climate has been manipulated to make it look acceptable. The hatemongers of talk radio have gained such influence that the brutish, bullying types who rather enjoy the idea of torture have gained some measure of validation from their chosen media, and rather than feeling ashamed of their little perversion, can come right out with it and trot out various morally vacuous arguments in its favour.

And this thread is full of it.

Maybe the moderate Americans can look at their countrymen who openly espouse the use of torture and begin to understand why their country is perceived world wide as a hypocritical bully and the rightful heir to the Nazi party.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 05:25 AM
I can definitely envision situations wherein torture would be justified (in my personal opinion); however, such situations are rare. If torture is used to gain potentially critical/vital information that may, or might, save human lives, when there is a very high probability--bordering on certainity--that such is the case, then I believe torture would be justified. The problem arises in attempting to define just what such circumstances/situations one is talking about.

Sure, if torturing a prisoner would, for example, gain information on the location of an armed nuclear bomb planted in some U.S. city--that could literally kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people--then I would personally think that not using torture would be morally wrong (and I don't care what U.S. or international laws, agreements, treaties, etc. thought about it.). Such a situation though is an extreme circumstance. What about a situation where one or a few people might be kept from harm if torture is used, but we aren't sure the bad guy we have is even knowledgible of the information we want, or we don't really know what information we are looking for, etc. In other words, just where do you draw the line on using torture? Further, just what constitutes torture?

Before I would feel ok about using it I would need to know a heck of a lot more about just what is meant/intended--until then, I think mandating the humane treatment of all prisoners is the right way to go. Ok'ing torture and trying to define exceptional cases where it is permitted would probable just be a waste of time and only succeed in ensuring prisoners got tortured on a fairly routine basis. Far better, in my opinion, to outlaw it and then ignore the law if a situation like I postulated ever came up.

I would hope that any U.S. citizen charged with interrogating prisoners would find torture morally repugnant.

[edit on 19-9-2006 by Astronomer70]

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 05:36 AM
Sure, if torturing a prisoner would, for example, gain information on the location of an armed nuclear bomb planted in some U.S. city--that could literally kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people--then I would personally think that not using torture would be morally wrong (and I don't care what U.S. or international laws, agreements, treaties, etc. thought about it.).


and if you found yourself in such a situation, and felt this strongly enough, would you be willing to accept the consequences of the actions also? mainly spending some time in prison for your act!! the test is in the latter part of my you feel strongly enough about your believe that the situation merits torture that you, yourself would sacrifice something of yours....the time you spend in prison? if not, then well, I don't believe the situation warrents it.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 05:41 AM

Originally posted by Astronomer70
The problem arises in attempting to define just what such circumstances/situations one is talking about.

Exactly. Who decides what is "extreme"? Who decides how much evidence is enough to implicate someone to the point where torturing would be justifued in order to save many innocent people?

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 05:44 AM
Absolutely yes dawnstar. If I knew my prisoner had the information I needed and I didn't do everything to get it that I could do, then I simply could not live with myself if my not getting the information resulted in those people being killed. I would happily take my chances with any jury they put me in front of and if need be I would gladly die for my crime.

Would I say the same thing if my actions would only result in saving one persons life? I don't know and I hope I never have to find out.

[edit on 19-9-2006 by Astronomer70]

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