To Fight An Enemy You Must Call Him By His Name.

Personally i believe the term 'enemy combatant' is out because we have to be politically correct. The term “enemy combatant” hurts the self-esteem of terrorists. This is boulderdash! Maybe now they'll be “undocumented protagonists”.

By the terms of the Geneva Convention, these people are enemy combatants and not subject to protection of the Convention. By removing that term, President Obama has pretty much voided the entire thing; if one part isn’t to be followed, why should any of it?

Will out military have to read them their Miranda rights before picking them up off the battle field?

Definitions:

'Enemy combatant' is a term historically referring to members of the armed forces of the state with which another state is at war.

'Non-combatant' is a military and legal term describing civilians not engaged in combat.

'Lawful combatant' is an individual authorized by governmental authority or the LOAC (Law of Armed Conflict) to engage in hostilities.

We must also remember that the Geneva Conventions apply in wars between two or more states. Terrorists have no state. Terrorists are now getting lawful-combatant legitimacy. If a combatant follows the law of war, then they are considered a privileged combatant, and upon capture they do qualify as a prisoner of war under the Third Geneva Convention (GCIII). If a combatant does not follow the law of war (like a terrorists), then they are considered an unlawful combatant, and upon capture they do not qualify for prisoner of war status.

Very bad precedent to set giving them legal rights.

 

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Why Obama’s Abandonment Of ‘Enemy Combatant’ Is So Wrong


http://startthinkingright.wordpress.com/2009/03/16/why-obamas-abandonment-of-enemy-combatant-is-so-wrong/

March 16, 2009 | Michael Eden


Some analysts are claiming that this abandonment (dare I say it, 'cutting and running') from the term, "enemy combatant" has practical consequences; others say it's basically window dressing from a president who will outwardly make a cosmetic change to damn the Bush administration only to more or less continue the same policies. I don't claim to know who is more correct. But I am gravely concerned about the direction in which we seem to be headed.

And I have reason to believe that Obama's decision to change his terminology will lead to deeper, more fundamental consequences, as a Wall Street Journal (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123697422076922961.html) article alludes to:

The term enemy combatant has been used for decades to define members of a military who engage in activities such as sabotage and espionage that occur outside normal combat. By defining Guantanamo detainees as enemy combatants, the Bush administration cleared the way for some to be tried in newly created offshore military commissions rather than in civilian courts.

The Obama administration, in abandoning the term, hinted at its likely policy on the detainees. Mr. Holder expressed doubt about the Bush military commissions during his confirmation hearings, and said civilian courts may be the best place to try such prisoners.

It is interesting to learn where the term "enemy combatant" came from. It's not just some phrase created out of thin air by "that fascist bastard George Bush to justify his warmongering." Rather, it comes out of the Geneva Convention (http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/wars/a/loac_2.htm).

The Geneva Conventions distinguish between lawful combatants, noncombatants, and unlawful combatants.

Basically, a lawful combatant must fall under a legitimate chain-of-command structure; must wear some form of recognizable and distinguishing uniform or emblem; must carry weaponry openly; and must fight according to internationally-recognized rules of warfare.

And one of the things the Geneva Convention was clearly intended to do was to encourage combatants to fight "lawfully,' by employing those four characteristics. If a nation's combatants did in fact fight according to those characteristics, there were benefits. How they were treated if captured was defined and regulated. In other words, if combatants fought by internationally recognized standards, the benefits of the Geneva Convention applied to their soldiers.

The problem is, the Geneva Convention doesn't say much about "unlawful combatants" are to be treated. During World War Two, the Germans and the Japanese simply tended to line them up and shoot them after brutal interrogation sessions.

The United States is currently fighting a war - often by proxy (http://abcnews.go.com/International/IraqCoverage/story?id=2688501) - against enemies (yes, I said the word 'enemy' and I'm not going to take it back) who don't follow ANY of the four rules that would place them under Geneva Convention protection.

And the Obama administration is saying, "Let's protect them under the Geneva Convention anyway."

Do you see the problem? If we're going to treat unlawful combatants the same way as lawful combatants, what is really the incentive for being a lawful combatant? I hate to have to be the one to tell you, but by taking off a uniform, hiding weapons, and blending into the civilian population, you can do a lot more damage to the enemy - and have a much better chance of getting away following attacks.

It tends to be real hard on the civilians who get in the way; but it works GREAT for all those "unlawful combatants." They're harder to catch, and they have a much easier time planning surprise attacks that will generate high casualties.

the commander of the USS Cole when it was attacked by such "unlawful combatants" was outraged (http://www.miamiherald.com/news/more-info/story/948872.html):

"The decision by President Obama to shift responsibility of captured terrorists from the Department of Defense to the Department of Justice sets a dangerous precedent in the war on terror. Now, those forces responsible for military actions to capture terrorists will no longer have a say in how and where they are detained, or when and where they are transferred out of U.S. control. By this change the President is no longer consider the threat or the intelligence value of detainees.''

Retired Navy Cmdr. Kirk S. Lippold, former commanding officer of the USS Cole warship and senior military fellow at the lobby Military Families United

And Commander Lippold, all outrage notwithstanding, is correct in his facts (http://features.csmonitor.com/politics/2009/02/27/obama-signals-major-shift-in-us-anti-terror-policy/): Obama IS - in stark departure from the Bush administration - treating these " undocumented protagonists (http://twitter.com/bucktowndusty/status/1323630589)" (via Hotair (http://hotair.com/archives/2009/03/13/obama-abandons-enemy-combatant-term-for-gitmo-detainees/))

) as criminals who posses rights and privileges rather than as the very worst form of human cockroaches that they are.

Our soldiers are not trained police investigators. They are neither trained to collect evidence nor do they operate in an environment where such a luxury is allowable. And that's on top of the problem of exposing secret intelligence capabilities that led to our forces capturing these terrorists in the first place.

The Obama policy is both insane and immoral. It is insane because it rewards these terrorists by guaranteeing them status and treatment that they do not deserve - said treatment being reserved to those who have followed the rules of warfare - and eradicates any and all incentive to follow the rules of war. And it is immoral because it cannot do anything other than undermine our soldiers' operations and jeopardize their lives.

 

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Josie06 Josie06
56-60, F
13 Responses Mar 16, 2009

Once again, you are wrong.<br />
The IRAQIS never were AQ until AFTER the invasion...making each and every 'detainee' a lawful combatant.<br />
Likewise, EVERY 'detainee' from Afghanistan, an invaded and occupied country, is a militia.

Bitlord, again you are wrong. As I have said and as fetishesofallkinds has said ... <br />
<br />
AQ does not meet the definition of militia set out in the Hague Conventions.<br />
<br />
Try a different tact. It too will not make them qualify as something they are not.<br />
<br />
A dog can not be a horse. End of story.

Let's discuss the timeline of U.S. law instead.<br />
The war crimes act of 1996 explicitly includes the Hague Conventions of 1907.<br />
Which states, in part, that all members of a militia, organized AFTER invasion, are POW if captured even if they use no ensign nor distinctive badge.<br />
Being accused of being 'A.Q.' in NO WAY removes the protections of the War Crimes Act of 1996.<br />
So, please try to stay on subject.<br />
ACCUSATION by Bush or his Pentagon Goons is not proof.

Yes, you are done.<br />
Then again, you were the moment you placed winning over facts.

The "TWIT" thanks you bitlord for your omnipresence and wonderful mind.<br />
<br />
We're done.

Yep, I know that the Iraqis in Abu Ghraib WERE NOT AQ because there WAS NO AQ in Iraq before the war!<br />
Says our own CIA!!<br />
Get a CLUE twit!<br />
If the Talib and Iraqis worked with AQ in order to fight the invaders, THEY ARE PROTECTED MILITIA ANYWAY!!<br />
Reread the article from the Hague Conventions!!!<br />
THAT'S OUR LAW!!!

bitlord, you know who they are? Maybe you should be in charge and send them who. Tell them it's okay to kill Americans and others at their discretion. Guess you were there on the battlefield or hovering above it identifying them all.<br />
<br />
If the Talib and Iraqis fought as AQ, they are AQ not the militia of Iraq.

Wrong as always Josie.<br />
AQ isn't the issue.<br />
It's the THOUSANDS of innocents who were only protecting their nations, both Talib and Iraqis, who are illegally being held as 'enemy combatants' and ARE PROTECTED under the War Crimes Act of 1996 as indicated by the Hague Conventions of 1907 included by reference.

I did include the pertinent articles of the 1907 Hague Conventions.<br />
<br />
You totally miss the boat ... AQ has no country, they are not a national military of the State. They are mercenary for a belief not a State or organized government. They are not the militia of the Nation/State of Iraq.<br />
<br />
You must really understand terms before you bandy them about. A militia as commonly used today refers to a military force composed of ordinary citizens to provide defense, emergency law enforcement, or paramilitary service, in times of emergency without being paid a regular salary or committed to a fixed term of service. AQ isn't a militia.

just like you Josie, avoid the factual quote, hope no one can find the text.

I see you tried to skip over the 1907 convention definition of "militia springing up after invasion".<br />
won't work.<br />
Here, in full.<br />
Eat it.<br />
Article 1, paragraph 2<br />
"...Art. 2. The inhabitants of a territory which has not been occupied, who, on the approach of the enemy, spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading troops without having had time to organize themselves in accordance with Article 1, shall be regarded as belligerents if they carry arms openly and if they respect the laws and customs of war. ..."<br />
All they have to do is carry weapons, and they are SOLDIERS, that's U.S. LAW!!!

Where should I start.<br />
<br />
The Hague Convention of 1899 had the following sections: <br />
<br />
* I - Pacific Settlement of International Disputes<br />
* II - Laws and Customs of War on Land<br />
* III - Adaptation to Maritime Warfare of Principles of Geneva Convention of 1864<br />
* IV - Prohibiting Launching of Projectiles and Explosives from Balloons<br />
* Declaration I - On the Launching of Projectiles and Explosives from Balloons<br />
* Declaration II - On the Use of Projectiles the ob<x>ject of Which is the Diffusion of Asphyxiating or Deleterious Gases<br />
* Declaration III - On the Use of Bullets Which Expand or Flatten Easily in the Human Body<br />
<br />
Followed by The Hague Convention of 1907 with the following:<br />
<br />
* I — The Pacific Settlement of International Disputes<br />
* II — The Limitation of Employment of Force for Recovery of Contract Debts<br />
* III — The Opening of Hostilities<br />
* IV — The Laws and Customs of War on Land<br />
* V — The Rights and Duties of Neutral Powers and Persons in Case of War on Land<br />
* VI — The Status of Enemy Merchant Ships at the Outbreak of Hostilities<br />
* VII — The Conversion of Merchant Ships into War-Ships<br />
* VIII — The Laying of Automatic Submarine Contact Mines<br />
* IX — Bombardment by Naval Forces in Time of War<br />
* X — Adaptation to Maritime War of the Principles of the Geneva Convention<br />
* XI — Certain Restrictions with Regard to the Exercise of the Right of Capture in Naval War<br />
* XII — The Creation of an International Prize Court [Not Ratified][1]<br />
* XIII - The Rights and Duties of Neutral Powers in Naval War<br />
<br />
These declarations were signed as well:<br />
<br />
* Declaration I — extending Declaration II from the 1899 Conference to other types of aircraft<br />
* Declaration II—- on the obligatory arbitration<br />
<br />
The War Crimes Act did incorporate Article IV of the Hague Conventions of 1907 as you state. Not an argument.<br />
<br />
The courts have held that Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions apply to the War on terrorism and by implication (though not specifically stated) that interrogation techniques that violated it would be war crimes. Never stating what techniques would violate it.<br />
<br />
No bitlord, you are wrong as usual. The War Crimes Act talks of crimes and violations (torture, murder, etc) and the conduct of the US Military. It does not talk of who are combatants.<br />
<br />
The Third Geneva Convention defines Prisoners of War. Terrorists are not covered under Article 4.1.2 as militias/organized volunteers because they do not conduct operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war. I think you must learn to read better.<br />
<br />
Further, terrorists are not protected by the Geneva Convention as they are not uniformed and represent no State/Nation or party. Ideologues wear no uniforms and aren't representing any State/Nation. It also excludes non-signatories. Therefore they do not fall under any of the definitions of the Geneva Conventions.<br />
<br />
Why? One problem is terrorism has no universal definition, it is defined by each individual state/national government. It was never defined or spoken of in the Geneva Convention. Back then or now.<br />
<br />
IMHO, The "War Crimes Act" and the Hague Conventions and the Geneva Conventions are ill suited to deal with fighters who represent no nation and wear no uniform. Additionally, I don't believe they should as it would blur the lines of warfare beyond any practical means to be valuable.<br />
<br />
I think you would like it if terrorists were militias, but they don't even fit the definition in any stretch of the imagination. Maybe you would see your way clear to call them civilians, thus justifying your tirades against the former President. Which I believe is all your trying to justify, your hate for a former President.<br />
<br />
As usual bitlord, you are off-base and wrong ... AGAIN. This is just my opinion though.

You're wrong as always Josie.<br />
Read "War crimes act of 1996"<br />
It specifically incorporates the Hague Conventions on Warfare of 1907.<br />
then look up "Militia arising after invasion"<br />
ALL the Afghani and Iraqi resistance meet that term, and are legally prisoners of war.<br />
Smoke that.

Avoiding the issue, the Administration renames things:<br />
<br />
<br />
War on Terror = “Overseas Contingency Operation"<br />
<br />
Terrorist acts = "man-caused disasters"<br />
<br />
Enemy combatant = detainee<br />
<br />
Least we forget:<br />
<br />
Earmarks = Stimulus<br />
<br />
Welfare payments = Tax cuts<br />
<br />
<br />
Soon Up will be down and down will be up.<br />
<br />
It's Orwellian.<br />
<br />
<br />
This use of words defines us, our government, as soft to our enemies and therefore dangerous for US citizens.