View Poll Results: What is GITMO about?

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  • GITMO is a fine prison.

    26 40.63%
  • GITMO is a fine GULAG.

    10 15.63%
  • The UN is lying.

    23 35.94%
  • GITMO reflects contemporary USA mores.

    21 32.81%
  • GITMO upholds the finest standards of USA Justice.

    21 32.81%
  • GITMO is a continuing embarrassment.

    27 42.19%
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Thread: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

  1. #81
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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    Yes. Between the belligerents who are parties.

    Nation A and B are parties. Nation C is not.

    A and B are fighting each other. The provisions are in effect. B and C are fighting each other. The provisions are not.
    Yep - my bad. The 1949 GC makes it more clear:

    Although one of the Powers in conflict may not be a party to the present Convention, the Powers who are parties thereto shall remain bound by it in their mutual relations. They shall furthermore be bound by the Convention in relation to the said Power, if the latter accepts and applies the provisions thereof.
    (emphasis added)
    Obviously, they haven't done so.

    Edit:
    To your second post, I agree and I never really disagreed with that part - I was just noting that the nature of this kind of war was never really considered. But since they (and therefore, we) aren't bound by it anyway, the rest doesn't matter.
    Last edited by MoSurveyor; 02-02-12 at 04:42 PM.

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    That's one of the things the Geneva Conventions -- and customary "laws" of warfare -- were intended to prevent.

    If all the combatants are in uniform, you don't have this problem.

    If the combatants don't hide among civilian populations, you don't have to bomb civilian populations.

    If the combatants don't stockpile weapons in schools, you don't have to bomb schools.

    And so on.

    When they don't follow these "laws," you have to do nasty things. But to hamstring yourself against such an enemy is to effect your own defeat.

    War is terrible. Rewarding those who "play by the rules" and reserving dire consequences for those who don't can make it a bit less terrible.

    But if you treat everyone as though they're playing by the rules, there's no reason why they should bother -- there's no penalty for being savages. Thus, savagery ensues.
    Well said, but I think its important to consider the other side of this coin. The perspective of the "enemy".

    The US has such incredible military superiority that we can crush most opposition like insects.

    It amounts to the ability to bully, when all is said and done.

    So what do you do if you believe you are actually defending your home and way of life. The kind of fighters we "approve" of, philosophically.

    Tongue in cheek, requiring all "enemy" combatants to gather in one place and provide cruise missile targeting coordinates isn't a reasonable demand.

    Considering the gross asymmetry our military might represents.
    Anyone wondering what I'm talking about start here:
    The Psychology of Persuasion

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by What if...? View Post
    Well said, but I think its important to consider the other side of this coin. The perspective of the "enemy".

    The US has such incredible military superiority that we can crush most opposition like insects.

    It amounts to the ability to bully, when all is said and done.

    So what do you do if you believe you are actually defending your home and way of life. The kind of fighters we "approve" of, philosophically.

    Tongue in cheek, requiring all "enemy" combatants to gather in one place and provide cruise missile targeting coordinates isn't a reasonable demand.

    Considering the gross asymmetry our military might represents.
    I made a mental note long ago when reading the GC that many Americans in 1776 would not have qualified or would have been hard to classify.

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by MoSurveyor View Post
    I made a mental note long ago when reading the GC that many Americans in 1776 would not have qualified or would have been hard to classify.
    And many were hanged and shot as spies.

    However, for the most part, the Revolution was military-to-military. Even militia were under military command and they were easily separated from the population at large.
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by What if...? View Post
    Well said, but I think its important to consider the other side of this coin. The perspective of the "enemy".

    The US has such incredible military superiority that we can crush most opposition like insects.

    It amounts to the ability to bully, when all is said and done.

    So what do you do if you believe you are actually defending your home and way of life. The kind of fighters we "approve" of, philosophically.

    Tongue in cheek, requiring all "enemy" combatants to gather in one place and provide cruise missile targeting coordinates isn't a reasonable demand.

    Considering the gross asymmetry our military might represents.
    Our superiority doesn't require us to give anyone a special pass.

    I mean, we do, and often to our considerable detriment. We tolerate far more than we should. But there's nothing in "the rule of law" which demands this.

    Simply put, the weakness of the enemy isn't our problem.

    So what do you do if you believe you are actually defending your home and way of life. The kind of fighters we "approve" of, philosophically.
    That's quite an overstatement. This could be used to describe anyone trying to repel an invasion of anywhere, including the Nazi insurgents fighting Allied occupation.
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    Our superiority doesn't require us to give anyone a special pass.

    I mean, we do, and often to our considerable detriment. We tolerate far more than we should. But there's nothing in "the rule of law" which demands this.

    Simply put, the weakness of the enemy isn't our problem.



    That's quite an overstatement. This could be used to describe anyone trying to repel an invasion of anywhere, including the Nazi insurgents fighting Allied occupation.
    I wasn't dismissing your point, more of a "mile in the other guys moccasins" perspective.
    Anyone wondering what I'm talking about start here:
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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by What if...? View Post
    I wasn't dismissing your point, more of a "mile in the other guys moccasins" perspective.
    OK, but what does that really do?

    Any weaker opponent would like to have advantages and ways to handicap the stronger opponent.

    That may be all well and good in a sport, but in war, what does it do but increase misery, death, destruction, and injury?
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveFagan View Post
    When you believe info from the CIA, you are the victim and they are the perpetrators, or perps as your local gendarme might say. You better read the poll "The CIA and the Media" in the POLLS forum.


    So where's your documentation that waterboarding ever happened, then? I mean, if you dismiss everything from the CIA.

    And where's your documentation that it happened in Cuba?
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    I don't think you could actually cite an applicable rule of law and the rights thereunto appertaining.

    Hint: US criminal law and the Constitution aren't it.
    I'm not sure why those wouldn't work, as these are criminal acts. The questions why would we not want to follow a rule of law that treated people legally and with rights?



    The "air" comment? Simply that there was a sudden push for entirely novel interpretations of the usual "international law" which applied. Like yours, below.
    Nothing there is out of thin air, but a history of us signing agreements on human rights and treatment of all types of prisoners. we ahve denounced torture, including waterboarding, and imprisoning people without due process throughout our history. There is nothing fomr thin air about it.


    Then you really have no idea what the laws of warfare are about. They have always been about countries agreeing with each other about how they'll conduct themselves with each other. They've never been about hamstringing a nation against an enemy which won't conform to that code of conduct.

    Which is not to say that we should consider ourselves licensed to behave like savages. But the idea that someone who doesn't conform to the laws of war should have the "rights" of someone who does is just plain asinine. And suicidal.
    It's neither. The notion that following the law is suicial is what is really silly, especially when you concider this enemy has no chance at defeating us. None. The type of struggle that it would take to throw all laws out the window is of such a desperate nature that it be would something of apoclyptic proportions. We are simply not there.

    In fact, I would argue we would be safer if we behaved like we really believed in our ideals. Giving them lip service makes us more like the worse vision of us our enemies have, and helps them promote that vision. I suggest we be bold and behave like people brave enough to live by our ideals, and not cowards so scare, of so little, that we make excuses for not following rule of law.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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    Re: United Nations: U.S. Operation Of Gitmo Is ‘Clear Breach Of International Law’

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I'm not sure why those wouldn't work, as these are criminal acts. The questions why would we not want to follow a rule of law that treated people legally and with rights?
    No, they aren't. Nobody in Gitmo is there on arrest for a criminal act. The rest is gibberish based on a false premise.

    Nothing there is out of thin air, but a history of us signing agreements on human rights and treatment of all types of prisoners. we ahve denounced torture, including waterboarding, and imprisoning people without due process throughout our history. There is nothing fomr thin air about it.
    Talking about international customary and treaty law of warfare.


    It's neither. The notion that following the law is suicial is what is really silly
    You say all this based on an extremely faulty grasp on what "the law" actually is.


    especially when you concider this enemy has no chance at defeating us. None.
    We've been in Afghanistan for 10 years. Have we won? Are we close?


    The type of struggle that it would take to throw all laws out the window is of such a desperate nature that it be would something of apoclyptic proportions. We are simply not there.

    In fact, I would argue we would be safer if we behaved like we really believed in our ideals. Giving them lip service makes us more like the worse vision of us our enemies have, and helps them promote that vision. I suggest we be bold and behave like people brave enough to live by our ideals, and not cowards so scare, of so little, that we make excuses for not following rule of law.
    Holding others to the civilized rules of warfare and not coddling those who don't IS one of our ideals.
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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