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Do Unto Your Enemy...
NYT ^ | September 25, 2006 | PAUL RIECKHOFF

Posted on 09/25/2006 1:30:04 PM PDT by RDTF

-snip-

I remember a seasoned senior officer explaining the importance of the Geneva Conventions. He said, “When an enemy fighter knows he’ll be treated well by United States forces if he is captured, he is more likely to give up.”

A year later on the streets of Baghdad, I saw countless insurgents surrender when faced with the prospect of a hot meal, a pack of cigarettes and air-conditioning. America’s moral integrity was the single most important weapon my platoon had on the streets of Iraq. It saved innumerable lives, encouraged cooperation with our allies and deterred Iraqis from joining the growing insurgency.

But those days are over. America’s moral standing has eroded, thanks to its flawed rationale for war and scandals like Abu Ghraib, Guantánamo and Haditha. The last thing we can afford now is to leave Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions open to reinterpretation, as President Bush proposed to do and can still do under the compromise bill that emerged last week.

-snip-

It is not hard to imagine that one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces while investigating a potential nuclear weapons program. What is to stop that soldier from being water-boarded, locked in a cold room for days without sleep as Iranian pop music blares all around him — and finally sentenced to die without a fair trial or the right to see the evidence against him?

If America continues to erode the meaning of the Geneva Conventions, we will cede the ground upon which to prosecute dictators and warlords. We will also become unable to protect our troops if they are perceived as being no more bound by the rule of law than dictators and warlords themselves.

-snip-

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: nytreasontimes
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Although he may make some interesting points he's ignoring the most important one - terrorists don't play by the rules and never will.
1 posted on 09/25/2006 1:30:05 PM PDT by RDTF
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To: RDTF
Where is the barf alert in the headline?

This is sickening. The only terrorists in Baghdad that are surrendering are the ones that were forced to fight in the first place or else die and have their families killed as well.

Hardcore Al Qaeda who are eager to blow themselves up in a car bomb are not going to love the U.S. of A. just because they are going to be treated nicely.

Sheesh.

2 posted on 09/25/2006 1:34:54 PM PDT by Yo-Yo (USAF, TAC, 12th AF, 366 TFW, 366 MG, 366 CRS, Mtn Home AFB, 1978-81)
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To: Yo-Yo

Yeah, guess I should have added a barf alert. Hopefully the NYT source will be a giveaway.


3 posted on 09/25/2006 1:37:24 PM PDT by RDTF ("We love death. The US loves life. That is the big difference between us two. Osama Bin laden)
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To: Yo-Yo

I don't believe we have eroded the Convention, rather we have read it and applied it. Non-uniformed combatants are not covered. Never have been, never will be. How we treat prisoners is largely governed by how an enemy fights, not by a bunch of lawyers. Believe me taking prisoners because they ran out ammunition after trying to kill you and now want to surrender is generally covered by a 3 to 5 round burst delivered center mass of their chest. If the lawyers would like to witness our combatants we can easily let them walk point.


4 posted on 09/25/2006 1:38:45 PM PDT by tigtog
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To: RDTF

It is not hard to imagine that one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces while investigating a potential nuclear weapons program. What is to stop that soldier from being water-boarded, locked in a cold room for days without sleep as Iranian pop music blares all around him — and finally sentenced to die without a fair trial or the right to see the evidence against him?
__________________________________________________

Uhhh, you can be SURE, this unfortunate soldier would know he was already a dead man, just a matter of how much pain before his time.


5 posted on 09/25/2006 1:39:54 PM PDT by MadeInAmerica (- If ILLEGAL means Undocumented - Then Breaking and Entering means Unannounced Visit)
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To: RDTF
Germany and Japan were signatories to the Geneva Convention.

mccain should know that better than anyone.

6 posted on 09/25/2006 1:43:08 PM PDT by mdittmar (May God watch over those who serve,and have served, to keep us free.)
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To: RDTF

"A year later on the streets of Baghdad, I saw countless insurgents surrender when faced with the prospect of a hot meal, a pack of cigarettes and air-conditioning. "

They ran out of options and chose to surrender in the hopes of fighting another day, not for the meal, cigarettes and ac.


7 posted on 09/25/2006 1:43:40 PM PDT by Kirkwood
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To: RDTF
one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces

Iran? The same country that invaded our embassy and held our diplomats hostage for more than a year? Oh yes, we mustn't do anything to make them think they can get away with flouting international law.

-ccm

8 posted on 09/25/2006 1:45:38 PM PDT by ccmay (Too much Law; not enough Order)
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To: RDTF

I dont think that will work on someone who has been brought up in war and hatred toward those who dont have what thier enemies enjoy everyday those things they are envious of,even more when we are decalaring war on them!


9 posted on 09/25/2006 1:47:51 PM PDT by results only
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To: MadeInAmerica

Only problem with terrorists who give up is that we get to feed them, House them, our soldiers get spit on by them and have feces thrown at them, they sit around a jail getting fat off special diets and then get turned loose to kill others, and start the process again. How many enemy combatants does this soldier know who are frightened to be captured by Americans?

Americans moral standing hasnt been eroded thanks to flawed rationale , its been eroded by Democrats and the media launching a full scale attack on the Bush administration.


10 posted on 09/25/2006 1:49:39 PM PDT by sgtbono2002 (The fourth estate is a fifth column.)
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To: RDTF

Good grief.
Next thing, we'll be dropping leaflets promising them dinner at the restaurant of their choice if they surrender.
The only thing 'seasoned' about that officer is his fat a$$.
I'll bet he never got more that a couple of miles from the Pentagon in his whole career.


11 posted on 09/25/2006 1:53:14 PM PDT by ComputerGuy (An expert is a person who avoids the small errors while sweeping on to the grand fallacy)
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To: RDTF

RDTF....do you know who this guy is??

He is the FIRST of the traitor Iraq vets...to come back and start making the rounds on all of the TV talk shows bashing BUSH...he doesn't have the integrity to write about this subject.

Did you notice that he lumped Abh Gharib, Guantanamo, Haditha in a group that says that America doesn't have the moral values we should???

PUUUUH-LEEEEEEEEEZE...if he was a true patriot veteran...he would NEVER make those remarks..smearing the whole military with his broad brush.


12 posted on 09/25/2006 1:55:51 PM PDT by Txsleuth (,((((((((ISRAEL)))))) Pray for the release of the Israelis.)
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To: RDTF
the terrorists are already in violation of the Geneva conventions simply by not wearing a uniform.
13 posted on 09/25/2006 1:58:00 PM PDT by edzo4
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To: Txsleuth

oh...that creep! Amazing how someone like him, after all he has seen, learned and been trained on doesn't understand the enemy we are fighting. He just doesn't get it.


14 posted on 09/25/2006 1:58:52 PM PDT by RDTF ("We love death. The US loves life. That is the big difference between us two. Osama Bin laden)
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To: RDTF
It is not hard to imagine that one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces while investigating a potential nuclear weapons program. What is to stop that soldier from being water-boarded, locked in a cold room for days without sleep as Iranian pop music blares all around him — and finally sentenced to die without a fair trial or the right to see the evidence against him?

While I'm actually somewhat persuaded by the first argument, that good treatment of POWs makes our enemies more likely to surrender, I say Barbra Streisand to this one.

None of our enemies in any major conflict has ever let the Geneva Conventions dictate their treatment of American POWs. Ask Senator McFeign how those Conventions helped him out as a POW.

To put it bluntly, it's only the USA and our allies who even try to follow the vaunted "Laws of War". The enemies we have faced have unanimously ignored them.

It seems ridiculous that it should even need to be said, but war isn't about playing nice. It's about quickly and completely defeating an enemy who wants to destroy you.

The idea that the slow-moving, deliberate wheels of American jurisprudence should be employed in the prosecution of a fast-moving, vicious war against bloodthirsty terrorists is the very embodiment of insanity!

15 posted on 09/25/2006 2:01:24 PM PDT by TChris (The United Nations is suffering from delusions of relevance.)
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To: Yo-Yo

"Where is the barf alert in the headline?"

My thoughts exactly. I am not a vociferous proponent of the war in Iraq, but we are there and should do everything in our power to win it and support the troops while they fight it.


16 posted on 09/25/2006 2:03:32 PM PDT by BLS (Outside of a dog, a book is mans' best friend. Inside a dog it is too dark to read a book.)
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To: RDTF

I remember one night...he was on Hannity and Colmes to debate...and I think it was about the Haditha case, when it first started getting a lot of publicity...

On the other side was Ollie North....and I noticed a LOT different demeanor from him...that he showed on MSNBC...and other shows...when he was the only guest.

I think he KNEW he couldn't BS Ollie North...because he knows Ollie, has been there, done that.


17 posted on 09/25/2006 2:03:38 PM PDT by Txsleuth (,((((((((ISRAEL)))))) Pray for the release of the Israelis.)
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To: RDTF
It is not hard to imagine that one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces

Iran. That is the country where they hang rape victims right?

Somehow I don't see them following the rules of war when they have not mastered the rules for even the most basic of civilized behavior.

18 posted on 09/25/2006 2:06:47 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (De inimico non loquaris sed cogites)
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To: RDTF

It is not hard to imagine that one of our Special Forces soldiers might one day be captured by Iranian forces while investigating a potential nuclear weapons program. What is to stop that soldier from being water-boarded, locked in a cold room for days without sleep as Iranian pop music blares all around him — and finally sentenced to die without a fair trial or the right to see the evidence against him?

Nothing, absolutely nothing will stop them certainly not some piece of paper in Switzerland.
The only thing that WILL stop them is if they know and understand that if we find out they did this, that the retrobution that will come their way will be so SO overwhelming as to make them shake in fear. That's all
it will take, nothing else will have any effect.
Now we can take a more humanistic approach to most who surrender to us and this will indeed cause more to decide
so in that regard, but some must be interrogated for the
information they have that means American LIVES.


19 posted on 09/25/2006 2:08:40 PM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: RDTF

Any American soldier taken by the insurgents already knows he is a dead man. The insurgents don't follow the Geneva Convention, unless there is a little-known clause governing the condition of knives and saws used in beheadings, or the placement of bullets to the back of the head.

The coverage of Abu Graib was mostly propaganda-driven (by the time the photos hit the press, the suspects were already under arrest); Haditha is a hoax, and Guantanamo is a pretty nice place to be a prisoner, if you have to be a prisoner anywhere. Most hit pieces like this that use "Guantanamo" as a buzz-word are dishonest right out of the starting gate, playing into the enemy's propaganda. Does anyone imagine that we would ever get good press for our treatment of insurgent prisoners? Really?

Even the recent grandstanding by McCain and his pals simply plays into the hands of the enemy. He forced through a law banning outright torture, which implies that we were committing torture in the first place. Thanks, dude. Between Al Jazeera, McCain, and the New York Times, the terrorists have all the help they need.


20 posted on 09/25/2006 2:09:45 PM PDT by marron
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