Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Kill 'Em All, Let Allah Sort 'Em Out
MichNews ^ | 11/18/2004 | Chris Davis

Posted on 11/18/2004 3:34:57 PM PST by writer33

click here to read article


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-5051-100101-150151-200201-222 last
To: Tarpaulin

Negative. Don't start that oxymoron business.


201 posted on 11/21/2004 4:21:36 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 197 | View Replies]

To: MarMema

I completely agree, MarMema.


202 posted on 11/21/2004 4:22:18 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 200 | View Replies]

To: writer33

Did you know you can ping more than one freeper at once? Just put a semicolon after the freeper's screen name, then a a space, then the next freeper's screen name.


203 posted on 11/21/2004 4:23:14 PM PST by Paleo Conservative (Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Arlen Specter's got to go!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 199 | View Replies]

To: joesnuffy

Ping!


204 posted on 11/21/2004 4:23:47 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Paleo Conservative

Yeah, but I couldn't remember your name. So I had to go back and take another peek. Sorry for the inconvenience it may have caused you.


205 posted on 11/21/2004 4:25:02 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 203 | View Replies]

To: writer33

Affirmative.

Stating that the ROP is anything other than a death cult is an oxymoron.

BTW, I was in Desert Storm too. I've seen it, Man.


206 posted on 11/21/2004 4:33:28 PM PST by Tarpaulin (Look it up.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 201 | View Replies]

To: Tarpaulin

Now don't make me roll up my sleeves and Howard Dean you, man. It might get quite nasty. :) Hehe!


207 posted on 11/21/2004 6:05:15 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 206 | View Replies]

To: calenel

calenel wrote: "The Marine shot an insurgent terrorist in the act of committing a War Crime. The terrorist was out of uniform (a War Crime) and using a mosque as a military base (a War Crime). Other incidents had occurred with booby trapped bodies (a War Crime), false surrender (a War Crime) and faking injuries to lure into ambush (a War Crime)."

If it were so cut-and-dried, I'm surprised that the West Point professor didn't raise this as a defense. Indeed, I have never seen this argument until you raised it. So you might be right, but I'm puzzled why none of the many experts I've heard discuss this situation concur with your point of view. I don't pretend to be an expert on this incident or UCMJ in general, but I wasn't aware that UCMJ uses one set of rules of engagement for "legitimate" enemy combatants and a completely different set of rules for everyone else.

My position continues to be that I trust the UCMJ process and won't be surprised if that process ultimately results in a conviction in that case. Taking this position is NOT tantamount to siding with the enemy, nor do I in any way condone the utter disregard for life and rules of war exhibited by the enemy, which I find deplorable and despicable. I absolutely support the mission in Iraq. My simple point is that we do that cause and mission no good by ourselves abandoning all principles and stooping to the same level of lawlessness as the enemy.
"I was ordered to do it" was not a defense at Nuremburg nor
should "But they did things that were even worse" be a defense in this instance. There's no question that the fact that the enemy has booby-trapped dead bodies etc. is absolutely an important factor in determining whether this marine might reasonably have assessed there was a credible threat posed by the individual he shot.


208 posted on 11/22/2004 7:58:30 AM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 108 | View Replies]

To: namvetcav

It's interesting that your response entirely ducks the truth of the claim that UCMJ does not permit the marine to use the "might have done X, Y, Z" defense and instead launches a broad-side ad hominem attack against me and a West Point prof. My experience in debates such as this is that ad hominem attacks are the last resort of those unable to debate on the merits of the issue.

Let's be clear: I don't claim to know s**t about UCMJ. Indeed I explicitly acknowledge this point. I merely was reporting what I had learned from the West Point professor because it was news to me and I foolishly thought it might be of interest to others attempting to EVEN-HANDEDLY assess this particular situation.

But let's also be clear that the issue is NOT whether it would be bad for the marines if this individual were convicted. Surely you're not saying that we should bend the UCMJ rules depending on what's convenient for PR purposes. Under that reasoning, the OJ verdict was a good one since it prevented rioting in the streets.

I won't waste bandwidth responding to your ad hominem attacks as these are irrelevant to a serious discussion of
the ISSUE, which is whether even-handedly applying UCMJ to the facts in this case should result in a conviction or acquittal. You apparently believe that UCMJ offers this marine more discretion about what constitutes a legitimate
threat than a West Point professor believes it offers. Based on the abysmal quality of your response, I now believe even more firmly that the professor--who appeared far more dispassionate and capable of clear-headed thinking on this issue than you appear to be--is more likely than you are to be correct about his assessment.


209 posted on 11/22/2004 8:20:33 AM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 156 | View Replies]

To: DrC

Your first post was such slap-happy garbage you really didn't deserve the level of respect responses to you have accorded. Your POV was soundly and reasonably slapped down. The so-called "ad hominem attacks" were just frustration with a debater who refuses to recognize defeat by sound reason.


210 posted on 11/22/2004 10:33:33 AM PST by TigersEye ("protecting baby - good. killing baby - bad.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 209 | View Replies]

To: conservativecorner; ZellsBells

Ping!


211 posted on 11/22/2004 12:41:01 PM PST by writer33 (The U.S. Constitution defines a conservative)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DrC
"If it were so cut-and-dried, I'm surprised that the West Point professor didn't raise this as a defense."

All of the things I listed as War Crimes are, in fact, such. As for why your WP professor acquaintance did not raise this defense I can only speculate. Without intent to impugn the credentials or qualifications of the professor, perhaps it is a case of being unable to see the forrest for the trees. Perhaps it is PC run amok (dictating that the American must be the bad guy, or that the Military is naturally in the wrong, or what ever the PC fad of the week might be). Perhaps it is simply that the prof has forgotten more about the Laws of War than you or I shall ever know, including the part of the GC that specifically excludes the terrorist and his ilk from its protections. Perhaps the professor, like so many who claim to be experts on the Laws of War, has never actually read the GC.

"I don't pretend to be an expert on this incident or UCMJ in general, but I wasn't aware that UCMJ uses one set of rules of engagement for "legitimate" enemy combatants and a completely different set of rules for everyone else."

The UCMJ incorporates the GC in its entirety. The exclusions from protection that are clearly stated in the GC are there to protect the Legal Combatants from and in situations such as the one that that Marine found himself. If the other side had been making a reasonable effort to observe the GC, that Marine would not have shot the terrorist (the terrorist wouldn't have been a terrorist, there would not have been the high probability of a booby trap or false surrender, and they wouldn't have been in the mosque in the first place). The lack of protections for the terrorists in the GC are not to punish the terrorists, THEY ARE EXPLICIT PROTECTIONS FOR THE LEGAL COMBATANTS. The terrorists have only those rights that we, the Forces of Civilization, give them. Logically, to have it any other way legitimizes the terrorists' methods and renders the GC so much scrap paper.

Try that one out on your professor and those experts. I'm curious to hear the response.
212 posted on 11/23/2004 12:45:51 AM PST by calenel (The Democratic Party is the Socialist Mafia. It is a Criminal Enterprise.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 208 | View Replies]

To: TigersEye

TigersEye wrote: "Your first post was such slap-happy garbage you really didn't deserve the level of respect responses to you have accorded."

Blame the morons, not the messenger.
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1286534/posts
I believe the reporter who wrote the story alluded to in the above thread must have read your post.


213 posted on 11/23/2004 5:18:05 AM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 210 | View Replies]

To: calenel

Thanks for a reasoned reply. The WP professor is not my acquaintance. I heard him talking on (gasp!) NPR while driving home one night. The fact that this professor teaches at West Point and not at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, etc. makes it unlikely in my book that he hews to a PC line of assuming America must be the bad guy or especially that the military is always wrong). Because he's teaching the very officers who have to command the troops in Iraq and elsewhere, it also seems implausible that he hasn't read the GC. I heard another interview with a Marine in the field last night; he emphasized the importance of strict rules of engagement in combat and clearly accepted the necessity of these "because the point isn't to kill everyone in sight" (or words to that effect).

In any case, I'm not in a position to "try out" your suggestions on this professor. I accept your premise that GC is designed to protect combatants. But just as the soldiers at Abu Graib "crossed the line" I don't think we should, in our eagerness to defend our troops in Iraq, automatically rule out the possibility that this marine crossed the line in this instance. I'm perfectly comfortable with letting our military justice system play this one out. My prediction is that there will be a consequence rather than full exoneration in this instance. You apparently believe otherwise. We'll soon see who is right.

What I regret on this forum is the tone exhibited by some of the most shrill that even considering the possibility that a violation of UCMJ occurred is somehow disloyal and patriotic. It is no more disloyal and patriotic than observing that while 140,000+ U.S. soldiers have conducted themselves with honor and distinction, there were a few bad apples at Abu Graib who were appropriately punished for conducting themselves in a less than honorable fashion. The Abu Graib abuses really did occur; My Lai really did occur. These were not events invented by the MSM to "get" the military. The military acted with honor and distinction in recognizing problems in their midst and bringing the perpetrators to swift justice.


214 posted on 11/23/2004 5:38:42 AM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 212 | View Replies]

To: DrC
"The WP professor is not my acquaintance. I heard him talking on (gasp!) NPR while driving home one night. The fact that this professor teaches at West Point and not at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, etc. makes it unlikely in my book that he hews to a PC line of assuming America must be the bad guy or especially that the military is always wrong)."

Prior to the Clinton Administration and the Political Correction that happened to the Military and Intelligence I would have agreed with you. The fact that he was on NPR which cherry-picks its guests makes him far less credible.

I also am comfortable with Military due process. I was with Abu Graib and also with the Afghanistan friendly fire incident. I believe that this Marine has a legitimate defense as previously described. I hope that his defenders do a proper job.
215 posted on 11/23/2004 8:48:11 AM PST by calenel (The Democratic Party is the Socialist Mafia. It is a Criminal Enterprise.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 214 | View Replies]

To: DrC
So, you waited three days and came up with something as dishonest as #209 and want to keep going. You're ten numbered, unanswered contentions in the hole and things are going to get lots worse for you. Let's review for the folks and then we're going to start a complete review of the individual issues and we'll end up with a flow sheet of how your arguments have done across this thread since you assert you know something about debate. Let's see how you do.

1. Since you don't actually communicate with me but put on a pretentious show, what's going on? You appear as a '98 Freeper with maybe 30 vanilla posts over all those years and now you've undergone a whacky personality change that's put you off the reservation. You've blurted out #16 - a contentious pile of of troll-like blather and told us that it's "indefensible" to make excuses for this Marine in combat. We have to give him up. Tough love, but you're a patriot!
So, you're attacked, ... but you're so clever, you slip the noose. As will mark your style, you're never on-point or systematic. Nope. You're defense is that you're the ventriloquist's dummy for an unnamed West Point professor. And while most people would be sheepish to admit the unattributed theft of ideas (#16 - if those are the "paraphrased" ideas), you're proud to self-identify as an ignoramus on these issues. You fall back constantly on the authority (vericundiam) fallacy, making bald assertions attributed to Professor Popgun, an unidentified joker you channel like Ramtha but have now, today, finally told "canenal" (#208) that he's a guy you heard once on NPR while you were driving your car. Now this guy's hand is totally up your kazoo and you want us to think you can assume each other's debts, that you're a perfect dummy. And you've larded on the vericundium fallacy everywhere and called yourself an ignoramus mouthpiece not just for an unidentified NPR professor but "many" unidentified "experts" you've claimed to have heard. We call your contentions and your reasoning fallacious and your moronic defense is that everything you say is magically and expressly derivative, but without actual attribution to any identified human being. You speak for a guy you heard on the radio once and you're a self-confessed ignoramus on the subject. That works for you?

So, little one, you're going to have to hitch up your panties and do some work. You favored us with "your" opinion. You have the burden of proof. You're on the affirmative side of the question. Demonstrate that you're the ventriloquist's dummy you say you are or defend the positions without the vericundium fallacy. What will it be?

I've got three more issues coming out of your silly #209 and then we'll get back to the 10 numbered points. Welcome to the evenhanded party.
216 posted on 11/23/2004 9:41:53 AM PST by namvetcav
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 214 | View Replies]

To: namvetcav

Let's be clear about what I did or did not say. I said:
1. "A marine CANNOT kill another person based on speculation about what that person "might have done" as that would leave enough discretion to kill literally anything in sight, depending on the circumstances."
My source for this is irrelevant except in the sense that I found it a credible source for reasons I explained to canenal. But the statement itself either is factually correct or is not and you don't advance your credibility by referring to this professor as Professor Popgun: as you presumably well know, ad hominem attacks are among the most elementary forms of fallacious argument. Is it your position that UCMJ allows a "might have done" defense?

2. "I believe that like the soldiers at Abu Graib, this marine will be court martialed and convicted of being in violation of that code." This is merely a prediction, better known as an OPINION. You are welcome to your own opinion, but it is inappropriate to respond to this statement as if I am eagerly awaiting this outcome.

3. "Clearly, he should be given a fair trial and offered a chance to offer an explanation for his behavior: there may be an extenuating circumstance not visible on the tape."
Here's a clue that I'm being "fair and balanced" in my assessment here and not out to "get" this marine. In this context, your responding as if I were the moral equivalent of Michael Moore is wholly out-of-proportion and inappropriate.

4. "And until then, he is innocent until proven guilty."
Gee, I hope this fundamental principle of American justice isn't in question, is it?

5. "But offering excuses for the behavior, if indeed it crossed the line, is indefensible."
Please note the caveat you didn't bother offering readers in your reckless characterization of my remarks. I said his behavior is indefensible IF IT CROSSED THE LINE. If this marine is court-martialed and found guilty, are YOU prepared to argue that the UCMJ process screwed up and committed an injustice? If so, WOW! You really are the arrogant SOB that you appear to be.

6. "If we wish to win hearts and minds in Iraq, it is critical that we maintain our high standards and honor and not stoop to the complete lack of regard for rules of war exhibited by the enemy."
You responded to this remark by focusing on the ENEMY. To be honest, I don't really care if we have the respect of murderous thugs. I don't in any way think we should conduct ourselves with the motivation of winning the heart or mind of OBL: that's a fool's errand. But there are plenty of non-combatants (measured in millions of Iraqis who will judge this war and our role in it based on the conduct of our troops. Rest assured that if they engage in widespread violations of GC, that will not hasten the day on which all of our troops can finally come home. Do you seriously disagree with that assessment? I believe it because it makes logical sense to me, because I've heard it voiced by numerous conservative commentators (i.e., not pundits predisposed to finding fault with what the US does) AND by a marine in Iraq (admittedly, interviewed on NPR, so I guess I should take that with a grain of salt).

7. "That's tough to do, and it even, tragically, risks American lives. But for the same reason that freedom itself is worth paying for in blood, when necessary, so is integrity, honor and all the values that make our military the best in the world."
I have heard even Donald Rumsfeld state that we have bent over backwards to conduct our operations so as to minimize collateral damage and have heard in more than one place that as a consequence, we inevitably elevate the risk of death to our own soldiers in so doing. That is, if we could indiscriminately carpet bomb Fallujah, we clearly could have taken what was left of the city with almost no loss of life. So I understand that GC and UCMJ won't be interpreted in such a way as to recklessly endanger the lives of our soldiers. But a line has to be drawn somewhere. If we had seen the victim reaching for something under his blanket, we probably wouldn't even be talking about this case. But what I observed (I won't pretend to speak for you) was no such covert or obvious threat from this individual. In contrast, we observed lots of movement and talking from another wounded individual who unaccountably was NOT shot in that very same room.

As for the ad vericundiam fallacy, should we deduct just a few points from your own credibility given that you don't even know how to spell the fallacy you so pompously trot out? Please be advised of the following:

"Invincible Authority does, however, mimic a legitimate pattern of reasoning. It must be remembered that experts become experts by having reasons for their opinions. These reasons are examined by other people interested in the subject (including other experts). People generally come to be recognized as experts because their reasons make sense to others. For those of us who do not have the time (or talent) to consider the arguments for ourselves, it is certainly better to adopt the opinions of an expert than the opinions of a non-expert. This is why checking the credentials of authors is an important step in judging the reliability of sources used in research. There is certainly no fallacy in naming an expert as the originator of arguments that are then explained and considered. But there is an important difference between using the credentials of an author as one criterion for the reliability of information, and using the credentials of the author as certifying that a position is true." http://www.cuyamaca.net/bruce.thompson/Fallacies/invincible_authority.asp

I don't claim the WP professor is infallible. Canenal is quite right that this prof may have been cherry-picked by NPR for his point of view and for that reason, some caution is in order. But all other things being equal, the opinion of a scholar with no apparent axe to grind about how UCMJ has been interpreted over decades is going to carry far more weight in my mind than the rantings of a blowhard such as yourself. 'Nuf said.


217 posted on 11/23/2004 3:16:44 PM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 216 | View Replies]

To: DrC
Your #217:
This must be about your 3 day, de riguear, evenhanded #209 and a "let's-be-clear-about-what-you're-saying" response. Ennui, contempt, sloth - guess. Three days - something is beneath notice, maybe. We strive for evenhandedness.

Ya'know, we're the only people who should care about following this obsessional maze so stop being stupid and posting crap like #217. Address #216 directly. I'm not going to drop the ball by now posting a Moby Dick six pages of refutation about you're newly formed constructions of the original #16 dumbass contentions which you think you get to selectively resurrect and reinterpret now, having failed to engage in any honest debate across the last four posts. You're in a deep hole and you're not going to miracle your butt out of it with a "de novo", King's X, magical handwave, and we go back to the time you weren't a ventriloquist's dummy, self-confessed ignoramus and I would add without fear of contradiction, a weaselly twerp engaging in shameless sophistry.

Or I could restate in this way: Mr. Ed was, of course, a horse, but DrC is a rented mule and he's taken a fairly outstanding beating in every one of these posts and he has addressed none of the actual issues. In all the deceptive tripe he's posted since #97, now he's saying he's merely said 7 little innocuous things. Few folks called him a "euroweenie". Ya'think he engages in a fallacy of oversimplification?

In any case, why can't you answer #216 so we can get going? You have no standing to direct the flow of this mop-up operation. You handwaved ten numbered objections out of existence at #209 after a three day lapse. No reasonable person would allow you any control over the course of issue analysis after so dishonest, bad faith, and lazy a display of public discourse and you're at it again. I've said we'd be thorough. Until I'm not, stop dumping extraneous garbage into this process.

The dangers of my #216 are immediate and severe for you. They confront you as an advocate who is affirmatively burdened to make a fair and open case. First, I actually state that you stink, so to speak. You're not the '98 vanilla Freeper with 30 little posts and I explicitly challenged that, having made only mock-humorous allusions earlier. No answers from you. Your personality change after 5 years draws no attention you think.

Second: you've got trouble because your entire case is beslimed by your unattributed theft of "ideas" at #16, the jujitsu of calling them the unimpeachable paraphrasing of a great unidentified authority, and then the cheesy sophistic defense of selective facts not in evidence.

#216 demands that you do actual labor and identify your ventriloquist and allow us to examine him or support your arguments with open citations we can check against your assertions of fact or legalistic assertions about matters in which you enthusiastically claim you are an ignoramus. You're affirmatively obligated. You carry the burden.

Your answer at #217 is dishonest, though it is amusing. Really, Mr. 'Nuf said (an Arab name, one would figure)!

Your sleazy idea in #217 is that you (or better "YOU", in those pathetic CAPS) get a "de novo" chance. You get to avoid all the moron trouble you got yourself into on all the arguments supporting your #16, and you, the non-ventriloqist's dummy will defend #16's little assertions now, maybe in you're own voice (but not too damn likely since you're a self-admitted ignoramus . . . but that was later and you were only an ignoramus later in the thread, . . . that's the ticket). You've said dozens of things with dozens of implications since #16 but you've got the "King's X", handwave power. You're only saying these things now and there are so innocuous. Very few people bothered to call you a euroweenie. Quite innocuous, yes.

I complained on #53 and I'm still waiting for an on-point answer. You think you get to restate your #16 and masquerade as a little, patriotic lamb. Dream on. A "de novo" good faith start would have responded to my #53, but that's what makes you a "bad faith" sort of guy. Having actually said dozens of things with dozens of contentious implications, they are only 7 things you or maybe Professor Popgun have said and you'll support them with many imputations, facts not in evidence, and pretentious new argumentation. It is quite simple. Thank you Sheik 'Nuf said, prince of the endlessly expanding crappy desert.

Answer #216 directly. Identify your ventriloquist or support your assertions of fact. Say it explicitly and do actual work. I want to know if Professor Popgun is conflating a "mens rea" concept with a permissible defense concept and where that is in the UCMJ. I want the consequentialist vs. deontological ground together, as it often is these cases of "hard" law. The guesses, accurate or not, of a self-confessed ignoramus mean nothing. When stupid people predict who's going to win, so what? If only we were stupid and prescient and even a blind squirrel gets . . . and so forth.

Look, there's lots of highly objectionable crap within your #217 and I've probably wasted lots of time making a record for future reference. You can be unloaded on in due course. But that's after you answer #216 directly and we'll cover the three issues that also arose from your #209 which I promised and then we get to my 10 numbered issues of #153.

I will say this. #217 was a sweet trick and I, grudgingly, respect low cunning. You're quite wrong and I'm going to thump you in detail in due course, but the #217 solution to the deep hole you're in was somewhat clever. And, it would be better if any third party who's fool enough to read this stuff got a "de novo" start. But I'm strongly advantaged here and you're in a deep hole that will get deeper. If I saw you as an honest interlocutor or even an interesting person it would be different. But you're so desperate and foolish that you think a minor spelling error of a Latinate word is important to you and to my level of erudition. You wouldn't have noticed it without Goggling it and since it was spelled correctly in earlier posts, this just makes you look lazy and bungling and flummoxed.
218 posted on 11/25/2004 10:46:52 AM PST by namvetcav
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 217 | View Replies]

To: writer33

Unfortunate title to a fine essay.


219 posted on 11/25/2004 10:49:45 AM PST by Barlowmaker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: namvetcav

Unlike you, I don't hang around the boards 24/7. This is the first time I've seen your Thanksgiving Day rant.

Your claim that I have hijacked the '98 vanilla Freeper's identity doesn't merit a serious response. What conceivable "evidence" could I offer to "prove" I am the same person who posted 30 innocuous posts over the past 6 years? More importantly, of what conceivable relevance is this? Why is it so hard for you to focus on the merits of my argument as opposed to insisting on volley after volley of ad hominem attacks. Let's pretend you have proven beyond all reasonable doubt that I am "a ventriloquist's dummy, self-confessed ignoramus and I would add without fear of contradiction, a weaselly twerp." This would be quite irrelevant to ascertaining whether my argument has merit or not. In that regard, it is notable that your bloviating response contains not even one single SUBSTANTIVE reply to my 7 points.

The same observation can be made about your obsession to identify my West Point professor. I have gone back to NPR to see if I can locate the audio file so you can listen for yourself, but unfortunately cannot find it. So I'm not in a position to tell you who the individual was by name. I concur that in his case, knowing his identity could potentially be useful in ascertaining his credibility in the sense that we could look at his vita and see whether he's a learned scholar in the matters he discussed in NPR or whether he instead is weighing in on matters far from his own area of expertise. I am a professor in a top-10 university, but that confers zero weight on my assertions regarding UCMJ because I don't pretend to have developed any well-known or longstanding expertise in these matters.
Moreover, even if the West Point professor were a leading expert on UCMJ doesn't make him infallible, which is exactly the point of the vericundiam fallacy. Moreover he and I both concede that the tape is only one piece of evidence. Were this to go to a court martial, there would be lots of other evidence introduced, including presumably testimony of his peers who were in the same room at the same time and could testify to circumstances and conditions not visible on the tape etc. as well as testimony of the marine himself as to his own perceptions and concerns at the time of the incident. So we're all entitled to our own speculations about how this might play out, but it has to be within the confines of what the UCMJ. So if a poster claimed that the marine in question had a horrific childhood with a history of abuse and that this could be offered as a defense for his actions, I hope we can all agree this would be a ludicrous claim and not worthy of serious discussion.

I have made a single factual claim about the UCMJ: that it does not permit "might have done" defenses. This factual claim remains undisputed by you or anyone else. Instead, you have launched into a diatribe about how awful it would be if this marine were convicted and about how I have stolen my ideas from someone else and ain't that a shame, yada, yada, yada. Complete irrelevancies: it doesn't matter whether I arrived at my conclusion about UCMJ through years of my own study, through years of serving as a JAG, by hearing it from a WP professor or reading it in People magazine. My claim, on its merits, is either true or false.

So instead of wasting bandwidth on shotgun volleys of ad hominem attacks against me or the unknown WP professor, why not focus on a SUBSTANTIVE response to that simple question. Don't trot out gross generalities about how UCMJ wasn't designed to get our men killed. Please either refute my specific claim: UCMJ DOES alllow "might have done" defenses and cite your source, or alternatively, explain how it doesn't apply in this specific instance etc.

Here is my reference to the Geneva Convention rules regarding wounded combatants:
each Party to the conflict shall be bound to apply, as a minimum, the following provisions: (1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria. To this end, the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons: (a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture; (b) taking of hostages; (c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment; (d) the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgement pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples. (2) The wounded and sick shall be collected and cared for. An impartial humanitarian body, such as the International Committee of the Red Cross, may offer its services to the Parties to the conflict.
http://www.genevaconventions.org/


220 posted on 11/28/2004 11:32:53 AM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 218 | View Replies]

To: DrC
Finally you've done a little work. #220 contains lots of extraneous crap but at least we can proceed on the first issues.

And how thin you've now become. We'll pretend that the fat, sweaty troll who stumbled onto this thread at #16 is gone and so let's engage your debatin' fantasy. You get to assert something you assert to be important and I have to show the initial assertion is wrong. The importance (relevance) is a priori and you make no case other than the bald assertion of relevance. I'll indulge your "big diet" fantasy.

In civilian criminal law it is problematic that the preclusion of a defense as "impermissible" would have a grave impact on the the chances of conviction. How does one show that gravity in the absence of a display of analytical acumen? Has actual preclusion saved the jury from contamination? Could sharp lawyering get around preclusion? There's the stuff of endless legal stories, TV and literature. In courts-martial, the officer judges are in the jury and are contaminated by ruling against the impermissible defense but we simply assume the unringing of the bell, as well we should. However, whether a specific court-martial expressly convicts because a specifically proposed, speculatively posited defense is problematically thought impermissible is absurdly overreaching for any amateur or even a legal nitwit. Even cable news lawyers are seldom stupid enough to say, "He can't use the no-pants defense, now he's toast."

But what is the "might have done" defense? It is a straw man. It is also a calumny on our heroic Marine who should be supported now that the republic is at war and asking so much of him and in the fog of war, we are oblig . . . (true, I somewhat mock the reflexive supporters here but watch your step. If I pinged you up on one of the 98% O'Reilly poll threads, the pajamahadeen would be using your head for polo.)

In any case, "might have done" is straw man stuff. That's all you attribute to him and that's the big caps key thing between him and conviction at #16 and if convicted, Freepers couldn't bellyache about it. That's not even a nice try.

Without your "fatness" or Professor Popgun's flesh, you only say that our Marine can't claim he's King John prior to Runnymede. Before Magna Carta, John could kill anybody on his word alone. You are simply putting the words of a fool in the mouths of his problematically required lawyers. Killing folks for what they "might have done" hasn't been a reasonable defense since 1215 and even then it only worked for the absolute ruler under some interpretation of our legal system. Excluding this "defense" attacks a pathetically constructed straw man.

You need to flesh yourself out here. You need to hammer Tibbets for dropping that A-bomb on Hiroshima, unhanding him for that "might have done" defense. You need to publish "might of done" and your anti-Dreyfus work, although that would be Napoleonic law. But without being the slightest bit fat, it is tough to have weight around here.

So that leaves the nasty personal aspect of this. Who the hell are you? Up until #220, you were so lazy . . . . It's hard to believe. You claim you're a way above average professor. You write notes for a living. This is the best you can communicate?

Your life here depends on your status as a '98 Freeper. This board is not evenhanded. Without your status and posting history, you would have been flamed into oblivion after your insanely presumptuous post at #97.

From the jump, as they say, you had the troll stink all over you without your status. What moron poseur would call the UCMJ the "US Military Code of Justice" and then scream in douche bag caps that it's going to screw over a combat Marine? Anyone living under it or a person of legal standing would never make the blunder. It's "indefensible" to make excuses for him if he's convicted, says DrC Emile Zola, some extreme low poster, NC shallow pub, boastful gambler, naive kill stat interventionist (kinda' you best quality), knows med bureaucracy and econ 101 maybe, etc. Who you are matters. That's why things are set up this way.

You want an "evenhanded" debate when you're an uneducated dummy on this subject and the subject infuriates the main constituency of this board. You've come to the wrong place. But I promised I'd indulge you if you and if you want more, I can supply it.

Your posting over this thread is shameful. I'm only an accountant who took the GI Bill for an MBA after Nam. You write notes for a damn living. You forced me to slug you in the head about 50 times before you actually did any work at all figuring you could weasel yourself out of anything. Well, good luck.

Last, three days/I'm a 24/7 hang-out canard -
I see response time as an optimization problem of punctilio vs. insouciance. I see your view as typically shallow or sloppy. But you did do some work so you can be proud of something.
221 posted on 12/01/2004 10:27:08 AM PST by namvetcav
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 220 | View Replies]

To: namvetcav

I'm not a troll. I don't care to have my IP address publicized, but am happy to authorize the moderator to confirm that my posts on this thread came from the identical IP address as all my posts going back to 1998. I don't know how else to "prove" I have not hijacked DrC's screen name. This line of argument is all a red herring since whether I am a troll or not, my argument can be evaluated on its merits.

As for my original post, I really was trying to make a very simple point--one that you mistakenly inflated all out of proportion into an attack on the marines, America, apple pie and motherhood. The professor made 2 assertions that were "news" to me: my deepest apologies for never having served in the military and not knowing this stuff "first hand." Do I get brownie points for my Dad having attended West Point? In any case, what the video shows is no obvious movement by the victim. Hence, the question on the table was under what circumstances could the shooting be justified? The professor pointed out that "mercy killings" are not allowed. I did not raise this point in my post because it wasn't relevant. I was reacting to a specific poster who, in my estimation (notwithstanding your claim that it is a strawman defense) was actually invoking the "might have done it" defense. And to that poster, I merely reported the second thing I'd learned from the WP professor, namely that such defenses are not allowed. The marine in question has to demonstrate that in his judgment this victim posed an actual as opposed to hypothetical threat to him or the other soldiers present. As I indicated earlier, had the victim reached beneath his blanket--even if it later turned out he had no weapon beneath--that action alone would have justified the shooting. But absent that, my understanding of how the code is applied [COMPLETELY derivative from a WP professor!], "he coulda done this" or "he coulda done that" won't be sufficient to convince a fair-minded military panel against conviction.

Again, this may not be "news" to you or anyone with experience in this area, but since not everyone here has had the benefit of your experience, including the poster who was offering up the "might have done" defense to defend this marine's actions, I thought my post was a reasonable contribution to the discussion.

The underlying premise of my argument was that the military justice system was fair and could indeed be counted upon to ignore inappropriate defenses even if the lawyer defending the marine offered them. That may be naive in the extreme from where you sit, but it's a conclusion I drew from observing how Abu Graib was handled--reasonably swift, no-nonsense justice without any effort to "rally round the marines" who admittedly are in a tough fight over there. The military has high standards of conduct that were upheld at Abu Graib and I expect an equally principled decision in the case of this marine.

If I understand your position correctly, it is literally impossible to expect a conviction of this marine. I, on the other hand, believe the odds favor his conviction but acknowledge the possibility of an acquittal based on evidence not visible on the tape. I'll leave it for readers to decide which is the more defensible position. I personally am quite content to let the investigation play and see which one of us is right in our predictions.


222 posted on 12/01/2004 12:05:22 PM PST by DrC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 221 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-5051-100101-150151-200201-222 last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson