Isn’t It Time To Dump The Geneva Convention?
The New York Times is rambling on about the Bush Administration and the Geneva Convention today:
In January 2002, when the Bush administration created the camp at Guantánamo Bay for prisoners from the war in Afghanistan, President Bush said he would be “adhering to the spirit of the Geneva Convention” in handling the detainees.
Unfortunately, like many of the things the administration said about Guantánamo Bay, this was not true. The president did not intend to follow the Geneva Conventions, and in some vital respects, he still doesn’t, despite a Supreme Court ruling that the prisoners merit those protections.
To everyone’s relief, the White House is now working with Congress on one major violation of the conventions found by the court — the military tribunals Mr. Bush invented for Guantánamo Bay. But the president remains determined to have his way on the other big issue — how jailers treat prisoners.
He wants Congress to make the United States the first country to repudiate the language of the Geneva Conventions. The only discernible reason is to allow interrogators — intelligence agents and private contractors — to continue abusive practices plainly banned by the conventions and to make sure they cannot be held accountable.
…This standard has been followed for more than a half-century by almost 190 countries, including the United States. 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.
The rational response to the court’s decision would be to ban those practices and bring America in line with the rest of the civilized world. But that’s not how this administration works. It asked Congress to change the law — to amend the War Crimes Act to redefine the standards of Common Article 3.”
This editorial by the Times just illustrates how ludicrous the debate over the war has gotten.
The Geneva Convention went into affect after World War 2 and the United States has never fought a country that has abided by them, nor are we likely to do so in the future.
Meanwhile, we’re wringing our hands over whether it’s proper to make them do a few jumping jacks and/or make them sit in a cold room as an interrogation technique? Heck, the New York Times doesn’t even want us force feeding the prisoners to keep them from starving to death during a hunger strike.
What benefit do we gain from handcuffing ourselves with these silly and archaic rules when we’re fighting against enemies that follow no rules of warfare whatsoever? None! It’s like a boxer continuing to follow Marquis of Queensbury rules when his opponent steps into the ring with a battle axe.
Dump the Geneva Convention and the sooner, the better! Then we can set up our own rules and standards based on the real world, not some pointless, antiquated document, that was obsolete the moment it went into force.
Hat tip to Don Surber for the story.