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What's happening with those poor devils at Camp Xray ???

 
 
Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 12:46 pm
Walter - Thanks for the excellent link!

Here are some key passages from it:
Quote:
All detainees at Guantanamo are being provided: -- three meals a day that meet Muslim dietary laws -- water -- medical care -- clothing and shoes -- shelter -- showers -- soap and toilet articles -- foam sleeping pads and blankets -- towels and washcloths -- the opportunity to worship -- correspondence materials, and the means to send mail -- the ability to receive packages of food and clothing, subject to security screening

The detainees will not be subjected to physical or mental abuse or cruel treatment. The International Committee of the Red Cross has visited and will continue to be able to visit the detainees privately. The detainees will be permitted to raise concerns about their conditions and we will attempt to address those concerns consistent with security.

Housing. We are building facilities in Guantanamo more appropriate for housing the detainees on a long-term basis. The detainees now at Guantanamo are being housed in temporary open-air shelters until these more long-term facilities can be arranged. Their current shelters are reasonable in light of the serious security risk posed by these detainees and the mild climate of Cuba.

POW Privileges the Detainees will not receive. The detainees will receive much of the treatment normally afforded to POWs by the Third Geneva Convention. However, the detainees will not receive some of the specific privileges afforded to POWs, including: -- access to a canteen to purchase food, soap, and tobacco -- a monthly advance of pay -- the ability to have and consult personal financial accounts -- the ability to receive scientific equipment, musical instruments, or sports outfits.

Oh my God! I hadn't realized that they are being denied access to musical instruments! This must be stopped! These are human beings, for God's sake! :wink:

(BTW, there's also an excellent, succinct description of why these folks are not covered by the Geneva Convention found at Walter's link, though the US is in many ways treating them as if they were.)
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steissd
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 12:55 pm
I did not say that it was necessary to mistreat them in any way. I said that this was possible, since they did not conform to definition of POWs. That is all. The U.S. government displayed good will, but it was free not to display it.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:05 pm
Scrat wrote:
Walter - Thanks for the excellent link!


I thought, you knew this, since this is the reason, one of the reasons, of all the international discussions (it's from February LAST year!).
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:18 pm
Scrat wrote:
By the way, I'm still waiting for you to do so. Your citation doesn't do anything to educate me as to WHICH right or rights you claim they have been denied

Basically, I'm claiming that all of the rights I cited have been violated. By "basically" I mean that if you assume that one of these rights hasn't been violated, it follows that another one of them has. At least that's what I'm claiming.

Scrat wrote:
(assuming you provide that information) you have done nothing to show that they remained entitled to that right (those rights) given their status as un-uniformed enemy combatants captured during wartime.


Number one: I posted "that information" to the thread in form of an excerpt. I posted a link to the full text of the document so you can check it for any conspicious omissions I might have made. If that "does nothing to educate" you, what else am I supposed to do? I can post the stuff for you, but I can't read it for you.

Number two: They remained entitled to those rights because Article 2 says that everyone is entitled to them. Certainly the prisoners in Camp X-ray are a subset of "everyone". As you can check by following my above link, the declaration doesn't specify any circumstances under which people forfeit their human rights. Neither does any body of international law, to the best of my knowledge. But proving a negative is usually hard to impossible, and this point is no exception. I haven't read every single international law in existence myself.

May I therefore suggest that you swallow a bit of your own medicine and come up with an international law that does make such exception? Certainly the fact that you "find this notion absurd" doesn't qualify as evidence.

-- Thomas
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Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:25 pm
Quote:
Article 9. No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.

Care to get into defining what is "arbitrary"? Or do you prefer to just keep ignoring the word?
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:32 pm
Article 9. No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:34 pm
steissd wrote:
I did not say that it was necessary to mistreat them in any way. I said that this was possible, since they did not conform to definition of POWs.

They still conform to the definition of humans, therefore they enjoy human rights. These rights include the right to be tried in court, or else go free.

scrat wrote:
Care to get into defining what is "arbitrary"? Or do you prefer to just keep ignoring the word?

Similar point. "Arbitrary" is when you hold someone prisoner for no reason other than that George Bush and Tommy Franks think it's a good idea, and without ever accusing them of a crime.
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Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:42 pm
Thomas - You like to pretend there's no context to these actions, but we both (all) know that's not true.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:48 pm
Scrat wrote:
Thomas - You like to pretend there's no context to these actions, but we both (all) know that's not true.


If we all know it, why couldn't the Pentagon, in 18 months, find a crime to accuse them of, bring them to a court, and have them convicted in a legal way? If they have a case, why are they acting like the military of a banana republic?
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Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:52 pm
Thomas - Once again you want to pretend that this is something it is not. These are not citizens being held on a criminal complaint! Why do you expect them to be treated as something they are not?
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owi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 01:59 pm
If you lead a "war against terrorism" you have to swallow the pill, that when you "imprison terrorists" they have the status of a "prisoner of war".
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Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 02:08 pm
owi - The Geneva Convention--not you or I or GW Bush--defines what is and is not a POW. If you take the time to read it, it is quite clear that those held at Camp X-ray do not qualify based on that agreed-upon international standard. Despite this, the US has treated them in most regards as if they were entitled to that treatment.
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steissd
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 02:12 pm
Owi, you understand well, that the term "war against terrorism" is not to be understood literally; it is arther a set of different actions intended to prevent terror attacks and to dismantle terrorist organization than a "regular" war.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 02:14 pm
Scrat wrote:
Thomas - Once again you want to pretend that this is something it is not. These are not citizens being held on a criminal complaint! Why do you expect them to be treated as something they are not?


I don't. I expect them to be treated as humans who, in the parlance of the declaration, are charged with a penal offense. According to Article 11 (1); "Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence. " These people are not treated as if they were presumed innocent, yet nobody makes an effort to prove them guilty in a public trial, and they do most certainly not have "all the guarantees necessary for his defense".

Moreover, according to article 7, "All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. " This means if it's illegal under American law to imprison Americans for 18 months without a trial, it must be illegal under American law to imprison Afghanis without a trial for 18 months. No matter what their "penal offence" is, and no matter what their status with regard to the war is.

-- Thomas
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Scrat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 02:37 pm
Thomas - I understand that you think of the detainees in a criminal justice context. I can only tell you that it is not accurate to think of them in that way. I'll leave it at that.
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owi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 03:00 pm
scrat-
I think it's not so clear.
Quote:
In any event the starting point is that these prisoners, unless charged with terrorist offences, should be presumed to be prisoners of war. The US authorities' view is that they are "unlawful combatants" and the Geneva Conventions do not apply. America is entitled to make this case. But the issue can only be determined by a court. Article 5 of the Third Geneva Convention provides that should there be doubt as to whether an individual enjoys PoW status, they shall be treated as such until their status has been determined by a competent judicial tribunal.


(Mary Robinson, former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights)
http://vredessite.nl/andernieuws/2002/guantanamo-andernieuws/01-19_robinson.html

steissd-
This is the problem, when you mix things up - were the attacks on sept. 11th a crime or act of war?
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owi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 03:02 pm
here's article 5:

Quote:
Article 5

The present Convention shall apply to the persons referred to in Article 4 from the time they fall into the power of the enemy and until their final release and repatriation.

Should any doubt arise as to whether persons, having committed a belligerent act and having fallen into the hands of the enemy, belong to any of the categories enumerated in Article 4, such persons shall enjoy the protection of the present Convention until such time as their status has been determined by a competent tribunal.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 03:05 pm
Scrat wrote:
Thomas - I understand that you think of the detainees in a criminal justice context. I can only tell you that it is not accurate to think of them in that way. I'll leave it at that.


No, I don't necessarily think of the detainees in a criminal justice context, and neither does the declaration of human rights. To take a somewhat ridiculous counter-example, if the United States regarded enemy combatants as tortious and intended to sue them for damages, that would switch things into the context of civil law. What it wouldn't change is that the combatants have a right to be tried, and to be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Contrary to what you imply, it doesn't matter if the context is criminal justice, civil justice, or any other kind of justice. Whatever the context is, there are rules of due process, and a country can't just ignore them.

Does that make my point clearer?

-- Thomas
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 03:05 pm
Scrat you have still avoided my question,

Under what circumstances do you say the US government have the right to imprison a human being for 18 months without a charge or legal counsel.

Are you saying that the US has the right to do this at will?

Are you saying that the US has no obligation to prove guilt of a crime before they do this.

And incidently, I never said that the Afgan detainee have the same rights as an American teenager.

I am only saying that being imprisoned for 18 months is a big deal.

Imprisoning human beings without proving that they are guilty of a crime is to me unthinkable.

Again, how would you feel being imprisoned away from your framily for a year and a half?

Would the fact that you were fed make you feel any less wronged?
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2003 03:06 pm
Scrat wrote:
Thomas - Once again you want to pretend that this is something it is not. These are not citizens being held on a criminal complaint! Why do you expect them to be treated as something they are not?


I only expect that they be treated as human beings. This is all that the Geneva conventions and Thomas are asking.
0 Replies
 
 

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