Saturday, December 15, 2012

Unlawful Combatant

Terrorists are not criminals; at least not in the sense of bank robbers and car burglars.  They are terrorists, they are soldiers in an unlawful army waging an unlawful war, according to the rules of land warfare, the Geneva Conventions.  In order to be a lawful soldier you have to answer to a lawful government and wear a uniform and fight in the open.

Planting a bomb at a marketplace while wearing civilian clothing, hijacking an airplane while dressed as a passenger and planning a suicide bombing are not the acts of lawful combatants.  The citizenship of the person making the terrorist attack is not relevant.  In WWII many American citizens fought on the side of the Germans.  When they were captured they were treated as POWs initially because they were captured fighting for a lawful armed force, the German Army.

Todays' terrorist does not fight for a lawful army and they don't obey the rules of land warfare.  There is no reason to give them POW protections, it is not required by law.  There is no reason to give them the protections of American citizens who have been accused of a criminal offense, they are not criminals in the domestic sense.  They are unlawful combatants in war and don't deserve the benefits of either being a POW or an accused criminal; that's the view from the Hysterical Right Wing.

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