Sunday, September 24, 2006

Geneva Convention Article 3 & Protecting America

I feel compelled to provide some facts regarding the Geneva Convention, as many Republican Senators are reinterpreting what Article 3 of the Convention states. Here it is:

Art 3. In the case of armed conflict not of an international character occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties, 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 judgment 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.

I have underlined very clear words above that are to guide nations in enforcing this International agreement we signed to uphold as well. You should also notice that the word "minimum" is used in the beginning. It means this is the minimum treatment that is allowed, not just a guideline in some situations.

We cannot allow the only person that can define what is torture or a violation of the Geneva Convention to be President Bush or any future President. The point of the Supreme Court Ruling was to tell the President he could not continue to treat prisoners this way. Trying to get the law changed and made retroactive is not morally ethical. Nor does it protect America, as this President and this Administration have much to be held accountable for. If we aren't going to have the courage as a nation of free people to stand up on this issue and shake the very core of this democracy as we did during the Vietnam War and when we marched against Civil Rights abuses, then when in God are we? Where is your voice? Contact your Senators and Congressmen and voice your concern. The time is now to raise your voice, not just in 2008 when we are afforded the opportunity to vote for a new President.

If you think I am totally out to lunch on my comments about President Bush, I offer you this piece written by Keith Olbermann of MSNBC on Friday. Click here. We have much to fear with this Presdient and this Administration and we had better start speaking out before our voices are silenced altogether.


Blogger Charlie said...

I wanted to vote in your 2008 poll, but the candidate that I want to see run wasn't listed. My vote is for Chuck Hagel in 2008.

10:07 PM  

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