Saturday, October 07, 2006

Geneva Say What?

It's always refreshing to know that you're paying fifty thousand dollars a year (loan indebtedness, right, I'm not actually paying it) for some supposed expert to show you that you had more expertise in his field when you were four years old. Are everyday English words really tough to understand? They must be for law professors. Recently I was told that George W. Bush and Republicans in the Senate were fundamentally changing the way justice works in this country, and were altering the Geneva Convention.

I'm a curious guy, and I've been reading for over twenty years, so I thought I'd go ahead and read the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War. I mean, I'd feel silly arguing about something I didn't know, and I don't want to be stupid; I want to be smart, like my professor.

Here's the relevant document, and I must give deserved props to Yale for this "Avalon Project" thing, which is a goldmine of information. Apparently really, really smart liberals are capable of doing good (or at least useful) stuff occasionally?! Who knew?

Anyway, check out Article 4. I don't want to go point-by-point on this, since I'm not getting a grade for this blog entry, nor am I able to bill for the time spent on it. I may go in depth at a future point if this hysteria over torture continues to be annoying. Just notice that the terrorist "insurgents" currently enjoying the hospitality of a warm bed in Gitmo are not actually prisoners of war, as defined by the Convention. Saying that the Convention ought to apply to these people is not simply reading and interpretation, but a speculative vision of what a future convention should delineate.

Let me clarify that: if you think the terrorists are prisoners of war, you are actually the one trying to change/get us out of the Geneva Conventions. What Geneva does say is at issue; what Geneva should say, or someone wants Geneva to say, or wishes Geneva had said, or wants a future treaty to say, is fantasy, and requiring that the President of the United States entertain fantasy and hold himself to the strictures of a doctrine that has not been approved by any international body nor legislature of this country, is bizarre to say the least. Implying that George W. Bush is somehow failing the intent of Geneva and abusing human rights, if that implication is grounded in this false interpretation of the definition of "prisoner of war," is intellectually dishonest.

I really dislike having to fork over massive sums of money to intellectually dishonest partisans so they can treat me like a person so naive I can't see through this insanity.

Again, for someone who supports Geneva, he sure doesn't seem to like the text of it.


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