Constant's pations

If it's more than 30 minutes old, it's not news. It's a blog.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Domestic Rendition: The excuses make no sense

If you want to read some interestingly absurd excuses why domestic rendition "is not occurring", you're in the right place.

Take a look at the A3 letter. [ Click 02 Mar 2006 12:20:49 -0500 ]

Notice the problems with the comments.

The first problem is the White House waffling on whether the detainees at the black sites are or are not subject to the laws of war.

Small problem: The laws of war apply to US personnel -- in how they treat people -- regardless the "status" of the detainee. [More about that later, toward the end]

Inconsistent arguments destroy White House Credibility and Legal Foundation

It doesn't matter what the White House says after this point -- the problem the White House is that they've contradicted themselves. Notice the White House has argued for and against the applicability of "laws of war" to "detainees":

Pro: White House Argument for laws of war being applicable

The White House argued that the ICRC, not the UN, should monitor the detainees.

Con: White House Argument against laws of war being applicable

The White House argues that the ICRC cannot get access to Eastern Europe.

Adverse Judgements: Conflicting Arguments Cancel Eachother

The White House refuses to cooperate with lawful inquiry. We can make adverse judgements.

It doesn't matter what the White House says. They've proven that they're inconsistent. The issue of whether someone -- the detainees -- is or isn't "subject" to the protocols is irrelevant.

The issue is whether the US laws -- which ban this conduct by US personnel -- will be enforced.

The entire ruse has been to shift attention from [a] whether the US personnel in the CIA are or are not subject to US laws prohibiting torture; to [b] whether the detainees are or are not covered.

The White House argues that the "international laws apply" so the "ICRC, not the UN" should be relied upon as a source of information about the detainees.

The White House ruse is well known.

The war crimes by the American CIA, DoD, Joint Staff, NSC, NSA, and White House are well known. You cannot credibly justify the misconduct by personnel who are prohibited from doing this. It doesn't matter what the White House excuses are -- they have asserted a "defense" that is at odds with their justification for the mistreatment.

Article 136 of the UCMJ requires that the treatment, trials, and tribunals have to be consistent with the US District court. That is the law. The President may not make tribunals that ignore this requirement. Period.

It doesn't matter what "international law" says about the "disposition" of combatants. International is clear on how US military personnel shall threat people: Humanely. Period.

It has not been proven that the detainees are or are not related to any war. Rather, it appears the opposite: Despite no evidence, the US continues to torture people. That is a violation of the laws of war. Period.

The "utility" of the law is that it governs behavior. Those nations which violate the laws of war lawfully subject their civilian population to lawful retaliation by those engaged in combat. Translation: once the US violated the laws of war related to treatment of people, the "enemy" [however you describe it] are not longer constrained by those provisions the US ignores. Period.

Congratulations, the American "leadership" has effectively argued that it is "appropriate" that their civilian populations be lawfully retaliated against using torture. That is a legitimacy issue for the RNC to explain in a war crimes trial, not one that is "debatable" in the blogosphere.

The only thing the White House and RNC can proffer is legal non-sense. They are in violation of the laws. They are not legitimately waging war. They are outlaws. They are in rebellion against the Geneva Convention.

There needs to be war crimes trial holding the White House Staff, Joint Staff, NSA, NSC, and RNC leadership to account for alleged crimes against humanity. The issue isn't the detainee; the issue is whether Americans will or will not assent to the rule of law.

American civilians can be tried for war crimes under the UCMJ and military tribunals.

* * *

To ask that we "Debate" a "lawful way" to render people asks us to do what the APA does: How to "ethically" support torture. It's impossible. [ Read more ]