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Due Process and Guantanamo

  1. Jun 5, 2007 #1

    Astronuc

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    Military Judges Dismiss Charges for 2 Detainees
    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/05/world/americas/05gitmo.html
    Will wonders never cease? Some of my faith is restored.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 5, 2007 #2

    chemisttree

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    Apparently the law was written to allow the military tribunals to hear the cases for "unlawful enemy combatants" only. In Congress' rush to enact some legislation to deal with the detainees, the language was imprecise. The military tribunal did not prove that the combatants were 'unlawful'. I predict that the law will be rewritten in the near future.

    The best part of this story, "The surprise decisions do not spell freedom for the detainees."

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19044292/
     
  4. Jun 5, 2007 #3
    I wonder what the military definition of an unlawful enemy combatant is??
     
  5. Jun 5, 2007 #4

    chemisttree

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    'Unlawful Combatant'...If there even is such a thing. Perhaps they meant out of uniform combatants.
     
  6. Jun 5, 2007 #5

    BobG

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    The Geneva Convention doesn't have a term, "unlawuful combatants", but it does specify what type of combatants have POW status when captured, as well as what to do with those that aren't automatically granted POW status:

    The detainees have to face one tribunal to determine their status and then, if they are found to be unlawful combatants, can undergo another trial for war crimes, etc.

    The exception is mercenaries and children. Mercenaries are denied POW status by Article 47, Protocol I of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. Additionally, the use of mercenaries was banned by the United Nations by resolution 44/34, the International Convention against the Recruitment, Use, Financing and Training of Mercenaries. Using children under the age of 15 was also banned in 1989 by the UN's Article 38, meaning they can never be lawful combatants or POWs (theoretically, something else will be done with children besides try them as war criminals, but I don't think the UN ever specified what to do with child warriors).
     
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