Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Wednesday | March 26, 2003

Time to kill the Geneva Conventions

It's clear that both sides have dragged the Geneva Conventions through the mud, and it's time to acknowledge that neither side gives them much heed.

The latest US violation is the bombing of Iraqi television in an attempt to stiffle Saddam's propaganda efforts.

Iraq has its own long litany of violations, including perhaps the unconfirmed executions of surrendering US troops. And has the Red Cross gotten access to the US POWs yet?

The whining about the conventions is getting tiresome, and seriously, they have been ignored by all sides in just about every conflict since the things were drafted.

War is messy business, not easily subject to "rules". And given the crucial role of propaganda in modern conflicts, it's clear that taking out Baghdad television was a sound military act, as was parading US POW's on air. I can't find fault in either act, regardless of what the Geneva Conventions might say.

The attempt to "civilize" war may have been noble, but ultimately futile. There's nothing civilized about people killing people.

Update: There's lots of concern in the comments about torture of POWs. We already have an international convention against torture (read it here). That should help protect such POWs under international law. Violating these rules are Crimes Against Humanity, and can be fully enforced post-conflict.

Posted March 26, 2003 08:35 AM | Comments (82)


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