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[Rant Censored]

Gah! I've decided not to post my latest rant and also editted my earlier 'sucide is an act of war' post.

Some things just really make me mad.

One of them is the misconception that everyone held at Guantanamo Bay is a terrorist. Sure, some probably are, but most were just holding guns pointing the wrong way when their country was invaded!

Also comments saying they are treated  "Better than most citizens in our U.S. prisons. These people think nothing of life. A suicide means nothing to them. If we close the place they win." are indicative to the short-sightedness prevalent in so many areas.

I agree with "You cannot claim to be fighting to uphold principles of freedom and justice around the world while at the same time ignoring international laws and basic human rights. Since these prisons are not adequately controlled from international agents, there is no way to know who committed suicide, who was tortured to death and who was downright executed. After pictures from Abu Ghraib, I don't quite think much of the US calling others "bad". It hardly gets more "bad" than that in my eyes."

But then again I guess my views on the whole situation are fairly well known to anyone I've spoken to or who has read my LJ over the years.

I'm very unlikely to suddenly change my mind about the legality of the Iraq War, the treatment of prisoners of war (don't even get me started on 'enemy combatants') by US Forces and the long term 'good' it will do. The whole situation is not only incredibly divisive within most western 'cultures' but will further alienate many cultures and push more and mroe people into the arms of extremists (on both sides of the fence).

(Quoted comments were taken from the BBC 'Have Your Say' Forums - which I really shouldn't read as there's alwasya few which are generally guaranteed to  wind me up)

Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
mrmmarc
Jun. 11th, 2006 10:10 am (UTC)
You know they HAVE to say it was an act of war.

To say otherwise, to admit one INCH otherwise to to accept that the people in Guantanamo Bay are innocent/being held illegally.

If they are terrorists- then why not simply put them on trial.
We know that every one of the men released from Guantanamo Bay have been innocent.

Trial them or release them.

(le sigh)

Understand your anger bro. Really do.

djonma
Jun. 11th, 2006 10:59 am (UTC)
But they are being held illegaly, no matter what the US might say.
The UN have already declared that.
djonma
Jun. 11th, 2006 10:51 am (UTC)
The problem is, what can the UN do about it?
It all comes down to the fact that the UN is virtually powerless now.

The UN can't exactly invade Guantanamo and release the prisoners.

The UN can't take military action against the US.

All the UN can do is ask the US to close Guantanamo, which they've already done.
The US can just ignore them, which they are doing.
heliograph
Jun. 11th, 2006 03:04 pm (UTC)
One of them is the misconception that everyone held at Guantanamo Bay is a terrorist. Sure, some probably are, but most were just holding guns pointing the wrong way when their country was invaded!

This statement is factually incorrect, unless we invaded a bunch of countries and nobody told me. Here's a list of Guantanamo detainees by nationality. There's one Iraqi on the list.

angusabranson
Jun. 11th, 2006 06:28 pm (UTC)
Quite a few Afghans though.

Also many of the people arrested were, apparently, not in combat situations at the time. Thus if I was in France and Russia invaded I could end up in a Prison/Concentration Camp purely by being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Just because the Russian forces felt I was suspicious.

I'm sure many of the Pakistani's on the list are probably innocent. There was a lot of cross-border pollination between Afghanistan and Pakistan before the Taleban fell (and also since). In tribal lands things such as political borders don't really matter so much. Especially when it's all pretty much just wasteland without any customs points :p

In anycase, regardless of the reasons the 'enemy combatants' are being held in Guantanamo Bay it is against the Geneva Convention and has been critised by almost every other state on the face of the planet (friendly, or unfriendly in US terms) including the United Nations themselves.

The US should either start trying the people there or repatriating them to their native countries.
heliograph
Jun. 11th, 2006 06:59 pm (UTC)
Quite a few Afghans though.

The article says most of the Guantanamo prisoners were captured in Afghanistan. But most of them aren't Afghanis: the biggest slice seems to be Saudis and Yemenites, but the vast majority are not from any countries the US has invaded.

Your original statement indicated you thought the majority were native troops. That isn't the case.

Also many of the people arrested were, apparently, not in combat situations at the time.

This is a leap from what you said before. Where's the new info coming from? They have released prisoners and claimed it was all a misunderstanding (after they'd kept them in prison for two years). More on that below.

I'm sure many of the Pakistani's on the list are probably innocent.

I'm not: I don't have enough information one way or the other to make a blanket statement like that. They have released a fair number.

In anycase, regardless of the reasons the 'enemy combatants' are being held in Guantanamo Bay it is against the Geneva Convention and has been critised by almost every other state on the face of the planet (friendly, or unfriendly in US terms) including the United Nations themselves.

But not your country, right? ;-)

The US should either start trying the people there or repatriating them to their native countries.

I agree: I think we should treat them like criminals, not prisoners of war. I'd like to think that if they'd be processed in an open court system the mistakes would have been found sooner, and actually innocent people wouldn't have been in illegal captivity for two or more years.

If you actually take a look at the facts (there's additional, non-US links in the article I linked to) they actually have repatriated a large chunk of the prisoners. And in many of those cases the native country now has them in local prisons.

There's nothing wrong with passionately arguing your case, but you can make your case more strongly if you back it up with facts instead of feelings, or vague assertions that you would like to be true. Leave truthiness to the Bush administration.

angusabranson
Jun. 11th, 2006 08:09 pm (UTC)
**But not your country, right? ;-)**
The British government has actually called for the camp to be closed, on numerous ocasions. They did so again within the last couple of weeks.

Also in reagrds to the comment I made about being arrested in non-combat situations. That has been recorded in a number of places. Admittedly many have now been repatriated (look at the 'R's on the list you linked to) who were found to be not involved in terrorism but there are, I'm guessing here as no one really has any of the facts about G-Bay, I'm sure other cases of people still being held.

Certainly the British inmates that were held in G-Bay that have been released have given insight into many things that happened there and the conditions are appalling. At the very least the US Government should allow more access to the site to the Red Cross, lawyers and representatives of the governments of the people they are holding.

Can you imagine the uproar if any other country did this? Especially if it was holding US citizens!

One of the major problems I have with the whole thing (human rights aside) is that other countries can now do this sort of thing and try and justify it by saying that the US did it. It has allowed foreign militaries/governments to seize people under the 'enemy combatant' tag and incarerate them without trial or access to health, human rights or their government representatives.

Also in historical context (although I do not believe this to be the case with the current crop of Saudi's, etc, present in Afghanistan) people from all over the Arab world flocked to Afghanistan to help them fight the war against Russia. Osama was one of the leading recruiters in this (backed by US Dollars at the time - as was Saddam for different reasons) and he brought lots of Saudis to Afghanistan.

Also with the strict religious laws in Afghanistan under the Taleban it appealed to alot of the more extreme Muslems as somewhere to go and live. A little bit like Israel appeals to Jews and certain parts of America is beginning to appeal for Evangelists (although neither Israel or America are anywhere near as extreme in their religious codes thank *insert diety here* - although we'll see what Sanata Maria is like when that is founded in Florida! :p).

Anyway, I'm heading back downstairs to watch the second half of the Portugal/Angola match.

Catch ya laters! :)
iamnikchick
Jun. 11th, 2006 03:41 pm (UTC)
Just wanted to reassure you that there are still people over here who see it the same way as you do, even if our government and military leaders pay us no mind or heed our wishes. :(
angusabranson
Jun. 11th, 2006 06:29 pm (UTC)
Oh, don't worry on that score. I know plenty of Americans who despair of the situation you have over there.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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