Royal Marine jailed for murdering Taliban fighter has conviction reduced to manslaughter. - Page 2 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#14791415
Frollein wrote: Terrorists aren't combatants. They are not protected under Geneva and they damn well shouldn't be.

Obviously they are protected by the Geneva Convention.

The Status and Protection of Unlawful Combatants.
1. Introduction
The term ‘unlawful combatant’ became better known during the recent armed conflict in Afghanistan, when the Bush administration announced its decision to classify the captured Taliban soldiers and al-Qaeda fighters as unlawful combatants and, as a consequence, to deny them prisoner-of-war status.* This has provoked a heated debate over the exact status and protection of such persons. In view of the current security situation around the world, it has been asserted ever more frequently that unlawful combatants are not entitled to any protection whatsoever under international humanitarian law. These statements are clouded in emotional rhetoric and are also dangerous, as they lead to a situation where certain persons in armed conflict are left in a legal vacuum. Yet every person has the fundamental and undeniable right to recognition before the law. It is the general principle of the four Geneva Conventions (1949)* and their two Additional Protocols (1977) that every person in enemy hands must have some status under international law — that of either a prisoner of war or a civilian. There is no intermediate status: nobody in enemy hands can be outside the law. The present article will not discuss whether unlawful combatants should be treated as prisoners of war according to the Third Convention but, instead, will first shed some light on the status of unlawful combatants and then argue that they are protected as civilians under the Fourth Convention.

http://www.juridicainternational.eu/?id=12632
#14791417
Under Geneva, refugees from war and civil war are to be taken in by the neighbouring countries only, not by far away destinations with dozens of safe countries in between, but I don't see you crying over that violation. Seems you invoke Geneva only when it suits you. Basically, no Islamist deserves anything but a bullet between the eyes, considering that they use children as personal shields during battle (like right now in Mossul).
#14791419
layman wrote:I think I grudgingly agree. We need to stick to our higher standards in order to keep acting (being) superior I am afraid.

What "higher standards" are these? British soldiers have committed similar actions in every single war in history. Note the difference in reaction to this "crime" between the politicians and senior officers - who live in a bubble in Whitehall - and actual soldiers on the ground, all of whom rallied around Sgt Blackman.

There are all sorts of documented cases of British and American soldiers killing German soldiers after they had surrendered during the two world wars, and we celebrate those men as the "Greatest Generation". That's without mentioning the firebombing of places like Dresden and Hamburg. The idea that we behave uniquely well during wars is a national self-delusion. Prosecuting Sgt Blackman was a way of soothing that self-perception, rather than being done out of any real concern for justice.
Last edited by Heisenberg on 29 Mar 2017 16:00, edited 1 time in total.
#14791420
Frollein wrote:Under Geneva, refugees from war and civil war are to be taken in by the neighbouring countries only, not by far away destinations with dozens of safe countries in between, but I don't see you crying over that violation. Seems you invoke Geneva only when it suits you. Basically, no Islamist deserves anything but a bullet between the eyes, considering that they use children as personal shields during battle (like right now in Mossul).

You are just stating your opinion which counts for very little. You want it both ways don't you.
Combatants/terrorists are protected by the Geneva Convention and civilians are protected by the Geneva Convention.
#14791429
Heisenberg wrote:There are all sorts of documented cases of British and American soldiers killing German soldiers after they had surrendered during the two world wars, and we celebrate those men as the "Greatest Generation". That's without mentioning the firebombing of places like Dresden and Hamburg.


The UK army of today is internationally regarded as the most professional in the world. Shooting an injured fighter is not professional.

Notice that I said today.
The bombing of Dresden and Hamburg would be considered a war crime if it happened today.
That's progress for you.
#14791432
anarchist23 wrote:Obviously they are protected by the Geneva Convention.

The text you quoted made it clear that your opinion is far from obvious.

This has provoked a heated debate over the exact status and protection of such persons.
#14791448
anarchist23 wrote:You are just stating your opinion which counts for very little. You want it both ways don't you.
Combatants/terrorists are protected by the Geneva Convention and civilians are protected by the Geneva Convention.


Nope, they aren't. The status and treatment of unlawful combatants is still under discussion, precisely because they don't follow any noble rules, and that puts regular combatants in a disadvantage that you can't tolerate if you want to win a war.

Basically, what I said before: if you throw out all the rules for your noble terrorist cause, don't whine if you don't get to enjoy being treated by those rules yourself anymore.
#14791453
Frollein wrote:Nope, they aren't. The status and treatment of unlawful combatants is still under discussion, precisely because they don't follow any noble rules, and that puts regular combatants in a disadvantage that you can't tolerate if you want to win a war.
Basically, what I said before: if you throw out all the rules for your noble terrorist cause, don't whine if you don't get to enjoy being treated by those rules yourself anymore.


A Royal Marine jailed for killing a wounded Taliban fighter in Afghanistan is to be freed within weeks

This is the opening sentence from the OP a BBC article. He is described as a "fighter" not a terrorist.
Are you saying that you know more than the BBC?
#14791459
anarchist23 wrote:The killing of a wounded fighter is against the Geneva Convention.


Just to give everyone some information on this regards. The soldier was convicted of murder which was reduced to manslaughter due to the Geneva Convention. The soldier is still guilty of the fighters death, just diminished responsibility. So you can quote the Geneva convention of you like, but the soldier has the legal right to defend himself to have his sentence reduced just like any other convicted individual. In other words, the Geneva Convention has little relevance in the reduction of the sentences length.
#14791467
anarchist23 wrote:This is the opening sentence from the OP a BBC article. He is described as a "fighter" not a terrorist.
Are you saying that you know more than the BBC?


I know not to call a terrorist a "fighter" or an "activist." And yes, basically everyone knows better than that left-liberal shit station.
#14791470
All these rules are just geopolitical hypocrisy we impose on weaker countries to generate justifications for our actions.

Not only do we not follow the rules but it often wouldn't make sense to. They weren't designed to facilitate some humanitarian slaughter of the enemy, because such a thing cannot exist.

We take people, train them to kill, and point them at the enemy. We cannot then cry hysterical tears when they do it outside of the set of ridiculous rules that we set up.

If we are to embark on mass killing then we shouldn't pretend we are going to be nice and gentlemanly about it.
#14791475
I think that's pretty much spot on, Mike.

I also think it's worth reading into the background to the incident for a bit of context. From the Guardian:

Blackman and his colleagues were in Helmand as part of Operation Herrick 14, which ran from March to October 2011, to help build schools, hospitals and roads and train Afghan forces. But they also had to cope with a determined and motivated enemy and they lost close friends. One man lost a leg in a roadside bomb. It was hung by the Taliban from a tree as a trophy. The troops said they feared that if they were captured they would be skinned alive or beheaded.

Blackman was in charge of command post Omar, a tiny roofless compound with no lock on the back gate. His commanding officer visited twice at most during the six months he was there.

By September, partly because of the number of injuries, the men under Blackman’s command had only one day of rest every two or three weeks. Blackman began to go out on almost every patrol. He was feeling stressed, jaded and paranoid, believing the Taliban were specifically targeting him.

***

Factors taken into account by the judges included:
Blackman had not received full pre-deployment training; he had to take time out of training because of his father’s death.
There was powerful evidence that members of the team under Blackman’s command were always on edge and did not feel safe at night.
CP Omar, where the team was based, was under constant external threat during summer months and difficult to reach safely.
The team had been hardest hit by the insurgents; they were losing ground and were combat-weary.
The team at CP Omar was undermanned; the previous team had numbered 25; the team under the appellant was 16.
The team was required to patrol between five and 10 hours a day over rough ground in heat that was normally over 50C when carrying a minimum of 100lb of equipment. They should not have done morning and evening patrols, but were sometimes required to do this because of the manpower shortage.
The men became physically tired, particularly at times of illness or insurgent activity. Blackman was in particular deprived of sleep.
Ambushes by insurgents and the threat of explosive devices were constant.
The insurgents had inflicted severe casualties and treated dead bodies callously.
Blackman regarded himself as responsible for his troops, particularly those with children (the appellant had none); he therefore undertook more patrols and risks to himself so that his troops could all get home safely.
Blackman regarded himself as easily identifiable and targeted by the insurgents. About a month before the killing two grenades were thrown at the appellant by insurgents while he was talking to Afghan civilians outside the camp. The grenades fell into a nearby drainage ditch which funnelled the blast upwards, saving his life.
The finding of the wounded Taliban fighter with a grenade may have triggered a memory of a recent attack when grenades were thrown at the patrol.
#14791484
@Heisenberg, Thanks for posting that context, it make the decision much more understandable. First as an officer I have to say that it looks as though his chain of command failed him in many ways. This of course added to the stress of combat operations. Prior to having this info I was more inclined towards the previous ruling, now I'm in favor of the manslaughter argument.

The issue I have with incidents like this is that they tend to lead to bigger incidents that prove damaging on the operational and strategic levels. While this incident would have had little or no impact if not for the investigation/media attention it can always lead to something bigger. This is the beginning of discipline breaking down. It's a small step from executing a confirmed enemy to executing a probable enemy, to crimes against civilians. It results in a series of justifications that people use to give themselves little permissions over time.
#14791491
Decky wrote:Do right wing people's lives even count? It was only a Taliban fighter. They are basically the Tories of the middle east.

As well as the Zionists...
Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, has cemented a coalition deal that will usher in the most rightwing nationalist government in the country’s history.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/ ... -lieberman
#14792617
One of my hobbies is making sweeping accusations about how 1/5th of the world's population are literal xenos, alien life forms from beyond the stars, who can't comprehend death and have no concept of their own mortality because every one of them is just an extension of the biomass that is the Islamic hive mind.
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