A Whole New Ball Game

There have been some shakeups in some conflicts going on around the world. The United States has announced that in Iraq, there will be a lot fewer “arrests” of “militants” in the future. From now on, if thy catch anyone attacking coalition forces or civilians, they will not be “detained” or “restrained,” but summarily executed on the spot. This is intended to discourage further attacks.

And in Israel, the IDF now says that they are recognizing Hamas “militants” as active combatants and will kill them on sight. Further, if these militants insist on hiding behind civilians, Israel will not be deterred from attacking and the blame should fall on Hamas itself.

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My mistake. Neither the US nor Israel made such announcements. But under the Geneva Convention Treaties on war, both actions would be perfectly legal and justified.

Remember the classic photo from the Viet Nam war, with the man getting shot in the head with a pistol? The shooter was the chief of police. The man being shot was a North Vietnamese officer who had been captured in civilian clothing. The chief had the legal option of summarily executing the spy, and did so. Yes, it was ugly and brutal and violent. It was also perfectly legitimate.

Back when we were bombing Iraq, there was a huge stink about the “human shields” who went to Iraq to “defend” hospitals, schools, and other such places. Naturally, Saddam stuck them in command facilities, bunkers, weapons depots, airbases, and the like, but that didn’t diminish their “humanitarian concerns.” Had any of them actually been killed by coalition bombs, Saddam could have been tried for their deaths.

Perhaps the US and Israel should consider these moves in the war against terror. A few brutal deaths now might head off a lot more deaths later.


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  1. Larry March 31, 2004
  2. Rodney Dill March 31, 2004
  3. Boyd March 31, 2004
  4. capt joe April 1, 2004