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QUOTATION: People often say that, in a democracy, decisions are made by a majority of the people. Of course, that is not true. Decisions are made by a majority of those who make themselves heard and who vote - a very different thing. - Walter H. Judd
2004-06-17 - 1:11 p.m.
Exempt from War Crimes? Why?
by Joan Callaway
"UNITED NATIONS - Defying the United States, Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged the U.N. Security Council on Thursday to stop shielding American peacekeepers from international prosecution for war crimes.
Annan cited the U.S. prisoner abuse scandal in Iraq in opposing a U.S. resolution calling for the blanket exemption for a third straight year.
The United States introduced the resolution last month but has delayed calling for a vote. Despite intensive lobbying, Washington doesn't have the minimum nine "yes" votes on the 15-member council to approve a new exemption, council diplomats said.
The current exemption expires June 30."
What are war crimes? Are we not talking about atrocities, abhorrent behavior -- such as mistreating prisoners of war?
I've always thought the United States was above "war crimes"...that we are better than that, more humane, more compassionate. That's why we were all so appalled at the acts against the prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the beheading of a U.S. citizen by the insurgents. War crimes are something that we in America have always abhorred.
I've heard a lot of talk from President Bush, V.P. Dick Cheney, and Rumsfeld about "rule of law", the value of human dignity and life...but now I read that our government is asking for a "blanket exemption" for the third straight year. How naive of me?
I'm not only naive, I guess...I'm appalled. American peacekeepers...? This request for "blanket exemption" doesn't read that way to me. Why, if we believe in and adhere to the rule of law are we asking for a special dispensation so that we can commit war crimes with impunity for the third straight year under the guise of
Who can help me to understand?
[I know, Bev. You keep warning me about trying to be logical with politics. I'll try.]