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Posted: 2/16/2006 9:03:59 PM EDT
AP (via MSN)
Updated: 10:12 p.m. ET Feb. 16, 2006

ROME - A panel of Italian judges upheld the November acquittals of three North Africans on international terror charges, ruling that recruiting suicide bombers to fight against U.S. soldiers is not terrorism, a lawyer said Thursday.

The verdict by the Milan judges, released Wednesday, echoes an earlier one in the case when a lower court judge ruled the actions of the three men were those of guerrillas, not terrorists.

Government officials condemned the latest ruling. Justice Minister Roberto Castell apologized to the victims of suicide attacks and their relatives, saying “there is in me a great feeling of shame, bitterness and powerlessness.”
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:14:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/17/2006 8:16:51 AM EDT by Manic_Moran]
I note that the court primarily relied on the target being US Soldiers. I think it's right there too: Military personnel are valid targets as long as no conventions are being broken. I don't see anything in the Hague declarations saying it's prohibited to kill yourself while killing enemy military. Wasn't there a Medal of Honor awarded to some pilot in 1942 or so who 'kamikazed' a Japanese warship? Isn't that a suicide attack?

NTM
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:39:28 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:42:04 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:42:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:45:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Jarhead_22:

Originally Posted By Manic_Moran:
I note that the court primarily relied on the target being US Soldiers. I think it's right there too: Military personnel are valid targets as long as no conventions are being broken. I don't see anything in the Hague declarations saying it's prohibited to kill yourself while killing enemy military. Wasn't there a Medal of Honor awarded to some pilot in 1942 or so who 'kamikazed' a Japanese warship? Isn't that a suicide attack?

NTM


There was a declaration of war involved between Japan and the US, and the pilot in question was in the armed forces of a nation-state. Slight difference between that state of affairs and the present case, wouldn't you say?



Big +1

Look up the term "lawful combatant."
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:55:35 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Sylvan:
Are they recruiting Iraqis or are they recruiting North Africans?



They are all the same
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:58:43 AM EDT
Ain't most of the suicide bombing deaths in Iraq are civilians?
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:00:52 AM EDT
A murder is a murder, no matter the lable attached.

Kill them.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:07:57 AM EDT

There was a declaration of war involved between Japan and the US


Was there ever a declaration of war in Vietnam? Korea? Panama? Haiti? Grenada? Anywhere else that we send the US military?

Specious argument.

NTM
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:08:32 AM EDT
The Third Geneva Convention doesn't require someone to be part of the armed forces of a nation state or for their to be a declaration of war to be considered a lawful combatant. They can be part of a militia or insurget group.

From the convention:

"A. Prisoners of war, in the sense of the present Convention, are persons belonging to one of the following categories, who have fallen into the power of the enemy:

1. Members of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict as well as members of militias or volunteer corps forming part of such armed forces.

2. Members of other militias and members of other volunteer corps, including those of organized resistance movements, belonging to a Party to the conflict and operating in or outside their own territory, even if this territory is occupied, provided that such militias or volunteer corps, including such organized resistance movements, fulfil the following conditions:

(a) That of being commanded by a person responsible for his subordinates;

(b) That of having a fixed distinctive sign recognizable at a distance;

(c) That of carrying arms openly;

(d) That of conducting their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.

[...]

6. Inhabitants of a non-occupied territory, who on the approach of the enemy spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading forces, without having had time to form themselves into regular armed units, provided they carry arms openly and respect the laws and customs of war."



However, these people almost certainly violate one or more of these requirements. I have never heard of a suicide bomber openly carrying their bomb. They hide the bombs in vehicles or under clothing and use the trappings of civilians to get close to their target and detonate.

The US pilot mentioned above used his weapon as a suicide bomb, but be bore his arms openly. He was a member of the armed forces of a combatant to the war. He wore a uniform, he was part of a recognised rank structure receiving orders. As he attacked his target with his plane it was known that he was the enemy and the Japanese had the opportunity to openly confront him.


The scum in this article are recruiting people that would violate almost every possible requirement for being a lawful combatant. They violate the only really important requirement which is to carry arms openly and have some sort of mark distinguishing them as a combatant. The way they "fight" marks them as war criminals.

Italy needs to rewrite some laws. In the meantime they should be placed into military custody as POW's since the court has basically recognised them as lawful combatants.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:17:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Manic_Moran:

There was a declaration of war involved between Japan and the US


Was there ever a declaration of war in Vietnam? Korea? Panama? Haiti? Grenada? Anywhere else that we send the US military?

Specious argument.

NTM



You are right that his argument wasn't 100% accurate as to the requirements for being declared a legitimate combatant. On the other hand your position, as stated here ...

I think it's right there too: Military personnel are valid targets as long as no conventions are being broken. I don't see anything in the Hague declarations saying it's prohibited to kill yourself while killing enemy military. Wasn't there a Medal of Honor awarded to some pilot in 1942 or so who 'kamikazed' a Japanese warship? Isn't that a suicide attack?

... is wrong.

Suicide bombing when carried out by people who hide their bombs and dress as civilians breaks the fundamental rules of what a lawful combatant is, since multiple conventions are being broken. I have yet to hear of a single suicide bombing carried out by an "insurgent" clearly marked as such, carrying his bomb openly.

They are not lawful combatants, they are murderers, terrorists, war criminals.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:28:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:35:45 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:53:15 AM EDT
Quite a few years back some Palestinians flew a hang glider (may have technically been an ultra light) at night into an Israeli military base and opened fire. I feel sorry for the Israeli soldiers who were killed, but those Palestinians died as soldiers, not terrorists.

But if those Palestinians had disguised themselves as civilians to get into the base and opened fire they would have been terrorists.

If someone targets civilians for no military purpose other than to kill, or disguises themselves as civilians they are either a spy or a terrorist. And when we catch someone doing this we should follow International law and shoot them.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:55:21 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 10:05:02 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Thuban:
Quite a few years back some Palestinians flew a hang glider (may have technically been an ultra light) at night into an Israeli military base and opened fire. I feel sorry for the Israeli soldiers who were killed, but those Palestinians died as soldiers, not terrorists.

But if those Palestinians had disguised themselves as civilians to get into the base and opened fire they would have been terrorists.

If someone targets civilians for no military purpose other than to kill, or disguises themselves as civilians they are either a spy or a terrorist. And when we catch someone doing this we should follow International law and shoot them.



Were those pali terrorists wearing uniforms when they did that?
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 2:27:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LARRYG:

Originally Posted By Thuban:
Quite a few years back some Palestinians flew a hang glider (may have technically been an ultra light) at night into an Israeli military base and opened fire. I feel sorry for the Israeli soldiers who were killed, but those Palestinians died as soldiers, not terrorists.

But if those Palestinians had disguised themselves as civilians to get into the base and opened fire they would have been terrorists.

If someone targets civilians for no military purpose other than to kill, or disguises themselves as civilians they are either a spy or a terrorist. And when we catch someone doing this we should follow International law and shoot them.



Were those pali terrorists wearing uniforms when they did that?



And I looked on Google but I couldn't find what the Palestinian roundel looked like either.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 6:04:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/17/2006 6:05:16 PM EDT by Manic_Moran]
Maybe I'm a little jaded by being Irish, but Ireland is generally considered the founding location for the concept of the Urban Guerilla (Michael Collins's mob), and we've also had a fair bit of experience of terrorism over the years.

I find the two rather easy to distinguish on the basic nature of the target. Guerillas are fighting a government by targetting the instruments of that government, particularly the security forces. Terrorists fight a government by fighting the citizens of that government, particularly those who are defenseless. How would you distinguish the two? Collins did not wear a uniform (at least, during the War of Independence), and most certainly didn't carry his arms openly.

I wear a uniform, I consider myself a valid target. I don't care how 'underhanded' it may seem to be, but only an idiot would try to fight the US by fighting the US's rules.

NTM
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