CC, I don't disagree with you generally. The problem, to me, is figuring out, first, what the who the evils are, and then how to best deal with them. I remember reading some time back about how predator drones were being deployed from a site in Las Vegas, Nevada. It bothered me that war has become so far removed from the physical elements of man to man combat that people, including, sometimes, innocent civilians, could be targeted and killed from a great distance as if the people doing it were playing a video game. It desensitives and trivilalizes the fact that people are being killed. ON the one hand, I can't see how, with the weaponry we have today, that we can go backwards, but when does one decide that there is disproportionate military force? The UN, last year, said that the use of predator drones violates international law.
Heyns, a South African law professor, told the meeting: "Are we to accept major changes to the international legal system which has been in existence since world war two and survived nuclear threats?"
Some states, he added, "find targeted killings immensely attractive. Others may do so in future … Current targeting practices weaken the rule of law. Killings may be lawful in an armed conflict [such as Afghanistan] but many targeted killings take place far from areas where it's recognised as being an armed conflict."
If it is true, he said, that "there have been secondary drone strikes on rescuers who are helping (the injured) after an initial drone attack, those further attacks are a war crime".
Heyns ridiculed the US suggestion that targeted UAV strikes on al-Qaida or allied groups were a legitimate response to the 9/11 attacks. "It's difficult to see how any killings carried out in 2012 can be justified as in response to [events] in 2001," he said. "Some states seem to want to invent new laws to justify new practices.
"The targeting is often operated by intelligence agencies which fall outside the scope of accountability. The term 'targeted killing' is wrong because it suggests little violence has occurred. The collateral damage may be less than aerial bombardment, but because they eliminate the risk to soldiers they can be used more often."
Heyns told the Guardian later that his future inquiries are likely to include the question of whether other countries, such as the UK, share intelligence with the US that could be used for selecting individuals as targets. A legal case has already been lodged in London over the UK's alleged role in the deaths of British citizens and others as a consequence of US drone strikes in Pakistan.
“Israeli forces have brazenly flouted the laws of war by carrying out a series of attacks on civilian homes, displaying callous indifference to the carnage caused,” said Philip Luther, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Amnesty International. “Even if a fighter had been present in one of these residential homes, it would not absolve Israel of its obligation to take every feasible precaution to protect the lives of civilians caught up in the fighting.”
The report contains numerous accounts from survivors describing frantically digging through the rubble and dust of their destroyed homes in search of the bodies of children and loved ones.
I do want to see evil people or systems brought to Justice. As Peter said in some other post, I can't think of any circumstance in which Hitler ruling the world would be acceptable, and yet we have, right now, instances of the same types of man's inhumanity to man going on and the US doesn't step in. If the United States, with the agreement of the ones ruling this country, ie, the 3 branches of government, wants to spend time examining the issues, and building alliances so it doesn't look like we do it unilaterally, AND if we can possibly do it without the sanitized use of unmanned weapons, I'd rather see that. IF Congress had seen a need to do this before, that's actually their constitutional right and duty as war powers reside with them; of course this didn't start with President Obama, but, for example, Bush did this before him. I'm not a fan of Rand Paul but I agree with him in this instance.
Paul is not saying military action against ISIS is unjustified, he states the exact opposite, in fact. But it’s the process through which it is being conducted that troubles him. He sees it as a separation of powers issues and encourages his fellow senators and representatives, particularly conservatives, to reclaim the power to make war, explicitly given them by the Constitution.
Laws only work if the majority abides by them. Furthermore, with the advent of terrorists, the laws are often antiquated and don't work well for the majority. Terrorists don't follow International laws, nor any laws in general.
And when the laws protect the terrorists, they need to be changed.
I've mentioned this before, that the Legislature changed or amended the Constitution after 911, giving the President, "Dubya" Bush at the time, to do whatever was necessary and thereby circumventing Congress to send troops and/or start military action. To my knowledge, the Consitution never reverted back to what it was and so now Obama has that power as well and any future President also. It needs to be reinstated that Congress only shall declare war, send troops, etc.
What bothers me about this, as I know it does you, is that I don't think the power to do war ought to be with the president, and that the founders explicitly gave war powers to Congress figuring there were so many people involved, lots of discussion, points of view and no rush to war. I feel like Congress doesn't want the responsibility and is shirking their duties. The founders didn't want a monorchy, though, and that AUMF is a blank check.
In addition, Congress doesn't do anything for the American people. If they ever decide to do something it's for their wealthy special interests. The majority of Americans are not being protected by the people whose job is to do exactly that.... to honor the Constitution and protect American citizens. It's called a "do-nothing" Congress for a good reason.
New poster comments are moderated,
meaning they won't show up until approved... or not. Be patient-we
have lives outside this blog, so it might take awhile You want to be rude?
totally stupid? inappropriate? Racist? Bigoted? Flame war baiter? Your
post may be deleted. Spammers or people posting pretend interest comments
but really wanting to hawk their latest book or sell stuff or govt
propaganda flacks won't see their posts published. Comments do not
necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the site owner(salon).
If you have a problem with logging in or registering, please speak up
right away. Love your comments. Oh, except spammersMore on commenting