Thursday, July 12, 2007

Fuck 'em!

From Alberto Gonzales' Memorandum to the President, 25 January 2002, entitled "Decision re Application of the Geneva Convention on Prisoners of War to the Conflict with Al Qaeda and the Taliban"

...the war against terrorism is a new kind of war...In my judgment, this new paradigm renders obsolete Geneva's strict limitations on questioning of enemy prisoners...[A] determination that GPW [Geneva Convention III on the Treatment of Prisoners of War] does not apply to al Qaeda and the Taliban elminates any argument regarding the need for case-by-case determinations of POW status." Two advantages to denying POW status to al Qaeda and Taliban detainees: "some of the language of the GPW is undefined (it prohibits, for example, 'outrages upon personal dignity' and 'inhuman treatment'), and it is difficult to predict with confidence what actions might be deemed to constitute violations of the relevant provisions of GPW." And: " is difficult to predict the needs and circumstances that could arise in the course of the war on terrorism.