That British soldier killed in Iraq recently was part of an SAS unit working with US special forces in an operation to neutralise a bomb making facility in a Sunni dominated area North of Baghdad. The right to make bombs for pre-emptive strikes in self-defence is well established: Attorney Generalís Ref (No2 of 1983)  QB 456. Those who seek to intrude on that right in the manner of these soldiers can be killed in self defence: R v Hussey (1924) 18 Crim App R 160 CCA<br><br>The soldiers started by lobbing percussion grenades at the target house but as they moved in they were caught in an ambush and sustained the said fatality and injuries to four of their number but not without ultimately killing their targets and at least 9 civilians including a woman and baby who were shot in cold blood as they ran away. Some of the civilian deaths were caused by US Air Force pilots who bombed one of the neighbouring houses. <br><br>These events are war crimes of course so Iím going to be calling for the survivors to be arrested and put on trial if it hasnít already happened when then get back home. Personally I would favour a Crown Court trial in England in which case we would have to extradite the US contingent but one alternative would be to convene the World Court in Holland which can invoke the relevant treaties. <br><br>Either way, a statement that "the Multi-national Force-Iraq sincerely regrets when civilians are wounded or killed and their families have our heartfelt condolences" will he irrelevant to liability which will turn on the question of intent to kill. As one witness stated: "There were no terrorists. The coalition calls us Iraqis insurgents, terrorist, but it is the coalition who are the terrorists, not us." Thatís about right Iím afraid.<br><br>km<br><br>
Interesting that you failed to quote more of that story:<br><br><blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p>An interpreter called over a tannoy for the men - there were two "targets" - to surrender, or at least to let the women and children come out. There was no reply from inside the house.<br><br>At one stage the coalition forces also threw "flash bangs" - percussion grenades - through the front portico to ensure there was no confusion about which house was being targeted.<br><br>They wanted to make sure that the people inside knew all the shouts from the tannoy weren't meant for next door, giving them every chance to surrender. This is a detail which will become important later on. <br><br>The American officer told me that had happened because the men were using them as cover: "When they came out of the house, the men were in amongst the women, shielding themselves.<br><br>"You don't do that; we would never shield ourselves with women and kids. It is not acceptable but they'll do it, the insurgents will do it, especially the bad ones.<br><br><br>"Preliminary assessment indicates that despite coalition forces' efforts to protect them, several civilians were injured or killed during the ensuing gun battle."<br><p><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>my photos
None of that is relevant for people going about their lawful business. When I sit down with my wife and kids for dinner I don't expect to be shouted at by some idiot with a loud hailer who starts trying to kill me and then accuse me of using my family as a shield. That's just a convenient excuse for war criminals trying to escape responsibility for their actions when what they've done in fact is to reinforce the right of others to take ever more effective measures in self-defence.<br><br>km<br><br>
So, making bombs now is a legal business? <br><br>And, taking your idea that what they are doing is legal (defense etc), why isn't what the coalition did was legal? A pre-emptive strike to reduce the amount of coalition casualties?<br><br>Civilian casualties is a regrettable thing, for sure. But all this could have been avoided had they just come out with their hands up.<br><br><br><br><br><br>my photos
<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr><p> why isn't what the coalition did was legal? A pre-emptive strike to reduce the amount of coalition casualties?<p><hr></blockquote><p> That goes to the crux of the problem as keymaker has pointed out that the entire invasion of the country by coalition forces was illegal. Jumping to an incident within that invasion and saying that the coalition forces are just using yet again a preemptive strike to reduce their own casualties is on the same faulty ground from the day we stepped foot in their country.<br><br>Reverse positions. A foreign invading force in Concord, Massachusetts. Hiding in farm houses and barns and sniping to kill the invading force is heroic. <br><br>
[color:blue]So, making bombs now is a legal business? </font color=blue><br><br>It is on the part of those fearing attack for example by way of summary execution or torture. You're not under any such threat but if you were you would have that right, yes, and I can't think of any reason why you should be expected to give it up. The right is exercisable as a defence to any charge there may be for bomb-making contrary to statute which is why such people have to be brought to trial rather than summarily executed on the spot.<br><br>[color:blue]why isn't what the coalition did was legal?</font color=blue><br><br>By exceeding the UN's mandate for reconstruction with the outrageous illegalities we all know about the coalition have cast themselves as trespassers in Iraq. The right of self defence does not extend to trespassers but only to victims thereof. In such a situation Intentionally shooting, bombing and killing people whether men, women or children is murder contrary to common law. That's why I was recommending a Crown Court trial because the conventional law is adequate for testing the soldiers' guilt or innocence over these events. <br><br>[color:blue]all this could have been avoided had they just come out with their hands up.</font color=blue> <br><br>They had every reason to fear for their lives and put up resistance because of past atrocities and acts of torture on the part of coalition forces. There's no such thing as a free lunch - when you go around executing and torturing people you bestow certain rights of self-protection on others whether you want them to have those rights or not.<br><br>km<br><br>
[color:blue]the entire invasion of the country by coalition forces was illegal</font color=blue> <br><br>That's an important point because it's the fall back position when any subsequent authority falls away. There was an attempt which may even have been technically successful to provide cover for our presence in Iraq with a subsequent UN reconstruction mandate.<br><br>Somehow I don't think that our conduct which has included homicides and torture are within the mandate so we fall back to our prior status - whoops, I thought Blair had got it wrong when he said an invasion mandate wasn't necessary.<br><br>km<br><br>
It boils down to the current McCain policy and rhetoric. "We totally screwed up and mismanaged this war from the beginning but we are now stuck and the best policy is to continue hoping for democracy to flower."<br><br>No John, two wrongs don't make a right and the fiction of flowers growing is just that. A fiction. Patreous rhetoric that the Iraqi politicians and Iraqi forces are taking over is utter fantasy. The surge has suppressed the death rates because that is what happens when you put more cops on the street. But there is no end game. It is only postponement of our inevitable retreat. <br><br>It took the Russians ten years to figure that out. Ten years and our army is toast as well as our treasury.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
<br>You seem to imply that it is okay to shoot civilians used as shields.<br>What kind of humanity is that, for crying out loud? The objective is more important than the method? <br>That's the same madness used by the Israelis, which made the new UN guy - Falk, I guess is his name - compare them with the Nazis, who also extinguished entire families to get one or two suspects.<br><br>There have been so many US killings of innocent civilians that I wouldn't want to send my wife and kids out there to face the US-SS.<br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
"Humor ist, wenn man trotzdem lacht" (Humour means laughing despite of it)
Loc: Alexandria, VA
Yes, because the family blown apart in their car by an IED is much more just, legal and humane than the family blown apart in their house by a mis-guided guided bomb ...<br><br>Seems to me, either way the results are pretty much the same ...<br><br>You were talking again about the rights of the bomb-makers and the war crimes of the soldiers?<br><br>(Or was it the war crimes of the bomb-makers and the rights of the soldiers? I do get so confused without a program.)<br><br>Turn up the signal, wipe out the noise ...
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