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Quote of the Day - It is inexcusable for scientists to torture animals; let them make their experiments on journalists and politicians. - Heinrik Ibsen

Tortured Lawyers and War Crimes

War crimes are something that we've seen before, and will likely see again.

But here's an unfamiliar twist - lawyers who may be potentially liable for war crimes. This article admittedly argues for liability, and is not balanced. The author thinks the government lawyers didn't do a thorough job analyzing the relevant laws.

Here's the deal: when asked to prepare a memo analyzing whether prisoners taken in Afganistan were subject to various war convention agreements, the government lawyers didn't do a thorough job. Their analysis ignored duties imposed by the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (which the United States ratified with reservations in 1994) and the federal torture statute, which creates criminal liability for U.S. nationals who commit torture abroad under color of law.

The government lawyers, on the other hand, argue that they were merely providing an opinion to back up decisions that had already been made.

But, does that mean that the lawyers are liable for the abuses and war crimes? They're tough questions.

Posted by J. Craig Williams on 6/14/2004 at 09:45 Comments (0)


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