Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Is Denying Protection to a Child Soldier a War Crime?

If it isn't, it should be.

The United States is a signatory to the Child Soldier protocol.   The United States therefore acknowledges that child soldiers can and are made to believe and do just about anything their adult mentors wish.   The United States therefore accepts that child combatants are to be treated as victims and, as such, agrees to furnish child soldiers with protection and rehabilitation.

So why, with Omar Khadr, did the United States turn its back on everything it acknowledged and undertook to do in signing the Child Soldier protocol?

Omar Khadr was not treated as a victim but as a war criminal.  Khadr was not protected and rehabilitated as the United States was obliged to do.   To the contrary, Khadr was housed within a community of radical Islamists where, by the prosecution's own witness, he was even further steeped in their beliefs.  In effect, the United States did just about everything conceivable to ensure that Khadr is today more radical and more dangerous than ever.

And now they blame Khadr for supposedly becoming everything that was entirely foreseeable from their own indifference and neglect.

Denying a prisoner food or water is a war crime.   Why should denying a child soldier protection and rehabilitation be any less a war crime?


Beijing York said...

So if the prosecutor's forensic psychiatrist claims Khadr was further brain washed in the ways of "radical Islam" all these years at Guantanamo, why does the plea agreement insist that he spend one more year there?

I think the prosecution is going out of its way to further brand him a hardened terrorist to ensure he doesn't get any early parole.

I hate the bigoted terms of "radical islam" or "civilized muslims" - trying to tie terrorism to religious beliefs. Should we ask the media to use similar terms for domestic terrorists who happen to be Christian?

The Mound of Sound said...

Excellent points, BY. Thanks


Beijing York said...

Check out this excellent interview with a US constitutional law expert:

The Mound of Sound said...

very informative interview. again, thanks.