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Four Color Politics

Mainly the Quotes of the Morning, with occasional Other Crap.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Quotes of the Morning: Double Your Standards

“I would be very worried if a Prime Minister came to talk about his country and did not mention, first and foremost, protecting people's lives. That's, after all, the most important responsibility of government.
And he believes, and I believe, that the -- there needs to be more forces inside Baghdad who are willing to hold people to account. In other words, if you find somebody who's kidnapping and murdering, the murderer ought to be held to account. It ought to be clear in society that that kind of behavior is not tolerated.”
-George ‘Dubya’ Bush, July 25, 2006

“Dang straight. We need to take these murderers and kidnappers to task. We need to let them know that no one is above the law.”

“Since 2003, Washington has shut down Pentagon programs to train and equip militaries in a handful of African nations because they have declined to sign agreements exempting American troops from the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
But the policy, which was designed to protect American troops, has instead angered senior military officials, who say the cuts in military aid are shortsighted and have weakened counterterrorism efforts in places where the threat of international terrorism is said to be most acute.
Under the terms of Article 98 agreements, which the Bush administration has pressed more than 100 nations to sign, nations pledge not to surrender American citizens to the international court without the consent of officials in Washington.
The Bush administration has refused to endorse the court, contending that overzealous prosecutors could charge American soldiers or civilian officials with war crimes for their roles in carrying out American policies abroad.”
-New York Times, July 23, 2006

“..except for U.S. troops, who obviously can’t be held accountable to the International Criminal Court. I mean, that would be silly.”

“The United States ambassador and the top American military commander here together issued an unusual apology on Thursday for the rape and murder of a young Iraqi woman and the killing of her family, saying that the crime, in which at least four soldiers are suspects, had injured the ‘Iraqi people as a whole.’
The statement came just hours after Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki said at a news conference that he might ask the American military to scrap a rule that grants foreign soldiers here immunity from Iraqi prosecution. Such a move would be a direct rebuke to the Bush administration, which has fought tenaciously to ensure that American soldiers are exempt from local or international laws when serving on foreign soil.”
-New York Times, July 6, 2006

“And letting the Iraqi people hold us accountable for the actions of our troops would be pretty silly too. I mean, how can you have a decent war if you have to abide by stupid things like laws and the Geneva Conventions? There isn’t anything to worry about anyway. When the United States sees a problem within our ranks we immediately fix it, so we are actually tougher than those so-called international courts. We police our own..”

“A new report by US pressure group Human Rights Watch says American forces in Iraq continued to torture and abuse detainees after the Abu Ghraib prison scandal in 2004.
The report flies in the face of claims by the US Defense Department that abuse of detainees was the work of a few bad apples acting on their own initiative.
Human Rights Watch senior researcher John Sifton says the findings are the result of direct testimony from three former US soldiers about prisoners in American custody in Iraq between 2003 and 2005.
‘The soldiers described detainees being routinely subjected to beatings, painful stress positions, severe sleep depravation, exposure to extreme cold and hot temperatures, very serious abuses,’ he said.
‘And it shows that abuses in Iraq were not isolated events by independent actors but rather, they were routine and authorized.’"
-ABC News Online, July 23, 2006

“It doesn’t matter.. Dubya wasn’t talking about US. He was talking about IRAQIS. What he really meant is that in society that kind of behavior isn’t tolerated from non-Americans. We live by a different standard.”


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