At 01:57 AM 3/28/03 -0800, Sarad AV wrote:
They are finding it hard to hit
armoured vehicles since they are well spread out in
distinct patterns.US has told iraq to treat US
soldiers as pow's and follow the geneva
convention.they showed images of 3 US pow's,one women
and 2 men-one of them were bandaged on their
head.These had appeared a few hours after US made a
press conference saying that they had taken 3000
iraqi's pow's and there were no US pow's.

Yep. This led to complaints about showing POWs on TV violating the Geneva convention. For some reason, when CNN showed Iraqi POWs, we didn't notice a problem. (At some level, I think the projections of the people at the top were so optimistic, that a lot of people were just shocked that the Iraqis didn't just collapse and welcome the soldiers into Baghdad with flowers and cheering. This has a really depressing parallel with the way we jumped intp Vietnam, though I don't think the Iraqi soldiers are anywhere near as tough and committed as the NVA.)

Iraq replied by asking them to follow the geneva
convention and not to do cluster bombing in civilan

Be fair about this. We own the skies above Baghdad, at least above the range of small-arms fire. If we wanted the streets of Baghdad choked with corpses, they would be. Basically, civilian casualties have been the result of a small number of bombs missing targets, or screwed up targeting, or bystanders getting hit when they're too close to what looks like a miliatary target. I think we've probably played up our bombing accuracy a bit too much, but it's not like we're targeting civilian areas. If we were, the images from Baghdad would be very different; not just one market with a bomb crater, and one hospital flooded with injured and dead people, but every building reduced to smoldering ruins, and dead people so thick on the ground you couldn't walk across it.

In any case US military pow's are going to have a hard
time and since U.S didnot give pow status to
*suspected* Al-Queda/taliban militants captured in
afghan war-no body is going to put pressure on iraq

Well, there's not a whole lot more pressure we can put on the top leadership of Iraq, since our public pronouncements have made clear that Saddam, his kids, and presumably most of the rest of the top echelon of Iraqi leadership is going to be jailed or executed when this is all done. I guess specific generals may have an incentive to treat US POWs better, since the issue will likely come up when the US takes over Iraq in another month or two.

I think the usual inducement to treating POWs you hold properly is that you want your soldiers who've been taken prisoner to be treated properly. (There's also world opinion, which we care about a lot more than Iraq does.) I'm not sure how important the Iraqi government considers our treatment of their captured soldiers, though, and we're not going to shoot them all even if the Iraqis do that to our captured soldiers.

Regards Sarath.

--John Kelsey, [EMAIL PROTECTED]

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