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  1. #1
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    US admits to detaining over 200 Afghan teenagers

    NEW YORK — The U.S. military has detained more than 200 Afghan teenagers who were captured in the war for about a year at a time at a military prison next to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, the United States has told the United Nations.

    The U.S. State Department characterized the detainees held since 2008 as “enemy combatants” in a report sent every four years to the United Nations in Geneva updating U.S. compliance with the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.


    The U.S. military had held them “to prevent a combatant from returning to the battlefield,” the report said.

    A few are still confined at the Detention Facility in Parwan, which will be turned over to the Afghan government, it said. “Many of them have been released or transferred to the Afghan government,” said the report, distributed this week.

    Most of the juvenile Afghan detainees were about 16 years old, but their age was not usually determined until after capture, the U.S. report said.

    If the average age is 16, “This means it is highly likely that some children were as young as 14 or 13 years old when they were detained by U.S. forces,” Jamil Dakwar, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s human rights program, said Friday.

    “I’ve represented children as young as 11 or 12 who have been at Bagram,” said Tina M. Foster, executive director of the International Justice Network, which represents adult and juvenile Bagram detainees.

    “I question the number of 200, because there are thousands of detainees at Parwan,” Foster said Friday. “There are other children whose parents have said these children are under 18 at the time of their capture, and the U.S. doesn’t allow the detainees or their families to contest their age.”

    Dakwar also criticized the length of detention, a year on average, according to the U.S. report.

    “This is an extraordinarily unacceptably long period of time that exposes children in detention to greater risk of physical and mental abuse, especially if they are denied access to the protections guaranteed to them under international law,” Dakwar said.

    The U.S. State Department was called for comment on the criticism, and a representative said they were seeking an officer to reply.

    The previous American report four years ago provided a snapshot of the focus of the U.S. military’s effort in the endgame of the Bush presidency after years of warfare and anti-terrorism campaigns. In 2008, the U.S. said it held about 500 juveniles in Iraqi detention centers and then had only about 10 at the Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan. A total of some 2,500 youths had been detained, almost all in Iraq, from 2002 through 2008 under the Bush administration.

    Barack Obama campaigned for the presidency in 2008 in part on winding down active U.S. involvement in the Iraq War, and shifting the military focus to Afghanistan. The latest figures on under-18 detainees reflect the redeployment of U.S. efforts to Afghanistan.

    Because the teen detainees were not charged with any crime, “a detainee would generally not be provided legal assistance.” They were allowed to attend open hearings and defend themselves, and a personal advocate was assigned to each detainee, the report said.

    “These are basically sham proceedings,” Foster said. “The personal representatives don’t do anything different for the child detainees than they do for the adults, which is nothing.”

    The report added that “the purpose of detention is not punitive but preventative: to prevent a combatant from returning to the battlefield.”

    It cited a 2004 U.S. Supreme Court case, Hamdi vs. Rumsfeld, as establishing that “the law of armed conflict permits the United States to detain belligerents until the end of hostilities without charging such individuals with crimes, because they are not being held as criminals facing future criminal trial.”

    The U.S. military is fighting irregular forces — al-Qaida, the Taliban, and an array of similar shadowy insurgent or terrorist groups. So it is not clear when “hostilities” would ever formally end, since there is no declaration of war and no enemy government to defeat. Only the United States can decide when it deems a conflict to be over, in those circumstances.

    Foster said that the teens seized are not in uniform or even typically taken in combat.

    “We’re not talking about battlefield captures, we’re talking about people who are living at home, and four or five brothers might be taken together. It might take them a year or more to figure out that one of them was younger than 18, to determine the identities of these kids,” she said.

    In January, the State Department will send a delegation to Geneva to present the report to the U.N.’s Committee on the Rights of the Child, and to answer any further questions the U.N. committee members may have.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/nation...02c_story.html

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  2. #2
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    ewing

    Shameful

  3. #3
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    This is also just as horrible:
    The Obama administration also indirectly supports the use of child soldiers by repeatedly granting waivers from the Child Soldiers Protection Act, signed into law by George W. Bush in 2008, to countries in Africa and the Middle East which use children in their armed forces. The waivers, personally authorized by President Barack Obama, allow war-torn nations such as Libya, Yemen, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Sudan to receive hundreds of millions of dollars in US military aid despite the fact that they are known to use child soldiers.
    http://morallowground.com/2012/12/10...ghan-children/

    While I love the US, the foreign policy of this and previous administrations is really horrible.

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by {Ron!n} View Post
    This is also just as horrible:

    http://morallowground.com/2012/12/10...ghan-children/

    While I love the US, the foreign policy of this and previous administrations is really horrible.
    It's different if we're doing it, or one of our allies is doing it.

    Democrats refuse to hit Obama hard on what they complained about under Bush(or much worse) and with the next Republican president, Republicans will once again do the same.

    Split the country in half and have both sides argue against one another, that's the game. ALL Americans need to put politics aside, and hold ALL politicians' feet to the fire on all violations of human rights, the rule of law, etc. wherever it props up...and despite the fact that it might be "your guy" doing it.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Schmooze View Post
    It's different if we're doing it, or one of our allies is doing it.

    Democrats refuse to hit Obama hard on what they complained about under Bush(or much worse) and with the next Republican president, Republicans will once again do the same.

    Split the country in half and have both sides argue against one another, that's the game. ALL Americans need to put politics aside, and hold ALL politicians' feet to the fire on all violations of human rights, the rule of law, etc. wherever it props up...and despite the fact that it might be "your guy" doing it.

    Unfortunately, we don't get to vote on real issues. We only get to choose b/t puppets

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewing View Post
    Shameful
    What is shameful? The fact that we are detaining Children?

    I noticed there was no rush to see if these children were actually enemy combatants, something I assure you can happen.
    Quote Originally Posted by AmsterNat View Post
    How unsurprising. Dude, give up trying to argue with valade. He cut you into little pieces, had you for breakfast, and shat you out.
    Quote Originally Posted by mariner4life View Post
    Valade you have totally owned this thread. Well done
    My fanbase is growing.

  7. #7
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    US admits to detaining over 200 Afghan teenagers

    realistically, Democrat and Republican parties are the same. media wins elections and the problems remain, no matter whos in office.


    Phillies Redskins Flyers

  8. #8
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    If they weren't terrorists then..they sure are now..

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by valade16 View Post
    What is shameful? The fact that we are detaining Children?

    I noticed there was no rush to see if these children were actually enemy combatants, something I assure you can happen.

    Yes

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by valade16 View Post
    What is shameful? The fact that we are detaining Children?

    I noticed there was no rush to see if these children were actually enemy combatants, something I assure you can happen.
    Look at the article:
    “We’re not talking about battlefield captures, we’re talking about people who are living at home, and four or five brothers might be taken together. It might take them a year or more to figure out that one of them was younger than 18, to determine the identities of these kids,” she said.

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewing View Post
    Yes
    So what do you propose we do to kids who are enemy combatants?

    Quote Originally Posted by {Ron!n} View Post
    Look at the article:
    I've looked at the article. I've been over there. Not all enemy combatants are detained from the battlefield alone. When we receive intelligence as to where an enemy combatant is habitated we detain them.

    Are you doubting that many of those detained are in fact enemy combatants? I'm sure there are many that aren't, but at the end of the day, what are you advocating?

    That we let all underage detainees go?
    Quote Originally Posted by AmsterNat View Post
    How unsurprising. Dude, give up trying to argue with valade. He cut you into little pieces, had you for breakfast, and shat you out.
    Quote Originally Posted by mariner4life View Post
    Valade you have totally owned this thread. Well done
    My fanbase is growing.

  12. #12
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    We should be shocked and appalled because it is impossible that teenagers could ever be enemy combatants.

  13. #13
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    The Government sucks

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewing View Post
    Unfortunately, we don't get to vote on real issues. We only get to choose b/t puppets
    #Chow!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by valade16 View Post
    So what do you propose we do to kids who are enemy combatants?



    I've looked at the article. I've been over there. Not all enemy combatants are detained from the battlefield alone. When we receive intelligence as to where an enemy combatant is habitated we detain them.

    Are you doubting that many of those detained are in fact enemy combatants? I'm sure there are many that aren't, but at the end of the day, what are you advocating?

    That we let all underage detainees go?
    I'm advocating that the US not detain 13 and 14 year olds. That they don't take over a year to decide whether or not those teenagers are in fact "enemy combatants". That they give them legal counsel.

    You admit that many of those kids aren't "enemy combatants", how is that acceptable in any way or form?
    Last edited by Ron!n; 12-11-2012 at 04:48 PM.

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