US Rules of Engagement
by Stephen Lendman
ROE define how force may be used in combat – what’s acceptable, unacceptable, under what conditions.
Geneva breaches and other laws of war fall outside of ROE. Military operations are governed by laws of war and international humanitarian law.
All nations are required to observe them. International and domestic laws universally recognize the right of self-defense in response to an attack or an imminent one.
Military necessity permits use of force not prohibited by the Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC). Distinguishing between civilians and military targets v. civilians and non-military ones is required.
Proportionality prohibits disproportionate, indiscriminate force likely to cause damage or loss of civilian lives.
Precautions must be taken to avoid and minimize noncombatant casualties, as well as damage to non-military sites.
Under Fourth Geneva, civilians must be given “effective advance warning” and “neutralized zones” where they can be as protected as much as possible.
Fourth Geneva also prohibits collective punishment; destruction of private property; torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, and other protections for noncombatants.
In all US wars, ROE violate core rule of law principles. Washington rules alone apply. Civilians in harm’s way have no place to hide.
Mass slaughter and destruction go on in all US war theaters, creating chaos and enormous human suffering.
During the 2003 Iraq war, US ROE authorized field commanders to kill every military-aged Iraqi in sight. Cold-blooded murder was officially OK’d.
The same policy is followed in Afghanistan, earlier in Libya, Yemen, Syria and Iraq – notably in the battle for Mosul.
Civilians are being slaughtered in cold blood, US terror-bombing striking residential areas and other non-military sites. Since the battle began last October, perhaps thousands of noncombatants perished. Pentagon claims otherwise are false.
RT’s Ruptly TV
interviewed residents able to flee the city. One man said ISIS fighters “go on rooftops of the houses and the families (inside) don’t know. Then the aircraft come and bomb it,” burying families under rubble.
“We are asking for bombing specific targets. There are still families inside the houses and the aircraft keep bombing. We are asking the coalition planes to be specific when they bomb. They were bombing randomly,” he said.
Another resident said “(t)he planes waited until one of the Daesh walked out into the street and then they struck. The fighter was only injured, but 11 members of one family in the house next door were instantly killed.”
“They dropped leaflets over the city telling us not to worry about the strikes, saying that they were extremely precise and would not hurt the civilians,” another man said, adding:
“(I)t feels like the coalition is killing more people than” ISIS fighters.
America created and supports ISIS, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups. Wars raging in multiple theaters aim to advance its imperium.
They’re not about humanitarian intervention or democracy building. Millions of casualties attest to what US belligerence is all about.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
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