Author Topic: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust  (Read 6764 times)

Offline bknight

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #30 on: December 01, 2015, 02:04:06 PM »
The idea that any order could be lawful is a bewildering one to me.  There are some things no one has the right to tell you to do, no matter what their authority over you is.
For example if you are ordered to take a heavily defended position and likely will result in your subordinates deaths is a lawful order, even though in the eyes of the subordinates it is amoral (i.e. their own survival)
« Last Edit: December 01, 2015, 02:31:34 PM by bknight »
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Offline Ishkabibble

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #31 on: December 01, 2015, 10:22:49 PM »
So how come none of the members of the US military or civilian employees of the DoD have been prosecuted for following clearly unlawful orders to torture detainees? Isn't everyone taught that the US is signatory to the Conventions on Torture, which outlaws it under any circumstance whatsoever?

A few low-level guards at Abu Ghraib were prosecuted, but that seems to be only because they didn't do it under orders. Others did, and apparently much worse.
Counter point, were any of those people tried and convicted for refusing to obey those orders?

EDIT:
I'm not justifying actions taken or not taken in reference to torture.  It seems like there were executive interpretations on the use of torture, whether following the general rules.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waterboarding

Not to get too far off from the original intent of the thread, but your statement above is the very reason why there is a growing movement to charge and try Rove, Cheney, Rice, and possibly W with war crimes. The primary reason why it has not already happened is that "Executive Authority" (the same claim Nixon used) grants them immunity, since their decisions were made while acting under the War Powers Act.

I will say at this juncture that I am not a lawyer, I do not play one on TV, there is no Holiday In Express within 50 miles of me. It most assuredly is not my intention to express any opinion, political or otherwise.   :-X
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Offline ka9q

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #32 on: December 01, 2015, 10:25:52 PM »
It seems like there were executive interpretations on the use of torture, whether following the general rules.
Of course there were executive interpretations that justified it. There always are. Even the Nazis rationalized the Holocaust as an act of self defense.

Seriously.

You'll find any number of speeches (e.g., by Himmler at Posen) explaining the necessity of killing not only the adult male Jews but also the women and children, or else they'd grow up hating the Nazis, launching counterattacks on them, and having even more Jewish children who would do the same.

« Last Edit: December 01, 2015, 10:27:52 PM by ka9q »

Offline gillianren

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #33 on: December 01, 2015, 11:32:02 PM »
The idea that any order could be lawful is a bewildering one to me.  There are some things no one has the right to tell you to do, no matter what their authority over you is.
For example if you are ordered to take a heavily defended position and likely will result in your subordinates deaths is a lawful order, even though in the eyes of the subordinates it is amoral (i.e. their own survival)

That's not what I'm talking about.  I'm talking about ordering someone to rape and/or murder civilians, for example.  Yes, I know that I'm coming at this from a modern perspective, but we've had rules about how you treat civilians for some time now.
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Offline bknight

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #34 on: December 02, 2015, 03:13:20 PM »
The idea that any order could be lawful is a bewildering one to me.  There are some things no one has the right to tell you to do, no matter what their authority over you is.
For example if you are ordered to take a heavily defended position and likely will result in your subordinates deaths is a lawful order, even though in the eyes of the subordinates it is amoral (i.e. their own survival)

That's not what I'm talking about.  I'm talking about ordering someone to rape and/or murder civilians, for example.  Yes, I know that I'm coming at this from a modern perspective, but we've had rules about how you treat civilians for some time now.
Yes, I would agree with your assessment in the case of unarmed civilians.
Truth needs no defense.  Nobody can take those footsteps I made on the surface of the moon away from me.
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Offline bknight

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #35 on: December 02, 2015, 03:14:57 PM »
It seems like there were executive interpretations on the use of torture, whether following the general rules.
Of course there were executive interpretations that justified it. There always are. Even the Nazis rationalized the Holocaust as an act of self defense.

Seriously.

You'll find any number of speeches (e.g., by Himmler at Posen) explaining the necessity of killing not only the adult male Jews but also the women and children, or else they'd grow up hating the Nazis, launching counterattacks on them, and having even more Jewish children who would do the same.
From my post, I am not justifying any actions taken against prisoners.
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Offline ka9q

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Re: Looking for advice on books about the Holocaust
« Reply #36 on: December 04, 2015, 03:29:06 AM »
From my post, I am not justifying any actions taken against prisoners.
I didn't mean to imply that you were. It's just that those who order war crimes and crimes against humanity always seem to have an excuse or a rationalization. Long before 9/11, one of the most common justifications we'd get from various banana republic dictators we'd accuse of human rights violations was that they were necessary to combat "terrorists". Sound familiar?