I have to admit that I have not read through the entire terrorist detainee bill, just parts of it. I am particularly alarmed by the NYTimes editorial that states rape is narrowly defined in the current House and Senate bill being rammed down our throats by the Bush administration.
Rape, sexual assault and sexual abuse are mentioned twice in the bill — once as crimes that could be prosecuted before military tribunals if committed by an “illegal enemy combatant,” and once as “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions that could be prosecuted as war crimes if committed by an American against a detainee. But in each case, the wording creates new and disturbing loopholes.
In the bill, rape is narrowly defined as forced or coerced genital or anal penetration. It utterly leaves out other acts, as well as the notion that sex without consent is also rape, as defined by numerous state laws and federal law. That is the more likely case in a prison, where a helpless inmate would be unlikely to resist the sexual overtures of a guard or interrogator.
My god. Haven't people come to the realization that raping women is another weapon that does far more damage than any bomb, gun, grenade, etc.?
Even more helpful would be the inclusion DEVAW (Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women) in this bill.
Here is a reminder for those that support the use of torture on the Hill:
Violence against women in wartime is a reflection of violence against women in peacetime, as long as violence against women is pervasive and accepted, stress, small arms proliferation and a culture of violence push violence against women to epidemic proportions, especially when civilians are the main targets of warfare. Women War Peace, Chapter 1 Human Rights Watch World Report 2004
This language must be removed from this bill, and we must be vigilant to make sure violence against women must not occur.