Human Shield Action To Iraq - Analysis and Effects of The Human Shields - Criticisms


The Human Shield Movement was criticised for what many saw as being an overt act of aiding Saddam Hussein’s regime. Charges of the shields being "dupes" and "useful idiots" for Saddam were widespread in the U.S. The human shields countered that while various governments around the globe carry out acts of aggression, the human shield action saw fit to defend against this one.

Human Rights Watch stated that "civilians acting as human shields, whether voluntary or not, contribute indirectly to the war capability of a state. Their actions do not pose a direct risk to opposing forces. Because they are not directly engaged in hostilities against an adversary, they retain their civilian immunity from attack." Human Rights Watch also noted that the use by a state of human shields, voluntary or not, is a violation of international law, citing Protocol I of the First Geneva Convention.

Jonah Goldberg claimed after a debate with O'Keefe, that "O'Keefe and his friends are objectively in favour of Saddam Hussein and his murderous regime because they believe he is uniquely worth defending with their bodies. They may be brave, I guess, but they're still idiots, and I'm sure Saddam is grateful for them".

Maria Ermanno, chairwoman of the Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society, cited reports that Iraqi officials were arranging transportation, accommodations and news conferences for the human shields and that they were being used for propaganda purposes by Saddam Hussein. "To go down to Iraq and live and act there on the regime's expense, then you're supporting a terrible dictator. I think that method is entirely wrong," Ermanno told Swedish Radio.

The Iraqi regime was also criticised for encouraging and facilitating the human shield actions, since this was seen as violation of international law and Protocol I, article 20 of the Geneva Convention.

Read more about this topic:  Human Shield Action To Iraq, Analysis and Effects of The Human Shields

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