The Grey Lady seems to justify the terrorists in Afghanistan who were supporting the Taliban and AQ and who were killing American and allied troops.
"Mr. Bush [my comment: notice how the Times has adopted the use of "Mister", and not "President", when discussing Bush?] decided they were illegal enemy combatants-even though most were captured while fighting the invasion of Afghanistan".
How offensive is this sentence? Would the Times have had us ignore the complicity of the Taliban in hosting Al Qaeda-who perpetrated 9/11? These people were caught defending a regime that played a part in killing thousands of Americans. They were "illegal enemy combatants" because they did not fight as soldiers as defined under the Geneva Conventions. But aside from this point, the Times seems to justify their killing of Americans and seems to side with them, even though most were captured while fighting the invasion of Afghanistan. How noxious is this line of thought?
The NYT's pronouncement that "others should be held under normal articles of war" would accord terrorists who do not follow the Geneva Conventions the protections afforded to soldiers under those conventions. The Times would have us gut the principles of the Geneva Convention to protect terrorists. People afforded protections under the Geneva Convention must wear identifiable insignia or uniforms that indicate they are soldiers, and conduct their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war, among other requirements. Terrorists do not abide by these requirements, and forfeit the right to fall under the protections of the Geneva Conventions.