From the journal The National Interest, an article that describes well the pickle Americans are in with respect to the International Committee of the Red Cross:
So the ICRC’s claims that it is treating the United States impartially, no better or worse than other countries, should be severely discounted. In fact, the ICRC’s continuing public attacks on the administration’s detainee policy have much more to do with the group’s advocacy agenda than with any actual violations by the United States. The ICRC recognizes, and has promoted for thirty years, a different set of norms that are far more favorable to irregular or guerrilla warfare than those traditional norms recognized and applied by the United States.
There’s good backstory on Protocol I, including the benefit seen to guerilla fighters and the ICRC’s birthing of the Protocol (which the US hasn’t signed, by the way):
Protocol I has rarely been implemented in practice, and it is simply not the case that merely because the ICRC claims that a particular requirement is customary international law it therefore must be accepted as such. Although the ICRC is often described as the “guardian” of the Geneva Conventions and its published commentaries on these documents are sometimes called “authoritative” (although “argumentative” is often a more accurate description), it has no legally recognizable role in interpreting or applying those treaties. States alone make international law, and each state is entitled to interpret that law itself–this is the essence of sovereignty and self-government. To the extent that the ICRC commentaries are respected, it is because they generally follow the relevant negotiating records, not because of any inherent wisdom. When the commentaries depart from those records, they are nothing but rhetoric.
Article is well worth a read.
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