By a law professor as opposed to a journalist. Hey, even I can understand his points: http://kennethandersonlawofwar.blogspot.com/2005/01/wapo-editorial-today-gets-geneva.html Opening salvos: The Washington Post, in its Sunday, January 16, 2005 editorial today opposing the confirmation of Alberto Gonzales as attorney general, gets it wrong on the Geneva Conventions. My guess is that the editorial writers have never actually read the relevant article of the conventions, but instead have simply relied on press releases from various rights groups that tell the WaPo what it wants to hear. The editorial reads: "In fact, the White House counsel [Gonzales] endorsed the view that the hundreds of combatants rounded up by U.S. and allied forces in Afghanistan, who included members of the Taliban army, foreign volunteers and a few innocent bystanders, as well as al Qaeda militants, could be collectively and indiscriminately denied Geneva protections without the individual hearings that the treaty provides for." (Emphasis added) The Post's editorial writers might have troubled themselves to read what Article 5, paragraph 2 of the Third Geneva Convention actually says: "Should any doubt arise as to whether persons, having committed a belligerent act and having fallen into the hands of the enemy, belong to any of the categories enumerated in Article 4, such persons shall enjoy the protection of the present Convention until such time as their status has been determined by a competent tribunal." (Emphasis added) It has long been my view, in scholarly and other writing, that sound policy urges the US to give each detainee a tribunal to determine their status, at least if it is proposed to deny someone Geneva protections. This is the view in 1997 Department of Defense regulations that afforded a brief, three officer panel to make such determinations and which was informally regarded, according to my understanding, by the ICRC as beyond the standard required by the Third Geneva Convention. I believe the decision of the Bush Administration not to apply those regulations was inappropriate and unwise. But it was not a violation of the Convention.