The relationship between promoting human rights and stopping wars can be perplexing. The 19th century origins of the Geneva Convention and the International Commissions of the Red Cross (ICRC) are warnings about the moral danger, ambiguities, or tensions of bringing war within the arena of human rights considerations. Human rights and war can be a toxic cocktail. One should not want to make war more likely or legitimate or deadly by seeming to say that the killing machine on one side or the other is acting humanely, as if that makes war okay. War is hell.

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