Also, you missed Falk’s point about occupation.Â While whether there is a civil war in Iraq is debatable (I don’t think there really is, but it’s a fluid situation anyway), it nevertheless is an occupation.Â And resistance to occupation is most certainly protected under the fourth Geneva Convention as well as the Hague Convention of 1908 (I think it was that year).
Occupation entails authority. The US Army or government has no ruling authority or power in Iraq; hell, the legitimate Iraqi government can tell us to leave and we should if that happens. Before the Iraqi government was established, we could have been called occupiers, but not anymore.
When I used the term non-combatant, I should have used the term ‘unlawful combatant.’
You mention that the minimum criterian is an open display of arms, but most of them don’t even do that. Even if you try to be flexible with the criteria, they still can not possibly be defined as ‘comabtants’.