Rules of War

Irene and Geri


  • Rules of war have always existed to dictate the proper conduct during a war
  • The rules of war are individualized for each army
  • The Geneva Convention and the Hague Convention set up rules that applied to all situations regarding war and applied to all countries

The Geneva Conventions

  • Made official in 1949
  • Followed by 190 countries
  • Regarded treatment of the victims of war (e.g. civilians, wounded or sick soldiers, or prisoners of war)
  • First conference (in 1864) established rules to protect the wounded and sick on the field

Some of the rules include:

  1. Medical attention must always be given regardless of which side the wounded was fighting on
  2. Sick or wounded soldiers must be treated with respect regardless of race, color, religion, etc.
  3. It is illegal to hold a wounded or sick person hostage
  4. Dead bodies must be collected, examined, identified, and respectfully buried
  5. Fighting must be suspended in order for the dead to be recovered

The Hague Conventions

  • The first conference was called the Hague Peace Convention (1899)
  • Regarded combat laws, illegal weaponry, and financial concerns
  • Also helped to prevent war from the beginning

Some of the rules include:

  1. It is illegal to misuse a white flag
  2. It is illegal to kill or injure a person who has surrendered
  3. It is illegal to attack a defenseless person or place
  4. It is illegal to attack a hospital