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Posts Tagged ‘International Criminal Court’

NEWSMAX

Tuesday, 23 Aug 2011

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, has been an outspoken critic of U.S. military action in Libya since it began six months ago, even saying President Barack Obama’s policy amounted to “an impeachable offense.”

Now, as Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi’s regime appears to be toppling, Kucinich is ramping up his criticism with the contention that NATO commanders in Libya should be tried in court for killing civilians, Politico reports.

“NATO’s top commanders may have acted under color of international law, but they are not exempt from international law,” Kucinich said in a statement issued today.

“If members of the Gadhafi regime are to be held accountable, NATO’s top commanders must also be held accountable through the International Criminal Court for all civilian deaths resulting from bombing,” Kucinich said. “Otherwise, we will have witnessed the triumph of a new international gangsterism.”

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By William Blum, ZNet, April 17, 2010

When did it begin, all this “We take your [call/problem/question] very seriously”? With answering-machine hell? As you wait endlessly, the company or government agency assures you that they take seriously whatever reason you’re calling. What a kind and thoughtful world we live in.

The BBC reported last month that doctors in the Iraqi city of Fallujah are reporting a high level of birth defects, with some blaming weapons used by the United States during its fierce onslaughts of 2004 and subsequently, which left much of the city in ruins. “It was like an earthquake,” a local engineer who was running for a national assembly seat told the Washington Post in 2005. “After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, there was Fallujah.” Now, the level of heart defects among newborn babies is said to be 13 times higher than in Europe.

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Ex-UN prosecutor: Bush may be next up for International Criminal Court

Raw  Story- Stephen C. Webster
Published: Saturday March 7, 2009

An ex-UN prosecutor has said that following the issuance of an arrest warrant for the president of Sudan, former US President George W. Bush could — and should — be next on the International Criminal Court’s list.

The former prosecutor’s assessment was echoed in some respect by United Nations General Assembly chief Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann of Nicaragua, who said America’s military occupation of Iraq has caused over a million deaths and should be probed by the United Nations.

“David Crane, an international law professor at Syracuse University, said the principle of law used to issue an arrest warrant for [Sudanese President] Omar al-Bashir could extend to former US President Bush over claims officials from his Administration may have engaged in torture by using coercive interrogation techniques on terror suspects,” reported the New Zealand Herald.

The indictment of Bashir was a landmark, said Crane, because it paved a route for the court at The Hague to pursue heads of states engaged in criminality.

“Crane also said that the [Bashir] indictment may even be extended to the former president George W. Bush, on the grounds that some officials in terms of his administration engaged in harsh interrogation techniques on terror suspects which mostly amounted to torture,” said Turkish Weekly.

“All pretended justifications notwithstanding, the aggressions against Iraq and Afghanistan and their occupations constitute atrocities that must be condemned and repudiated by all who believe in the rule of law in international relations,” Brockmann told the Human Rights Council. “The illegality of the use of force against Iraq cannot be doubted as it runs contrary to the prohibition of the use of force in Article 2(4) of the United Nations Charter. It sets a number of precedents that we cannot allow to stand.”

The Bush administration boycotted the Human Rights Council. The day Brockmann made his accusations happened to be the first in which the United States had observers at the council, on orders from President Obama.

According to Iranian news network PressTV, the Iranian government called the Bashir indictment “a blow to International justice” and an “insult directed at Muslims.”

Iran’s plainly stated sentiment toward the court’s legitimacy is similar in spirit to that of the United States. Because the US Government has refused to recognize the court by becoming a signatory in its statute, “the only other way Bush could be investigated is if the [UN] Security Council were to order it, something unlikely to happen with Washington a veto-wielding permanent member,” said the Herald.

Due to the International Criminal Court’s lack of any real police force, it has traditionally relied upon signatory states for enforcement of its rulings. But when the leader of one such state is indicted, the court’s authority and enforcement capability is called into question. Even the arrest of Bashir is a far cry, for now. And without a UN Security Council order, former US President Bush would not go on “trial” before the court any time soon.

However, on January 26, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture Manfred Nowak insisted that the pursuit of Bush and members of his administration for the torture of terror war prisoners is crucial if justice is to be served.

Nowak added that he believes enough evidence exists currently to proceed with the prosecution of Donald Rumsfeld, the former Secretary of Defense who was credited as being highly influential in the crafting and push for America’s invasion of Iraq and the prior administration’s abusive interrogation tactics.

The following video was published to YouTube on March 6 by the non-profit, Web-based news service LinkTV.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Robert Parry | Consortiumnews.com, March 5, 2009

New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof – like many of his American colleagues – is applauding the International Criminal Court’s arrest order against Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir for his role in the Darfur conflict that has claimed tens of thousands of lives.

In his Thursday column, Kristof describes the plight of an eight-year-old boy named Bakit who blew off his hands picking up a grenade that Kristof suspects was left behind by Bashir’s forces operating on the Chad side of the border with Sudan.

“Bakit became, inadvertently, one more casualty of the havoc and brutality that President Bashir has unleashed in Sudan and surrounding countries,” Kristof wrote. “So let’s applaud the I.C.C.’s arrest warrant, on behalf of children like Bakit who can’t.”

By all accounts, Kristof is a well-meaning journalist who travels to dangerous parts of the world, like Darfur, to report on human rights crimes. However, he also could be a case study of what’s wrong with American journalism.

While Kristof writes movingly about atrocities that can be blamed on Third World despots like Bashir, he won’t hold U.S. officials to the same standards.

Most notably, Kristof doesn’t call for prosecuting former President George W. Bush for war crimes, despite hundreds of thousands of Iraqis who have died as a result of Bush’s illegal invasion of their country. Many Iraqi children also don’t have hands – or legs or homes or parents.

But no one in a position of power in American journalism is demanding that former President Bush join President Bashir in the dock at The Hague.

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International Criminal Court’s case against Bashir could provide legal precedence for going after Bush.

Think Progress- By Ben Armbruster on Mar 5th, 2009 at 7:30 pm

The International Criminal Court (ICC) yesterday issued an arrest warrant for Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur. Today, the AP reports that, based on the legal principles the ICC used to arrest al-Bashir, former President George W. Bush could be next on the list:

David Crane, an international law professor at Syracuse University, said the principle of law used to issue an arrest warrant for Omar al-Bashir could extend to former US President Bush over claims officials from his Administration may have engaged in torture by using coercive interrogation techniques on terror suspects.

Crane is a former prosecutor of the Sierra Leone tribunal that indicted Liberian President Charles Taylor and put him on trial in The Hague.

Richard Dicker, director of the International Justice Programme at Human Rights Watch, said the al-Bashir ruling was likely to fuel discussion about investigations of possible crimes by Bush Administration officials.

President Clinton signed the “Rome Statute” setting up the ICC in 2000 but Bush then “unsigned” the document in May 2002, thereby withdrawing U.S. support for the court. However, the Wall Street Journal reported today that according to a senior White House official, the Obama administration may reconsider joining the court.

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