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U.S. Troops Must Not Be at the Mercy of the ICC

 
 
kickycan
 
  2  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:15 pm
This topic is interesting. I'd like to hear more about it from someone smart and unbiased. Can you guys all leave?

Thanks
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:17 pm
McG wrote:
...the US will need to worry about our troops/citizens being held to laws and rules that might be contrary to the US constitution.



It was my understanding that the ICC only prosecutes violations of international law. If I'm mistaken I just might revise my opinion. What international laws might be contrary to the US constitution?
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:18 pm
kickycan wrote:
This topic is interesting. I'd like to hear more about it from someone smart and unbiased. Can you guys all leave?

Thanks


I can't believe you think I'm biased! :wink:
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:24 pm
"U.S. Troops Must Not Be at the Mercy of the ICC", but in the UK today a panel of High Court judges in London ruled that crimes done in Basra [Iraq] by British soldiers are still within the reach of the [European] human rights agreement [aka European Convention on Human Rights ].
[The judges also said that previous UK investigations of other Iraqi civilian deaths were inadequate, opening the way for further appeals.]

Iraqis win death probe test case

Seems that in democracies even in times of war laws aren't silent.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:25 pm
kickycan wrote:
This topic is interesting. I'd like to hear more about it from someone smart and unbiased. Can you guys all leave?

Thanks



I'm gonna assume there is an element of humor in that word "all"...that I have missed here!
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:26 pm
McGentrix wrote:
It is my understanding that the US govt believes the US law and court system is competent enough to take care of US citizens and that our constitution trumps international law when applied to it's citizenry.



If this really is so, why bother?

As I said: either the senator (and obviously you, too) don't know much but write/publish a lot about the ICC or ... :wink:
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:31 pm
Walter Hinteler wrote:
McGentrix wrote:
It is my understanding that the US govt believes the US law and court system is competent enough to take care of US citizens and that our constitution trumps international law when applied to it's citizenry.



If this really is so, why bother?

As I said: either the senator (and obviously you, too) don't know much but write/publish a lot about the ICC or ... :wink:


Walt, if I am mistaken, please explain to me how. I have no great fear of acknowledging my lack of study regarding international lawand the interactions of the ICC.
0 Replies
 
kickycan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:35 pm
Frank Apisa wrote:
kickycan wrote:
This topic is interesting. I'd like to hear more about it from someone smart and unbiased. Can you guys all leave?

Thanks



I'm gonna assume there is an element of humor in that word "all"...that I have missed here!


He he he...
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 01:46 pm
Fom the very beginning, your quotation starts with allegations, with are not only untrue but discriminating any democratic legal system:
the ICC doesn't arrest and prosecute itself

From your quotation:
Quote:
The United States is not a party to the ICC and does not recognize its jurisdiction. Even so, the court can currently arrest and prosecute our troops and personnel operating in U.N. peacekeeping missions if the host nation is a member of the ICC, accepts its jurisdiction voluntarily, or is directed by the U.N. Security Council.



Proceedings before the ICC may be initiated by a State Party, the Prosecutor or the United Nations Security Council.
Once a State becomes a party to the Statute, it accepts the Court's jurisdiction with respect to crimes under the Statute. For the Court to exercise its jurisdiction, the territorial State (the State on whose territory the situation which is being investigated has taken or is taking place), or the State of nationality (the State whose nationality is possessed by the person who is being investigated) must be a party to the Statute.


If a case is being considered by a country with jurisdiction over it, then the ICC cannot act unless the country is unwilling or unable genuinely to investigate or prosecute.


Etc etc etc
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 03:07 pm
McGentrix wrote:
It is my understanding that the US govt believes the US law and court system is competent enough to take care of US citizens and that our constitution trumps international law when applied to it's citizenry.


The following has nothing to do with ICC :

Quote:
US admits more Afghan jail deaths

The US army has admitted that eight detainees have died in its custody in Afghanistan - two more than it had previously acknowledged.
The army's admission came after the campaign group Human Rights Watch said it knew of three new incidents.

The group sent an open letter to US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, saying the US has failed to investigate or punish abuses by its soldiers.

A US official said at least three deaths were still being investigated.



"It's time for the United States to come clean about crimes committed by US forces in Afghanistan," said Brad Adams, Asia Division director for Human Rights Watch (HRW).
A failure to prosecute soldiers for incidents in Afghanistan had led to "a culture of impunity" which may have spread to Iraq, he said.

There was fury earlier this year when photographs emerged of Iraqi prisoners being physically and sexually abused by American prison guards.

The latest revelations are a further embarrassment for the US military and will only intensify scrutiny of the way it treats its prisoners, says the BBC's Ian Pannell in Washington.

Four accused

The US military said eight deaths in Afghanistan had been documented.

It released only basic details of the cases, which included:


A "Mr M Sayari", killed in August 2002. The army said the case had been investigated and closed.
HRW pointed to an investigation launched into a death about this time, in which four soldiers were accused of murder. But it said there was no record of any court martial against the accused.


Sher Mohammed Khan, who died in September this year after being arrested near Khost. The army said initial reports suggested he had a heart attack, though investigations were continuing.
HRW says the documents only came to light after a request by another US campaign group under the Freedom of Information Act.
HRW says it is aware of "only a handful of criminal investigations" into the cases and into many claims of torture by detainees.


It says it knows of only two US personnel being charged with any crime.
The HRW letter also claims that the US-run detention system in Afghanistan operates entirely outside the rule of law, and that commanders have repeatedly refused requests for visits by the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission.

HRW also urged the US military to publish a delayed internal report on its Afghan detention centres.

The US authorities promised to release parts of the report several months ago, but a spokesman said on Monday that no date had been set for publishing the report because its findings were still being reviewed in Washington - but that no abuses had been uncovered.
Source
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 03:35 pm
By using my quote, I assume you are using this article of an example of what I said. These cases are being investigated by US investigators. Just as Abu Ghraib was.

How would this be an example of why the ICC should be able to have jurisdiction over US citizens or soldiers?
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 03:49 pm
McGentrix wrote:
By using my quote, I assume you are using this article of an example of what I said. These cases are being investigated by US investigators. Just as Abu Ghraib was.

How would this be an example of why the ICC should be able to have jurisdiction over US citizens or soldiers?



When you please look again at my last post:
Walter Hinteler wrote:
The following has nothing to do with ICC :
[...]


With the post and quotations before that, I've tried to clear up that the ICC has no jurisdiction over US-citizens and soldiers.

This was thaught to be another example, how well the US justice system(s) is (are) working.

Sorry that my attempts failed.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 08:17 pm
I was wondering if that's what you meant. I'm still not sure if you think it's a good thing or a bad thing though.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 10:12 pm
As usual, Walter is correct. Uncharacteristically, however, he failed to provide a link to the primary source (really, Walter, I'm disappointed!). Here's the official website of the ICC.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Dec, 2004 10:23 pm
Re: U.S. Troops Must Not Be at the Mercy of the ICC
Senator Jon Kyl wrote:
The United States is not a party to the ICC and does not recognize its jurisdiction. Even so, the court can currently arrest and prosecute our troops and personnel operating in U.N. peacekeeping missions if the host nation is a member of the ICC, accepts its jurisdiction voluntarily, or is directed by the U.N. Security Council.

I believe that is a correct interpretation of the law. The ICC, however, will defer to any investigation and/or prosecution instigated by the US.

Senator Jon Kyl wrote:
Consider: A U.N. report issued last week called for the Security Council to refer suspected cases of war crimes to the ICC. Almost simultaneously, war crimes charges were filed in a German court against Defense Secretary Rumsfeld for prison abuses at Abu Graib in Iraq.

I wish the prosecution all the best.

Senator Jon Kyl wrote:
A German human rights group argued, under the much abused and misunderstood concept of "universal jurisdiction," that any citizen or group can file a claim against any world leader who may be guilty of committing crimes against humanity. Can anyone reasonably believe that more such cases are not soon to follow?

"Universal jurisdiction" isn't "much abused," although Senator Kyl provides some evidence that it is indeed "misunderstood."

Senator Jon Kyl wrote:
Although the Clinton Administration helped negotiate the terms and scope of the ICC, and even signed the treaty that created it in 1998, it was never submitted to the Senate for ratification. On May 6, 2002, the Bush Administration formally renounced any commitment to join the ICC or recognize its jurisdiction, citing fundamental structural flaws that would allow the court to undermine the role of the U.N. Security Council in maintaining international peace and security, as well as concerns over unchecked prosecutorial power and efforts to assert jurisdiction over citizens of states that have not ratified the treaty.

US citizens who commit crimes abroad can already be prosecuted in foreign jurisdictions. In that respect, the ICC is hardly revolutionary.
0 Replies
 
Joe Republican
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Dec, 2004 01:08 am
McGentrix wrote:
Walter Hinteler wrote:
Or - might be he had, but he thinks, e.g. that the USA doesn' have a functional juridical system?


It is my understanding that the US govt believes the US law and court system is competent enough to take care of US citizens and that our constitution trumps international law when applied to it's citizenry. With this being the case, an international organization like the ICC can only undermine foriegn relations because the US will need to worry about our troops/citizens being held to laws and rules that might be contrary to the US constitution.


This isn't what the US believes. It's to allow illegal activities to go on and not be held accountable for them.

Take a look at the cases of US soldiers committing crimes, and how the US has not allowed our people to be tried in other countries. It's part of the reason for all of the hatred for the US. We put ourselves ABOVE the law in other countries eyes.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Dec, 2004 01:51 am
joefromchicago wrote:
As usual, Walter is correct. Uncharacteristically, however, he failed to provide a link to the primary source (really, Walter, I'm disappointed!). Here's the official website of the ICC.


This was thought to be an educationary action.

Now, I am disapponted that you didn't notice that, Joe!
0 Replies
 
Craven de Kere
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Dec, 2004 02:41 am
McG,

You can't have your cake and eat it. You frequently cast the US in a role of globocop by necessity, with the general theme being that no other authority steps up to the plate.

At the same time, you demonstrate an aversion to anyone stepping up to the plate as a perceived threat to the US hegemony.

"The UN is nothing more than a powerless debate club."

"We cannot let the UN bolster its authority."

You can't have your cake and eat it.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Dec, 2004 03:51 am
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Dec, 2004 06:22 am
Maybe I'm missing something here. Isn't the whole point of the ICC not to prevent genocides and abuses but to provide a way to bring justice to the perpetrators of the same? In that sense, aren't the Milosevic and Rwanda trials good examples of how this would work?

So my take is that the ICC is already doing its job, with or without us, but that we put ourselves outside their jusrisdiction. We are talking about the rule of law. There's a reason why we are so fond of it in this country, and it makes sense to extend that internationally.
0 Replies
 
 

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