I.C.C.: Impunity for U.S. Soldiers?
By Adam Porter
The U.S. won't allow the International Criminal Court (ICC) to exist. Each time the UN votes on the commencement of an International Criminal Court it has been vetoed by the U.S. Mostly alongside the U.K. Sometimes Israel votes against, once El Salvador.
But international justice is a long way from the minds of the American elite. In 1998, the Pentagon contacted military chiefs from all over the world including many human rights abusers, the Pakistanis for example. They did so in order to get said criminals to lobby against the creation of the ICC. "Military personnel would be significantly affected by an ICC," said the letter (March 27, 1998).
Senator Jesse Helms has introduced an amendment to the American Servicemembers Protection Act 2001 which would make it illegal for U.S. military personnel to be detained under any such future court. It will also mean economic sanctions against any country that even dares to agree to the court. The U.K. ratified it on October 4. The Swiss ratified the court on October 12. Currently 43 countries have ratified. Sixty countries are needed to force implementation. The Pentagon is scared that the current climate could hurry up implementation. They are scared of democracy.
Because Helms' motion will not only destroy the chances of trying men like bin Laden it will also enable the U.S. to undertake military action against anyone who detains a U.S. citizen or service person.
Source: "Rogue State: The U.S. and the ICC," Nov. 2, 2001. <http://www.guerrillanews.com/newswire/196.html>