Daily archives: March 28, 2006

Rendered Meaningless: The Rule of Law in the US ‘War on Terror’

By Margaret Satterthwaite of the New York University School of Law, writing in the Jurist

Since 9/11, the U.S. government has used the discourse and authorizing rules of the laws of war while simultaneously flouting the limiting and protective rules of that regime, labeling them ‘quaint’ and inapplicable. At the same time, the Administration insists that human rights law is not applicable to this new ‘war,’ arguing alternatively that the relevant norms do not apply to extraterritorial conduct, that there is no relevant implementing legislation requiring the U.S. to abide by its international obligations, and that human rights law does not apply in situations of armed conflict. As to those standards it does concede applicability ‘ such as the prohibition on torture ‘ the Administration has largely defined away the practice. The effect is to take U.S. actions in the ‘War on Terror’ outside of both frameworks, dealing a blow to the rule of law.


View with comments

Your government is corrupt! Ghana 2000

The bulk of this material is hidden behind a subscription wall, at least at the quoted site, but I thought it might be fun to post some material from my period as Deputy High Commissioner in Ghana (1998 to 2002).

This will I hope lay to rest the accusations that my passion for democracy, human rights and honesty in Uzbekistan was a temporary career move of some kind.


Ghanaian Chronicle 9/1/2000

From allafrica.com

By Joyce Mensah Nsefo

Nobody expected Wednesday’s conference on accountability to produce any fireworks, but then nobody reckoned with the Scotsman His Excellency Mr.Craig John Murray, deputy British High Commissioner, the open minded,respected, free-speaking diplomat. And when he decided to make an intervention it came in the form of a bombshell, lifting his audience off their feet with surprise, followed by moments of embarrassing silence.

Craig, who had been invited to say a few words at the workshop on “Information for Accountability” declared that corruption in Ghana is a problem and specifically pointed accusing fingers at the government in the area of awards of contracts.

The Dispatch 9/5/2000

From allafrica.com

Government to Deport Diplomat?

There are credible indications within high places that the government is thinking about the possibility of asking the British government to recall the deputy British High Commissioner, Mr. Craig Murray, for what a highly-placed official described as “irresponsible, undiplomatic and unsubstantiated allegations of governmental corruption.”

In a story first carried by JOY FM and later by The Ghanaian Chronicle, Mr.Murray is reported to have said corruption is a problem internationally but it was rather on the high side in Ghana. He alleged that even foreigners who win contracts are required to pay a percentage of the contract value, to be given to certain highly-placed people in government. He also said Ghana has had a record of waivers from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for non-compliance with benchmarks for releasing funds.


View with comments