A New Low for the International Criminal Court 85


The ICC really has plumbed new depths in the current trial of ex-Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo. I do urge you to read the analysis I wrote at the time of his overthrow. Gbagbo certainly was guilty of crimes, but much more killing and violence was done by current Ivory Coast President, and former Deputy MD of the IMF, Alassane Ouattara. My article was written at the time to counter an extremely misleading one written by Thalia Griffiths, editor of African Energy, and published in the Guardian. I have since discovered more about the role of Trafigura in funding Ouattara’s forces, and the picture becomes ever clearer.

Ouattara killed more than Gbagbo but now sits in the Presidential palace, secure with his French and CIA backers, and confines Gbagbo to the International Criminal Court. That institution shames itself by making itself a simple instrument of victor’s justice, or of prosecuting the side that the major western powers were fighting against. To underline the hypocrisy of this, yesterday Ouattara granted Ivorian citizenship to his ally Blaise Compaore, former President of Burkina Faso, to help him avoid an international arrest warrant for crimes including the murder of his predecessor. Compaore had helped Ouattara fix his election.

Please note, it is very important to avoid the fallacy of “goodies” and “baddies” in African politics. The Ivorien election was extremely unsafe and characterised by cheating on all sides. I am in no sense defending Gbagbo as an innocent.

Yesterday I met with a Western diplomat who told me they are in fact well aware that Campaore’s hand was behind the attacks in Ougadougou a month ago that were blamed on Al Qaida. It would be unfair to say that any Western security service planned or even approved of it. But it benefits their narrative in a number of ways to go along with it. Re-establishing Compaore in Burkina Faso remains a French objective, and the CIA are happy to play ball.

I am in West Africa until Saturday.


85 thoughts on “A New Low for the International Criminal Court

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  • fwl

    Thanks Macky. I may check out Del Ponte’s book The Hunt. It looks then to my uninformed eyes as if the ICTY and some of its personnel were intent on impartiality balance and independence but as in any attempt at international justice the usual (I won’t say inevitable) occurred.

    Incidentally (aka off topic) – if anyone has read or is watching the Night Manager are there any thoughts on whether Roper (the charming arms dealer played by Hugh Laurie) and his like would be for Britain in Europe or against (or indifferent)?

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Interesting to see that the defenders of the late Slobodan Milosevic are still alive and well.

    But why has no one put in a good word for “General” Ratko Mladic?

    Or Arkan?

    C’mon guys, make it a full house! 🙂

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Exexpat

    Your posts help me understand why you didn’t get that job at the ICC.

  • fwl

    Habbs, its not for me to speak for the Serbs, but they are an interesting people and deserve a voice. I don’t mean any individual in particular, but as a people. I get the impression that many of them were very angry over how their country was played (if that is not entirely an inappropriate word). I am not justifying anyone or anything. As I have revealed above I don’t know much about what happened in the former Yugoslavia, but the bad guys weren’t all on one side.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Fwl

    I wasn’t really aiming my comment at you – you are one of the good guys on here (so far – don’t disappoint me! 🙂 ).

    I don’t see how one can say Serbia was “played”. Let’s face it, the Serbs have form in wiping out people they don’t like (cf the treatment reserved by Tito for the Mihailovic faction at the end of WW2). You’re right to say there were bad guys on all sides but the Serbs under Karadzic/Milosevic/Mladic got what was coming to them. To talk about a NATO or Western “plot” against Yugoslavia is just tired old nonsense trotted out by those who support anyone and anything they think is anti-Western/US.

  • Clark

    Habbabkuk, please clarify what you mean by this:

    “the Serbs have form in wiping out people they don’t like […] the Serbs under Karadzic/Milosevic/Mladic got what was coming to them”

    I know almost nothing about the conflicts you’re referring to, but you seem to be saying that Serbs are bad people. I think you must mean something different.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Clark

    I suggest you read up about (1) what happened to one group of Yugoslav partisans at the end of WW2 (at the hands of Tito’s Communist partisans) and (2) the Bosnian conflict. Having done so, you will understand more clearly why NATO intervention in the Kosovo conflict was necessary and desirable.

    Messrs Milosevic, Karadic and Ratko (the Rat) Mladic were genocidal swine. But feel free to make up your own mind, of course.

  • fwl

    Re ” Serbia played”: I don’t have enough facts to have a concluded view as to culpability and to understand whether extent geo politics was head or tail in Serbia and Kosovo.

    If the head was geo political (as I suspect) then that puts the monsters in a different context to if the monsters were the head and the geo politics were the tail (doesn’t justify them though). Thats putting it very simply.

    In any event when there is a vacuum all the monsters come out. In the Arab Spring the head appears to have been geo political and that in my book has been sinful i.e. some people in the false name of some humanitarian rhetoric have let lose the monsters. Why?

    Anyway further off topic and back to my question of 10:39 this morning: if anyone has read or is watching the Night Manager are there any thoughts on whether Roper (the charming arms dealer played by Hugh Laurie) and his like would be for Britain in Europe or against (or indifferent)? I think this is an interesting question. Maybe unanswerable, but its a question that is likely to shape how I vote; who is who and who is up to what in the shadows?

  • Republicofscotland

    Interesting to see that the defenders of the late Slobodan Milosevic are still alive and well.

    But why has no one put in a good word for “General” Ratko Mladic?

    Or Arkan?

    ______________

    Habb.

    Well according to this article Better Together, accepted a donation of £1million pounds from Ian Taylor. A British business man and head of Vitoil, who had dealing with you guessed it Arkan.

    http://nationalcollective.com/2013/04/07/dirty-money-the-tory-millionaire-bankrolling-better-together/

    But then again after reading “Project Fear” by Joe Pike, absolutely nothing about the establidhment surprises me anymore.

  • Macky

    Habba-Clown; “That is what I’m disputing – it’s not a fact, it’s merely your opinion.”

    No, it’s a fact; if the ICC was so minded, ie truely impartial, it could bring to trial those responsible to what happened to Iraq.

    Why are you struggling with something so basic & straight forward ?!!

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    How could Habby possibly see what the ICC didn’t do in NATO”s bust-up of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq when he cannot see that Israel and NATO busted up the Republic of Yugoslavia! without even a mention by the ICTY!

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Macky

    You’re offering an opinion again: you are suggesting that the ICC is partial because it hasn’t “brought to trial” certain people YOU think should be on trial.

    Can you understand that just because you think “x” it doesn’t mean that “x” becomes a fact. 🙂

    BTW, do you have any idea of the process required before the ICC indicts someone? Here’s a challenge – tell us, briefly and in your own words.

  • Macky

    @Habby-Clown, You are either truly dense or are being deliberately obtuse, playing your moronic troll games; I’m not wasting any more time on you; if another Poster can’t follow what I’m stating, then I will respond, but as to you, please kindly Piss Off !

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Macky

    “@Habby-Clown, You are either truly dense or are being deliberately obtuse, playing your moronic troll games;”
    ________________________

    It is being neither dense nor obtuse to point out that you shouldn’t automatically confuse what you believe with facts.

    Your beliefs may sometimes correspond to reality (ie, to the facts) and sometimes not.

    Your error consists in thinking that something must be true simply because you believe it to be true.

    Are you denying that you believe the ICC is partial because it hasn’t indicted
    certain people you believe to be war criminals (eg, Bush, Blair, etc)?

    And what is your response to my question “do you have any idea of the process required before the ICC indicts someone”?

    *****************************

    A word of advice to you, Macky – experience should have taught you that you shouldn’t tangle with me on here because you invariably come off worse. What you should do is to use Habbabreak or to raise your game considerably. Good luck! 🙂

  • Republicofscotland

    “What is the point you’re trying to make (if there is one)?”

    ____________

    Habb.

    Oh nothing in particular, just showing the usual connections between the British establishment and murderous warlords.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    RoS

    Maybe. But how was that relevant to the point under discussion? I think you just felt you had to say something 5again…and again…and again… 🙂 )

  • Courtenay Barnett

    One Response to ICC Wanted Broader Jurisdiction in Libya: Moreno-Ocampo

    Courtenay Barnett says:

    “Criminal’s Accomplice”
    (A one act/one scene play with a potentially horrific end.)
    Setting: A War Crimes Tribunal, somewhere in Europe.
    Actors: Three Judges; an international war crimes Prosecutor; a Court…
    “Criminal’s Accomplice”

    (A one act/one scene play with a potentially horrific end.)

    Setting: A War Crimes Tribunal, somewhere in Europe.

    Actors: Three Judges; an international war crimes Prosecutor; a Court Clerk; two armed court officers; Donald Rumsfeld

    Act 1

    Scene one. A black curtain is slowly drawn to reveal a somber setting. Three Judges ( A President of the Court; the Judge on the President’s right; The Judge on the President’s left); two armed guards; a Court Clerk who reads the charges; the Prosecutor; Donald Rumsfeld, standing as an accused before the Tribunal.

    President ( looking at Rumsfeld): Mr. Rumsfeld you have been brought before this Tribunal for reason that by international consensus, a vast majority of people in the world had petitioned for your trial for complicity in crimes against humanity. Should this Tribunal find you guilty, you can be sentenced to life imprisonment. Do you understand?

    Rumsfeld: Yes I do.

    President: Is there anything you wish to say before the trial commences?

    Rumsfeld: I am an American citizen, and this court has no jurisdiction over me. I am American, I am above international law, and in fact I am a law unto myself.

    President: Precisely, and it is those misconceived notions which got you into this predicament in the first place. Commence with the charges.

    Court Clerk: Reads a long list of jurisprudential formalities, and then adds…

    “ facilitating the procurement of chemical weapons , namely bis- ( 2-cholorethyl) – sulfide ( more commonly known as mustard gas) for sale to the Government of Iraq under the rule of Saddam Hussein.”

    Rumsfeld: Is that supposed to be a charge?

    President: Mr. Rumsfeld the international law applicable to your alleged heinous conduct was read out to you previously. Would you care to have the passages repeated?

    Rumsfeld: What’s this international law, international law indeed! I told you already I don’t give a damn about any international law – I am an American citizen.

    President: ( looking at Prosecutor) : Please begin questioning.

    Prosecutor: Mr. President there is one more charge.

    President: Clerk, please read the charge.

    Clerk: “Facilitating the procurement of chemical weapons , namely ethyl N, N-dimethylphosphoroamidocyanidate ( more commonly known as Tabun) for sale to the Government of Iraq under the rule of Saddam Hussein.”

    Rumsfeld: And that’s what you call a charge? So I helped in getting and approving sales of chemical weapons, and a lot of other weapons for Saddam Hussein, and what of it? There is no crime in that. We sold him weapons because it was in the interest of the United States to sell weapons to him and his bunch of bandits in Iraq . Don’t you understand that he was conducting a war with Iran, and we needed to have a no win situation. It was in US interest. I did my law abiding duty to my country. ( Rumsfled turns from his focus on the President, looks slowly to the center of the court room, lowers his head, and almost sotto voce says) – and I don’t see why I am in this damn court for all the good that I have done for God and country.

    President: Mr. Prosecutor – you may begin questioning.

    Prosecutor: Your name is Donald Rumsfeld, and you held office under President Reagan, and you have been Secretary of Defence for the United Stares of America?

    Rumsfeld: Yes.

    Prosecutor: During the period of the Iran- Iraq War – do you recall being an envoy to Baghdad?

    Rumsfeld: Yes.

    Prosecutor: And at the time you carried a hand-written letter and personally delivered it to Iraq’s President, Saddam Hussein?

    Rumsfeld: Yes.

    Prosecutor: It is also true to say that at the time of your visit to Iraq you were the highest ranking United States official to have visited Iraq in the previous six years.

    Rumsfeld: Probably.

    Prosecutor: It was either so or it wasn’t. Are you able to name anyone in the preceding six years, prior to your visit to Baghdad, who held higher office than yourself who had visited Baghdad; or, more precisely had at all visited Iraq?

    Rumsfeld: No.

    Prosecutor: So…

    Rumsfeld: Look, it’s all lawyers’ games, if this then that, so what ? O.K. yes I was the top guy who visited.

    Prosecutor: Would you have a look at the three exhibits which I am about to hand up to you – listed “A” , “B” and “C’ for ease for reference.

    ( papers are handed to Rumsfeld)

    Prosecutor: Please look at “ A”. And you accept that in March 1984 you were in Baghdad.

    Rumsfeld: Yes.

    Prosecutor: Now turn to “B”. From that United Press International report, you accept that it was reported internationally that, and I quote in part, “ Mustard gas laced with a nerve agent has been used on Iranian soldiers in the 43-month Persian Gulf War between Iran and Iraq….” And it goes on “ Meanwhile, in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, U.S. presidential envoy Donald Rumsfeld held talks with Foreign Minister Tarek Aziz on the Gulf War before leaving for an unspecified destination.” Do you accept that report as factually accurate?

    Rumsfeld: Well I already told you that I was in Baghdad, but I wasn’t there doing the gassing.

    Prosecutor: Do you have reason to doubt that at the time it was reported, you personally knew, and the day before your meeting with Tariq Aziz it had been reported that some 600 Iranian soldiers had been gassed with chemical weapons on the southern front.

    Rumsfeld: I told you I wasn’t there gassing, so how am I to know?

    Prosecutor: Look at exhibit “C” Mr. Rumsfeld. By reference to that document, is it no less a person than US Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick, who acknowledged, “ We think the use of chemical weapons is a very serious matter. We’ve made that clear in general and particular.” Now, do you deny that as a very senior US official you knew and were fully aware of the gassing with chemical weapons?

    Rumsfeld: O.K., you got me on that one.

    Prosecutor: And on March 29, 1984, it was reported in the New York Times, “ American diplomats pronounce themselves satisfied with relations between Iraq and the United States and suggest that normal diplomatic ties have been restored in all but name.”

    Rumsfeld: Look, I am no dummy, my name is Donald, not George, you are going to go to some paper and ask this, and question the other , and therefore this, and all that lawyer bullshit. Let me just tell you plain and straight. In May, 1984, I resigned. You want to suggest that I am the facilitator who gave support when Iraq was actively using chemical weapons. You are then going on to say that during my period Iraq was actively purchasing weapons and chemical agents from American firms. Well let me tell you something Buddy, that’s just how the world is. I did it for my country, The U.S. of A. which I love. Look, I am not some kind of Milosovic, or some criminal, who you put in some monkey cage and get away with it. We will bomb the shit out of this court before that is allowed to happen. You guys just don’t get it, yes we sold – yes I helped procure the weapons. I did what was right for my country at the time. I came back and I have loyally served George W. Yes, Saddam gassed the Kurds in 1988.Yes we sold him 60 Hughes helicopters and more stuff too.

    President: Mr. Rumsfeld, just a couple questions.

    Rumsfeld: Sure.

    President: Having just admitted as you did, you have been a great help to this Tribunal, and have probably shortened the trial considerably – however, just for the record, a couple points. Do you, personally, not feel any sense of remorse for the complicity in first facilitating the Iraqi government’s atrocities, and then never having done anything about it?

    Rumsfeld: Look, under Clinton I signed a letter saying that we should get rid of Saddam.

    President: But when you were in a position to inform the world about the atrocities you were totally silent.

    Rumsfeld: You just don’t get it. We sold him the stuff, and we needed him then, so why should I have said anything? It would not be logical. It would not have made sense. But when Geroge W. got back in we are focused on oil and we moved aggressively after him. The guy is a tyrant, so he had to be got rid of.

    Prosecutor: Mr. Rumsfeld…

    Rumsfeld: I have had enough of this court crap.

    Rumsfeld turns and walks towards the main doors of the court, and as he does so he is approached by the court’s two armed officers. Rumsfeld turns and says…

    “If one of you so much as puts a hand on me, the Marines will be here quicker than you can say ‘Saddam Hussein’ . I am out of here guys, back to God’s own country, the U.S.of A.”

    As he walks through the court’s doors a loud mocking laugh is heard.

    The End.

  • Macky

    Habba-Clown; “experience should have taught you that you shouldn’t tangle with me on here because you invariably come off worse”

    Walter Mitty is alive & well !! 😀

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Well, Macky, you’ve been owned on here often enough, haven’t you?

    By me, by Dreoilin, by Captain Komodo – even Craig, that most tolerant of men, once told you you were spouting nonsense (whereupon you flounced off this blog for a while).

    Anyway, challenge me again on the most recent thread(s) of you’re in need of another flooring! 🙂

  • Macky

    @Habba-Clown, the reply to your latest remarks about me is to quote back your own recent words;

    “Your error consists in thinking that something must be true simply because you believe it to be true.”

    Your increasingly deluded remarks are just expressions of your state of denial generated psychological projections.

    From Wiki;

    “Psychological projection, also known as blame shifting, is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unpleasant impulses by denying their existence while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude.”

    I politely decline your challenge invitation , as embarrassing the afflicted is really no challenge at all, and has long since lost all novelty for me iro yourself ! 😀

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Macky

    You’re wise to decline my challenge: a tongue-lashing from me, as you’ve found out to your cost on several occasions, can be a painful experience.

    Have you ever thought of installing Habbabreak? It seems to work well for our friend Captain Kolodo (cashiered).

  • Paul Barbara

    Billboard is no problem to me; though I’m a (non-Denominational) Christian, I have a sense of humour!

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