Charges of genocide against four administrations in Washington and London document the continuity of U.S. and British crimes against Iraq. For nearly a generation, the U.S. and U.K. have collaborated in the attempted murder of a nation. It remains a crime in progress.
Four U.S. Presidents and Four UK Prime Ministers Charged With Genocide
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
“The U.S. record of direct and indirect involvement in torture and mass killings is unmatched by any other nation since at least World War Two.”
Last week, the government of Spain closed one window of accountability for the most serious crimes committed by the most powerful nations on earth. Under great pressure from the United States, Spain decided to limit its own jurisdiction in cases of genocide and crimes against humanity. Under international law, such crimes fall under the universal jurisdiction of any nation, whether one’s own citizens are victims or not. The logic is that crimes against humanity are offenses against every member of the human species – a crime against all.
Spain had been a venue for bringing high crimes charges against human rights violators in Guatemala, Argentina, China, Israel and elsewhere. The worlds biggest potential defendant for war crimes and crimes against humanity is the United States, whose record of direct and indirect involvement in torture and mass killings is unmatched by any other nation since at least World War Two. It was U.S. pressure that forced Spain to close off its courts from international jurisdiction cases. However, one day before the change in Spanish law, lawyers for the human rights group Brussels Tribunal filed charges of crimes against humanity and genocide against four presidents of the United States and four prime ministers of Great Britain.
The charges cite 1.5 million Iraqi deaths over the course of 19 years of American and British attacks, including two full scale wars of aggression, the “most draconian sanctions regime ever designed,” and subsequent occupation of Iraq. Half a million of the dead, according to the charges, were children. So massive and systematic were the assaults on Iraq, stretching for roughly a generation, the accusers charge the U.S. and U.K. with deliberate destruction of a nation.
“Crimes against humanity are offenses against every member of the human species – a crime against all.”
The bill of particulars is massive. In addition to the dead, “some 4.7 million Iraqis — one fifth of the population — have been forcibly displaced” since the invasion of 2003. Depleted uranium has led to 600 percent increases in cancer cases in some areas. The U.S. and Britain purposely dismantled the Iraqi state, through “’manhunting,’ extrajudicial assassinations, mass imprisonment and torture, of Baathists, the entire educated class of the state apparatus, religious and linguistic minorities and Arab Sunnis, resulting in the total collapse of all public services and other economic functions and promoting civil strife and systematic corruption.
On top of all this, the Americans and Brits attempted to partition Iraq and plunder its natural resources.
The defendants are George Herbert Walker Bush, William J. Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Hussein Obama, Margaret Thatcher, John Major, Anthony Blair and Gordon Brown. It is highly unlikely they will be charged in Spain, even though the advocates beat the deadline by a day. The global clearing house for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide is the International Criminal Court. But in recent years that court has prosecuted no one but Africans. The United States refuses to join the International Criminal Court, and thus claims immunity from prosecution. But no one is immune under international law, and one day there will be a reckoning. For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Glen Ford. On the web, go to www.BlackAgendaReport.com.
Oscar Grant was murdered by a transit cop on a Bay Area subway platform before hundreds of witnesses. To enable his killer to go free, he had to be murdered again and again in the media and the courts. This book, coming in January, tells the story of these multiple murders.
Teach For America Rap: A Scab is a Scab is a Scab
What do you call cheap "replacement workers" summoned by management? From the HBO series "Treme".
Actor, rapper & human rights activist Yasiin Bey, aka Mos Def graphically demonstrates a little of what Uncle Sam's untried, un-accused, unsentenced but permanently incarcerated prisoners at Guantanamo Bay & elsewhere undergo every day... not for the faint of heart. From the Guardian, where you can find much more real journalistic coverage of the NSA and more.
A warning to current & future Facebook "friends" and "likes":
Please know that being our “friend” or “liking” us on Facebook does not guarantee that you'll see Black Agenda Report's posts in your news feed. Facebook arbitrarily limits the reach of persons and business to 15% of “friends” and “likes”. The only way to be sure you receive weekly updates from Black Agenda Report is to sign up for our weekly email alerts on the left side of this page.
Was the US and NATO's Libyan intervention a humanitarian campaign to protect Libyans against Muammar Gaddafi’s threats of mass violence and genocide, or was it a cynically “rehearsed military expedition” to force regime change and wield Western authority in the region? Far from being an action to save lives, NATO’s “indiscriminate” bombing of civilian targets and cities such as Sirte (Gaddafi’s birthplace) resulted in genocide, ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity, and civil war..
The year that saw an African American run for the presidency as a viable contender also witnessed a truly remarkable silence. While millions of words written about the political ascent of one black man, there was virtually nothing about the descent of black leadership into well-nigh total ineffectiveness. Barack Obama’s personal itinerary was mapped in the minutest detail. The larger itinerary of African Americans was mostly ignored.