Lest we forget, our own gestapo cops have just recently been committing war crimes against American citizens themselves for weeks on end via chemical warfare (tear-gas), potentially-fatal rubber bullets, as well as hundreds of documented assaults. And all for the terrible crime of exercising our first Amendment right to protest. Can you imagine what our military is doing overseas where atrocities aren’t being filmed?
Former U.S. soldier Chelsea Manning once leaked classified raw footage of U.S. soldiers recklessly slaughtering Iraqi civilians including children and two Reuters journalists and for that she was sentenced to 35 years at a maximum-security military prison at Fort Leavenworth. This is what happens to those who tell the truth about the U.S. Empire.
Manning served 7 years before her sentence was commuted by President Obama (note that he held off until his last year in office to do so). She was later re-imprisoned for a full year solely for refusing to testify against Julian Assange, the publisher of Wikileaks, until finally being released after attempting suicide. She wasn’t charged with an actual crime, but was held in isolation to compel her to testify. The United Nations deemed this treatment as torture.
“The Trump administration is launching an economic and legal offensive on the International Criminal Court in response to the court’s decision to open an investigation into war crimes in Afghanistan carried out by all sides, including the US. The US will not just sanction ICC officials involved in the investigation of alleged war crimes by the US and its allies, it will also impose visa restrictions on the families of those officials. Additionally, the administration declared on Thursday that it was launching a counter-investigation into the ICC, for alleged corruption.” (The Hill)
This response might as well be an admission of guilt. If the U.S. Empire has nothing to hide, then why lash out so punitively against the ICC? If the investigation were to yield no evidence, then what does the U.S. Empire have to worry about? We know why.Here is the official response from the ICC:
The International Criminal Court (“ICC” or “the Court”) expresses profound regret at the announcement of further threats and coercive actions, including financial measures, against the Court and its officials, made earlier today by the Government of the United States.
The ICC stands firmly by its staff and officials and remains unwavering in its commitment to discharging, independently and impartially, the mandate bestowed upon it by the Rome Statute and the States that are party to it.
These are the latest in a series of unprecedented attacks on the ICC, an independent international judicial institution, as well as on the Rome Statute system of international criminal justice, which reflects the commitment and cooperation of the ICC’s 123 States Parties, representing all regions of the world.
These attacks constitute an escalation and an unacceptable attempt to interfere with the rule of law and the Court’s judicial proceedings. They are announced with the declared aim of influencing the actions of ICC officials in the context of the Court’s independent and objective investigations and impartial judicial proceedings.
An attack on the ICC also represents an attack against the interests of victims of atrocity crimes, for many of whom the Court represents the last hope for justice.
As it continues to meet its mandated responsibilities, the Court relies on the staunch support and cooperation of its States Parties. The Court wishes to recall, in this context, yesterday’s joint statement from the ten ICC States Parties members of the UN Security Council, reconfirming their “unwavering support for the Court as an independent and impartial judicial institution,” as well as the press statement issued earlier today by the President of the Assembly of States Parties.
All of this should be making more headlines than it has because it lays bare the utter reckless arrogance of the United States, which has refused to join the ICC since it began in 2002. Bush, Obama, and obviously Trump are all guilty of rejecting this no-brainer organization. The message this sends to the International Criminal Court and the United Nations is: “Yes, we commit war crimes, we will continue to commit war crimes, and anyone who talks about it will also be a target.”
Some might say the U.S. has lost it’s moral-standing in the world, but that would suggest we had any to begin with. A truly decent nation does not engage in war so readily; there is no other country in modern history that has pursued such widespread, blood-thirsty imperialism and has no signs of slowing down.
Any nation that tries to stop this would risk the wrath of nuclear annihilation. That’s what President Truman’s dropping of two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, despite the Japanese having already offered terms of surrender, truly symbolized; that the U.S. Empire was draconian enough to cross the line. To this day we remain the only country to ever use nuclear weapons against another nation, proving that the rest of the world is at least more sensible in this regard.
Declaring itself immune to war crime prosecution by the international community and to aggressively attack the ICC itself is yet another reason why the American people have a moral obligation to overthrow our own Empire. Since we are the only people the U.S. cannot nuke without destroying itself, we are the ones that could succeed.
We’ve waited for far too long as it is.
It’s time to stop waiting. #REVOLT