Monday, April 21, 2014

Dubya in court?

Dubya's being sued for crimes against peace. It's a class action lawsuit filed in California by victims of the Iraq war.
The case against Bush is based on the conduct of members of the administration prior to coming into office as well as conduct taking place on and after 9/11. Years before their appointment to the Bush Administration, Richard Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz were vocal advocates of a militant neoconservative ideology that called for the United States to use its armed forces in the Middle East and elsewhere.

They openly chronicled their desire for aggressive wars through a non-profit called The Project for the New American Century (or PNAC). In 1998, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz would personally sign a letter to then-President Clinton, urging the president to implement a “strategy for removing Saddam’s regime from power,” which included a “willingness to undertake military action as diplomacy is clearly failing.”

On 9/11, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz openly pressed for the United States to invade Iraq, even though intelligence at the time confirmed that it was al Qaeda, and not Saddam, that was responsible.
We now know that the Bush Administration began a concerted effort to scare and mislead the American public in order to obtain support for the Iraq War. As alleged in the complaint, this included the famous phrase that “the smoking gun could not be a mushroom cloud,” which was used repeatedly by Administration officials on news shows as a way of equating non-action with the vaporization of a United States city. The Administration used bogus and false intelligence to make the case for weapons of mass destruction, and also falsely linked al Qaeda to Iraq, despite the fact that there has never been any evidence of any operational linkages between the two. These were not simple mistakes: this was an intentional campaign by Administration officials to use faulty data to garner support for a war.
I'm happy to stipulate the truth of all of this, and more. But I still don't think that this lawsuit is going anywhere.

On the other hand, if America's standing in the world continues to sink -- and the BRICS countries continue to become more powerful -- we may reach a point where lawsuits of this kind could be lodged in a body like the World Court. And the penalty? Trade sanctions. A 100% tax on American imports, to be lifted only when this country hands over the accused for judgment.

This is all blue sky conjecture, of course, but you gotta admit: It'd be an interesting thing to see.

And in the long run, a little punishment from a world body might be the best thing to happen to this country. Arrogance is a nation-killer, and humility sometimes has to be imposed from outside. The Germans got spanked after WWII -- not as soundly as they should have been spanked, but there was still a big, internationally-sanctioned spanking. And Germany benefited from the discipline.
Sibel Edmonds said FBI tapes revealed that the US was planning to invade Iraq from before 9/11:

The monitoring of the Turks picked up contacts with Feith, Wolfowitz, and Perle in the summer of 2001, four months before 9/11. They were discussing with the Turkish ambassador in Washington an arrangement whereby the U.S. would invade Iraq and divide the country. The UK would take the south, the rest would go to the U.S. They were negotiating what Turkey required in exchange for allowing an attack from Turkish soil. The Turks were very supportive, but wanted a three-part division of Iraq to include their own occupation of the Kurdish region. The three Defense Department officials said that would be more than they could agree to, but they continued daily communications to the ambassador and his defense attaché in an attempt to convince them to help.

And former criminal prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi argued that Bush was guilty of murder under well established US law and should be prosecuted.

I like the idea but I don't like the chances.
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