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"A sagacious accounting of the Stone Age and the beginnings of civilization"
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A.O. Kime Articles:

AGRICULTURE
Betrayal
Biocontrols
Bio-oddity #1
Bio-oddity #2
CECA
DDT ban
Family farms
Farm facts
Farm socialism
Kansas Settlement
Kime ordeal
Mission creep
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ANTIQUITY
American cavemen
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Herodotus
Kennewick Man
Montezuma Castle
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Shoofly Village ruins
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Stone Age timelines
Stone Age tools
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METAPHYSICAL
Afterlife
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Evil (nature of)
Gift of life
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Inkwell philosophy
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Melissos
Metaphysical poetry
Metaphysics
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Muse
Plotinus
Polytheism
Semantics
Sixth sense
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Suicide
Superhumanness
Time (nature of)
Two Septembers
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SOCIOPOLITICAL
19th century
Arrogance
Civil wars
Civilization
Coolness
Curse of science
Economic injustices
Establishment
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Globalization
Grand Jury
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Int'l Criminal Court
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Outsourcing
Politesse
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Proposition 203
Rule of law
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Tariffs
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Tyrants
War contradictions
War criminals
World wars
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Recent tyrants, dictators and war criminals

artist rendition of justice scales

Status of recently deposed tyrants accused of being war criminals but never prosecuted

Chili - Augusto Pinochet, died December 10, 2006
Ethiopia - Mengistu Haile Mariam, living in Zimbabwe
Haiti - Jean Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier, fled to the French Riviera in 1986 - returned to Haiti in 2011 and subsequently held by Haitian police to face corruption charges - died of a heart attack at home October 4, 2014
Liberia - Charles Taylor, convicted and imprisoned in The Hague for war crimes (CONVICTED)
Paraguay - Alfredo Stroessner, died August 16, 2006 while in exile in Brazil
Sierra Leone - Foday Sankoh, died July 29, 2003
Uganda - Milton Obote, died in a hospital in Johannesburg October 10, 2005
Uganda – Edi Amin, died August 16, 2003

In a chilling statement about Edi Amin, a shopkeeper in Kampala said... "People say he killed many people but I think there is no leader who has not killed."

---

So, what are the prosecutors of the newly created International Criminal Court (ICC) doing about the above alleged depots who are still alive? Nothing. They can't act upon crimes committed prior to the formation of this court (July 2003)... there are no retroactive provisions. Nonetheless, under the jurisdiction of other courts, there are numerous officials charged with war-crimes around the globe which includes 45 military officers from Argentina and former leaders of the junta, plus dozens of Serbian officials have either been convicted or indicted (ad-hoc tribunals). See 'war-crime tribunals worldwide' below

'Aggression' added to the list of what constitutes a war crime in 1974

Although the ICC States still need to agree on what constitutes 'aggression' which apparently may not occur until this year (2009), soon after the formation of the ICC the Athens and Istanbul bar associations went ahead anyway and filed that charge against Tony Blair (then England's Prime Minister). However, since nothing seems to have come of it (no news), the case was either dropped or thrown out of court.

Curiously, before the Iraq invasion, few knew 'aggression' was a potential 'war crime' but actually this was established in 1974, see Definition of Aggression (external website). Even though the Athens and Istanbul Bar Associations seemingly jumped the gun, if civilization is to progress, outlawing aggression would seem a necessary and logical step... yet, what about for the purpose of eliminating imminent threats? Surely at times aggression can be justified. After all, to counter an enemy which utilizes covert tactics shouldn't be a crime merely because the enemy was countered overtly. Besides, the best defensive often requires offensive tactics.

As noble as the ICC is trying to be, and God knows we need nobleness in this world, but for modern day threats... shouldn't we be more realistic? Hopefully the ICC will recognize a nation's concern over the horrific nature of modern day weapons, effectively 'instantaneous', and don't plant themselves in 'la-la' land. Today, in a time when a retaliatory response is often no longer a viable option, being 'too late', the UN (or the ICC) should empower itself to take preemptive action to neutralize threatening regimes. If they don't, how can they possible contemplate war-crime charges against those who do? Otherwise, in passiveness, if Washington was leveled by a nuclear device, sympathy cards from the UN just won't do.

While an International Criminal Court (and even the UN) is an admirable idea since there is a dire need, one can only hope they won't get swept up in 'utopian foolishness' like the Athens and Istanbul bar associations. If they do, where will this end? Will soldiers soon be required to read the enemy his rights before he shoots him? Lets stay on terra firma.

With the Iraq threat neutralized, what will the UN and the ICC do about the nuclear threat posed by North Korea and Iran? Nothing? Will their inaction force the U.S. (or Israel) to react once again? Yes, Kofi Annon was right, the UN was (and still is) in a crisis but largely of its own making. While Kofi was perhaps the best Secretary-General the UN ever had, but if the UN is going to be an effective institution it should show leadership and take the initiative, not leave it up to the U.S. and Israel ... the most likely victims of inaction. If the target was likely to be Paris or Berlin, the Europeans would assuredly change their position about 'aggression'. Yet, on the other hand, since no weapons of mass-destruction have been found in Iraq, Bush and Blair had put themselves in a largely untenable position.

Bankers also subject to war crimes?

According to Legal Week, on September 18, 2003 when Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the ICC chief prosecutor, spoke at the International Bar Association (IBA) conference in San Francisco, he issued a fair warning. In demonstrating the connection between illegal business activities in The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the mass killings occurring there, he stated his intention to investigate those companies involved and whether they should be held on charges and brought before the ICC (a series of UN reports had alleged the banking systems within 25 countries, including the US and UK, were essentially funding the mass murders through illegal exports). Since likely many such business transactions are being facilitated by lawyers, he asked them to help with his investigations.

A great move, if we want to get at the root of world problems, follow the money... except, nothing seems to have come of it.

Great observations

In a Reuters article, the then U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annon was quoted as saying "Terrorism will only be defeated if we act to solve the political dispute and long-standing conflicts which generate support for it," Also "If we do not, we shall find ourselves acting as a recruiting sergeant for the very terrorists we seek to suppress."

In the same article, Reuters quoted Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik as saying "The rule of law and respect for human rights are the first and the best way to counter terrorism," the Norwegian said. "We must provide outlets for human ambitions, for hopes and beliefs, but also for anger and grief."

In summary

A long time coming, the formation of the International Criminal Court has given human rights groups the instrument they have long sought... legal recourse. Ironically, while these groups are now in a position to influence what constitutes a war-crime, it comes at a time when Iraq was 'invaded by mistake'. Unfortunately, practically the first order of business is a mistaken invasion... an unclear situation which could throw the unprepared court into turmoil. After all, history has never recorded a mistaken invasion before, that is, the situation on the ground not being as originally thought by the invader... therefore making the invasion seem 'unjustified'.

Or was it just the 'excuse' that Saddam had WMD which was unjustified? That excuse may have been a cover for other reasons. At any rate, because the U.S. and her allies removed a tyrant from power and seemingly a potential threat, that is, some good was done, the question remains whether charges of 'unlawful' aggression is apropos. Perhaps it is, after all, you can't attack someone just because they appear threatening. On the other hand, Saddam wasn't some ordinary street thug with a switchblade knife. We know he was a credible threat, capable of quickly developing WMD... he's had them before.

Where is King Solomon?

A.O. Kime

War Crime Tribunals Worldwide

Last updated item July 14, 2009: Rwanda

Argentina: 45 military officials and former leaders of the junta, after having been arrested, were later released pending trial. Formal charges and the trials will apparently be handled locally (under Argentinean law).

    March 10, 2005: Adolfo Scilingo, an Argentinean and former Argentine naval officer, is the first person ever tried before a Spanish court for crimes against humanity committed by a foreigner in another country. Accused of committing genocide, torture and terrorism during the military regime of Jorge Videla (1973-1983), the Spanish National Court of Justice will sentence Scilingo on April 19th. Spain, taking it upon themselves, have apparently claimed universal jurisdiction for crimes against humanity.

  Cambodia: A joint U.N.-Cambodia tribunal was ratified by the Cambodian legislature October 5, 2004 to try members of the Khmer Rouge which ruled from 1975-79.

    July 2, 2006: It was reported the trials for at least two former regime leaders, Ta Mok and Duchare, are expected to begin by mid-2007.

    November 20, 2007: A bail hearing was conducted for Chief Khmer Rouge interrogator Duchare (also known as Duch and Kaing Guek Eav)

Chili: June 7, 2005: A Santiago appeal court's decision ended proceeding against Augusto Pinochet for nine abductions and one murder involving Operation Condor. Note: Pinochet died on December 10, 2006

DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo): As of April 22, 2005, the ICC appears to be making headway since it has reached the Pre-Trial Chambers stage (as to what is admissible evidence). Arrests by local authorities and surrenders are also taking place.

    August 17, 2005: In the Beach case, the Brazzaville court acquitted 15 defendants of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity

    March 17, 2006: The ICC makes its first arrest since its founding (July 2002) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, a Congolese national, accused of "conscripting and enlisting children under the age of fifteen years and using them to participate actively in hostilities" was arrested and transferred to The Hague.

    January 29, 2007: The International Criminal Court (ICC) has confirmed charges against Thomas Lubanga Dyilo who will now stand trial. It will be the very first case (against an individual) for the ICC since its inception in July 2003.

    November 16, 2007: In his first appearance before the International Criminal Court (ICC) Congolese militia leader Germain Katanga faces charges of murder, sexual enslavement, forcing children to serve as soldiers among other war crimes. He is the second Congolese transfer to the ICC.

Iraq: December 10, 2003: the Iraqi Governing Council announced their creation of the Iraqi Special Tribunal For Crimes Against Humanity to try Iraqi citizens accused of genocide and crimes against humanity and for certain other crimes committed between July 17, 1968 to May 1, 2003 under Iraqi law. They are being criticized for not involving the international community in this however.

    July 1, 2005: Saddam makes first court appearance... news agencies censored

    September 12, 2005: Trial for Saddam Hussein and seven officials scheduled to begin October 19, 2005

    October 19, 2005: Trial for Saddam Hussein adjourned until November 28

    March 15, 2006: Saddam takes the stand for the first time. Admitting he ordered 148 men from Dujail to be tried (for their attempt to assassination him), he also justified the sentences as entirely legal, saying "Where is the crime?."

    November 5, 2006: Saddam sentenced to hang... appeal process expected to take a couple months. Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, one of Saddam's lawyers, was ejected from the courtroom for calling the proceedings 'a travesty'.

   December 30, 2006: Saddam was executed (hanged).

Peru: A Truth and Reconciliation Commission (CVR) submitted a final report (August 2003) on the war crimes committed during the 20 years of fighting between government forces and Shining Path rebels from 1980 to 2000.

    August 17, 2005: The trial in Peru's Anti-Corruption Court began for 57 defendants accused of being part of the Colina Group, a paramilitary death squad.

    April 8, 2009: Peru's Fujimori sentenced to 25 years in prison for massacres.

Rwanda: The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, a U.N. court based in Tanzania, is trying several dozen suspects for genocide which killed some 500,000 people in 1994 while Rwanda (local) courts are trying others.

    March 10, 2005: To date, about 60,000 confessions of war crimes have been obtained (75% of the detainees have confessed). Importantly, 668 district and sector officials have been charged and summoned before the court.

    June, 2006: So far the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) has handed down 22 judgments involving 28 accused. Twenty-five were convicted and three acquitted.

    July 14, 2009: Tharcisse Renzaho, the former Kigali governor, was found guilty of genocide and, as crimes against humanity, two counts of murder and two counts of rape. He was sentenced to life in prison.

Sierra Leone: A tribunal jointly planned by the Sierra Leone government and the U.N., which will include a blend of local and international judges and prosecutors, will try war crimes from the country's 1991-2000 civil war.

    February 28, 2003: The Trial Chamber ordered the joint trial of Sankoh, Bockarie, Sesay, Kallon and Gbao (Five alleged leaders of the former Revolutionary United Front). Note: Iindictments against Sankoh and Bockarie were withdrawn on December 8, 2003 due to their deaths.

    February 28, 2004: The Trial Chamber ordered the joint trial of Norman, Fofana and Kondewa (Three alleged leaders of the former Civil Defence Forces)

    March 7, 2005: The last trial of the Special Court for Sierra Leone began for Brima, Kamara and Kanu (three former members of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC)).

Note: Proceedings against Charles Taylor (former Liberian president) expected to start April 2, 2007

South Africa: A Truth and Reconciliation Commission, created after their first open (all-race) elections in 1994, has investigated crimes committed under white-minority rule and submitted their report. While the commission is no longer active (see the official Truth and Reconciliation Commission website), for the decisions see Amnesty Hearings and Decisions

Sudan: The situation in Sudan, having been referred to the ICC by the U.N. on April 1, 2005 (since Sudan is not a States Party to the ICC), the ICC has been pursuing charges against a number of Sudanese officials for their acts in a war which has claimed some 300,000 lives except that, the Sudan government is only loosely cooperating and has openly stated they will not allow any citizen to be tried elsewhere. As a result the matter has become a stalemate.

    May 2, 2007: The ICC issued arrest warrants for the Sudanese citizens Ahmad Harun and Ali Kushayb over the situation in Darfur... although the Sudan government continues to reject any ICC authority.

    July 14, 2008: The ICC requested a warrant for the arrest of Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

    March 4, 2009: An arrest warrant was issued for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur, the first ever against a sitting head of state (did not include genocide).

Uganda: For its first case, the ICC will investigate more recent alleged atrocities in Uganda. Among other crimes, the BBC reports that "The world court has begun an investigation into war crimes allegedly committed by Ugandan rebels. The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) is accused of abducting some 20,000 children, forcing the boys to become fighters and the girls sex slaves. The investigation comes a day after Uganda's army said it had nearly captured LRA leader Joseph Kony." UPDATE: As of late, under pressure that pursuing charges would upset the peace process, the ICC is backpedaling... at least for now.

    October 13, 2005: Unsealed today were ICC arrest warrants issued October 8th for five senior leaders of the LRA including Joseph Kony.

Yugoslavia: In 1993, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) was formed (the first such military tribunal since World War II). This tribunal, based in The Hague, Netherlands, has tried 43 people for atrocities committed during the 1990's (Balkan wars) and the former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic is now on trial... in its third year. With the UN Security Council resolution requiring the ICTY to close its investigations by the end of 2004, all subsequent cases will be referred to national courts.

    March 9, 2005: General Momcilo Perisic, the highest-ranking military commander to appear before the ICTY court, pleaded not guilty to the 13 counts against him. Perisic was formerly the Chief of Staff of the Yugoslav army. Also on this date was the opening of the 'Special War Crimes Chamber' in Sarajevo (Bosnia/Herzegovina).

    March 23, 2005: Vinko Pandurevic, a former Bosnian Serb general accused of genocide by the ICTY for his role in the massacre in Srebrenica on July 1995 has surrendered to the court in the Hague.

    March 11, 2006: Slobodan Milosevic, age 64, found dead in his cell in The Hague, Netherlands.

    June 11, 2007: Milan Martic, the former leader of rebel Serbs in Croatia, was sentenced by the U.N. war crimes tribunal to 35 years in prison for ordering atrocities when the breakaway state of Croatia was established.

    July 21, 2008: Radovan Karadzic, one of the leaders of the Bosnian Serbs in the 1992-95 Bosnia war, was arrested in Serbia. A fugitive for 11 years, he will stand trial in The Hague for war crimes.

Last modified: 03/08/16