Thursday, July 27, 2006

personal criminal responsibility, all the way up the chain of command

* juancole:
"The Israelis denied that they hit the base deliberately, but Kofi would know. Why do it? When you have in mind war crimes, it is better not to have neutral observers in the region.
Israel's present policy toward Lebanon, of striking at so many civilian targets as to hold the entire civilian population hostage, is unspeakable.

I haven't complained about the Israeli border war with Hizbullah. I'm not sure it is wise, and I don't know how many Israelis Hizbullah even killed in, say, the year 2005. Is it really worth it? But I don't deny that Hizbullah went too far when it shelled dozens of civilian towns and cities and killed over a dozen innocent civilians, even in reprisal for the Israeli bombing campaign. (You can't target civilians. That is a prosecutable crime.) That is a clear casus belli, and I'd like to see Nasrallah tried at the Hague for all those civilian deaths he ordered. The fighting at Maroun al-Ra's and Bint Jbeil was horrible on all sides, but it was understandable, even justifiable. The fighting itself isn't going to lead anywwhere useful, though, and it is time for a ceasefire and political negotiations--the only way to actually settle such disputes.

What was done to Lebanon as a whole is among the most horrible war crimes of the young 21st century. And that it was done tells me that there is something sick in the heart of the Israeli military and political elite, a sickness of the soul that had better be faced and remedied before our entire world catches the contagion."

* dailystar:
"Israeli gunboats also fired warning shots at a Turkish ferry that was helping evacuate Australians from Lebanon and held it for several hours, Turkish Transport Minister Binali Yildirim said on Tuesday."

* via demnow:
"UN High Commission for Human Rights Louise Arbour: “It's pretty apparent that the number, the scale of civilian casualties in this conflict raises very serious questions about breaches of the laws and customs of war in a way, not only that is a breach of international humanitarian law but that could engage international criminal law and could engage personal criminal responsibility, all the way up the chain of command.”"