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The International Criminal Court: An Imperial Tool

by Stephen Lendman Thursday, May. 19, 2011 at 5:23 AM
lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net

Libya

The International Criminal Court: An Imperial Tool - by Stephen Lendman

Established by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court on July 1, 2002, it's mandated to prosecute individuals for genocide and aggression, as well as crimes or war and against humanity.

Much earlier, the UN Charter was created "to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our life time has brought untold sorrow to mankind." Its Chapter I states:

"To maintain international peace and security, (member states shall respect the) principle of the sovereign equality (of other members), settle their international disputes by peaceful means, (and) refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state."

In fact, since established in October 1945, its leadership did nothing to deter war, human rights abuses, or other high crimes of powerful member states, notably Western ones and Israel, repeatedly committing crimes of war and against humanity with impunity.

Neither has the ICC, functioning solely as an imperial tool, targeting outlier states Western powers designate, notably America whose leaders commit the worst of high crimes, acting lawlessly with impunity because no international body or court holds them accountable.

Like accusations against Yugoslavia/Serbia's Slobodan Milosevic, Liberia's Charles Taylor, Sudan's Omar Hassan al-Bashir, Saddam Hussein (by Washington's Iraqi Special Tribunal) and others, Muammar Gaddafi now faces similar charges.

On May 16, New York Times writer Marlise Simons headlined, "International Court Seeks Warrant for Qaddafi," saying:

ICC chief prosecutor Jose Luis Moreno-Ocampo "sought arrest warrants" for Gaddafi, his son Saif al-Islam, and brother-in-law intelligence chief, Abdullah Al-Sanous, on "charges of orchestrating systematic attacks against civilians (amounting to) crimes against humanity."

Calling Saif his "de facto prime minister" and Al-Sanousi his "right-hand man, his executioner," Moreno-Campo's announced evidence was alleged intelligence from other governments and "a lot of phone calls from (outside and) inside Libya."

True or false, he claimed:

Gaddafi's "forces attacked Libyan civilians in their homes and in public spaces, shot demonstrators with live ammunition, used heavy weaponry against participants in funeral processions, and placed snipers to kill those leaving mosques after prayers."

"The (alleged) evidence shows that such persecution is still ongoing as I speak today in the areas under Gaddafi's control. (His) forces have prepared a list with the names of alleged dissidents, and they are being arrested, put into prisons in Tripoli, tortured and made to disappear."

As a result, he claimed enough alleged evidence for trial, sounding more like witch-hunt than legitimate justice. Notably, Washington pressured the Security Council last February to investigate "widespread and systematic attacks" against Libyans it instigated by enlisting, arming and funding insurgent fighters.

They, not Gaddafi, incited violence. Justifiably, he responded to stop it. Victimized by imperial intervention, he's now targeted for doing his job.

Moreover, Libya isn't a Rome Statute signatory. As a result, the ICC has no jurisdiction to act. Nonetheless, a three-judge panel will decide whether to issue warrants, no matter the obvious political motive behind doing so.

Moreno-Ocampo is an imperial tool, following orders. Claiming ample evidence shows Gaddafi "personally ordered attacks on unarmed Libyan civilians" is gross hypocrisy with no credibility whatever. He's regurgitating lines given him to read.

In fact, no humanitarian crisis existed until America and its imperial partners showed up lawlessly. Planned many months, perhaps years, in advance, their grand scheme includes:

-- replacing one despot with another;

-- preventing any democratic spark from emerging;

-- colonizing Libya;

-- balkanizing the country;

-- establishing new Pentagon bases;

-- using them to intimidate neighboring states;

-- dominating the Mediterranean Basin and entire African continent; and

-- carving up Libya for profit by stealing its wealth, controlling its money and resources, exploiting its people, turning workers into serfs, and privatizing its state enterprises under Western control, no matter how many corpses and mass destruction it takes to do it.

In his new book, Michael Parenti defined "The Face of Imperialism" as:

"the process whereby the dominant investor interests in one country bring to bear military and financial power upon another country in order to expropriate the land, labor, capital, natural resources, commerce, and markets of that other country....There are real material interests at stake, fortunes to be made many times over.(Intervening) is intended to enrich the investors and keep the world safe for them."

Moreover, whether democrats or despots, blaming victims facilitates the process, claiming intervention for humanitarian reasons, the last refuge of scandalous liars.

As a result, Gaddafi, his son Saif, intelligence chief Al-Sanous, and perhaps other top officials are being victimized to advance Western planned plunder and dominance.

Moreno-Ocampo's complicit, a Western favorite because earlier he assured Washington they'd be no Iraq or other US war crimes prosecutions. In fact, a July 2003 WikiLeaks-released State Department cable said:

"Privately, Ocampo has said that he wishes to dispose of Iraq issues (i.e., not investigate them)." By implication, he meant all US war crimes everywhere.

In fact, since appointed on June 16, 2003, he abstained from any imperial prosecutions, exposing himself as complicit with horrific Western crimes of war and against humanity, leaving America, Israel, and other culpable states unaccountable.

Instead, he chose soft targets, Western designated ones, including outlier officials in Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic, Sudan, Kenya, and Libya, absolving the most culpable big fish, notably Bush II, Cheney, Obama, key people under them, and top Pentagon commanders.

Moreover, he avoids prosecuting rogue Western-allied MENA country (Middle East/North Africa) allies, including:

-- Egypt's military junta;

-- Iraq's puppet leaders;

-- Afghan ones;

-- Bahrain;

-- Saudi Arabia;

-- other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states;

-- Yemen;

-- Morocco;

-- Algeria;

-- Tunisia; and

-- most notably of all, Israel, by far the region's most culpable state for over six decades, responsible for horrendous crimes of war and against humanity.

Absolving Israel, America and its complicit partners mocks the notion of a legitimate tribunal. Worse still is targeting their victims, making them pay for imperial crimes.

A Final Comment

Thomas Mountain is an independent Eritrea-based journalist, providing firsthand reports on regional events. On May 16, he headlined, "Libya Charges NATO Massacre of Religious Leaders," saying:

On May 14, ahead of Moreno-Ocampo's accusations, Libyan "spokesperson Moussa Ibrahim presented strong evidence" that NATO massacred Libyan religious leaders at Brega.

On May 13, "over 150 of Libya's most senior Imams" assembled there for a peace conference. "Brega was chosen....because it is the closest government held town to the rebel held stronghold of Benghazi, and the Imams planned to send a delegation (there) following the conference."

However, early on May 13, NATO bombed their site, killing at least 10, injuring over 40 others severely enough to require hospitalization. "Libyan television showed the site, which was clearly demolished."

Two Imans traveled to Tripoli, held a press conference and condemned the attack. NATO confirmed it, claiming it targeted a "command and control center," a deliberate lie. The structure was a "temporary residential complex or guest quarters," unrelated to Libya's military.

Mountain believes NATO forces are "desperate," despite calling "the present military situation (a) 'stalemate.' " In fact, government forces "continue to tighten their control over most of the south and are regaining control of the eastern oil producing region, effectively" preventing rebels from exporting significant amounts of oil.

They also regained control of Libya's Great Man Made River (GMMR) system, its ocean-sized aquifer pipeline project.

Killing Imams at Brega shows how peace threatens NATO, potentially disrupting their imperial plans. Moreover, Benghazi-based western journalists report rebel factions squabbling over leadership control.

As a result, Moreno-Ocampo's announcement was strategically timed to justify war by accusing government victims of crimes, portraying NATO lawlessness as a noble initiative to deter them.

In fact, Gaddafi officials are right saying:

"It is the rebels who took up arms in the middle of our peaceful cities and caused the death of many people (by recruiting foreign mercenary) fighters from several nationalities."

Of course, Western media airbrush that notion from regurgitated managed news, reporting everything but the truth.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/.

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