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It is now quite clear the Ukraine is just a tool for the USA to fight its geopolitical decline by trying to put a wedge in relations between EU and Russia. Nowhere it was more clear then with MH17 provocation (and there are very serious reason to call this tragedy a geopolitical provocation) and propaganda attack on Russia that followed it.
US "containment 2.0" policy toward Russia had been brewing for a long time. "It's an illusion to believe that there are some specific steps we could take in connection with Ukraine to mollify the US, and they would lift this blockade and return to normal," says Sergei Markov, a Kremlin-connected political analyst. "No, just watch, they will keep moving the goal posts."
The real reasons that US-Russia acrimony has been inexorably building, they say, is that Russia is at the leading edge of emerging countries that are challenging the US-run global financial and political order.
The US plan, Mr. Markov says, "is to continue tightening the screws over the long term, aiming to increase discontent among Russia's middle class, and to turn people against Putin. The ultimate goal is regime change, and we would be fools not to see that."
July 23, 2014 | csmonitor.com
Many leading foreign policy advisers to Putin say that Ukraine is merely an excuse for US-led sanctions, and that Washington is bent on 'regime change' in Russia.
There are at least two schools of thought in the Kremlin about what Russia can do in the face of a US-led "sanctions attack," which is only growing deeper with each passing week.
One school, tactically embraced by President Vladimir Putin himself yesterday, is that conciliatory rhetoric, signals of non-aggression toward Ukraine, and massaging the divergent economic interests between European countries and the US, may succeed in blunting further sanctions, if not rolling back the ones already imposed.
But another point of view, held by many leading foreign policy advisers, is far more pessimistic, and even fatalistic. This perspective argues that Russia's schism with the US will keep on widening no matter what happens in Ukraine.Recommended: Sochi, Soviets, and tsars: How much do you know about Russia?
The US, they say, is pursuing a "containment 2.0" strategy that, like the successful US cold war policy that toppled the former Soviet Union, is aimed at weakening and ultimately defeating Russia as a geopolitical foe.
'The ultimate goal is regime change'
Several waves of sanctions have hit banks and individuals considered close to President Putin or heavily involved in Russia's Ukraine policy-making. Last week the US imposed the toughest measures yet, curbing the access of leading Russian banks and oil companies to Western capital markets. The European Union followed up with somewhat milder sanctions, which they have threatened to bolster again in the wake of the MH17 disaster.
But while Moscow's March annexation of Crimea may have been the trigger that unleashed successive waves of sanctions from the US and Europe, the "containment 2.0" theory's adherents say that it was merely the spark that set off a conflict that had been brewing for a long time.
"It's an illusion to believe that there are some specific steps we could take in connection with Ukraine to mollify the US, and they would lift this blockade and return to normal," says Sergei Markov, a Kremlin-connected political analyst. "No, just watch, they will keep moving the goal posts."
The real reasons that US-Russia acrimony has been inexorably building, they say, is that Russia is at the leading edge of emerging countries that are challenging the US-run global financial and political order.
The US plan, Mr. Markov says, "is to continue tightening the screws over the long term, aiming to increase discontent among Russia's middle class, and to turn people against Putin. The ultimate goal is regime change, and we would be fools not to see that."
Although the Kremlin has claimed that sanctions against Russia will "boomerang" against Western economic interests, few analysts believe Russia can win against the overwhelming financial and economic firepower of the US and its allies in any extended showdown. As such, some argue that Russia has no choice but to accept a measure of isolation as its lot.
But there are ways Russia can turn the situation to its advantage, they say.
First, they argue, the Kremlin could adopt policies that might compensate for the loss of foreign investment by encouraging domestic capital to mobilize.
Indeed, they say, something just like that appears to have happened by accident. After the first wave of US sanctions caused an exodus of foreign investors in March, a remarkable Russian stock market rebound occurred in the weeks after, as Russians came rushing in to snap up the bargains.
Similarly, they argue, the Russian government can use its nearly half-a-trillion dollars in foreign currency reserves to bolster the ruble and back investments in domestic industries. That could make up for the coming loss of virtually all Ukrainian imports and redirect Russia's economy from raw materials exports to modern manufacturing and services.
"There is a lot of domestic capital and energy that could be unlocked, but our elites need to embrace reforms," says Sergei Karaganov, honorary chair of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policies, a leading Moscow think tank. "The sanctions so far imposed are doing very little harm, but our economy was stagnating even before," due to over reliance on raw materials exports and an unwelcoming environment for small and medium-sized businesses in Russia.
"The sanctions can be an impetus, a wake-up call," he says, "but only if we make the right policy choices."
A wall of BRICS?
The other major thing Russia can do, say those who see a US campaign against it, is grow its ties with like-thinking countries who are also at odds with the US-dominated world order.
Unlike the former Soviet Union, whose string of client states were a crippling economic drain, Russia's potential allies are some of the world's fastest-growing economies. Two months ago Putin closed a huge gas deal with China, signalling that Moscow has alternatives if its main customer, the EU, decides to stop buying Russian energy. Last week, at a summit of the BRICS [Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa] countries, the emerging five-nation group resoundingly condemned US-led sanctions against Russia. They also established a development bank which could eventually rival US-dominated institutions such as the World Bank.
The evolution of the BRICS over the past 14 years from an idea suggested by a Goldman Sachs analyst to an actual bloc of countries that holds summits, coordinates foreign policies, and designs its own supra-national institutions obviously has deeply-rooted causes. But Russian experts say the current sanctions campaign against Russia by the US is probably doing more than anything else to spur the determination of BRICS states to develop their own parallel institutions – and, incidentally, give refuge to Russia.
"A couple of years ago the idea of a BRICS development bank seemed completely fanciful," says Georgi Toloraya, director of the Russian National Committee for BRICS Research, a semi-official think tank in Moscow. "But now we have this confrontation between Russia and the West. Tensions are growing between China and the US in the political-military sphere. This is changing minds rapidly. Now the idea of creating a separate institution doesn't seem so exotic at all."
The United States are working hard to identify the perpetrators of the attack against the plane of the Malaysian Airlines and were very quick to point the finger at pro-Russian rebels.
Atlantico: The United States put a lot of efforts for blaming those who they consider to be the perpetrators of the attack against the plane of the Malaysian Airlines and were very quick to point the finger at pro-Russian. What interest do they have to point finger at Russia?
Jean-Bernard Pinatel: Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989, policy makers and American politicians perceived a major threat: that a reconciliation and an alliance between Europe and Russia would challenge the supremacy of the United States, which is allowing them with impunity to interfere in the internal affairs of any country, or invade them, and interpret international law in their private interests as most recently demonstrated the case of the BNP bank.
To understand this undeniable reality requires that we consider a historical context of those events.
In 1997, former National Security Adviser of the United States, Zbigniew Brzezinski, published under the title "The Grand Chessboard" a book adopting the two concepts, coined by Mackinder, Eurasia and "Heartland." He repeated his account his famous maxim: "who governs the Eastern Europe dominates the Heartland; who governs the Heartland dominates Eurasia; which governs the Eurasia dominates the World World. "
He makes the following conclusion: "For America, the chief geopolitical issue is Eurasia." In another publication (1), he make this though more explicit: "If Ukraine fell, he wrote, it would greatly reduce the geopolitical options for Russia. Even without the Baltic states and Poland, Russia, which would retain control of Ukraine could always aspire with confidence to the direction of a Eurasian empire. But without Ukraine and its 52 million Slav brothers and sisters, any attempt to Moscow to rebuild the Eurasian empire threatens to lead Russia in lengthy disputes with non-Slavic national and difference religious groups. ".
Between 2002 and 2004, to implement this strategy, the United States has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to help the pro-Western Ukrainian opposition to gain power. Millions of dollars also cooperation came from private institutes such as the Soros Foundation and European governments. This money does not go directly to political parties. He passed by including foundations and non-governmental organizations who advised the opposition, allowing it to be equipped with the technical resources and the latest advertising tools. An American cable from January 5, 2010, published on the WikiLeaks website (ref. 10WARSAW7) shows the involvement of Poland in color revolutions of former Eastern European countries. The role of NGOs is particularly exposed (2). The Wikileaks cables demonstrate continuous efforts and the continued commitment of the United States to extend their sphere of influence in Eastern Europe, and first of all in Ukraine.
Ukraine is undergoing a civil war. Yet nobody in the West denounced the ardor with which the Ukrainian government is trying to subdue the separatists. What is the real interest of Americans to ignore this reality and support the Ukrainian government? What did they gain?
The Ukrainian state is a construction of Stalin and exists independently only since 1991, after the breakup of the Soviet bloc. He previously existed between 1917 and 1921 between the fall of Tsarism in 1917 and the victory of the Bolsheviks that dismembered this new state into 4 parts. Ex-Russian part of Ukraine, with Kiev as its capital, the birthplace of civilization and Russian culture was integrated with the USSR while the former Austrian part, with Lviv's as the local capital was absorbed by the Poland.
Little Ukraine "Transcarpathia" voted for unification with Czechoslovakia and in Bukovina Ukrainian minority resigned himself to unification with Romania.
But Ukraine does not mean a nation. Ukrainians have no common history. Quite the contrary. During the second world war, when in the summer of 1941, Ukraine was invaded by the armies of the Reich, the Germans were received as liberators by the Western part of Ukraine. In contrast in the Easten Ukraine, they met strong resistance from the local population which continued until 1944
In retaliation, the Germans track down supporters and burned hundreds of villages. In April 1943, an SS division Galicia is made from Ukrainian volunteers whose descendants formed the storm troops of the EuroMaidan. This SS division was also used by the Germans in Slovakia to suppress the Slovak national movement. But Ukrainian and American pro-Western did everything at the end of the war, to throw a veil over the atrocities committed by this division and retain only the anti-Soviet struggle. However, historians estimate more than 220,000 Ukrainians enlisted alongside the German forces during the Second World War to fight the Soviet regime.
This history helps explain why civil war is possible and why the part of Ukrainian forces consisting of troops from the West can use tanks and planes against separatists from the East.
Ukrainian President with the complicity of silence of the majority of politicians and Western media launched a war against part of the population of the country with the same cruelty that is attributed to Syrian dictator. In addition, the Ukrainian armed forces are advised by American special forces and mercenaries.
The USA and Obama was provoke Russia into invasion of Ukraine in order to revive the cold war between the West and the East. Putin has understood the trap "Nobel Peace Winner" Obama created for him. First he advised the Ukrainian separatists not to hold the referendum; then he did not recognize its result and showed a moderation which surprised all independent observers while tanks and planes indiscriminately attack a Russian-speaking population.
How Ukraine can prevent the creation of a Europe-Russia alliance? Why the United States so actively try to prevent it?
The Americans continued to put pressure on Europe in order to integrate Ukraine and Georgia into NATO, which would constitute an unacceptable provocation to Russia.
Fortunately, European leaders have not bent to the will of Washington, which in this case acts solely in its own interests. Similarly, if Putin gave in to pressure from ultra-nationalist and openly intervened in Ukraine, the United States would achieved their strategic goal and the Cold War in Europe would be restarted damaging our fundamental interests.
Why Europe acts as vassal of the USA? Does it really interested to follow the American strategy?
Many European leaders got their education in the United States. They are members of American "Think-Tanks" or "transatlantic foundations" such as the "American Foundation" which largely finance their benefits and travel. The Atlanticism is certainly manufactured not only by the awareness that we share the same democratic values with the American people but also by the multitude of personal interests of many European leaders whose standard of living depends on their submission to the will of the USA.
Nevertheless, more and more Europeans are beginning to tell the difference between the American state which is, in fact, run by lobbies, the most important of which is the military-industrial lobby and the American nation whose values and economic and cultural dynamism possess an undeniable attractiveness and remains for young European wonderful school.
Angela Merkel and the Germans are at the forefront of this awareness because they have not accepted the permanent industrial espionage which the NSA use against this country. Furthermore, the revelation of the laptop plays Angela Merkel strongly shocked the country. Spiegel of November 3, 2013 claiming that now even political asylum for Edward Snowden in on the agenda. In the article "Asil Für Snowden" Europe's biggest daily published extensive excerpts of his revelations.
On 10 July 2014, the German government announced the expulsion of the head of the American secret services in Germany, as part of a spy case against German officials who provided intelligence information to Washington, a move unprecedented among allies within NATO. "The representative of the United States Intelligence Agency at the Embassy of the United States of America was asked to leave Germany," said the government spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement. The expulsion comes "in response to a lack of cooperation that was long in efforts to clarify" the activity of American intelligence agents in Germany, told a German MEP, Clemens Binninger, President of the Parliamentary Oversight Committee on intelligence, which met in Berlin on Thursday.
In France, the former Prime Minister Michel Rocard, a sociologist Edgar Morin, former ministers Luc Ferry and Jack Lang and former European MP Daniel Cohn-Bendit, launched a petition calling on President Francois Hollande, his Prime Minister Manuel Valse and Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius "promptly grant Edward Snowden political asylum.
Unfortunately for France and Europe, Francois Hollande, as part of the French intelligentsia, still admires Barack Obama, and Laurent Fabius for a long time received funds from U.S. foundations. Neither of them realize that their policies pose a threat to the strategic interests of France and Europe.
Jean-Bernard Pinatel, General, recognized expert on economic and geopolitical matters.
Original publication:La véritable raison pour laquelle les États-Unis se préoccupent tant de l'Ukraine tout en se foutant éperdument des Ukrainiens
NEW YORK – Russia's actions in Ukraine constitute a serious and dangerous violation of international law. In 1994, Ukraine agreed to give up the nuclear weapons it had inherited from the Soviet Union, in return for a solemn commitment by the United States, the United Kingdom, and Russia to protect Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty. Russia has now violated that pledge, not only harming Ukraine but also undermining the international legal framework for preventing nuclear proliferation.
Unless Russia changes course – which seems unlikely anytime soon – the global consequences are apt to be grave. The US and the European Union will impose sanctions, weakening Russia's economy and the world economy – and stoking even more tension and nationalism. Mistakes on one side or the other could lead to violent disaster. We need only to recall the spiral of hubris and miscalculation that led to the outbreak of World War I, a century ago this year.
As frightening as the Ukraine crisis is, the more general disregard of international law in recent years must not be overlooked. Without diminishing the seriousness of Russia's recent actions, we should note that they come in the context of repeated violations of international law by the US, the EU, and NATO. Every such violation undermines the fragile edifice of international law, and risks throwing the world into a lawless war of all against all.
The US and its allies have also launched a series of military interventions in recent years in contravention of the United Nations Charter and without the support of the UN Security Council. The US-led NATO bombing of Serbia in 1999 lacked the sanction of international law, and occurred despite the strong objections of Russia, a Serbian ally. Kosovo's subsequent declaration of independence from Serbia, recognized by the US and most EU members, is a precedent that Russia eagerly cites for its actions in Crimea. The ironies are obvious.
The Kosovo War was followed by the US-led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, both of which occurred without the support of the Security Council, and in the case of Iraq, despite vigorous objections within it. The results for both Afghanistan and Iraq have been utterly devastating.
NATO's actions in Libya in 2011 to topple Muammar el-Qaddafi constituted another such violation of international law. After the Security Council approved a resolution to institute a no-fly zone and take other actions ostensibly to protect Libyan civilians, NATO used the resolution as a pretext to overthrow Qaddafi's regime through aerial bombardment. Russia and China strenuously objected, stating then and now that NATO seriously exceeded its mandate. Libya remains unstable and violent, without an effective national government, to this day.
As Russia itself has repeatedly pointed out, US actions in Syria have been similarly illegal. When the Arab Spring protests began in early 2011, peaceful demonstrators in Syria demanded reforms. President Bashar al-Assad's regime cracked down violently on the protesters, leading some military units to revolt. At that point, in the summer of 2011, the US began to back the military insurrection, with President Barack Obama declaring that Assad must "step aside."
Since then, the US, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and others have provided logistical, financial, and military support to the insurrection, in violation of Syria's sovereignty and international law. There is no doubt that Assad has behaved cruelly, but there is also no doubt that the US-led support of the insurrection is a violation of Syria's sovereignty, one that has contributed to an upward spiral of violence that by now has claimed more than 130,000 Syrian lives and destroyed much of the country's cultural heritage and infrastructure.
One can add many other US actions, including drone strikes on the territory of sovereign states without their governments' permission; covert military operations; renditions and torture of terror suspects; and massive spying by the US National Security Agency. When challenged by other countries or UN organizations, the US has brushed aside their objections.
International law itself is at a crossroads. The US, Russia, the EU, and NATO cite it when it is to their advantage and disregard it when they deem it a nuisance. Again, this is not to justify Russia's unacceptable actions; rather, it is to add them to the sequence of actions contrary to international law.
The same problems may soon spill over into Asia. Until recently, China, Japan, and others in Asia have staunchly defended the requirement that the Security Council approve any outside military intervention in sovereign states. Recently, however, several countries in East Asia have become locked in a spiral of claims and counterclaims regarding borders, shipping lanes, and territorial rights. So far, these disputes have remained basically peaceful, but tensions are rising. We must hope that the countries of the region continue to see the great value of international law as a bulwark of sovereignty, and act accordingly.
There have long been skeptics of international law – those who believe that it can never prevail over the national interests of major powers, and that maintaining a balance of power among competitors is all that really can be done to keep the peace. From this perspective, Russia's actions in the Crimea are simply the actions of a great power asserting its prerogatives.
Yet such a world is profoundly and unnecessarily dangerous. We have learned time and again that there is no such thing as a true "balance of power." There are always imbalances and destabilizing power shifts. Without some scaffolding of law, open conflict is all too likely.
This is especially true today, as countries jostle for oil and other vital resources. It is no coincidence that most of the deadly wars of recent years have taken place in regions rich in valuable and contested natural resources.
As we look back in this centennial year toward the outbreak of WWI, we see again and again that the only possible route to safety is international law, upheld by the United Nations and respected on all sides. Yes, it sounds naive, but no one has to look back to see the naiveté of the belief that great-power politics will preserve peace and ensure humanity's survival.
In the Ukraine crisis, the Security Council should help to find a negotiated solution that preserves Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. That will not happen soon, but the UN should persevere, looking for a breakthrough at a later date. And, just as the US turns to the Security Council in this case, so it should hold itself accountable to international law as well, helping to build a bulwark against dangerous global instability.
Read more at http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/jeffrey-d--sachs-sees-in-russia-s-annexation-of-crimea-the-return--with-us-complicity--of-great-power-politics#s2Oa0jfRYpjr63e8.99
Peace and Collaborative Development Network
A stated rationale for a potential attack on Iraq is the desire to remove any threat from weapons of mass destruction (WMD) that it possessed. Throughout 2002, the Bush administration made clear that removing Saddam Hussein from power in order to restore international peace and security was a major goal.
The principle stated justifications for this policy of "regime change" were that Iraq's continuing production of WMD and known ties to terrorist organizations, as well as Iraq's continued violations of UN Security Council resolutions, amounted to a threat to the U.S. and the world community. The Bush administration's overall rationale for the invasion of Iraq was presented in detail by Secretary of State, Colin Powell, to the United Nations Security Council on February 5, 2003. In summary, he stated:
"We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction; he's determined to make more. Given Saddam Hussein's history of aggression... given what we know of his terrorist associations and given his determination to exact revenge on those who oppose him, should we take the risk that he will not someday use these weapons at a time and the place and in the manner of his choosing at a time when the world is in a much weaker position to respond? The United States will not and cannot run that risk to the American people. Leaving Saddam Hussein in possession of weapons of mass destruction for a few more months or years is not an option, not in a post-September 11 world.
The main allegations at that time were that Saddam Hussein was in possession of, or was attempting to produce WMD particularly in light of two previous attacks on Baghdad nuclear weapons production facilities by both Iran and Israel which only postponed weapons development progress; and that he had ties to terrorists, specifically al-Qaeda. Moreover, it has also been alleged by some commentators that, while it never made an explicit connection between Iraq and the September 11 attacks, the Bush Administration did repeatedly insinuate a link, thereby creating a false impression for the American public.
Grand jury testimony from the first World Trade Center attack (February 26, 1993) trials cited numerous direct linkages from the terrorists to Baghdad and Department 13 of the Iraqi Intelligence Service in that initial attack marking the second anniversary to vindicate the surrender of Iraqi armed forces in Operation Desert Storm. For example, The Washington Post has noted that
" While not explicitly declaring Iraqi culpability in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, administration officials did, at various times, imply a link. In late 2001, Cheney said it was "pretty well confirmed" that attack mastermind Mohamed Atta had met with a senior Iraqi intelligence official. Later, Cheney called Iraq the "geographic base of the terrorists who had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11." "
Steven Kull, director of the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA) at the University of Maryland, observed in March 2003 that "The administration has succeeded in creating a sense that there is some connection [between Sept. 11 and Saddam Hussein]". This was following a New York Times/CBS poll that showed 45% of Americans believing Saddam Hussein was "personally involved" in the September 11 atrocities.
As the Christian Science Monitor observed at the time, while "Sources knowledgeable about US intelligence say there is no evidence that Hussein played a role in the Sept. 11 attacks, nor that he has been or is currently aiding Al Qaeda... the White House appears to be encouraging this false impression, as it seeks to maintain American support for a possible war against Iraq and demonstrate seriousness of purpose to Hussein's regime." The CSM went on to report that, while polling data collected "right after Sept. 11, 2001" showed that only 3 percent mentioned Iraq or Saddam Hussein, by January 2003 attitudes "had been transformed" with a Knight Ridder poll showing that 44% of Americans believed "most" or "some" of the September 11 hijackers were Iraqi citizens.
The BBC has also noted that while President Bush "never directly accused the former Iraqi leader of having a hand in the attacks on New York and Washington", he "repeatedly associated the two in keynote addresses delivered since September 11", adding that "Senior members of his administration have similarly conflated the two.
"For instance, the BBC report quotes Colin Powell in February 2003, stating that "We've learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases. And we know that after September 11, Saddam Hussein's regime gleefully celebrated the terrorist attacks on America." The same BBC report, from September 2003, also noted the results of a recent opinion poll, which suggested that "70% of Americans believe the Iraqi leader was personally involved in the attacks."
Also in September 2003, the Boston Globe reported that "Vice President Dick Cheney, anxious to defend the White House foreign policy amid ongoing violence in Iraq, stunned intelligence analysts and even members of his own administration this week by failing to dismiss a widely discredited claim: that Saddam Hussein might have played a role in the Sept. 11 attacks." A year later, Presidential candidate John Kerry alleged that Cheney was continuing "to intentionally mislead the American public by drawing a link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11 in an attempt to make the invasion of Iraq part of the global war on terror."
According to then-President of the United States George W. Bush and the Prime minister of the United Kingdom of that time; Tony Blair, the reasons for the invasion were "to disarm Iraq of WMD, to end Saddam Hussein's support for terrorism, and to free the Iraqi people." According to Blair, the trigger was Iraq's failure to take a "final opportunity" to disarm itself of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons that U.S. and coalition officials called an immediate and intolerable threat to world peace. Although some remnants of pre-1991 production were found after the end of the war, U.S. government spokespeople confirmed that these were not the weapons for which the U.S. went to war. /
In 2005, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) released a report saying that no weapons of mass destruction had been found in Iraq.
(a) US attack in Iraq: an Occupation or Liberation?
U.S. military forces entered Baghdad on April 9, 2003, General Tommy Franks, commander of the coalition forces, announced that the Americans had "come as liberators, not occupiers."
In the traditional understanding, an occupying power is a temporary custodian of the status quo in the territory it controls. Occupiers are assumed to remain only for the limited period between the cessation of hostilities and the conclusion of a final peace treaty. That treaty determines the fate of the occupied territory, most likely returning it to the ousted de jure sovereign. Thus, an occupier exercises mere de facto power. For that reason it enjoys no general legislative authority to make permanent changes to legal and political structures in the territory.
(b) US Attack in Iraq: a Self Defense?
Since it was not directly attacked by Iraq the United States did not have an obvious right to self-defense. The administration, though, argued that it had a right to defend itself preemptively against a future possible attack. In his speech to the United Nations on September 12, 2002, President Bush described Saddam Hussein's regime as "a grave and gathering danger," detailed that regime's persistent efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction, and spoke of an "outlaw regime" providing such weapons to terrorists. For an extensive discussion of international law and the preemptive use of force, We can see the Congressional Research Service's Report for Congress of September 23, 2002.
While arguing for preemption, the administration also suggested that the United States had a right to self-defense on the grounds that the Iraqi regime was connected to Al Qaeda, the organization responsible for the attacks on the United States of September 11, 2001. In February 2003, Secretary of State Colin Powell told the United Nations Security Council that Iraq was harboring a terrorist cell led by Abu Musab Zarqawi, a suspected associate of Al Qaeda. Powell also said that senior Iraqi and Al Qaeda leaders had met at least eight times since the early 1990s. Ansar al-Islam, an Islamist militia group, was also suspected of ties to Al Qaeda, and was based in a lawless part of northeast Iraq, though it was not known to have cooperated with Saddam Hussein.
(C) Analysis of Jus ad bellum
Thus, Iraq war was a Self Defense? Simply not because Iraq's missile power was limited within 150 to 180 kilometers, that could not reach to the territory of US or its neighboring countries. It was an Anticipatory Self Defense? No, because anticipatory self defense is a vague idea. Apart form this, UNMOVIC and IAEA did not find any development of weapons of mass destruction or nuclear weapons that may be a threat to world peace and security. Iraq attack was a Reprisal? Simply should not be because CIA and other Intelligence Agency could not trace out any involvement of Iraq with Al Qaeda, or 9/11 mishaps in US. Iraq War was s Doctrine of Necessity? I think it should not be because finally Iraq accepted UN Resolution 1441 and UNMOVIC and IAEA inspected the required suspected places of Iraq. Iraq War was a humanitarian intervention? I think if Iraq violated human rights to a large scale, President Saddam Hussein should be dragged under justice for crimes against the humanity but regime change cannot be the object of military action. Diplomatic negotiations comes first. If it fails, then economic sanctions might have been imposed upon Iraq and even diplomatic relations might be curtailed. Then the responsibility should go to the UN Security Council, not of USA. Thus I think Iraq war was an aggression and use of unauthorized force by US allies.
Asked in the fall of 2002 if the upcoming war in Iraq would be a just war, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger said that "the concept of 'preventive war' does not appear in the Catechism of the Catholic Church." UN Secretary General stated that the use of force without Council endorsement would "not be in conformity with the Charter" and many legal experts now describe the US-UK attack as an act of aggression, violating international law.
Attorney General Lord Goldsmith describes regime change in Iraq as a disproportionate response to Saddam Hussein's alleged failure to disarm, illegal in the eyes of international law. Goldsmith stresses that in terms of legality, "regime change cannot be the objective of military action." In 2003, apparently under pressure from Prime Minister Tony Blair, Goldsmith stated that invading Iraq was legal even without a second UN Security Council resolution. (The Common Dreams)
Senior UK judicial figure, Lord Bingham, argues that the US and UK invasion of Iraq in 2003 was a serious violation of international law as there was no hard evidence that Iraq failed to disarm. UK opposition parties are pressing for an independent inquiry to scrutinize the actions of the government in the run up to the invasion.
Why US cannot be dragged under International Criminal Court
ICC has the jurisdiction over those facts of member states that the states are unwilling or unable to try in the domestic Court but the state wants to try the case. As ICC is a complementary Court of the domestic Court of law and the USA is not a member state of ICC, uptil now International Criminal Court has no jurisdiction over the offenses committed by US government or their soldiers. Although the appointment of prosecutor by UNSC, primary investigation of the case by the prosecutor, approval of the pre-trial chamber, provisions of appeal to the trial chamber ensure much of the transparency of International Criminal Court, US has not yet ratified the Rome Statute.
Apart from this, the George W Bush Administration "unsigned" the Clinton signature on the Rome Statute, sought through bilateral diplomacy to persuade or coerce other states into exempting US personnel from the coverage of the ICC, delayed UN peace keeping deployments until the Security Council exempted any participating US personnel from any review by the ICC, and in almost every way imaginable tried to undermine the ICC. In 2005, however, the USA abstained on a UN Security Council resolution that authorized the ICC prosecutor to open investigations about possibly indicating certain Sudanese leaders for atrocities in the Darfur region of that country.
International Criminal Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo announced that his office will not investigate war crimes committed in Iraq by coalition forces. The Bush administration has staunchly opposed the ICC claiming it will "unfairly target" US military personnel. Ocampo's decision gives evidence of the court's impartiality.
However Congressed passed the American Service Members Protection Act, which among other provisions authorized in advance the US military action to free any US national detained abroad in connection to ICC proceedings. President George W Bush signed it, despite considerable foreign criticism.
In the run up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the question of whether the invasion would be a just war was posed. Many of those on both sides of the debate framed their arguments in terms of the Just War. They came to quite different conclusions because they put different interpretations on how the just war criteria should be applied. Supporters of the war tended to accept the US position that the enforcement of UN resolutions was sufficient authority or even, as in the case of the Land Letter that the United States as a sovereign nation could count as legitimate authority. Opponents of the war tended to interpret legitimate authority as requiring a specific Security Council resolution. They also asserted that the US had neither exhausted its diplomatic options nor allowed international efforts to run their course and take effect.
According to Pope John Paul II, however, the Iraq war was clearly not a just one.
One of Spain's leading judges on war crimes and terrorism-related cases, Baltasar Garzon, ranks the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq among "the most sordid and unjustifiable episodes in recent human history." The judge criticizes US President George W. Bush and his allies, including British and Spanish Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Jose Maria Aznar, who supported the attack "despite having doubts and biased information." Garzon's condemnation of the leaders reflects growing disenchantment worldwide with the Iraq catastrophe.
Furthermore, in a German court an army major has successfully argued that the US and the UK did not legally invade Iraq, therefore he broke no laws in refusing to obey a military order. The author concludes that such decisions set a precedent for the recognition of the Iraq war as an act of aggression, and therefore a war crime – of which the British government should be very wary.
A prosecutor of Nazi war crimes at Nuremberg, Benjamin Ferenccz, believes US President George W. Bush's aggressive war in Iraq constitutes a "supreme international crime" capable of prosecution in an international court. Claiming that the atrocities of the Iraq war were "highly predictable," Ferenccz points to the UN Charter, which unequivocally states that no nation can use armed force without UN Security Council permission. He convincingly argues that, due to his invasion of Iraq and the subsequent acts of the US military, Bush should face charges for war crimes along with Saddam Hussein.
On the eve of the Security Council's quarterly discussion on the situation in Iraq, a group of NGOs has written the Council to voice their concern. Several disturbing reports have been released by Secretary General Kofi Annan, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), and human rights organizations. These reports have highlighted significant violations of international human rights and humanitarian law, especially in the area of detention practices. In response, the NGOs ask the Council to break its pattern of pro forma review, "accept its responsibility" and "substantially review the mandate it has given to the MNF."
In this interview, former United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) human rights chief John Pace discusses sectarian violence, US military operations, and the legality of the war. According to Pace, ongoing US military operations have led to widespread civilian displacement and destruction, and along with the rise in sectarian militias contribute most to instability in Iraq. Furthermore, US detentions violate the Geneva Conventions and as many as 90 percent of all Iraqi prisoners are innocent. "Normalization," Pace says, cannot go forward in Iraq so long as the US military occupation remains.
A group of 27 NGOs points out that the US-led Multinational Force (MNF) in Iraq has seriously violated international law, including bans on the use of torture, illegal detentions, siege tactics against population centers, and "indiscriminate and especially injurious" weapons. Furthermore, the MNF is responsible for failing to address patterns of corruption and mismanagement in Iraq's development fund and reconstruction programs. Citing numerous official reports and legal texts, the letter urges Council members to "substantially reconsider, revise or terminate" the MNF's mandate to bring it into conformity with international law.
In a statement ahead of a Council meeting July 14, 2006 reviewing the mandate of the Multinational Force (MNF), Amnesty International USA calls on the UN Security Council and the Iraqi government to hold to account "those who commit crimes under international law in Iraq, including members of the US-led MNF." Amnesty demands that the Council not extend the immunity from legal proceedings for abuses by the MNF or their contractors and concludes that "the Iraqi criminal justice system should be able to exercise jurisdiction over any crime committed in Iraq."
Although US and Iraq government has already dragged some of the alleged soldiers and civilians under justice, there are still many offenders in US military forces and Iraqi soldiers and suicidal bombers which are still beyond justice as per the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, 1998 as US and Iraq are not the member states of International Criminal Court. Apart from this it depends on US and Iraqi governments how they will be capable of applying their domestic humanitarian laws regarding the offences committed since Iraq war 2003 to uptil now.
Schröder InSerbia News
Berlin – Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder said that what is happening in Crimea is a violation of the international law and admitted that NATO's attack on Serbia in 1999 was also a violation of the international law.
"What is happening in Crimea is a violation of the international law," said Schröder in Hamburg at a meeting of the weekly "Die Zeit", while not wishing to criticize Russian President Vladimir Putin.
He, however, said that as German Chancellor, he violated the international law in the Yugoslav conflict.
"We sent our planes there… on Serbia and together with NATO forces bombed a sovereign country, and at the same time there was no decision of the UN Security Council…" said Schröder , stressing that this is why he is careful with pointing fingers and that both cases formally represent a violation of the UN Charter.
Schröder showed skepticism, when it comes to the motives of the former head of the Ukrainian government Yulia Tymoshenko, and noting that he does not know what kind of material interests she has, warned that there is a danger, that the financial support, for which he advocates, goes to the wrong channels. Schroeder criticized the European Union again and said that the leadership of the European Commission did not understand that Ukraine is a culturally divided country.
"I wonder would it be right to put a culturally divided country, such as Ukraine, before an alternative – Association Agreement with the EU or a customs union with Russia," he said.
The US is violating a number of international laws in attacking Serbia over Kosovo which is part of a sovereign independent state.
It is a violation of Article 2 of the UN Charter that prohibits the use of force against a sovereign state where it has not committed aggression on other states. Serbia did not attack any neighboring states outside its sovereign borders. The Security Council did not sanction the use of force here. If the issue had been submitted to the Security Council, it would certainly have been vetoed by Russia and China. NATO knows it and therefore bypassed it.
It is a violation of NATO's own Charter which claims it is a defensive organizations and is only committed to force if one of its members is attacked. No member of NATO was attacked.
The so-called Rambouillet "Agreement" (there was no "agreement" by Serbia ) is a violation of the 1980 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties which forbids coercion and force to compel any state to sign a treaty or agreement. Serbia is being asked to sign this "Agreement" through NATO bombs and missiles.
It is a violation of the Helsinki Accords Final Act of 1975 which guarantees the territorial frontiers of the states of Europe. What this so-called peace plan offers is (a) the severance of Kosovo through NATO bombing with immediate effect; or (b) the severance of Kosovo through NATO occupation three years later.
If the sequel to the bombing is recognition of Kosovo as an independent state, this will violate international law that prohibits recognition of provinces that unilaterally declare independence against the wishes of the federal authorities.
These unlawful actions will set precedents that will undermine stability elsewhere in the world.
Professor Raju G. C. Thomas
March 24, 1999
Rights Group Says NATO Bombing in Yugoslavia Violated Law - New York Times
By STEVEN ERLANGER
Published: June 8, 2000
In an extensive report that infuriated NATO leaders, Amnesty International said today that NATO violated international law in its bombing war over Yugoslavia by hitting targets where civilians were sure to be killed.
In particular, the human rights group said that NATO's bombing of the Belgrade headquarters of Radio Television Serbia, on April 23, 1999, ''was a deliberate attack on a civilian object and as such constitutes a war crime.'' Sixteen people died in the predawn attack, nearly all of them technicians, security workers and makeup artists.
NATO has defended the bombing as an attack on the ''propaganda machine'' of President Slobodan Milosevic of Yugoslavia.
International law forbids direct attacks on civilians and civilian targets and requires all feasible precautions to prevent civilian deaths. In some cases, Amnesty said, NATO failed to take sufficient precautions to minimize civilian casualties. The number of civilian deaths from NATO air strikes ''could have been significantly reduced if NATO forces had fully adhered to the laws of war,'' the report said.
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