Friday, 2 May 2008

Lessons from History

Today's Guardian has a thoughtful and troubling comment on international criminal justice:

1 comment:

ajokic said...

Is this recommended piece from Guardian really thoughtful? Not at all!

For example, it contains a sentence like this one:

"Meanwhile in Rwanda the tribunal set up to bring justice to the Hutu slayers of nearly a million Tutsis in the 1994 genocide is coming to the end of its term..."

Where to begin with ignorance and nonsense in this sentence? The ICTR is not in Rwanda. Look up Arusha on the map. However, much more significant a mistake is the idea that this UN ad hoc court was explicitly set up on an ethnic basis to prosecute Hutu alleged perpetrators only. If it were so set up, would that be a good idea?

Not according to Degni-Segui who found that violations of the Geneva Conventions, over which the ICTR has jurisdiction, were committed on all sides.

It is yet another matter whether there were "nearly a million Tutsis" in the 1994 Rwanda to be slain in the first place? Were there any Hutu victims of Tutsi (say RPF) atrocities in this violent episode?

A "thoughtful" piece would not consist of such simplifications, confusions or ignorance of geography.