US soldiers immunity. - Page 3

April 4th, 2005  
Charge 7
Apart from his movies you probably no little about him.
Don't count on that. He and his brothers had a resort home on an island in Lake Bomoseen - not far from where I grew up. He came to town quite frequently as just a regular guy and enjoyed telling stories at the local general store.

Yes, he was indeed a smart man, but I was refering to his being far from serious.
April 13th, 2005  
Lord Londonderry
Originally Posted by Charge 7
Apart from his movies you probably no little about him.
Don't count on that. He and his brothers had a resort home on an island in Lake Bomoseen - not far from where I grew up. He came to town quite frequently as just a regular guy and enjoyed telling stories at the local general store.

Yes, he was indeed a smart man, but I was refering to his being far from serious.
He actually had quite a serious side. You may have got confused with Harpo.
April 13th, 2005  
Charge 7
I guess you didn't read that quote you made. He and his brothers summered where I grew up. I was quite familiar with all of them. It was a small New England town of 1400 or so people.

Yes, he could be serious. That wasn't what he was known for. Personally, I wish this would be dropped. It's quite off topic and time enough has passed that staurofilakes and I have both turned the heat down without you fanning the flames.

May 17th, 2005  
MI Blues
Hey Swordfish - thanks for posting that excerpt regarding the setup of the ICC - it was very informative.

One of the US objections to the ICC - and to the United Nations as well (recognizing the fact that the two entities are only remotely related) - is the Neo-European idea that sovreign nations should - for ANY reason - relinquish their sovreignty in any capacity to any "international" body - the steps towards setting up the idealized "One-World Government" which has been proposed and theorized many times over.

This is a nation which regards itself as having earned its own liberation from a tyrannical foreign government in King George III's Britain. She has stood - virtually alone, at times, it seems - against the forces ranging from Emperor Maximillian thru Hitler, Tojo, Stalin, and later (and less popularly) against asian communist regimes and middle eastern despots such as Hussein and Khomeini.

This is a nation where all citizens have the opportunity to pursue a dream - more so than in ANY other nation (name another nation where recent immigrants have a higher rate of self-sufficiency and success) - and where all who do not give up on that dream can STILL achieve it.

That this nation would subject herself to the rule of law of nations which have given up their own sovreignty - literally or figuratively - is ludicrous.

That said, the spectre of an international criminal court is still attractive. And unnecessary in a nation such as the US, where the political and military leadership is still subject to the accountability of the citizens.
June 10th, 2005  

Topic: Re: US soldiers immunity.

Dear Member,

There has to be some kind of middle ground. For example in NATO's case maybe they can handle it the way that they use to handle cases against merchant sea captains. To wit, a hearing would be held comprised of 9 NATO officers (in your countries case none from Italy or the USA) who are recently retired and can not be recalled and are picked by lot. Their vote on the issue would be secret and only the result of stating the member should be handed over to Italy or not and not how many voted for and how many voted against. That way the members of that hearing could not be punished, etc. Also the vote would have to be at least 2/3s.

Finally, I think such a hearing would have handed the pilots over. They were on a joy ride IMHO. As for the Korean girls I think they would not have been. It was just an accident and on narrow roads like Korea has in the country it can just happen. As hard as it is for many to accept accidents happen which are no ones fault. I was in a horrible accident that effected me drastically for the rest of my life involving a car and my motorcycle. I had lawyers wanting to sue the driver although it was really no ones fault -- ie there was hidden drives on that road.

Jack E. Hammond

Originally Posted by Italian Guy
Since the journalist incident happened earlier this month, the US soldiers immunity from foreign law has come back to fashion.
We had an incident in Italy back in 1998 when a pilot accidentally flew his plane on some skilift wires and had the cabin fall down: 20 people died. Anger mounted back then because the piloto was not brought before Italian justice.
Paradoxically enough, I agree with the decision. I mean the principle.
I can understand that relying on any foreing justice or judge may seriously jeopardize the US military's safety in general.
But my question is: where does this tradition come from? How long ago was it established? Where is is written and formalized? And then of course know as much as possible about your opinions.

June 10th, 2005  
Originally Posted by SwordFish_13
Originally Posted by 03USMC

So let me ask you this. Do you feel an Aussie Troop, an Italian troop, or a Brit should just be turned over to a UN convened court at their whim? Thats my problem.

Emmm thats not a problem as the stated countries has Already Voted For the creatin of ICC ..........In 1998 120 countries voted to adopt the treaty only seven countries voted against it (including China, Libya, Iraq, and the United States) .............. Before the Court can be set up, 60 countries need to ratify the treaty.

By the 2000 more than 139 states signed the treaty........ As of May 2003, 90 countries have ratified it ( which Fulfills the minimum requred 60 Countries) .

Now the Only Problem is the US using the veto Power.

Until 2002 USA was supporting the trety and was spearheading to get support of member countries to get the trety approvd....... .And there are some serious Misunderstanding about Who can be Proceuted in ICC

Dear Member,

I think you can understand the US concern. A lot of NGO (ie non government orgranizations) have see international law as a way to stop the US from being in conflicts that they oppose -- ie it is called "Lawfare". That is not the intent of international law.

For example there is absolutely nothing in 1949 Geneva Convention that makes cluster bombs as being illegal (ie nor for that fact napalm). But they have tried to use it that way. And during the Kosovo operations against Yugoslavaia, various anti-war groups and pro-Serb groups tried to use a Belgium law to cripple NATO and US air strikes.

And now look at the results. Yes we have an ICC, but one in which if any nations arrest a US military person or politician and hands them over to the ICC basically a state of war will exists between that nation and any nation that supports that nation. And this was not the whim of a US president but the US Congress and even then the House of Represenatives which is the most answerable to the US public.

You gave a list of nations who did not sign. One nation that did not sign and then reversed themselves was Russia. They did not reverse themselves because they believed in the ICC, but because the EU put economic pressure on them (ie the EU is not putting pressure on Jamica not to restore the death penalty).

Finally, of those 120 nations that did sign and ratify the ICC do you really expect over half of them signed it with the intention of obeying it? That is the difference. The US through court challenges would be forced to obey it even if we did not want to. Do you really think it is fair that some nations who ratify it can ignore it and then others have to obey it. In our nation we have 50 states. All 50 states have to obey our federal laws and federal courts. Imagine if one nation could out on federal laws or federal court decisions it disagreed with. I am for international treaties. But I think we have to be careful about international treaties that involve non-democratic and non-human right nations.

Jack E. H ammond
July 1st, 2005  
Italian Guy
Thank you very much Jack. Can I feel free to contact you in case any further opinion?
July 12th, 2005  
Oh, man, I have trouble with this one. Let's imagine another scenario. A battalion of I don't know, let's say German troops come to train at a US base. during their stay, one soldier is accused of the rape of an American woman while on the base. A tit for tat exchange follows, and the soldier in question is sent home and then released due to lack of evidence. Is this acceptable? No it is not, but according to US policy, this can happen again and again, and the host country is obliged to rely on US cooperation in order to assure that some sort of justice is meted out the guilty party. What happens if for some reason that cooperation is no longer forthcoming? You will have a group of US soldiers to whom the rule of law no longer applies. As a former Canadian soldier, I was ALWAYS told that I was subject to the laws of the country in which I was operating, and that the military could not defend me in certain situations. Let me tell you, it made the lot of us far more careful when we were out and abroad. I do not believe for one second that US soldiers should not be subject to the laws of the country in which they are operating. Someone earlier on in the thread said that it is because these countries have "given up their sovereignty" and therefore their laws no longer apply. Sorry, but that's codswallop, horsehockey and a very large load of foul smelling bovine fecal matter. In Bosnia, we were told to enforce the law as well as we could, and we were informed of some of the subtleties of Bosnian law. Was it ideal? No, but it was all we could do. We had to follow those laws ourselves. So I see no reason that US soldiers should not be obliged to do the same thing.
Another example: a true one at that. Two US pilots are patrolling in F-16s over Kandahar, Afghanistan. Below them, they see the muzzle flashes of a Canadian PPCLI platoon that was conducting a night exercise. The US pilots descend to see what's up, then decide that it is hostile fire, that they are under attack, and decide to roll in with their GP bombs. They so inform their controller, who tells them to wait. They repeat their request to drop their bombs, and they are again told to hold off. In violation of that order, they roll in, drop their bombs and kill four Canadians. The penalties they received were... wait for it... administrative! If a Canadian pilot had done that, I know for certain that he would be in jail for violation of a direct order and manslaughter.
If the US had a policy of really punishing guilty parties, I would not care that they handled their dirty laundry themselves. However, we have seen that this is not the case. And for those who may not believe me,
the dead soldiers are:

* Sgt. Marc Leger, 29, Lancaster, Ontario
* Cpl. Ainsworth Dyer, 24, Montreal, Quebec and Toronto, Ontario
* Pte. Richard Green, 21, Mill Cove, Nova Scotia
* Pte. Nathan Smith, 27, Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia

... just had to get that one off my chest...

July 12th, 2005  

* The ICC Statute was adopted in Rome in 1998 by 120 countries after several years of negotiations at the United Nations. 139 countries ultimately signed the ICC Statute, and 96 states had ratified or acceded to it by September 2004. The ICC Statute came into force on July 1, 2002, following the required 60th ratification.

* Support for the ICC has been led by a coalition of America's friends and allies, including all members of the European Union and all members of NATO except the US and Turkey.
Last sentence says a lot, US will continue to be a No1 world policeman. To rearrange to World according to their own model (new world order). Turkey is important geo-strategic partner who control the pump lines from Iraq and Azerbaijan. That’s why the violation of human rights regarding Curds is just a minor problem and they can do what ever their want in their yard. Other nations have limited sovereignty and that the main rule of a new world order. All means are allowed to those who serve the interest of world order, and CNN, BBC, SKY…will do everything to present their “true” as legal one. Or just put the new light on picture from the field. Like recent days in Srebrenica, as example…

In 1999 US and NATO bombed Serbia in order to take control over Kosovo province. One of the key points of the negotiations in Rambuie before the attack was to allow NATO to create a bases and freedom of movement trough Serbia. Serbs did not accept that. On Kosovo they is biggest base of US at the south east Europe at the moment…
For the crimes committed in bombing campaign ( Belgrade TV stations, train to Greece, civilian busses, refugee camps, bridges, few towns in central Serbia…) nobody is responsible. No need to mention mass usage of illegal weapons (cluster, uranium ammunition…)

This is a nation where all citizens have the opportunity to pursue a dream - more so than in ANY other nation (name another nation where recent immigrants have a higher rate of self-sufficiency and success) - and where all who do not give up on that dream can STILL achieve it.
MI blues…if is like that, what will happen if majority of population in New Mexico and California decide to be part of Mexico or independent? At the moment Latin-Americans are majority there. I think that you truly believe in the pictures you see on the screen of your TV and never ask yourselves-is it really like that out there? NATO and Croats destroyed Serb Krajina 1995 and ethnicaly cleaned the land, in 1999 NATO-US bombed Serbia to establish Albanian Kosovo as a new entity...

In 1993, 600 Canadian soldiers -- half of them reservists -- fought a battle in a desolate corner of the former Yugoslavia. Outnumbered and, outgunned by their Croatian foes, they nonetheless fought them to a standstill and forced them to retreat. In the process, they helped uncover evidence of ethnic cleansing by Croatian forces who were determined to evict ethnic Serbs before the Canadians could enforce a shaky UN peace agreement.
The story of their battle, and the physical and mental scars that plagued the soldiers for years after, went largely unreported in Canada. Government and senior military officers, distracted by the Somalia scandal of the same year, did little to put out the story of the largest military action by Canadian troops since the Korean War and the troops returned home to little fanfare or recognition.
Eleven years later, along comes journalist Carol Off with “The Ghosts of Medak Pocket”. The Story of Canada's Secret War, a book that purports to be the never-before-told story of how Lieutenant-Colonel Jim Calvin and the soldiers of 2nd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry fought and suffered.
I am using this opportunity to thanks all of them for defending UN and Serbs in Medak Pocket in Croatia 1993. Hope there are some of them here. CNN was never there but you were.
July 12th, 2005  
Here is something that confirms my words…Persons who wrote and sign this article seems to have strong status in American society today. I am disappointed with that, after I’ve passed trough their opinions they stressed here and in other articles they published in Washington Times. Terms “Slavs” used as term “Nazi”, glorifying of Catholic central Europe in opposite to East, and in general, glorifying US role in exodus of 270 000 Serbs from Croatia after operation Storm in 1995, and role of Stepinac in WW2 genocide over Serbs and Jews in Croatia in 1941…is really strong brainwashing for local newspaper consumers and students.
Those who survived this are cleaned from Croatia, it is ethnically clean now...does professor know that? What kind of history he teach?

Truth & Justice
The View from Washington

Mesic’s Betrayal
By Jeffrey T. Kuhner

Croatian President Stipe Mesic has once again betrayed his country’s vital national interests. During a recent trip by U.S. Senator George Voinovich to Croatia, Mr. Mesic told the Ohio Republican that Zagreb still opposes Washington’s request for American troops to be exempt from prosecution before the International Criminal Court.

“The Croatian public will hardly accept to have citizens of another country being exempt from prosecution before an international court, while at the same time Croatia is required to extradite its own citizens” accused of war crimes to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, Mr. Mesic told Mr. Voinovich.

Washington rightly opposes the ICC because it will expose U.S. military officials to politically motivated prosecutions. The international court is the vehicle by which the anti-American Left hopes to harass U.S. officials through frivolous indictments. The goal of the pro-ICC globalists is to use international legal institutions as a means of curtailing American foreign policy...

A good example of this was the 2002 decision by a Belgian court to begin proceedings against U.S. Gen. Tommy Franks on charges of “command responsibility” for alleged war crimes committed by coalition forces in Iraq. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld threatened the Belgian government with the removal of NATO headquarters from Brussels unless the country amended its self-anointed law of “universal jurisdiction.” Only after intense pressure did the Belgians finally agree.

This is why the Bush administration is determined to have countries around the world—including Croatia—sign the Article 98 treaty that would shield U.S. troops from being extradited to the ICC. So far, Washington has secured agreement from about 100 nations...

It is an open secret in Washington that Zagreb’s refusal to sign Article 98 is the principal obstacle to Croatia’s entry into NATO. By failing to support the United States on an issue of such importance, the Croatian government has helped to alienate senior members of the Bush administration….Croatia now has a unique opportunity to emerge as a key strategic partner of the United States. It can become the Israel of southeastern Europe, a pivotal democratic and pro-American ally in an unstable area of the world. Zagreb can act as a bulwark against both Serbian expansionism and resurgent Islam in Bosnia-Hercegovina…Serbia will not be weak forever. …He has repeatedly shown himself to be a dogmatic, anti-American, anti-Croatian leftist, whose foreign policy is irresponsible and short-sighted. In the end, it is Croatia that will continue to pay the price for his intellectual and moral bankruptcy.

Jeffrey Kuhner is an assistant national editor at The Washington Times. Jeffrey T. Kuhner is editor of the Ripon Forum magazine and communications director at the Ripon Society, a Republican think tank, in Washington, DC. He can be reached at ( He is also a regular contributor to the Commentary pages of The Washington Times. This essay is adapted from Mr. Kuhner’s upcoming book, “Fatal Embrace: The Croat-Serb Conflict in the 20th Century.” Mr. Kuhner would like to give special thanks to Danica Ramljak for her invaluable research assistance in the writing of this article.

Sleepwalking in the Balkans
By Grace Vuoto, Professor of European history at Howard University

President Bush has thus far done an admirable job in the war on terrorism, but in the Balkans he is asleep at the wheel….The problem in the Balkans is that the war-crimes tribunal at The Hague, Netherlands, for the former Yugoslavia is running roughshod over the basic principles of justice and fair play it was mandated to enforce. Instead of restoring calm and order by patiently identifying those who committed war crimes during the Croat-Serb conflict (1991-95), the tribunal is behaving in a sloppy and high-handed manner likely to spark tensions once again.
… Moreover, The Hague is now rearing its ugly head toward the United States. Investigators have begun to make inquiries into the American role in Operation Storm, the August 1995 offensive launched by Croatia that effectively ended the Croat-Serb war.
... Despite the recent denials by the State Department, it is well known by all who have observed this scene closely that the United States had ultimate "command responsibility" over Operation Storm. Washington gave the operation the green light and provided Zagreb with vital military and intelligence assistance such as the use of unmanned drones and encryption gear. Does this mean we will soon face the humiliating prospect of American officials being dragged before the tribunal? Will our generals be treated with the same contempt? Will our journalists be intimidated when they criticize The Hague? If this scenario is unacceptable to Americans, then why should the Croatian people accept it?... American leadership is required. Mr. Bush came to power pledging humility in foreign affairs: he must demonstrate this by protecting the rights of weaker nations and calling to account this arrogant court… Also, by allowing Mrs. Del Ponte and her staffers to run wild, international law is being undermined.

Grace Vuoto is a professor of European history at Howard University