The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing -- Edmund Burke

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ICC To Target Capitalism As A Crime?

Warner Todd Huston

whuston@americasvoices.org     
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May 14, 2004


Well, the ICC is at it again!  The International Criminal Court seems to be changing its direction monthly and expanding its scope.  Now they have basically announced that they feel they should be able to prosecute any business man who has had the misfortune to have done business with any "Criminal" the ICC has targeted whether that business man knows he had such dealings or not.

But before I get into the ins and outs of this newest idea the ICC is using to enlarge its mandate I want point out a curious thing that I have discovered.  Over the last few months there have been a few articles here and there (maybe no more than 4 from what I can tell) about this particular new twist to the ICC's plans.  But lately information seems strangely scarce.

The most referenced reporting of this story has been from the Journal of the American Bar Association.  The ABA Journal reported that well-known human rights attorney and newly appointed chief prosecutor of the ICC, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, addressed a conference of attorneys in San Francisco earlier this year.  A report of this address was printed in the ABA Journal a few months ago.  I have seen stories that have referenced this ABA report.  Yet, this report has been removed from the on-line database of the ABA.  One has to wonder what they are trying to hide?  There is also a listing on the New York Law School website about Mr. Ocampo's address to them on the same subject.  Curiously, though, it is one of the lectures that have no transcript available for download.  Just why all the secrecy?

I don't want to go down the "black helicopter" route, but its just darned odd that one report has disappeared from public perusal and another outlet won't even offer the text of Mr. Moreno-Ocampo's address.

What is it that is so scary about this new ICC direction?  According to reports Luis Moreno-Ocampo has announced that bankers, capitalists and businessmen can be legitimate targets of the ICC.  He is said to have warned the international business community that they can be held accountable by the ICC for directly OR indirectly assisting a government who might be accused of violating international law.  He is further quoted as having "encouraged" international corporations to cooperate with the ICC to avoid such prosecution.

This is a shocking concept.  What could it do to capital investment if international businessmen might have to fear being whisked from their offices and placed before this "court" for prosecution, even if they had no idea that the business they were involved in may have gone toward some sort of international crime against humanity?  Wouldn't one expect businessmen to fear that the unstable governments they are dealing with might run afoul of the barely understood and ill defined rationale of this international court which would cause the poor businessman to be brought up on charges right along with them as well?  Wouldn't you imagine that such businessmen might scale back the very kinds of investment that would help third world nations advance into the 21st century?

And what government will protect these businessmen?  If he is living in a country that has foolishly agreed to extradition treaties with the ICC, could he expect to be grabbed in the dark of night, thrown in the back of an unmarked van and carted off to some far away country for prosecution?

The USA has not signed the treaty agreeing to the ICC and is currently attempting to get other nations to agree with it on it's reasoning.  They have worried that their politicians or soldiers might be vulnerable to the same treatment by the ICC as I described above.  Of course, the ICC has claimed, in all its innocence, that this would never be the case - famous last words, eh? - but it is beginning to look as if they have moved on from their past desires to get at the U.S. through its officials and military men.  They seem now to have set their sights on our business community.

This new power that the ICC seems so willing to take upon itself is even more chilling than the past worries by the U.S. and others.  The ICC now has the potential to stop international investment in the third world as well as international cooperation between nations.

The biggest question I have is this:  "if the ICC is saving us all from crimes against humanity, who is saving us from the ICC?"

 

Copyright Copyright 2020 by Warner Todd Huston & America's Voices, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Warner Todd Huston is a publisher/printer by trade and has enjoyed writing articles on history and current events which have appeared in several publications and many websites over the years.  He agrees with the old axiom that "those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it" and many of his opinion editorials use history as a lesson for us today.  You may contact Warner at whuston@americasvoices.org.

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