Posts Tagged Ocampo
“A good scapegoat is nearly as welcome as a solution to the problem”
In 2007, in the wake of the disputed elections, Ruto was ODM’s most vocal defender at KICC and Uhuru was the first to clinch the ignominious title of an opposition leader defecting to the ruling party. Kalonzo was an opportunist, just as he is today, waiting to benefit from whatever outcome.
Then came PEV and subsequent formation of the coalition, and we had no less than three opportunities to form a local tribunal and we didn’t. RAO, Kibaki and the entire cabinet even once came to parliament to beg members to vote for such a tribunal in vain.
The reason was Ruto, being then in ODM which was not really an equal partner in the coalition, was afraid he would be made the scapegoat. UK probably never thought he could be touched. And so the inevitable happened, Ocampo came calling and now WSR and UK are in the difficult position they are in.
What astounds me is the fact Ruto’s and UK’s supporters and/or tribesmen, even the most learned, take every opportunity to blame RAO for this turn of events, even when we know that our own parliament and the same accused individuals insisted on going the hague route.
It is fine to hate Raila for whatever reason including the fact you only want your “man” in power, but give the devil his due and just admit the hague matter was a poorly calculated move by the gang now operating under the moniker G7.
In any case if anyone stands to benefit, and who fully intends to as the cat was inadvertently let out of the bag by Muthama, then it is Kalonzo –he of the shuttle diplomacy that’s akin to wolves and chickens voting what’s for dinner; he who sacked Mutula from the MoJ the other day for stating clear points of law, and he stood uncondemned. Yet when RAO sacks Balala, a minister who had made it his business to light fires within the ODM boat at every waking opportunity, we get this hue and cry from the G7 brigade.
Let us have an honest discourse: Why is RAO blamed for everything that goes wrong even from choices made by those affected?
“The only time politicians tell the truth is when they call each other liars”
If you have been surprised by -the master prevaricator- Kalonzo’s bid to insist on going on what appears to be an ill-advised junket to, supposedly, lobby the UN Security council to grant Kenya (or is it PNU?) a deferral from the ICC process in what seems to be a futile mission (The US and UK will most likely remain adamant in their opposition to such a move, though whether they will actually veto the move rather than simply abstain from or vote against is a moot point), then wonder no more…. It is apparent that the bid to go the route of the UNSC as opposed to simply seeking deferral from the ICC itself is a calcultated move that is based on a game of chances and implications.
You see If the a local court indicted those implicated by Waki/Ocampo 6 then the GoK would have a strong case for deferral at the ICC since they would actually have shown they have started making moves to mete out justice, but such charges would then confirm to the ICC that the six, among others, have a case to answer. On the other hand, if they take the gamble that ICC pre-trial judges will, hopefully, acquit the 6 for lack of enough evidence, then our judiciary would later on argue that a reputable court, which it will be convenient to call the ICC at that point in time, has already cleared the six and hence they can’t be charged again locally (call it a recourse to some form of double jeopardy). Indeed they, read those with the real power, can then go ahead to charge a totally different set of persons (no prizes for guessing who is first on the list).
PS. If the leaked wikileaks cables from Ranneberger have any credibility then I highly doubt that, as a person, Kalonzo would actually like to see Ruto and Uhuru acquited or their case deferred; consider that this is the same man who was trying to get Kibaki out of the way by trying to influence Dubya to prevail on him, Mwai, to step down in his favour based on this, probably misguided, notion that the Central vote would just fall right into his indecisive lap. The very same man was thinking his days in KANU as a Nyayo waterboy guaranteed the Rift Valley was in his back pocket. Opportunism at its worst.
PS. I also doubt the push for the ICC by ODM/Raila is entirely based on a genuine desire to see justice done as opposed to getting a smoother ride in 2012, opportunism at its best. The difference, however, is in the fact that those that now live under the constant fear of joining Charles Taylor in his quarters behind bars at the Hague brought this on themselves; they and their minions, after all, refused to support the formation of a local tribunal on at least two occassions. I also cannot buy this hogwash that Raila has enough influence to dictate to Ocampo the persons to finger and when to name them and even go further and control when judges at the ICC issue summons, that is just plain ridiculous.
This is not checkers, this is a chess endgame being played out….
Bush kills 1,000,000 Iraqis based on lies; he is walking free in Texas. 1000 Kenyans (sadly) die in a stolen election and we cheer the sacrifice of a few ‘token’ african leaders as justice. Xiabo subverts his government; he gets a nobel prize. Assange releases the truth to the world; he is detained without bail. Are we so stupid we can’t see through this charade of hypocritical western bullsh*t!
Apollo Yann Sande: All that info is a well known fact. Pragmatic eyes would say that we make decisions most favourable for us. The opportunity presents to dispatch heavy handed politicans who would not be otherwise moved by the polls because of the stranglehold on the impoverished, underinformed masses. The US will have their day in the global court of social justice, and it will happen sooner than you know when hyperinflation impoverished them before the end of this decade.
Wes Ley: I also don’t see what moral highground the United States has to tell poor African countries about ICC when they, in the company of the likes of Israel and Iran, are not signatories to the Rome Statute
Sam Akhwale Ashene: I agree with you about Assanje(I spell it the Luyia way), but about the PEV killings, let justice according to the world system take its course.Kenyan leaders need to learn never again to use state machinery, including police salaries, guns and bullets bought by tax payers’ money to kill children.Just because some possible suspects are sons of rich and influential families (that were the genesis of some problems in translocating groups into different provinces istead of former settler farms in their home provinces) is no good reason to sympathise.As for the RV suspects, let each take it as his/her personal walk of life-They might emgerge more refined individuals in terms of outlook to life and probably even quit politics for full time religious ministry.
Wes Ley: I don’t sympathize with those who committed crimes during the PEV, I just need people to see the bigger picture here. Not to seem callous or anything, but we lost a little over 1,000 people, many of whom were shot by uniformed forces, is this really a genocide? These western countries sat by while Rwanda burned, they sit by while drones drop bombs on weddings in Afghanistan and Pakistan, they sat by while manufactured fairy tales of WMD were used to murder millions in Iraq, you think they are our friends? You think they know or care about justice?
The more I think about this little ICC razzmatazz, a damn minstrel called Ocampo and Africa being made the whipping boy for the planet yet again, the more am reminded of the words of Stalin “The death of one man is a tragedy, the death of millions is a statistic”
Apollo Yann Sande: @Wes: So, should we stop the ICC process?
Wes Ley: I don’t say we should, am not even sure we can seeing our emancipation from imperialism was still born, am saying how can we accept that the ICC is truly a court of justice when mass murderers from Europe, Israel and America walk free, while seemingly tribal honchos from poor countries whose savage sidekicks have committed sporadic cases of extreme and crude violence are made the face of crimes against humanity?
How is this different to what KACA has been doing prosecuting a policeman for taking a 100 bob bribe while kleptocratic ministers ride off with impunity into the sunset with taxpayers’ billions?
If they are going to indict Lubanga (of course we all forget the same Western forces financing the wars in Congo to steal minerals), if they are going to indict Kihara or Okemo and look the other way at what lily white leaders have done in the black and brown world, then I spit on their credibility
Apollo Yann Sande: Ok, if we shouldn’t stop it (and you know we can). How should we view it?
Yumbs Nyams: Wes, forget what Bush did. The blood of 1300 Kenyans cries for justice. We failed to constitute a tribunal. We can’t draw analogies when it was us who appended signatures on the Rome statute. I’m in total support of the process en hope one day the henchmen of these six will face justice.
Sam Akhwale Ashene: If that is what is going to help rid us of the Independence generation’s stranglehold onto our politics, so be it.Kenyatta Senior was ruler from 1963, he plus his crony Koinange plunged us into a mess as far as land ownership is concerned.Moi and his ilk followed the same “Nyayo”.Now Kibaki wants to “hand over” the same way of doing things to Kenyatta Junior, hence the panic and the emergency cabinet meeting.Ruto is what he is because of Moi.If Ocampo will give us an emancipation that we have been unable to do for ourselves, so be it.If someone has vomited on the floor of a matatu, I care less if a madman in the market is the one who will clean the floor so that we all can go on with the journey in a clean vehicle.
Sam Akhwale Ashene: Yumbs, even getting PC and PPOs to record statements before a neutral(read asian origin, not Kenyan tribe)judge in time, with all the assurance that their lawyers will be present and thta all rules will be observed is proving to be a headache. It has taken 20 years for the report on Ouko’s death to state in plain terms what we all along knew through rumours.Kenyasn need an unbending big stick to be serious about anything.Seriously.KTN and Standard kept screaming that APs were being ferried in City Hoppas to go be polling agents, yet the powers that be still pushed ahead with their rigging agenda.If those who were in charge of the State security machinery are being held to account for their arrogance and partisan use of State resources,so be it.
Wes Ley: I don’t know about we, most Kenyans approach this ICC issue from a point of arrant ignorance almost as if such a route is a panacea for all that bedevils us, personally I’d rather we had the courage and honesty to sit down and ask ourselves where the rain started beating us, to have the courage to make reparations to the aggrieved.
If the issue is large swathes of land held by a few then wouldn’t an agreement to assuage the IDPs by settling them do more than jailing a few leaders who might have lit a match that eventually ended up in a fireball they hadn’t prepared to and couldn’t control?
Then I must reiterate that my crusade isn’t about the fact that justice will be done or at least seem to have been done, this is about pride and self determination, is the ICC a kangaroo court where the poor are hanged for murdering a handful (not saying it’s excusable) while the real merchants of invasion and death view us from the gallery laughing at the dark continent?
Is justice best served by retribution or reconciliation? Is justice seen to be done by the hanging of Saddam and the sweeping under the rag of Bush’s atrocities? Will justice be done by jailing WR and UK while developing selective amnesia on the role the former colonialist, now turned paragons of virtue, had in installing the stooges we so wish to get rid of and whom we delude ourselves will be taken care of by their creators?
Nguru David: I mantain Kenyans r a special lot with some special ROT. Kenyans cant b helped. The best is to move to the winning team. Ask Kalonzo just how to do that, OR even better Saitoti, the PROF of mathematics, A real PROF indeed.
Wes Ley: I also believe Kalonzo needs to be indicted, at least by the court of public opinion, for selfishly taking sides in a time of tension and dispute for his own personal political gain… then his explanation; “I took the Vice presidency to unite Kenyans”, how stupid do this politicians think we are? Or rather how stupid are a majority of us and how many of our politicians have realized this?
Sam Akhwale Ashene: I’m one person who is very, very, very tired of the leaders we have in Kenya.When we have Kenyans or descendants of Kenyans winning Nobel prices,yet back home we have to put up with names I have been hearing since I was in Standard 5, 27 years ago for leaders, I think we are getting a raw deal.The truth is, with the leaders we have,we will NEVER solve the problem of where the rain begun to beat us, because they trade in Umbrellas and make huge profits as long as the rain keeps falling.If Ocampo will help lift the car where we don’t have a jack, let it be so, even if he leaves us to repair the puncture and change the wheel.As for calling people whio can afford to hire Helicopters very weekend poor, who can trasfer their pedigree dairy cows from their farms in Nakuru to Karen during the dry season,who can sell their land gotten in questionable circumstances to the government, to settle IDPs they created, if those are the poor being hanged at the ICC, then I think the definition of poor has changed totally.
Wes Ley: poor wasn’t in the context of wealth, it was in the context of confused and bewildered persons who are about to be hung out to dry yet they can see far worse criminals sitting pretty and even condemning them.
Steve Hannington: Wes… if a banker swindles me of 1M and you rob someone else 1K at gun point. Will you use the fact that the banker has not yet been prosecuted as you defence?
Wes Ley: Banker swindles vs Robber with gun is hardly similar to Bush steals oil and murders a million people vs Politicians protest election result and 1200 die
Steve Hannington: Actually it is… banker=uses tactical/technical know how. gunpoint=Just plain stupid idiot that does his thing openly.
Wes Ley: blatantly killing a million people is tactical huh?
Hippie Ottie Ojay: Wesley are u saying tht crime should go unpunished because another crime went unpunished. For your info criminal liability is individual so it daint matter that another went without penalisation otherwise what would we turn into?
Warle Maina: one case at a time…impunity has been long going on in Africa…now that Kenya leads as one of the most developed nations, let it lead in trying some of its own high and mighty in the ICC, as for bush and his krunnies…another story for another day…
Steve Hannington: Wes… Bottom line is crime was comitted and they should pay. For Kenyans and for Kenya. Bush will pay for his at the pearly gates.
Peter Ndoria: Your logic is very sound, Wes. But only to the extent that you have addressed these separates issues well. Why you have gone ahead to mix them up, I don’t know. I will lose all faith in the Nobel Prize if it is not awarded to Julian next year (it basically means you can get one only if you antagonise the Chinese Govt.), I also think Bush should be in the ICC next to Taylor, as for Israel, they thrive on a good PR move 65 years later on the graves of some 6million of them to hold Europe in an eternal guilt-trip (6 million in 6 years is loose change compared to 800,00 in a month as happened in Rwanda ’94). The examples are countless but I believe Ocampo should be let loose on these thugs, not because I really love the guy but just so someone somewhere will realise that there can be consequences next time you arm a tribal militia. Actually, for me, the trial starts and end today with thenaming of the 6 names…
How Rannenberger comes in, I don’t know- though that sounds like the rhetoric of our political class ranting during Jamhuri Day about ‘foreigners’ telling us wht to do. Was it a coincidence that the Cabinet opted for the Local Tribunal route the very following day. I believe not.
Wes Ley: All am saying is I have no real respect for Ocampo if he’s pursuing petty tribal chiefs in Africa and pretending not to see real atrocious crimes that have taken place in other countries; invasion, ruin, plunder, mass murder, lies and not one indictment! Had to take an individual country like Spain and Nigeria to issue warrants for the war criminals Bush and Cheney. Ocampo is using a hammer to kill flies when that hammer would be more of a deterrent if applied to the skulls of the imperialist hawks that have committed crimes against humanity.
Otherwise Ocampo should feel free to admit he doesn’t have the balls to go after big time international villains, in which case whatever justice meted out to Kenya’s six will not be testament to justice being seen to be done but rather a drop in the ocean, a bloody ocean in which sharks swim free and omena are indicted.
Andrew Em: @ Ndoria, its hypocritical to highlight the Rwandan genocide by belittling the Jewish Holocaust as a PR exercise aimed at keeping the Europe in perpetual guilt.
Lets face it, it is also NAIVE for any African State and/or peoples for that matter to expect justice as we know it from the west.ICC is a joke and any western initiated/backed measures for justice, democracy or human rights have always been a mockery of African sense of justice, culture, tradition and intellectualism.
As a continent our problems are timeless and terminal, largely self inflicted,fueled by our leaders greed and exacerbated by the west’s hunger for dominion,greed for our resources and the belief that some animals are more equal than others
It is vital that this is understood first before Africa turns to the west for any form of help or advice.And as rightly predicted, Ruto and Co.have been named suspects. Further prediction will reveal that they will walk free, as have many others before and after them will.Why? bcoz, the form of justice is western prescribed, designed to further western interests, and as a African’s we refuse to face our problems head on and address them using home grown solutions.
Refer also to this book “Five to Rule Them All” by David L Bosco.-its a good read.
Peter Ndoria: @Andrew; Josef Stalin alone killed more people than 6 million people- by some estimates, five times more. Ever read about it or perpetually see it on CNN like you do the Holocaust? Those victims (or their families) just don’t know how to do good PR like the Jews, who by the way are the only nuclear capable nation that gets away with not being inspected (think Iran and North Korea). So, perhaps you should look at the bigger picture on that one…
I fully agree with your sentiment. I am just wondering why we have suddenly ‘realised’ that we are an independent nation that doesn’t need foreigners some few hours to Ocampo’s List. We had TWO chances to set up a Local Tribunal and we blew them. Let nature take its course.
Peter Ndoria: @Wes; I agree with you, but only to the extent that there are other (bigger) criminals out there. Does that mean we ignore our own? I don’t think so. I have little respect for ICC either and I expect very little out of it- but the fact that our politicians now know there is someone out there who can at least bark, even if he doesn’t bite, is some step in a good direction. See how they are already busy issuing statements? Gone are the ‘lie low like envelopes’ days of tribal clashes… to me, I hope.
Wes Ley: What good is the ICC if it’s only present when it’s time to parade the ‘primitive’ darkies for the entertainment of the ‘civilized’ west? What do these folks have in common: Thomas Lubanga, Jean Pierre Bemba, Germain Katanga, Mathieu Chui, Charles Taylor and Omar El Bashir. Soon to be joined by Francis Muthaura, Uhuru Kenyatta, William Ruto, Henry Kosgey, Hussein Ali & Joshua Arap Sang
…. All are but expendable negroes!
They might as well as call it the International African Criminal Court since those are the only ones being indicted.
Obviously those that have colonised and carted away africas resources, invaded sovereign states, exterminated millions, plundered others’ natural resources, enslaved, drove other races to extinction will not be touched as long as they’re from western Europe, north America or Israel
Peter Ndoria: Your observation is correct. Why are the following names missing; Slobodan Milosevic, Radovan Karadžić and Ratko Mladić? Is it perhaps because they were no ‘darkies’? That notwithstanding, I think I make my point rather clear. As a Kenyan, am happy to see that our politicians have finally realised that they can be held (even if somewhat) accountable. Listening to the like of IsaacRuto, Francis Muthaura and Uhuru giving statements says something about this thing having an impact…
Wes Ley: Those were the token white ‘darkies’ from Eastern europe, the inhabitants of a section deemed “the sick man of Europe”, notice the sneers and disdain shown to Russia for getting the fifa world cup, no wonder the millions of Russians killed in the world wars are buried in the pit latrines of history, Eastern Europe and The Arab peninsula are seen as nothing but gypsy romas and sand niqqas by the west, US and Israel
Andrew Em: My friends, a genocide in Rwanda, PEV in Kenya, Blood Diamonds in Sierra Leone etc, are considered ‘acceptable tragedies’ by the five member nations of the UN Security Council which are also the world’s largest manufacturers and exporters of small arms,ammunition and other weapons to third world countries. What is not accepted and is avoided at all costs is a war , any war btn any of the five members.
The weapons used in the PEV in Kenya were not manufactured by the six suspects.they were supplied and even the funding was not by the six suspects.
So the six suspects have been publicly named, issued statements etc. with luck there might be a hearing..am not so sure about indictments.
The reality we live in is that we are constantly watching a show, a movie maybe.different actors, same same script, same director.And somewhere down the line its gonna end, we shall go about our business as usual and the six or maybe others will be back to make another movie as and when the directors need them.
Yesterday at 16:08 · Like
Peter Ndoria Who considers them ‘acceptable’, Bwana Andrew…. or are you just making a wild general statement?
Hippie Ottie Ojay: there was a tribunal in Yugoslavia to try war crime perpetrators why are u being selective in naming only Africans Wes! my view is that at the end of the day Kenyans need closure which can only be attained when justice is seen to be achieved which cannot be by comparing with th ewestern world of what ought to have been there. You claim we are sovereigns then why compare let the suspects face the law as it is and if you have a case against the likes of Bush you can petition the international court to open up investigations and a possible prosecution thats the goodness of international law as all international citizens from wherever you are can submit such a petition and have a right to be heard and access redress. If we take your line of arguement it would mean impunity should reign within the African leadership because it is reigning in the west, Tell me this will you condone your child to be a thief because aneighbour’s child of the same age is a thief!!!!!!! never mind you ought not to answer that, if you had experienced the PEV violence at close range you would understand why some of us need closure and not to be toyed around with by political big wigs
Andrew Em: @Peter, These are not general statements. they are factually based on alot of comparative readings.please find and read the books “Five to Rule Them All” by David L Bosco.Another good one is Lords of poverty and Wealth of Nations.there are quiet more but a combination of these three will give u a rough idea of who shapes global politics and hence determines the distribution of global resources
Peter Ndoria: I’ve read ‘Lords of Poverty’, a very interesting book. I wouldn’t mind reading the other two. My perception of global politics, I believe, is informed by many factors. For example, you -an African- are totally bowled over by the Holocaust yet you say nothing of the four Centuries that Europe lorded over and raped the Continent- they are yet to issue an even apology, yet you find it ‘unacceptable’ that one finds the Holocaust a relatively small matter.
That said, the issue of global politics (which I agree a lot on with you) and the Kenyan scenario are, to me, separate as I have elaborated above… y’all seem to mix them up.
Andrew Em: i dont think am mixing up anything.all am trying to do is highlight the fact that all this ICC stuff and many others before it is nothing but a stage managed show.the victims who want closure might as well find it somewhere else.
It is a gross injustice in itself to let them believe that Ocampo will come from the Hague and give them closure.
Of vital importance is that if as a country we want to have any sense of justice, freedom and independence in all aspects, we must stop relying on prescribed solutions from the west and find home grown solutions. The masses must be educated about this so that they stop gawking and holding fair skinned individuals in ‘awe’ as if they are a
Wes Ley: See Ottie you are becoming emotional as this ‘if you were touched by the PEV’ statement betrays. How did you ascertain I was not touched by PEV? Is it because I see beyond a charade that you, probably, falsely believe is the end of impunity or even a route to closure and justice? Furthermore I have explained over and over that western europe is different from Yugoslavia and its ilk, no need to flog a dead horse. If these Kenyans are indicted and punished, fine with me, let them carry their cross. If you swallow that horse shit that only these Africans and a few eastern europeans and arabs are the face of war criminals and purveyors of crimes against humanity, then we’ll agree to disagree because obviously you are swallowing that WASP koolaid that you don’t see Massa is just having us do a jig on the cotton plantation and the sambos and uncle Toms leading the cheering squad are too blind to see what little pawns we are in a very large chess board. I insist that ICC is nothing but a joke to real war criminals who will never be indicted, yet we want to tell the unwashed masses Ocampo will make everything hunky dory. Waafrika tuna shida kubwa, ya kwanza ni kufikiria shida zetu zitamalizwa na wanaotudhulumu.
Peter Ndoria: There were two chances. We blew them… no, we actually said we have no faith in our judicial system and we’d rather ‘go to the Hague’. I don’t see Ocampo’s fault in that.
It is only when some Guy realised that his appointed successor may be in that list that we, all of a sudden, remembered that we have a , to borrow your words, “sense of justice, freedom and independence in all aspects..”. This is about a prescribed political alliance, more than prescribed solutions from the West. All that anti-foreigners rhetoric at Nyayo Stadium this Sunday… not a coincidence. Listen to Minister Githae today.
Wes Ley: The anti foreigner rants at Nyayo were aimed at the US ambassador, whose contempt for the principals was laid bare by Assange’s courageous leaks. As for the failure of the local tribunal motions, it was parliament that failed deliberately, not us, I’ll be damned if I believe those self-centred MPs represent me any more than a wolf represents a sheep’s rights. These MPs miscalculated how fast Ocampo would move, or did they? How are we to know that they will not walk free? Why shouldn’t they hope to walk free if Bush, Blair, Rumsfeld, Cheney, Rice, Netanyahu, Sharon et al are free and with far more blood on their hands? Ooops, I forgot they come from the dark continent where we are picked on for experiments in economics such as SAPs and privatization and as cannon fodder for fledgling courts unable and/or unwilling to go after global masterminds of theft and plunder of other countries’ resources with millions of lifes snuffed out and dismissed as collateral damage. Am off to listen to Immortal Technique and open my eyes to what is hidden behind the smoke and mirrors of world governance.
It is silly season and everyone is going gaga over the ‘Hague’…. But I have my misgivings on the International Criminal Court which I am oft forced to reduce to nothing more than the usual window dressing, talkathons and razzmatazz that international bodies, such as the United Nations, seem to have been reduced to in the wake of powerful nations defying resolutions and vetoing what isn’t in their interest, albeit it might be in the wider global interest, refusing to sign up to protocols that call for collective responsibility such as environmental matters. The first discrepancy in this Court has to do with the claim of being ‘international’ which seems to be meant to convey pretences to universal acceptance and jurisdiction. To begin with only 108 states are members of the court with 39 other countries having developed cold feet when it came to ratifying the Rome Statute that established the Court on 1st July 2002; this also means the court cannot prosecute crimes committed before this date. The court itself is defined as a permanent tribunal tasked with prosecuting individuals for crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide and crimes of aggression.
With that out the way comes the part that bothers me regarding this court and its effectiveness: A glance at the countries that have refused to sign up as members or openly campaigned against the ICC is very telling; it is not reassuring that the world’s only superpower, The United States of America, is at the head of the rogue list, common allies like Israel are staunchly opposed to this Court and America and Israel ,being some of the most notorious aggressors on earth, it’s easy to see why. Other strange bedfellows in this alliance against an all-encompassing court include China, Russia, India, Iraq, Libya, Qatar and Yemen.
America’s exit from the court is a sad piece of Bush policy that I hope Obama has the guts to reverse; the U.S. was one of 139 countries which signed the Rome Statue, the very treaty establishing the ICC, however, the Bush administration was resistant to ratification and went ahead to announce to the UN of a unilateral decision by the U.S.to nullify its signature and thus withdraw its support (it was hitherto unheard of to ‘nullify’ a signature but oh well, this was Bush we are talking about). The Bush administration then went further and threatened to cut-off military aid to countries in the process of ratifying the Rome Statue who would not have clauses that exempt U.S. citizens and military personne;l effectively granting immunity from prosecution for such crimes as within the ICC’s jurisdiction.
The ICC has so far opened investigations into crimes committed in: DRC, Northern Uganda, the Central African Republic and Darfur (Sudan). 14 people have been indicted, of which 5 are still in custody, 7 remain free and 2 have passed on.
What I worry about then has to do with several issues that are apparent;
1. It speaks volumes that all the countries from which ‘criminals’ have been indicted, except for Radzic from Serbia, are in Africa and that is one coincidence I would love Ocampo to give me to understand.
2. Can the ICC have any real teeth when the world’s sole super-power has refused to sign and is in-fact coercing dependent states from ratifying their membership?
3. What does it imply when countries like China, India, Russia (members of the emerging trading block called BRIC which has most of the world’s population and dollar reserves) and the likes of Libya and Iraq team up with the States and Israel to fight the ICC?
4. It also has to be said that the ICC, even by its defined role, is meant to intervene in situations where a country doesn’t have functional courts or is basically in such turmoil as to have a government that is nothing more than a basket case; does Kenya really fit this profile or indeed is the scale of violence that took place in the aftermath of the last general elections really at par with the atrocities committed by the likes of Thomas Lubanga who enlisted children under 15 years of age to kill and main or Charles Taylor’s reign of terror in Liberia or Omar El-Bashir’s genocide in Sudan