Imagine if America had to answer for its war crimes
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo demonstrated what the term "ugly American" meant the other day when he bragged about his defeat of the International Criminal Court.
"Americanism means taking care of our own," said Pompeo.
"We stopped international courts from prosecuting our service members," Pompeo continued, adding that the potential probe "was an outrage."
Pompeo confirmed earlier this year that the administration would revoke or deny visas for ICC personnel who try to investigate or prosecute U.S. officials or key allies for potential war crimes. A month later, in April, the administration followed through and revoked prosecutor Bensouda's visa for entry into the U.S.
Just because you defeated justice doesn't mean the crimes go away.
However, it does mean that there is no incentive to stop committing war crimes.
That brings us to today's news from Yemen.
The UK, US, France and Iran may be complicit in possible war crimes in Yemen over their support for parties to the conflict there, UN experts say.
A new report warns the countries they could be held responsible for aiding or assisting the commission of violations.
The Western powers provide weapons and logistical support to the Saudi-led coalition backing Yemen's government, while Iran backs the Houthi rebels.
The UN says the four-year conflict has claimed the lives of at least 7,290 civilians and left 80% of the population - 24 million people - in need of humanitarian assistance or protection, including 10 million who rely on food aid to survive.
Yemen has gotten a significant amount of much needed attention in recent years, but just across the Gulf of Aden another humanitarian disaster of gigantic size is happening in near total silence and obscurity.
“In the absence of humanitarian assistance, up to 2.1 million people across Somalia face severe hunger through December,” the UN warned, citing the 2019 Post-Gu report’s conclusion that this would bring the total number of Somalis expected to be food insecure, to 6.3 million by year’s end.
1 million children are expected to be malnourished in Somalia by year's end.
Much like Yemen, the United States is busy committing war crimes in Somalia as well.
The United States may have committed war crimes as it bombed al-Shabab militants in Somalia, a new report Amnesty International alleges...
They found that the airstrikes killed farmers, women and an eight-year-old girl, whom the group assessed had no ties to al-Shabab.
"Due to the nature of the attacks, the U.S. government is violating international humanitarian law and these violations may amount to war crimes," Hassan said.
While the United States has been bombing Somalia for more than a decade, the Trump administration has accelerated the attacks.
The insurgency there is fueled by Somali rage over now decades-long American interference in their country.
Why Americans cannot bring themselves to care about Somalia is something I will never understand.
Meanwhile in Libya things have gone from bad to worse.
"Unless action is taken in the near term, it is highly likely that the current conflict will escalate into full civil war," Guterres said on Thursday in his latest report on the UN Support Mission in Libya.
AFRICOM says that a civil war would "give existing terrorist elements in Libya oxygen."
The leading instigator of the fighting is General Khalifa Haftar.
Haftar, after the defeat of the Libyan troops he was commanding in 1987, he offered his services to the CIA, which backed him for years as he awaited the opportunity to topple Muammar Gaddafi.
Is it really any surprise that Trump loves him?
An airstrike by Khalifa Haftar’s forces hit a migrant detention center east of Tripoli yesterday and killed at least 44 people and wounded up to 130. Haftar and his forces are mainly backed by the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt, and this airstrike is part of the assault on the Libyan capital that Trump reportedly endorsed when it began. The Trump administration is now shielding Haftar from condemnation by the Security Council by blocking the statement promoted by the U.K.
The ICC plans to investigate these war crimes, but since the Trump Administration won't even allow a condemnation, and considering how much Washington hates the ICC, i wouldn't count on this investigation going very far.