Tag Archives | War Crimes

Former Guatemalan Dictator Convicted Of Genocide

guatemalan dictator

The military dictatorship led by Montt slaughtered thousands upon thousands of villagers in an effort to exterminate Guatemala’s indigenous ethnic Mayan population, which it regarded as sympathetic to leftist rebels. No word on whether the CIA and Ronald Reagan will be tried posthumously as accessories. Reuters reports:

Former Guatemalan dictator Efrain Rios Montt was found guilty on Friday of genocide and crimes against humanity and sentenced to 80 years in prison. It was the first time a former head of state had been found guilty of genocide in his or her own country.

Montt, now 86, took power after a coup in 1982 and implemented a scorched-earth policy in which troops massacred thousands of indigenous villagers thought to be helping leftist rebels.

Prosecutors say Montt turned a blind eye as soldiers used rape, torture and arson to try to rid Guatemala of leftist rebels during his 1982-1983 rule, the most violent period of a 1960-1996 civil war in which as many as 250,000 people died.

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On This Tenth Anniversary of the Invasion of Iraq, a Reminder, According to the UN Charter, the Invasion was Illegal

via chycho

The war in Iraq is not over, not by a long shot. For decades to come we will have to deal with what the United States and its allies have unleashed.

It’s anyone’s guess if those responsible for this war of aggression will ever be held accountable for their crimes, what we do know however, is that the decision to invade Iraq has transformed the global political landscape (emphasis added):

“Kofi Annan, declared explicitly… that the US-led war on Iraq was illegal. Mr Annan said that the invasion was not sanctioned by the UN security council or in accordance with the UN’s founding charter. In an interview with the BBC World Service… he was asked outright if the war was illegal. He replied: ‘Yes, if you wish.’

“He then added unequivocally: ‘I have indicated it was not in conformity with the UN charter. From our point of view and from the charter point of view it was illegal.’

“American officials have defended the war as an act of self-defence, allowed under the UN charter, in view of Saddam Hussein’s supposed plans to build weapons of mass destruction…

“Mr Annan issued a stern critique of the notion of pre-emptive self-defence, saying it would lead to a breakdown in international order.”

Below you will find four videos embedded within excerpt from a 2006 article by Tony Judt entitled, “Bush’s Useful Idiots”.… Read the rest

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1,000 Year Old Stolen Buddha Statue is from Outerspace

Picture: E. Weiß: "Bilderatlas der Sternenwelt"

Via Rawstory

A thousand-year-old Buddhist statue taken from Tibet in 1938 by an SS team seeking the roots of Hitler’s Aryan doctrine was carved from a meteorite, scientists reported on Wednesday.

In a paper published in an academic journal, German and Austrian researchers recount an extraordinary tale where archaeology, the Third Reich and cosmic treasure are intertwined like an Indiana Jones movie.

Called the “Iron Man” because of the high content of iron in its rock, the 24-centimetre (10-inch) -high statue was brought to Germany by an expedition led by Ernst Schaefer, a zoologist and ethnologist.

Backed by SS chief Heinrich Himmler and heading a team whose members are all believed to have been SS, Schaefer roamed Tibet in 1938-9 to search for the origins of Aryanism, the notion of racial superiority that underpinned Nazism.

Weighing 10.6 kilos (23.3 pounds), the statue features the Buddhist god Vaisravana seated, with the palm of his right hand outstretched and pointing downwards.

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Colin Powell: Another War Criminal Cashes In

Medea Benjamin and Charles Davis write at Common Dreams:

One could be forgiven for thinking there’s anything honorable or honest about Colin Powell. For more than two decades now the Washington media has portrayed the former Secretary of State as something of a real life action hero, a reluctant warrior whose greatest fault – should they deign to mention any – was just being too darn loyal to a guy named George and his buddy Dick. What you might have missed is that Powell is a war criminal in his own right, one who in more than four decades of “public service” helped kill people from Vietnam to Panama to Iraq who never posed a threat to America. But don’t just take some anti-war activists’ word for it: Powell will proudly tell you as much, so long as he can make a buck from doing it in a book.

Powell’s latest $27.99 account of his legendary life is billed as a “powerful portrait of a leader who is reflective, self-effacing, and grateful for the contributions of everyone he works with.” But the title, It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership, could very well refer to Powell’s own careerist ambitions: saying and doing whatever served the interests of power – as a young officer in Vietnam, as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the illegal invasion of Panama, as Secretary of State under George W.

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Malaysian War Crimes Tribunal Finds Bush and Cheney Guilty

Kuala LumpurOh, if only it were the Hague. Or better yet, the U.S. Supreme Court. I guess it’s a start, though. Via Common Dreams:

Former President George W Bush, his vice president, Dick Cheney, and six other members of his administration have been found guilty of war crimes by a tribunal in Malaysia.

Bush, Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and five of their legal advisers were tried in their absence and convicted on Saturday.

Victims of torture told a panel of five judges in Kuala Lumpur of their suffering at the hands of US soldiers and contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan. Among the evidence, Briton Moazzam Begg, an ex-Guantanamo detainee, said he was beaten, put in a hood and left in solitary confinement. Iraqi woman Jameelah Abbas Hameedi said she was stripped and humiliated in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison.

Transcripts of the five-day trial will be sent to the chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Court, the United Nations and the Security Council.

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To Avoid Being Locked Up in Canada Cheney Stays Locked Up At Home

Dr. Anthony Hall writes at Veterans Today:
Earlier this week former US Vice-President Dick Cheney, the dominant, hands-on operative in the two-term presidency of George W. Bush, cancelled a speaking engagement in Toronto on April 24. Through a spokesperson Cheney indicated he was frightened to return to Canada after his experience last September 26 at the Vancouver Club. After promoting his book to a small local audience Cheney spent several hours hiding out in the posh venue trying to outwait several hundred citizen jurists, some of whom were planning to attempt a citizens’ arrest of the credibly-accused war criminal right on the spot. I am proud to have played an active role in the fascinating teach-in last September of those of us who deputized ourselves at the Vancouver Club. Our goal in assembling outside one of British Columbia’s oldest and most notorious sites of political cronyism was to attempt to defend Canadian sovereignty and the rule of law in Canada against the criminal contempt of government officials for the Canadian Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act (2000)...
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U.S. Soldier Opens Fire on Afghan Civilians: Up to 17 Dead

Via the Los Angeles Times:

A lone American serviceman slipped away from his base in southern Afghanistan before dawn Sunday and went on a methodical house-to-house shooting spree in a nearby village, killing 16 people, nearly all of them women and children, according to Afghan officials who visited the scene.

The NATO force confirmed that the assailant was in military custody, and that he had inflicted an unspecified number of casualties during the shooting spree at about 3 a.m. Sunday. The U.S. Embassy called for calm and expressed deep condolences; the Taliban referred to the killings as an “act of genocide.”

Via Al-Jazeera:

“Eleven members of my family are dead. They are all dead,” Haji Samad, an elder from Panjwai district, told the AFP news agency.

Captain Justin Brockhoff, a spokesman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), could not confirm any fatalities in the incident.

“This is a horrific incident, and our thoughts are with the families of the affected.

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