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December 2, 2016 / Congau

War Crime Tribunals

What is the purpose of an international war crime tribunal? If it is to prevent war crimes, it is useless, for it is unthinkable that its existence will ever scare anyone from committing atrocities.

Ruthless warlords and brutal generals don’t expect to lose, but they know that if they do, they lose everything. The remote threat of an international criminal court will add nothing to the risk they are taking. Throughout history beaten kings and commanders have met a terrible end when their kingdom fell. The loser has always been utterly disgraced and often lost his head. Yet again and again aspiring conquerors have gladly taken the sword. In the quest for glory, being conscious of possible disaster have not deterred them from cruelties of war and it is not likely that a modern court in the Haag would make a difference.

After all only losers go to the Haag and anything else is inconceivable. Could you ever imagine George Bush before a tribunal being held responsible for atrocities in Iraq? We can only laugh at the idea. No court is higher than the highest military power and whoever has the might also has the right. This is not justice, far from it, but it is better to express this age-old simple truth that to be betrayed by modern illusions. In fact war crime tribunals are just another tool in the hands of the powerful.

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