Crime against humanity and genocide

What is crime against humanity ?

What follows is a summing up international treaties including the status of international courts .

The first legal definition is given by article 6-c) of the Statute of the International Military Tribunal of Nuremberg, of August 8, 1945:

"Crimes against humanity, i.e. murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation, and any other inhumane act committed against any civilian population, before or during the war, or persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds, when these acts or persecutions, whether or not they constituted a violation of the domestic law of the country where they were perpetrated, were committed as a result of any crime falling within the jurisdiction of the court, or in connection with this crime. ".

Several texts have taken up or supplemented this definition, including those of the statutes of the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia in 1993, the International Criminal Tribunal to try crimes committed in Rwanda in 1994, then the International Criminal Court in 1998.

A crime against humanity presupposes a generalized or systematic attack against any civilian population, even without recourse to arms, by a state, a de facto power or an organization, even non-state. An incentive followed by effect is enough.

You have to prove the attack and its systematic nature, its organization, the link between the criminal acts.

The persons prosecuted will be sentenced in the event of their knowing participation in this attack, and the fact that their act is part of this attack. This consciousness can be presumed, for example in the case of a concentration camp guard.

In international law, it currently includes:

  • murder, including attacks on the integrity of the victim resulting in death, even without intention to kill;
  • the extermination of a population, or a set of behaviors such that death results therefrom, which brings the incrimination closer to that of genocide; it requires a certain number of victims, and planning, which implies that an executor can be condemned for a single victim;
  • enslavement, forced labor not essential to establish it, trafficking,
  • the deportation or the forced transfer of population, the constraint being able to be indirect, but there can be licit transfers, for example, for the construction of a dam;
  • imprisonment or another form of severe deprivation of liberty, in violation of fundamental rules of international law;
  • torture, which consists of the intentional infliction of severe pain or suffering, physical or mental, whether to obtain information, to punish, to exert pressure or to discriminate;
  • rape, consisting of an act of penetration and coercion and sexual violence; forced sterilization is included;
  • persecution, including damage to property, resulting from a discriminatory policy; it includes discrimination policies; discrimination based on sex does not include discrimination against homosexuals;
  • enforced disappearances;
  • apartheid;
  • other inhumane acts, in fact any act causing great suffering or seriously damaging bodily integrity or physical or mental health.

the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide7 adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 9, 1948, and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court8 adopted in 1998. The Convention in its article 2 and the Statute in its article 6 means by (crime of) genocide

“any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

a) murder of members of the group;
b) serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) intentionally inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
d) measures aimed at preventing births within the group;
e) forced transfer of children from the group to another group. »

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Basically what Putin has ordered his military to do.

Well, everyone, even Putin is presumed innocent, until judged guilty.

War crimes are established fact.

To prove Cime against humanity, you must demonstrate that the war crimes committed have been organized as such, by Russian state and we have no direct proof right now. And to condemn Putin, one must demonstrate that he has organized or at least let the crime be done. And we have no direct proof now.

About genocide, nothing demonstrates that the crime are committed with the intention of making the Ukrainian population to disappear, totally, even if i feel that something like that is on Putin’ s agenda.

I agree that some the fact are clearly on the list of genocidal acts, but the global intention is not yet proved.

And between a stop to the war a slim chance of a trial of Putin, what would you choose ?

How far does "presumption go?

How does a trial change the reality happening on the ground?

I’m sure it can be proven. It just depends if the powers that be want to prove it. Putin et al will more than likely be charged with war crimes, but whether or not he is charged with crimes against humanity (he should be) remains to be seen.

Putin, I’m sure, has set up plausible deniability. He’s made it clear without putting anything in writing, that his generals will suffer if they don’t do what he wants, and they will suffer if they say they did it under threat from him. He has already shown that he doesn’t care what history or the world thinks about his leadership skills or any other status as a human being.

We have put ourselves in a bind by setting the moral standard that we shouldn’t assassinate leaders, no matter how they came to power, and then we also act as if we could negotiate and do business with them while they act like organized criminals and threatened us and our friends openly. It’s the same logic we use when we allow a guy with a restraining order to buy a gun.

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I agree, except for the killing part… although… Someone needs to do something about Putin, but I’m not going to suggest assassination, though if someone did assassinate him, I wouldn’t be upset about it. The thing is, I’d be concern for the mental health of someone who did the deed. Murder could do a number on one’s mental health, if their mental health wasn’t messed up already. So, killing Putin wouldn’t be a good thing, much less a healthy thing for those who do it. Why do you think so many military people return with PTSD and other mental health issues?

If Putin is deemed guilty of war crimes then by extension so is every US President since WW2. The morality is always prejudicial, what “we” (The West) do is always justifiable, motivated by a moral claim, but what “our” enemies do is always reprehensible, criminal, motivated by obscene base instincts and so on.

Consider one random example, the illegal and secret bombing of Cambodia during the 1970s. Anyone know the impact that had on civilians? anyone know just how many bombs were dropped?

I’ll tell you, over the nine year period of US bombing some 2 million tons of bombs were dropped. This was achieved by some 580,000 bombing missions which equates to a full plane load of bombs every eight minutes for 24 hours a day for 9 years.

Over 30% of the bombs failed to detonate and since 1973 approx. 20,000 people have died or been injured as a result of encountering these munitions, many of them children.

Of course the people in Cambodia were not white “educated” Europeans, they were simple villagers so clearly nowhere near as relevant as Ukrainians.

This is just a small sample of the data from just one of the many geopolitical escapades that “we” have allowed to take place with no public calls for war crimes prosecution, no mass media frenzy of “genocide” and so on.

Yes Putin is a mad man but he is no different from other powerful leaders in the West when judged by the same standards.

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The crimes of a side do not excuse the crimes of the other side !!!

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Why would anyone think they would? But are you saying, agreeing then, that our former presidents should face the same justice we wish to impose on Putin?

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Many people have called several presidents war criminals. Whether or not the mass media has called for it is a statement about mass media, not about anyone who might call for that on Putin. It’s a fake inconsistency.

It looks like the forum upgrade released your ban. That can be reinstated easily.

I see you are just as unfathomably hostile toward me today as you were a year or two ago. If my post actually breaches no forum rules I politely and respectfully ask that you refrain from threatening to silence me simply because you might not like what I say sometimes, as Putin might do for example.

As for being “banned” I never was nor did my conduct ever warrant such treatment. If you feel the system has made an error in admitting me it might be more professional to check the facts before making such veiled threats in a public thread that others can see; I am not responsible for system errors either Sir, so posting as you do on the basis some “upgrade” might not have acted as you expected is simply rude.

Anyway back to the subject, so you agree Putin is no more deserving of “justice” than say Clinton or Bush or Nixon or Kissinger?

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I think that the question is legitimate.

I would only cite one case: Bush jr

His war on Irak, funded on fake facts, is a crime against peace, meaning a war crime. And " worst" if I may, it was foolish, we have seen the results.

Clinton too is guilty, the NATO bombing of Serbia in 1999 lasted three months, go and check out the pictures on the web, looks just like Ukraine today. That crime also demonstrates the empty (and unchecked by media) lying that NATO is a “purely defensive” alliance too.

What is sickening today is the silence from the public about Yemen, it is being bombed by Saudi Arabia as we speak, the refugee crisis exceeds that of Ukraine and mass starvation is not far away either.

Like I said (and others too, for example Noam Chomsky) crimes committed by us or our “friends” are sanitized, airbrushed out while those committed by our foes are incessantly reported often with a large does of speculation.

But only as a response to a prior act of war. I am not saying that our motives were always noble. Most involvement was to protect some US interest, like oil (see Kuwait), but the US has never started a war for expansionist purposes. We never stay unless invited by the prevailing government. (see Iraq, Afghanistan)

Note that during the Cuban missile crisis:

Some advisers—including all the Joint Chiefs of Staff—argued for an air strike to destroy the missiles, followed by a U.S. invasion of Cuba ; others favored stern warnings to Cuba and the Soviet Union. The President decided upon a middle course. On October 22, he ordered a naval “quarantine” of Cuba.

This situation is very much the same as the current Russia/Ukraine conflict, except that the US restrained from bombing Cuba into rubble and annex Cuba, whereas Russia is attempting to obliterate Ukraine as a country, kill all its remaining citizens and eventually annex it as Russia territory.

Since Chomsky was invoked, I’ll give Sam Harris a chance to weigh in. He tried to get him on his podcast, but it ended up being an off-the-rails email exchange, followed by public speeches like this from both.

Sam focuses on intentions, and says Chomsky just counts bodies. He couldn’t figure out Noam’s point of view. This 6 minutes is a bit over the top, I think Sam gives Noam credit in other places, but we don’t hear that here. Certainly, on other topics, Noam is very much worth your time.

I’ve had the same problem I’ve had with Sherlock with his hyperbole, like “sickening silence” from some “public” for instance. I can agree with some things, like Clinton is also a war criminal, but that label alone is not enough to put him on par with Putin, or to say the world should respond in the same way to both of them.

… and the Dick Cheney :japanese_ogre:

Though I fear hugo will always have us over a barrel on that one, it’s the US that legitimized Shock’n Awe for the 21st century.

Surrounding Russia with more and more bases staging US nuclear weapons and then openly planning to do the same in Ukraine is an ac to of war. Just as Russia staging nuclear weapons in Cuba was perceived by the US.

When the Berlin wall collapsed it was agreed between US and Russian diplomats that NATO would not expand eastward to include former soviet states. Yet that’s exactly what has happened and is ongoing today.

As one writer recently expressed it too, claiming that “sovereign nations have a right to join military alliances as they see fit is their right”, is precisely what Japan, Italy and Germany did during WW2 by establishing the Axis.

Cambodia’s government did not invite the US to drop 2 million tons of bombs on the country either, the government of Serbia did not invite NATO to bomb them for two months either.

Your reply proves the very point, what “we” do is never a war crime.

Are you saying you disagree with the metrics I cited for Cambodia? what has Chomsky said that you disagree with exactly, lets look at it closely together.

Here’s Chomsky debating Buckley, I’d be interested to hear of any factual errors Chomsky makes during that discussion:

Incidentally “genocide” and “crimes against humanity” are defined primarily by the United Nations, that is the body that to all intents and purposes defines “international law” other than for this or that treaty between nations.

Based on those definitions the US is undoubtedly guilty of war crimes to a greater degree than Russia in Ukraine today. Our “allies” are too, consider Israel’s illegal occupation and ongoing seizure of territory condemned by almost all UN member states (with the US routinely abstaining or disagreeing) or Saudi Arabia’s ongoing bombing against civilians in Yemen.

Saudi Arabia too has rather a lot of what we call “oligarchs”, I hear no calls for sanctions though…

If you do not vocally disapprove of these in the strongest terms then any expression of outrage about Ukraine just cannot be taken seriously as moral outrage.

I’m open to a reasonable argument as to why you think I should not perceive outrage for Ukraine as pure hypocrisy, please do explain.