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Doing Something about Darfur?

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3 Responses

  1. A few minor points: While Congress did indeed pass the “genocide” resolution in late July 2005, it was merely a follow-up to President Bush’s similar declaration a month and a half earlier. I realize CO is loathe to give the President any credit on almost any matter but Congress’s declaration is certainly of no more significance in this matter than a President’s.

    As to the ICC, this may be semantics but the US did not decline to veto the ICC referral, it abstained from the vote. Since Sudan is not a signatory to the ICC, the only way to get the ICC jurisdiction is by a Security Council vote. Since the costs would be borne by the ICC and not the UN, the US would not be directly involved, hence the abstention. I’d hardly call that a great victory for the ICC.

    I remember laughing about the supposed solemnity of the ICC actions last November when the ICC reported that, yep, there were bad things going on in Sudan and the only thing keeping the ICC from acting was a determination of whether or not Sudan was doing anything on its own about the atrocities. Seriously, they had to study the matter to see what Sudan was doing about it.

    But even after those legal eagles determine what anyone without a law degree could have figured out long ago, how does the prosecution go forward. Since Sudan is not a signatory, how does the ICC bring the perpetrators forward? Can anyone seriously picture a scenario where the ICC/UN unilaterally goes into Sudan for the purpose of initiating an ICC prosecution? It’s too ludicrous to even think about.

    I think this whole ICC investigation is just a colossal waste of time and money undertaken so that international tsk-tsk’ers can prance about The Hague pretending to be doing very important work. It is the appearance of caring without doing anything of substance (including not even going to Darfur during the investigation). Worse, it acts as deterrence to strong action by international players.

    Yeah, really too bad the US isn’t part of this glorified Moot Court program.

  2. I had no intention of slighting the president’s action or, for that matter, of praising Congress’s decision to declare the events in Darfur a “genocide.” I simply wanted to make the point, as your comment underscores, that the US has not been trying to shield Sudan from accountability.

  3. …well I did write it was a “minor point”…