Good Afternoon everyone! What better thing to do with a slow, hot and sticky Sunday afternoon than put together a thread about War Crimes?
Actually, it's the indexing and availability of records about them which is worth sharing. The United Nations and International Criminal Court have
put together an online index covering a mind numbing degree of information where it pertains to law, procedure, history of crimes and trials, as well
as each nations sets of laws and/or interpretations of international law. It's quite a resource, to be sure. Here are some specific links into the
areas of interest
* You are asked to click agreement to a terms page before entering. I skimmed over it and it looks like little more than 'If we're wrong on a detail
somewhere, tough. Readers discretion'.
(It's important to note here, this site is broken up on that navigation tree in a way where records pertaining to the same events, like Nuremberg or
the Pacific Tribunals will appear in more than one area depending on special focus/category. They may not appear in all areas, so to see everything,
it takes some looking around on the big ones like that)
United States Federal Law by Code
Allied Tribunals in the Far East post World War II
Rwanda Process Documents
East Timor Process Docs
This next area is of some particular interest for the legally minded and carrying a sense of curiosity and/or some humor. It's where nations come to
sue each other and here are the case listings of those that have, with outcomes.
International Court Of Justice
Finally, from that database, the national laws of virtually every nation in the world, by their own code/texts. no Wiki commentary or spin. A Just the
facts presentation by nation, of what the law is. Nothing more or less.
National Laws -
Now, despite the large number of links this seems, it's simply doing folks the favor of highlighting a few of the more interesting areas. There is
many many more times what I linked, and one can spend a whole day and evening in that database if this is an area of real curiosity.
The source nature of the material is what makes it most valuable. In many examples, (such as World War II tribunal documents), these are photo copies
of the original yellowed papers used in Court or used by the teams at the time to record the events as they went
Now I would be remiss to leave out some of the records of what has happened to make the war crimes trials and international bodies that handle them
necessary. Perspective is everything in understanding history to the lines which connect into our present. This is certainly no exception.
In terms of what has come the be seen as atrocity and the excesses of history:
World Historic War Crimes and Atrocities from Charlemagne to some of the North American / Indian
Top Massacres of the 20th Century
and finally, from that site, an Alphabetical Listing
of man's worst to man over the better part of
accepted known history. It's a real international bizarre of ways, causes and general urgency to get killed for something. Almost anything, when one
looks at the long term nature and trends of it across a thousand or more years.
40,000 here, 500,000 there, a million or more in a burst here or there and not unique to modern times as I found for scale. Something always going
somewhere though, and what a statement it makes. Perhaps the loudest one is the most self evident. When left to his own devices, entirely, man kills
each other for just a bit more off the other guy's plate. Or...so history would seem to show.
So, it's been that we've developed international laws over the past several decades to try, for the first time in human history, to get working
consensus on basic issues among all nations at once. Hardly a raging success, I don't mean to look into that here. Simply, to share some of the
framework it's all based on.
The first resource I'd like to share is the World Treaty Index
. You can search by single nation
or, in what is far more useful, you can search by combining nations for joint agreements. For example:
A selection of treaties by searching the US and Israel
This next one is the master index, if such a thing could be said to exist, of international treaties that the US has a part or interest in. It's a PDF
from the State Department and please DO NOT CLICK THIS
if you don't have the abillity to handle a LARGE pdf. This is a 500 page document.
However, within that 500 pages are all of the treaties which were in effect to at least 2011, and treaties do not change much. In fact, I'll address
U.S. State Department : A List of Treaties and Other International Agreements of the
United States in Force on January 1, 2011
For those who want to keep up on what changes or is altered in any way for those agreements, it goes through the Senate. The Senate keeps all that
handy for access as well.
^^ Within each link there, from the 103rd Congress onward, is another category for Senate Treaty Documents. That is where the treaties they have
signed or modified are listed for that Congress.
Last, but certainly not least, the major Treaties and Conventions we all hear talked abot.
The Geneva Conventions w/ all the mods and
The Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations
Chemical Non-Proliferation and Elimination material / Stats
Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty
ICRC Index of Material on all Areas for the Conduct of War
This topic and sharing of quick reference resources seemed fitting at this point as Syria and quite possibly Iran to follow, come to be hot and open
wars. These may be among the worst for tactics and lack of restraint among all players, as it develops.
I think we need to know where the line is now and has been before to fully understand what it looks like to be crossed.
I hope this is all helpful
edit on 25-8-2013 by wrabbit2000 because: One typo.. Ack!