Monday, April 28, 2008

Who's Looking Out for America?

By Debbie Schlussel

Who's looking out for America on the international stage?
Not the Bush Administration.

After long taking the right tack and opposing the International Criminal Court in Europe, the U.S. is now surrendering to it . . . and giving up America's national sovereignty.

Why wait for Barack or Hillary to do it, when the liberal Republican in office can do it now and claim credit, as a boost for Nobel Prize consideration.

And the reason for submitting is absurd, too.

As I've noted over the years, America didn't care about Arab genocide of Black Christians in Sudan. But, now that almost no Black Christians are left and the victims are now Black Muslims, suddenly the world and the State of Greater Celebritia is all atwitter over it. Now, the International Criminal Court is moving on Sudan over what's happening to Black Muslims in Darfur. And, therefore, the Bushies--not ever willing to do what's right on our own--insists we must now be a part of this international tribunal.

We have to give up our national sovereignty because Arab Muslims are murdering Black Muslims on the other side of the world? I don't get it. This will now make our soldiers answerable to this America-hating forum. It will make Americans and America's fight against terrorism weak and emasculated by submitting the fight of those efforts to a body dominated by pan-Islamist sympathizers.

Predictably, the far-left is joyous, and the only person talking any sense here is the ever-reliable, ever-visionary John Bolton. So, remind me again, why was Bush better than John Kerry? This was a point of contention between them in the 2004 election. Guess what? Bush lied:

A senior Bush administration official said Friday that the U.S. now accepts the "reality" of the International Criminal Court, and that Washington would consider aiding the Hague tribunal in its investigation of atrocities in Sudan's Darfur region.

"The U.S. must acknowledge that the ICC enjoys a large body of international support, and that many countries will look to the ICC as the preferred mechanism" for punishing war crimes that individual countries can't or won't address, John Bellinger, the State Department's chief lawyer, told a conference in Chicago marking the 10th anniversary of the tribunal's founding treaty, the Rome Statute. More than 100 countries have ratified the treaty. . . .

Mr. Bellinger's speech represented a rhetorical turnabout for an administration that came to power determined to hobble the movement for a permanent war crimes tribunal.

"This is a meaty piece of work," said Richard Dicker, international justice director for Human Rights Watch. "It's impossible to imagine such a statement four years ago." Shortly before the court opened in 2002, the Bush administration "unsigned" the Rome Statute, which President Clinton had approved before leaving office. President Bush subsequently signed legislation authorizing military action, should the court arrest an American, and limiting U.S. dealings with the tribunal.

An architect of the White House's earlier policies dismissed Mr. Bellinger's remarks as "pabulum" from a State Department that is too solicitous of international institutions. "It would be a great speech in the first Clinton administration, and probably a great speech in the second Clinton administration," said John Bolton, the former ambassador to the United Nations who, as undersecretary of state, signed the letter repudiating Rome Statute.

"It reflects the yearning the Rice State Department has for acceptance" by academics and foreign intellectuals, Mr. Bolton said. "The fight resumes after Jan. 20," when a new administration takes office, he added.

All three senators running for president -- Republican John McCain and Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama -- have voiced reservations about the court, but said they would consider closer cooperation with it.

In 2002, both Arizona Sen. McCain and New York Sen. Clinton voted for the anti-court legislation. But Sen. McCain said in 2005 that "I want us in the ICC, but I'm not satisfied that there are enough safeguards," Reuters reported. . . .
The Darfur investigation "is likely to do more than any other shape U.S. perceptions of the role and impact of the ICC," Mr. Bellinger said Friday. "We want to see the ICC's Darfur work succeed," and are "prepared to consider" providing assistance, he said.

The thaw between the Bush White House and the court began in 2005, when the U.S. refrained from vetoing a U.N. Security Council resolution referring Darfur atrocities to the court.
Mr. Bellinger said the U.S. wanted the court to "complement" the U.N. Security Council's agenda. That would ensure the court remains aligned with American interests, because the council can take no action without assent from its permanent members -- the U.S., Britain, China, France and Russia.

Mr. Bellinger said the U.S. would look to a diplomatic conference slated for 2010, which is expected to discuss definitions for the international crime of "aggression." . . .
The U.S. has worried that a vague definition could be used as a pretext to prosecute American officials for military operations.
The International Criminal Court is intended as a court of last resort for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, when national justice systems can't or won't take action.

This is madness. When an American soldier shoots a terrorist in Iraq who was trying to murder him, he may soon have to answer to China, France, Russia, and the other international America-haters on the ICC.

Thanks, George Bush. T minus 8 months

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