Presentation on theme: "KISSINGER Crimes & Misdemeanors. Readings Christopher Hitchens’ article in Harpers detailing Kissinger’s actions Kissinger’s attack on universal jurisdiction."— Presentation transcript:
KISSINGER Crimes & Misdemeanors
Readings Christopher Hitchens’ article in Harpers detailing Kissinger’s actions Kissinger’s attack on universal jurisdiction in Foreign Affairs Roth’s rebuttal of Kissinger’s attack
Depraved Realpolitik crimes Betrayal of Kurds in –Encouraged to revolt against Hussein –Abandoned to extermination Kissinger’s role in South Africa & Angola White-washing of death squads in Central America Support for Shah’s Torture & Repression in Iran
Indictable Crimes Mass murder in Indochina during war Murder in Chile during peace Bloodbath in Bangladesh Coup, Torture, Murder in Cyprus Conquest & Slaughter in East Timor Assassination in Washington, D.C.
International Law No longer recognizes “sovereign immunity” International Tribunal at the Hague Pinochet indictment –Spanish judge suppoena for Chilean Dictator Pinochet –British government arrested Pinochet Warrant for arrest of Kissinger Many of his co-conspirators are in jail
Prelude: “October Surprise” Fall of 1968 before the presidential elections: Humphrey vs Nixon Nixon & Kissinger sabotage the Paris Peace Talks over ending the Vietnam War Promise a better deal from Republicans South Vietnamese junta withdrew Result: Peace Talks Collapsed
1973 Coup in Chile Chilean military overthrew democratically elected president Salvador Allende Materially and morally backed by Kissinger and Nixon Administration
Consequences Humphrey lost, Nixon won Seven more years of war ( ) 20,000 more American soldiers died Hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese, Cambodians, Laotians died.
Evidence I Haldeman Diaries: reveal Johnson bugging? Stephen Ambrose bio on Nixon, fear of consequences of revelation Clark Clifford discovered secret communications between Nixon camp & S.Vietnamese government (violation of Logan Act)
Evidence II Richard Holbrooke: Kissinger was spy for Nixon inside negotiations Nixon’s Autobiography: John Mitchell was contact for Kissinger Anthony Summer’s book: Claire Chennault as second intermediary to S.Vietnamese Hitchen’s lists other sources, same story
“War Crimes” in Indochina? Christmas Bombing of North Vietnam after 1968 Elections General Telford Taylor’s book on Nuremberg & Vietnam: US leaders could be tried as well. Nuremberg Trials reasoning taken over by United Nations as basis of international law US accepted law its prosecutors & judges produced.
Question of Responsibility General Taylor analyzes cases of WWII leaders sentenced to death Central issue was knowledge and failure to act to stop or prevent further crimes –E.g., General Yamashita - hanged –E.g., Foreign Minister Hirota & Rape of Nanking – hanged Kissinger et. al. knew and in detail yet continued to perpetrate crimes
Kissinger & “Speedy Express” 9 th Division Slaughter in Kien Hoa province Body count = 11,000, weapons = 748 General Creighton Abrams praised operation widely and frequently Impossible to believe Kissinger was unaware Yet he took no steps to stop the slaughter
Kissinger & Cambodia/Laos - I Post-WWII, US denied allies right to attack other countries –E.g., Egypt in 1956, attacked by France, Britain and Israel, US forced retreat –E.g., against French attack of Tunesian town during war to keep Algeria All set aside by “hot pursuit” Secret bombing of Cambodia & Laos, Kissinger and Nixon lied about what they were doing, denied it.
Kissinger & Camboida/Laos - II 350,000 civilians in Laos, 600,000 civilians in Cambodia were killed by bombing Use of toxic chemical defoliants caused massive health crisis, esp for mothers, children & aged Kissinger brags about his role in orchestrating the bombing & poisoning Haldeman reports Kissinger’s pleasure
Kissinger & Cambodia/Laos - III Kissinger not only orchestrated but micro- managed operations –He carefully picked bombing targets –Tracked results, read “raw intelligence” Several of his own staff resigned, e.g, Anthony Lake Kissinger tapped phones of those who revealed what was going on
Kissinger & Operation Phoenix Murder of 35,708 Vietnamese civilians by CIA “counter-guerrilla” operatives Over first 2 & ½ years of Kissinger-Nixon Administration When word of operation leaked, Kissinger was furious and ordered wire-taps to find leaks, taps inside White House, State Department and newsmen Prelude to Watergate, Hitchen argues
Kissinger & Chile - I Chile: best democracy in Southern Cone 1/3 conservative vote, 1/3 socialist, 1/3 Christian Democratic centrist CIA funded “reliable elements” (as in Italy –which we now know involved fascists) 1972 socialist Salvador Allende elected president Kissinger et al decide to remove
Kissinger & Chile - II Two track operation: one thru State Department, one thru CIA Objective: destablization, kidnapping & assassination First target: Chilean General Rene Schneider, a military leader devoted to democracy So, word went out in Santiago of $50k
Kissinger & Chile - III Hitchens: “an unelected official in the US is meeting with others, without the knowledge or authorization of Congress, to plan the kidnapping of a consitutionally minded senior official in a democratic country with which the US is not at war and maintains cordial diplomatic relations... A “hit”, a piece of state-supported terrorism.”
Kissinger & Chile - IV Extensive evidence from de-classified cables between Washington and Chile about provision of money and guns for assassination Memo of Conversation, Oct 15, 1970 Two tracks within 2 nd track: –General Roberto Viaux et al –General Camilo Valenzuela et al Schneider was kidnapped and murdered
Kissinger & Chile - V Not only was Kissinger & US government involved in Coup against Allende that murdered him But also involved in cover-up of subsequent atrocities: torture, murder, etc. Evidence: CIA Report to Congress in 2000 admitted role, tried to escape responsibility for results
Kissinger & Cyprus - I Greece/Turkey conflict & Cyprus –Military dictatorship in Greece –Militarized government in Turkey –Democratically elected government in Cyprus (President Makarios) Cyprus: 82% Greek, 18% Turkish Kissinger had advance knowledge of plan to depose and kill Makarios
Kissinger & Cyprus - II Senator J. William Fulbright learned of impending coup and tried to get Kissinger to intervene Kissinger refused Coup took place on July 15, 1974 Murders followed, Kissinger ordered recognition of new regime – only country to do so. Turkish invasions, torture, murders followed, and partition.
Kissinger & Bloodbath in Bangladesh 1971 West Pakistan attacked East Pakistan (Bangladesh) slaughtering thousands US lack of action protested by US foreign service agents Kissinger was using Pakistan for secret negotiations with China Result: genocide in Bangladesh & Nixon to China Spring 1971.
US & Indonesia Pre-Kissinger US role in Indonesia –CIA organized invasion to overthrow Sukarno –Berkeley & MIT trained new elite –CIA collaborated in military coup that slaughtered 500,000+ –US/UN allowed take over of West Papua
Kissinger & East Timor - I Indonesia invaded East Timor on December 7, 1975 (Pearl Harbor) Right after Ford/Kissinger visit to Jakarta Ford/Kissinger gave permission and provided support for Indonesian invasion, conquest and colonization of East Timor via slaughter, rape, deliberate starvation – ,000 killed Kissinger furious over leaks of his role
Demetracopoulos -I Plan to kidnap and murder Greek journalist Elias Demetracopoulos who opposed US- backed military dictatorship in Greece (see the movie “Z”) After fall of dictatorship, he discovered documents about plans to kill him that included reference to cooperation in Washington
Demetracopoulos -II Used Freedom of Information Act to get documents in Washington 1963 CIA had tried to keep him out of US Greek military money for Nixon campaign –CIA money? “hush money” for Watergate? Demetracopoulos revelations led to plans to discredit and then assassinate him Prima facie case Kissinger knew
Relevant Laws? International Human Rights Laws Law of Armed Conflict International Criminal Law Domestic Law & Law of Civil Remedies Genocide Convention Covenant on Civil & Political Rights Alien Tort Claims Act
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction Kissinger: universal jurisdiction is new Roth: no, it’s not, US & Israeli courts have done this Kissinger: treaties on HR not intended for use of local judges against outsiders Roth: Wrong, e.g., Torture Convention mandates such prosecution
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction - II Kissinger: International Criminal Court “crimes” are too vague. Roth: wrong, definition of war crimes resembles US military definitions Kissinger: ICC prosecutor will not be accountable Roth: wrong, prosecutor can be removed
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction - III Kissinger: attacks ICC jurisdiction over US citizens in absence of US accession to treaty Roth: US itself asserts such jurisdiction Kissinger: ICC defendents won’t have due process as understood in US Roth:1) US courts martial same, 2) US courts regularly approve extradiction to countries lacking jury trials
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction - IV Kissinger: ICC would violate US constitution by asserting jurisdiction over US citizens Roth: 1) ICC gives up jurisdiction to good faith investigation by home government, 2) US allows foreign prosecution of US military personnel
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction - V Kissinger: claims selective prosecution, eg., Pinochet – “fashionably reviled man or the right” Roth: 1) Pinochet targeted because of murder of 3,000 and torture of thousands more, 2) all sorts of people have been prosecuted: Bosnian war criminals, Rwandan genocidaires, Argentine torturers
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction - VI Kissinger: ICC ignores local justice, eg., amnesty for Pinochet Roth: Amnesty for Pinochet was imposed by him Kissinger: worries about undemocratic government prosecution Roth: Govt’s regularly deny extradiction
Kissinger/Roth on Universal Jurisdiction Kissinger: UN Security Council should decide who gets tried Roth: option rejected because it would give member states ability to veto prosecution of their own citizens and those of their allies Roth: international law means US citizens must be held accountable like everyone else
Kissinger to Bush What, if any, are parallels between actions analzyed and condemned by Hitchens and those currently pursued by Bush Administration? Who, if anyone, might be prosecuted for the kinds of crimes delineated above?