This Is the Israeli Military Calling: Civilizing War Has Failed

http://www.worldbeyondwar.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/voltaire.jpgProbably the biggest news story of 1928 was the war-making nations of the world coming together on August 27th and legally outlawing war.  It’s a story that’s not told in our history books, but it’s not secret CIA history.  There was no CIA.  There was virtually no weapons industry as we know it.  There weren’t two political parties in the United States uniting in support of war after war.  In fact, the four biggest political parties in the United States all backed abolishing war.

Cue whining, polysyllabic screech: “But it didn’t wooooooooork!”

I wouldn’t be bothering with it if it had.  In its defense, the Kellogg-Briand Pact (look it up or read my book) was used to prosecute the makers of war on the losing sides following World War II (an historic first), and — for whatever combination of reasons (nukes? enlightenment? luck?) — the armed nations of the world have not waged war on each other since, preferring to slaughter the world’s poor instead. Significant compliance following the very first prosecution is a record that almost no other law can claim.

The Kellogg-Briand Pact has two chief values, as I see it.  First, it’s the law of the land in 85 nations including the United States, and it bans all war-making.  For those who claim that the U.S. Constitution sanctions or requires wars regardless of treaty obligations, the Peace Pact is no more relevant than the U.N. Charter or the Geneva Conventions or the Anti-Torture Convention or any other treaty.  But for those who read the laws as they are written, beginning to comply with the Kellogg-Briand Pact makes far more sense than legalizing drone murders or torture or bribery or corporate personhood or imprisonment without trial or any of the other lovely practices we’ve been “legalizing” on the flimsiest of legal arguments.  I’m not against new national or international laws against war; ban it 1,000 times, by all means, if there’s the slightest chance that one of them will stick. But there is, for what it’s worth, already a law on the books if we care to acknowledge it.

Second, the movement that created the Pact of Paris grew out of a widespread mainstream international understanding that war must be abolished, as slavery and blood feuds and duelling and other institutions were being abolished.  While advocates of outlawing war believed other steps would be required: a change in the culture, demilitarization, the establishment of international authorities and nonviolent forms of conflict resolution, prosecutions and targeted sanctions against war-makers; while most believed this would be the work of generations; while the forces leading toward World War II were understood and protested against for decades; the explicit and successful intention was to make a start of it by outlawing and formally renouncing and rendering illegitimate all war, not aggressive war or unsanctioned war or inappropriate war, but war.

In the never-ending aftermath of World War II, the U.N. Charter has formalized and popularized a very different conception of war’s legality.  I’ve just interviewed Ben Ferencz, aged 94, the last living Nuremberg prosecutor, for an upcoming edition of Talk Nation Radio.  He describes the Nuremberg prosecutions as happening under the framework of the U.N. Charter, or something identical to it, despite the chronological problem.  He believes that the U.S. invasion of Iraq was illegal.  But he claims not to know whether the U.S. invasion and ongoing over-12-year war on Afghanistan is legal or not.  Why? Not because it fits either of the two gaping loopholes opened up by the U.N. Charter, that is: not because it is U.N.-authorized or defensive, but — as far as I can make out — just because those loopholes exist and therefore wars might be legal and it’s unpleasant to acknowledge that the wars waged by one’s own nation are not.

Of course, plenty of people thought more or less like that in the 1920s and 1930s, but plenty of people also did not.  In the era of the United Nations, NATO, the CIA, and Lockheed Martin we have seen steady progress in the doomed attempt, not to eliminate war, but to civilize it.  The United States leads the way in arming the rest of the world, maintaining a military presence in most of the world, and launching wars.  Western allies and nations armed, free-of-charge, by the United States, including Israel, advance war-making and war-civilizing, not war-abolition.  The notion that war can be eliminated using the tool of war, making war on war-makers in order to teach them not to make war, has had a far longer run than the Kellogg-Briand Pact had prior to its supposed failure and the Truman Administration’s remaking of the U.S. government into a permanent war machine in the cause of progress.

Civilizing war for the benefit of the world has been an abysmal failure.  We now have wars launched on unarmed defenseless people thousands of miles away in the name of “defense.”  We now have wars depicted as U.N.-authorized because the U.N. once passed a resolution related to the nation being destroyed.  And just seconds before the Israeli military blows up your house in Gaza, they ring you up on the telephone to give you a proper warning.

I remember a comedy sketch from Steve Martin mocking the phony politeness of Los Angeles: a line of people waited their turn to withdraw cash from a bank machine, while a line of armed robbers waited their turn in a separate line to politely ask for and steal each person’s money.  War is past the point of such parody.  There is no space left for satire.  Governments are phoning families to tell them they’re about to be slaughtered, and then bombing the shelters they flee to if they manage to flee.

Is mass-murder acceptable if done without rape or torture or excessive targeting of children or the use of particular types of chemical weapons, as long as the victims are telephoned first or the murderers are associated with a group of people harmed by war several decades back?

Here’s a new initiative that says No, the abolition of the greatest evil needs a renaissance and completion: WorldBeyondWar.org.

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  • Carl_Herman

    That’s what I’m talking about! Great work, David; thank you!

    The lawful response from US and Israeli military, with broad popular support, is to arrest the War Criminals ordering these unlawful and lie-based Wars of Aggression.

    It’s just that simple. And if I had to place a bet, that’s how I say we’ll see the endgame play out.

    • not authorized

      Yes, you are right Carl. Our own military, who protects me via Constitutional Oath, would not want to be what us lowly civilians call accessories after the fact to this genocide. See Title 18 USC 2 thru 5, 2441.

      That would be conduct unbecoming, subject to court marshals… Just for starters.

      • Carl_Herman

        Thanks for speaking-up, not authorized. There are several areas of law in support of our Oaths. I encourage everyone with this interest to at least speak that these wars are not even close to lawful, and the only ethical response is to demand arrests of obvious War Criminals. Challenging for sure, those authorized with arrest authority need to live their Oath by creating their best response for endgame arrests.

        • not authorized

          I Agree. I am not familiar with the inner workings of military/civilian law. Is there a legal structure to try and force the issue in public?

          • Carl_Herman

            Many. The state level can charge murder upon US military for lying state residents in the military to unlawfully invade/attack to the arrest of the US president for issuing unlawful orders. This is not my area of expertise. What I do know is that public understanding of the facts, law, and demand for arrests of OBVIOUS War Criminals is a good start and something anyone can do.

          • Dee

            The Military has a total separate Legal system and active duty US Military are only subject to the UCMJ http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/ucmj.htm Civilians may not conduct Courts Martial , has to be Military. The Military may , at their discretion, turn military members over to civil courts for civil offenses.

            When it comes to arrests, or arresting somebody, Civilians, and that includes civilian Law Enforcement, can’t arrest under the UCMJ. They can arrest US military personnel under civil law.

            When it comes to arresting somebody under civil law the average citizen has almost the same arrest powers as a sworn law enforcement officer.. the one difference is that sworn law enforcement officers are indemnified against false arrest, citizens are not, and if they can’t make the case that they made a legal arrest they can be charged with a variety of crimes from false imprisonment to kidnapping to civil rights violations http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citizen's_arrest
            I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice, this is for common general information only.. I strongly suggest you consult with a competent lawyer before arresting anybody on your own.

          • not authorized

            Great. But as you pointed out, the Military can arrest it’s own officers, under it’s own laws. Specifically, even if it is Conduct Unbecoming. Please, remember, the United States > Our Military. It follows our will, not others. That is why they swear an Oath to the Constitution, ie, you and me, and ever other person who is domiciled within the United States. Part of that same Constitution states that Treaties, ARE the second SUPREME law of the land. That is just the way it is.

            The creation cannot be bigger than the Creator.

            10 U.S. Code § 814 – Art. 14. Delivery of offenders to civil authorities

      • Dee

        Actually we have US Sailors and Airmen right now , manning bunkers hooked up to launch silos or submarine missiles 24/7 more than ready to do far worse than mere genocide.
        Hiroshima was a 15 Kiloton bomb The SSBN OHIO is armed with 20 Missiles , each tipped with 10 separate warheads, each warhead averaging 200 Kilotons. it is one of 14 SSBN’s also 450 Minuteman III with 3 warheads each in the 300-500 Kiloton class. And we have Bombers as well… even most of our Fighters can carry at least one bomb.
        It would be their duty to launch .. they won’t get a Courts Martial for doing so. The absolute surety that the crews will launch and that the missiles will work is fundamental to the missiles ability to deter a nuclear attack on the United States. And make no mistake, each one of those crew members know the consequences if they fail to perform their primary mission. Nothing short of the total destruction of the USA.
        And “Conduct Unbecoming” only applies to Officers, and would not apply to anybody sucessfully carrying out their duties.

        • Carl_Herman

          So, Dee, we’re in agreement that officers are authorized to arrest those who issue unlawful orders, such as order for unlawful war as David explains and documents in this article?

          • Dee

            I was commenting on Not’s assertion that “Our own military, who protects me via Constitutional Oath, would not want to be what us lowly civilians call accessories after the fact to this genocide”

            Yes the US military is trained in the law of land warfare and what makes up an unlawful order .. however that training, in no way shape or form, agrees with the way you read the applicable treaties, or comports with your expressed understanding of the UCMJ. You persistently leave out all due process and finding of fact by competent authority before a charge is leveled and rather take it upon yourself to be the judge jury and executioner and now have added also the arresting officer. No system of law recognizes the level of authority you claim for yourself and no system of law would tolerate the violation of the human rights of the accused you advocate. Your arrogance is in a class by itself .. you refuse to recognize the authority of the UN to administer and interpret it’s own charter and you hold yourself up as the sole true interpreter of all international law, not recognizing the authority of any international organization , treaty foundation or international court to follow their own internal processes and legal safeguards. So yeah , you could say the UN military has been trained to recognize illegal ego based orders that distort and ignore due process and unlawful orders .. that is the very reason I give you so much grief over your ego trip.

            You can even seem to grasp that nations cannot even declared a war “legal” or “illegal” and that only the treaty organizations can do that. In fact the UN Charter or any of the treaties you mention do not have laws .. that have articles and subparagraphs .. Laws do not actually exist at the international level per se. Geneva Convention for examples has “rules” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_law
            International law differs from state-based legal systems in that it is primarily applicable to countries rather than to private citizens. National law may become international law when treaties delegate national jurisdiction to supranational tribunals such as the European Court of Human Rights or the International Criminal Court. Treaties such as the Geneva Conventions may require national law to conform.
            Snip
            Much of international law is consent-based governance. This means that a state member of the international community is not obliged to abide by this type of international law, unless it has expressly consented to a particular course of conduct.[4] This is an issue of state sovereignty. However, other aspects of international law are not consent-based but still are obligatory upon state and non-state actors such as customary international law and peremptory norms (jus cogens). snip

            jus cogens http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peremptory_norm

            Please note
            snip from the link
            “There are often disagreements over whether a particular case violates a peremptory norm. As in other areas of law, states generally reserve the right to interpret the concept for themselves.

            One positive right considered to be a peremptory norm is the right to use self-defense. Though qualified, this right is shared by states and individuals.

            Many large states have accepted this concept. Some of them have ratified the Vienna Convention, while others have stated in their official statements that they accept the Vienna Convention as “codificatory”. Some have applied the concept in their dealings with international organizations and other States.” end snip

          • Carl_Herman

            Ok, then, Dee: for perhaps the 8th total time that you refuse to answer and engage in all kinds of creative evasion, and I copy from your previous evasion: “explain what war law means by its two treaties: the Kellogg-Briand Pact and the UN Charter, Dee.Let’s see if this is clear or not.

            For example: stop sign law means you bring your vehicle to a complete stop before the stop line in front of the stop sign, or intersection without a stop line.

            Wow! That’s really clear. Your turn, Dee. Explain what war law means.”

          • Carl_Herman

            And in contrast to your obfuscation, the “due process” you argue for would FOLLOW arrests for a War Crime at a smaller scale. For example, arrests would occur upon orders of, “Crush that boy’s testicles” (an example John Yoo failed to identify as a War Crime, replying, “It would depend on why the president would want to do that”), or “Bomb that school and hospital with civilians inside” (oops, Israel does those).

            Competent military wouldn’t wait to refuse and arrest, saying, “Gee, I would be arrogant to refuse ‘cuz I’m not judge, jury, and executioner.”

          • Dee

            Carl , wow, do you ever not understand the UCMJ .. If somebody gave an order to “crush the boy’s testacies” and a soldier thought that that was an illegal order and refused to follow it.. The guy refusing the order is the one that gets courts martialed. The refuser gets to bring up why they refused as factors in extenuation and mitigation , If the courts martial finds the refusal was for good reason, such as being an illegal order .. then you have another courts martial for the fool that issued the illegal order. And there are “direct orders” that can be both illegal and defensible such as an order that is necessary to save lives of members of the unit.
            But both your examples are law of land warfare Geneva convention rules and have nothing to do with whether a war is legal or illegal and solely within the responsibility of that nations military to enforce or not. If the enemy is not following the law of land warfare or not a signatory, they forfeit all protections and there are no more rules under the law of land warfare that apply to either side, there are no more war crimes possible, because nothing is prohibited.
            Due process has to do with both before and after the arrest.. you can’t arrest without a warrant or indictment unless a sworn Officer is an actual witness to the crime in the civilian world … In the Military you have an article 132 hearing to establish probable cause.. Arrest has a specific meaning and has an accompanying charge.. the military doesn’t really need to arrest folks , you just order them to confine themselves to their home or barracks or the duty room or the third table last row in the mess hall ( dining facility for the politically correct) Then if they violate that order in front of an officer they can be arrested and if they do it without witnesses they get another count of disobeying an order . And the severity of not following that order is the same as failing to follow the order to crush the boys nuts. Failure to obey an order is a very serious crime, doesn’t matter what the order is .. The Military doesn’t have to push it to a courts martial , they can have the local commander handle it with an Article 15 nonjudicial punishment. The Higher the rank of the convening officer the more severe the possible punishment. No Soldier has to accept an Article 15 , but once they agree to accept an Article 15 proceeding they have no appeal on the verdict or punishment, but they have to choose before they present their case or have a verdict, The alternative is to demand a courts martial , have legal representation, and all the bells and whistles and the right of appeal.
            Due process involves the legal collection of evidence before charges are brought as much as the right to face your accuser at trial.

          • Carl_Herman

            Then, Dee, we’re in agreement that an officer is authorized to arrest (stop) an unlawful order when observed! There’s nothing more observable than unlawful war. You just stated accurately the Kellogg-Briand Pact means armed attack is unlawful.

            And testicle-crusher would have consequences for acting rather than refusing: http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/militarylaw1/a/obeyingorders.htm

          • Dee

            No actually we are not.. The Individual doesn’t get to pronounce an order as illegal, officer or enlisted.. And individual gets to take a stand and refuse what they think is an unlawful order ( a higher rank can countermand an order they think is illegal) but basically it is somebody putting their butt on the line for what they believe is right and hoping a military court agrees with them.
            And you have an incredible burden of proof in a situation where he other side isn’t following the laws of war and breaks the various treaties, which excuses your side from even having to follow the laws of land warfare in the first place. However nations often continue to follow the law of land warfare for their own moral reasons , even after the other side has broke the treaties.
            This means you can be guilty of a war crime based on national law, but since the treaties were broken by the other side, no international law of war treaties are currently in force in your little war and anything goes and nobody can be prosecuted for anything international by any international authority.
            And there you are on your high horse all noble and moral saying you won’t violate the laws of land warfare, only to find out since the other side already broke them and your side decided to therefore ignore them as is their Right under the treaty. There are no illegal orders, and you refused an order and you are going to jail.
            see the problem
            The Israelis get to shoot at hospitals and schools that Hamas decided to store ammo and weapons in .. no foul.. but then it is also no foul to hide ammo in weapons in a hospital because the other side is shelling them.. No violation of international law of war which isn’t in effect at the international level once both sides have broken the treaty. Unless it is a matter of jus cogens and your nation has decide to interpret a principle of jus cogens in a manner that makes them a war criminal , which is not likely.

          • Carl_Herman

            So, Dee, your bottom line is arguing that Israel’s war is legal.

            Just curious, Dee: if you were given the order to shell a hospital, school, water treatment plant, power station because your commander testified “terrorists hide there,” would you shrug your shoulders, say “no foul there,” and blast away?

            Is that your final answer?

          • Dee

            Carl.. I hope you are just playing slow. I don’t declare wars legal or illegal, I don’t think you should, I don’t think there is any basis to decide legality of war. War can be a violation of the UN Charter and your favorite long dead treaty Kellogg Briand, but those aren’t laws. So, no I am not saying Israeli’s current action in Gaza is legal.. are you saying it is a war? Not every armed conflict is a war. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_war Declaring war is a very formal thing.. some of your treaties only have effect in a properly declared war. I hate to get all legalese on you. Some of the treaties self void themselves once their rules are broken and they no longer have effect. Do you happen to know for a fact that the Hamas/Gaza/ Israeli thing is a declared War? When you get into treaties and international law each of these words have a precise meaning.

            Keep in mind I am keeping this simple for the sake of the stop signs

            I keep forgetting that you have a limited understanding of what you are talking about. Would I bombard a Hospital? How do I know it is a hospital? Your world gets very small and personal when the bullets start flying, you only get a limited view of what is around you, you can’t see behind things ( and that seems very important sometimes) Depending your world may stop just 200 yards or less from your nose. I’m not going to be shooting, just to be shooting. And I have a right to shoot back. Are you sure it is a Hospital?
            Bombard typically means some form of indirect fire .. you get numbers that’s all .. no way for you to know what something is, or that it is even a building.. all you know is your guys need help.. It’s getting better, what with drones and all.. but I am old school.. and they don’t usually describe the architecture to the guy yanking the landyard or pushing the button .. ” hey Gunner, you read Eastern Ukraine Home and Garden, remember about three months back.. the issue on Spas.. I think these GPS co-ordinates are for the garden between the Spa and the Hospital .. call back and check and see if they need the Fish market shelled instead”
            How can I say No with info like that? what would I base it on?
            Carl this only seems simple to you because you only have a very simple understanding of what you are talking about.

          • Carl_Herman

            Blah, blah, blah, Dee. Shut-up and follow orders, because Dee says, “I don’t think there is any basis to decide legality of war.”

            All those for ongoing confusion (the etymology of the word war) and war-murders on hospitals, children, retirement homes, playgrounds, soccer games on beaches, places of worship, and that it never end ‘cuz all is fair in war, follow Dee.

            Take a good look at the scenery on your journey, and remember you can turn around anytime you’re ready.

          • not authorized

            Sigh.

            Dear Dee,

            Call a truce dear. Have you read the disclaimer here? It’s calling for a restoration, not abolishment, of the United States Constitution.

            Read that again. It calls for a restoration of the United States Constitution.

            Why? Because, even through the evils currently exposed if even close to true, are mindboggling, the original intent of those that dreamed this nation up was wonderful. It was one of the greatest gifts ever given to man. It could have been so much more. It still can, if we just all take responsibility in some small way to make that happen. But it will take a lot of work.

            I’ve been thinking a lot lately. It sure would be nice to reboot, and start over, using existing treaty/constitution/law.

            Now, I can perceive that you, or your family, comes from a military background. First, and foremost, THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE. It truly is the thought that counts. My family sacrificed much blood, and lives, at the expense of being told the Constitution was under threat too. Note, I did not say the elite.

            With that said, I’m not against the military. I wish it went into a Human Rights only mission. It can under US Constitution. For starters, the Militia can enforce the Constitution with Congressional direction. But, they have no idea they need to ask them, if you do not read the Constitution, Treaties and the UCMJ.

            And before you try to think up of some witty retort, fact: You have no idea what “rights” are absent here, too. Read this:

            http://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/ccpr.aspx

            That is just ONE treaty. And again, before you come up with a witty retort I’ve already heard that that this is somehow “unamerican”.. I will remind you that Eleanor Roosevelt Co-Authored the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which, was the basis for this treaty. I seem to recall seeing many schools named after her around these parts.

            Now, recall. Article 6 of the US Constitution demands this law be Supreme, right along side of the Constitution. So, when you read something like the International Covenant, Article 6, and Title 18 Chapter 13, what conclusion do you reach?

            And if you want to ignore Article 6, then what about Amendment 9 and 10 of the Bill of Rights, which expressly allowed for additional enumerated rights by the people?

            Choose Humanity. It will be OK.

            Let’s find a way to go to Titan. It is a moon around Saturn that has a consistent amount of 5% methane in its atmosphere there. I think that is caused by life. Lets go check it out together to find out, yeah? 🙂

          • Dee

            Not, you got a lot backwards again. The US Constitution is the collection of Rights that our founding fathers agreed to give up to the Government. Human Rights don’t come from the Constitution or any mortal source. Human Rights is what you have because you are a human. Better look at those Bill of Rights again. They do not grant any rights to anybody … every one of the first 10 amendments is written in the negative. Congress shall pass no law, Congress shall not infringe .. shall not be violated.. If you read the preamble to the bill of rights it explains why.. yes Virginia, the Bill of Rights has it’s own separate preamble http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html

            The US Constitution is a specific list of Rights the Founding Father ceded to the government and a detailed plan of the structure of Government. The Oath of Office is a promise to stay within the specific and delegated power granted to government. All and every imaginable Right already belongs to each citizen. We the People even have the power to form a government , change a government, rewrite the Constitution. But to have an effective government, we needed to give it certain powers like to make laws and levy taxes. There is nothing in the Constitution that gives or takes Rights to or from the People. The Constitution is strictly about forming a governmet and it is We the people giving the Government certain specific and delegated Rights so it can function.

            The Declaration of Independence on the other hand sets out the basic principles , such as Humans have certain inalienable Rights given by their Creator among them are yadayadayada .. the UN declaration of Human Rights is a nice list , but the UN doesn’t have the authority to invent and grant Human Rights and our Rights have nothing to do with the UN Charter ..

            What happened is we overthrew the Divine Right of Kings and replaced it with the Divine Rights of Humans. As much as we were rebels against temporal power, we were Heretics against the structure of God and conscience that made the King the earthly representative of God and our conscience the slave of religion. But we were imperfect rebels and heretics.. and left slavery and genocide and the subjugation of women intact. And we are incredibly lazy and ignorant of the responsibilities that come with every Right. Still working on some of that.. Kind of like the law of war.. If you go with the war is only legal as a self defense measure, we would still be subject of the Crown. We had a long list of complaints in the Bill of Rights, more had to do with insults to our dignity and freedoms than any armed attack against us.. We literally fought for those Rights , free of Royal infringement , long before there was a Constitution and we made it clear we had a Right to destroy the Constitution and form a better suited Government at any time.. that is “We the People” are free to overthrow the current Constitution. The Oath is an Oath of Office for those currently holding Office as a condition of employment under the current Constitution with the current government.
            From the Declaration of Independence
            “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

            now it does go on a bit and adds .. don’t go crazy overthrowing government just because you have the right to.

            “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”

            However it also adds you don’t have to suffer forever

            “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security”
            how do those thoughts comport with your vaunted Oath to protect and preserve the Constitution against all enemies?
            can you see the disconnect?
            Which side are you on? can you be both? somebody with a total Right to abolish and reform a government to better suit your needs at any time, but observing prudence.. or a defender of the Constitution against all comers? or Both? can you be against war and yet favor the overthrow of government as out Founding fathers did? and do you feel right denying the right to overthrow a government to people in the world that are currently oppressed .. In Gaza we have the oppressed going for better governance but in doing so attacking the Israeli’s giving them the Right to self defense? Sounds like both sides have merit and an strong argument to justify their actions as far as a shooting war goes.. and It sounds like both sides are committing internationally recognized war crimes. make the perfect peace plan and have it on my desk by COB. Keep in mind you go to far in favor of one side or the other, either side can just walk away from any settlement and continue the war.
            Which Treaty covers that? What treaty actually has the power to take away the right of People to rise up, throw off oppressors or defend themselves if attacked by people rising up and throwing off the current legitimate Government and international treaty structure.
            Well, what is it going to be?

          • Carl_Herman

            So your bottom-line, Dee, is this “law stuff” is just too complicated to say a war is illegal.

            We can do stop sign laws, baseball rules, but war law somehow is too tricky for us stupid human beings to do anything about.

            Better be proud of that stand, Dee. Life will give you what you work for.

            Readers: be clear that war law is more simple than law for a stop sign, and just as easy to stop when it becomes clear day after day of obvious violations.

            We all have a choice to know and demand enforcement of war law: especially arrests of those “leaders” who continue Earth’s history of invasive and now unlawful Wars of Aggression.

          • Dee

            So ? who is stopping you , if it is all so simple and clear cut and easy to do .. arrest the bastards and be done with it?
            Carl says
            “Readers: be clear that war law is more simple than law for a stop sign, and just as easy to stop when it becomes clear day after day of obvious violations”
            personally I think that statement shows a somewhat less than full contact with reality. I don’t even know how to respond when the other side’s premise is so far off the mark.

          • Carl_Herman

            Thanks again, Dee, for your arguments that our military, law enforcement, and public conclude war law is too complicated for their pretty little heads to understand, and that they leave war to the Big Men (and Hillary) to take care of.

            You provide an option that should be made clear: remain confused and proudly say that two world wars produced zero law to ever end them.

          • Dee

            Carl.. not too complicated, more likely too simple for the complicated reality of war, but obviously ineffective. Wars aren’t ended because it’s illegal.. Wars end because of the horrors of death and destruction, because nations have a finite amount of blood and treasure and the will to use it and they just run out, one side or the other.
            And I don’t know where you get the idea “the Big Men ( and Hillary)” have a clue.. do you think your “Big Men( and Hillary)” know the magic words, and are running around stopping wars and arresting war makers? They are running around begging and pleading and promising incentives and offering or withdrawing support anything to get folks to just stop shooting for a few hours.
            If Hamas or Israel, for example, wanted the war to stop , one side or the other would accede to the others demands or work on some compromise.. they don’t, because they feel what they are fighting for is worth fighting for, and they have come to hate each other more than they love their own children ( ironically they are doing this for their children so they can have a better life in some way, or so they say, and maybe they are).
            What they are not doing is going around saying “if you don’t stop this war right now, we are going to arrest you and try you and sentence you jail for a long time because war is illegal”. No, what they say is ” look at these dead bodies, these are your own people , your own children.. and if you keep fighting more will die, or get maimed, or go crazy, or never be able to experience joy and happiness again, scared for life because of the horrors they are forced to witness and participate in. In the Name of God, In the name of Humanity, stop this stupid war .. They don’t say , “got to stop the war because it violates the UN charter and we might have to fine you or kick you out of the UN.” Or ” Stop Stop Stop , don’t you realize you are violating the Kellogg-Briand Pact.. Dude, nobody violates the Kellogg -Briand Pact, that would be illegal and is breaking the law , just like running a stop sign.
            Whatever “option” you think I am providing ( the only option I lay claim to providing is to use moral and ethical arguments instead of pretending we have legal remedies we don’t actually have and have never actually worked) .
            It doesn’t matter if folks remain confused .. but at some point , and I would announce it sadly .. That after 5000 years or war and death we have produced exactly zero laws that can actually stop a war.
            You say such laws exist and that it is easier than traffic laws to stop a war and arrest the evil doers .. But you only cite Treaties and Charters and Pacts and agreements that haven’t worked to end war. they just get twisted up as yet another BS justification to excuse making war. Not only did God say that it was okay for me to smite my enemies, and natural law says I have a right to defend my interests, but now I have half a dozen UNSCR’s that says my enemy is a real prick and deserves it.
            If you believe there are some magic treaties that have the power to declared war illegal and can and have actually stopped a war on that basis, then tell us what the treaty is and what war it stopped.
            I am all for stopping war, and from what I have observed the best chance for that comes when both sides feel the complaints are listened to and honored, and both sides feel a compromise will give them enough Justice to stop shooting and start talking, or after one side has totally destroyed the other side’s ability and willingness to keep fighting.
            As a matter of historical fact , The hard and unforgiving condemnation and legal damnation of the losing side in WW1 by the Versailles Treaty is pretty much what made WW2 happen. Throw in the League of Nations expelling members for starting small wars because that was basically the only option they had , resulting in losing the League as a forum for negotiations removed all restraint from the countries that were having their own little private wars at various places around the globe.
            Look, Americans were smart enough to figure out the Articles of Confederation weren’t getting the job done and came up with the Constitution, the World figured out the League of Nations was a total bust and tried with a different World Organization the UN … In both cases the problem was lack of power and authority to enforce the documents .. and giving the government or a world body the necessary power and authority did not please everybody, in fact with the UN they couldn’t give the necessary power and authority.. They had to make it complicated , give certain countries veto power, make many articles conditional or very flexible , and totally denied the UN the ability to infringe on a nation Sovereignty and denied the UN a standing force to enforce it’s own rulings.
            We know what deters war, one or both sides having enough power to destroy the other, making no gain for either side possible, and insuring mutual destruction as the likely outcome. That is not a solution, but it has worked to stop the most horrible possible war from starting and giving nations the incentive to talk to each other, find common ground , even if that ground is in Space and reduce their stockpiles of the most horrific weapons. To make economic structures that are so intertwined that any interruption would be disastrous to both economies and giving further self interest to working thing out peaceably.
            I am all for stopping War, and I am for any methods or approach that actually works. But you have to admit any Treaty or Charter that has a mutual and combined defense against an attack provision has historically just made wars larger than they had to be .. it was treaties with the intention of stopping war and providing mutual defense that made the First World War much bigger than it needed to be .. and it was the ineffectual attempts to appease to maintain peace on top of the terms of the Versailles Treaty that made the Second World War possible and inevitable , and the backroom deals/ treaties/understandings towards the end of the 2nd WW that made the Cold War necessary.
            I think the best that can be said for all the attempts to enforce peace after the 2ndWW is that they did not make another big shooting war likely ( some of the treaties or agreements like those that combined nations out of parts of others, or the splitting of old nations into two new nations, did make some smaller wars inevitable) like the attempts after previous wars. But not by much, and for stakes higher than anybody was willing to play for. But progress none the less.
            And Carl when you try and summarize what you think I am saying for the benefit of the readers here, I can’t tell if you are just trying to put some bad spin on what I am trying to say , or if that was honestly what you got from what I wrote. However, either way, folks can read what I wrote for themselves and compare it to what you claim to think I said to show just how much of what I am talking about you lack the facilities to understand.
            This current whiney misrepresentation of my position where you say I think it is too complicated and confusing for the average person and it should be left to the Big Boys, only works if the Big Boys were having some success producing peace and arresting and trying war makers .. Since the Big Boys aren’t arresting war makers and bringing peace, it is pretty easy to see that you could not find a plausible and sensible critique of my position and it makes you sound kind of desperate and frustrated.
            You cannot create a truthful defense of your flawed agenda and claims of how simple it is to arrest war makers and stop wars by attacking other approaches .. You have to demonstrate where your claims of a simple and quick fix by declaring war illegal and arresting the war makers has actually worked and stopped a war.

          • Dee

            Carl .. what do you mean by “war law”? There is the “Law of war” which is an actual meaningful , accepted term that has a specific meaning and covers a recognized body of international agreements http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_war. So if you mean something distinct by coining the phrase “War law” and I am not, in your opinion, answering your question, perhaps you could define your term.

            I have answered you question each time… but I think I might see part of the problem, the disconnect if you will.

            You think international law is no more complicated than traffic law. Most people recognize the international law has a number of great complicating factors, first it is a voluntary observance.. anybody who doesn’t like the way an international organization is interpreting the treaty or convention or charter it is responsible for, they can leave the treaty, or they can officially recognize a different interpretation or the concepts involved or expand or contract what terms like “self defense” or “aggression” means.

            Let’s look at the Kellogg Briand Pact .. Simply put it says thou shall not start wars.. the sole penalty being, being removed from the pact , no other advantage or penalty ensues from signing the treaty or breaking it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kellogg%E2%80%93Briand_Pact in fact , following the signing of the treaty, all that really changed was nations quit officially declaring war and just attacking under some other term like Peace Keeping.
            Nothing legal or illegal about war in the Kellogg Briand Pact, merely whether you want to stay a signatory or not. Nowhere in the UN Charter does it mention legality or illegality of war.. but there are violations of the Articles and those violations may or may not carry a penalty depending on a ruling and vote by the UNSC and how the UNSC sees both sides of the story.
            This is because of diplomacy.. you cannot end war by using it to enforce Peace. Usually, when it comes to blood and treasure, both sides believe they have good and just reasons in their national interest for fighting in the first place. And each side expects a fair hearing.
            Just as an example, if one side mixes it’s fighters amongst civilians that is a violation, a war crime, and the other side is no longer bound by the law of war, and can do what they must to neutralize or destroy the military targets.
            A little more complicated than a stop sign.

          • Carl_Herman

            Dee: at least you approach the simple question by answering that the Kellogg-Briand Pact (a US treaty) states that nations will not use armed attack (war) to settle dispute. That’s more simple than stop sign law, Dee.

            Now we’re in agreement as to the meaning of that legally-binding US treaty.

            Now: what does the UN Charter say about war law (law: what is and is not allowed for armed attack)?

          • Dee

            Carl .. it is not legally binding .. there is no penalty for leaving the treaty or violating it, it is strictly voluntary and revocable at any time, automatically revoked if you violate it.. end of story . It is not law, it is an idealistic promise.
            The UN Charter does not apply to individuals, there is nothing an individual can be tried for in the UN Charter .. it affects nations only and only when the UN says it does and even then if the UNSC imposes sanctions or authorizes a retaliatory attack or invasion nobody is required to participate , the most the UN can do is encourage participation and there is no penalty for ignoring the suggestion.. the UN can send it to the international court and they might levy a fine on a nation , but they have no way to collect it and there is no penalty for ignoring the penalty.
            With the UN Charter you have violations of the Charter which are handled by the UNSC or the international court .. but participation by any nation is voluntary .. you can get UNSCR’s all day and IC rulings against you .. and the nation you violated gets diplomatic points and symbolic justice.. nothing else, unless the offending nation sees a political or propaganda upside to voluntarily paying the penalty.
            it is like the driver getting to say what a full stop is, like any roll thru under 10 mph is a full stop , and if the ticketing officer gets rude , the driver just opts out of the traffic laws .. so the ticketing officer , wanting to keep as many people within the traffic laws has to play nice and give a verbal warning instead of a ticket or a written warning.
            knowing that war cannot be stopped overnight, international agencies have to make a value call .. deal harshly with war makers and put them outside the international scheme to end war, or deal with them gently and with maximum benefit of the doubt and keep them in the international system and have then conduct a smaller less messy and less fatal war and play by rules that spare the greatest number of people . Pretty Please with a cherry on top. And maybe next time they will come to the UN and air grievances and settle things within a diplomatic framework.
            but nobody is breaking any law by going to war .. treaties , Pact, charters .. and while they may be Laws implementing treaties and pacts and charters at the local level , they are local laws and the President has the power of Pardon or can spin up UNSCR’s international court rulings to legally justify anything.. and unless an international body with jurisdiction decides otherwise it is exactly as legal and for the exact reasons the nation says it is legal.

          • Carl_Herman

            And the UN Charter says what about when armed attack is allowed? You failed to address the question.

          • Carl_Herman

            Dee: you choose not to respond to this simple question: what does the UN Charter say when armed attack is allowed or not.

          • not authorized

            Blah blah blah. Is it lawful or not?