Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.


Bob Kerrey, American War Crimes, and the International Criminal Court: A Debate

StoryMay 10, 2001
Watch iconWatch Full Show

Yesterday, President Bush told Yugoslav President Vojislav Kostunica that American financial aid to Belgrade woulddepend on cooperation with the war crimes tribunal at The Hague. The Hague has indicted former Yugoslav PresidentSlobodon Milosevic for crimes against humanity during the Bosnian War.

Last month, President Kostunica refused outright to hand over Milosevic. But yesterday Kostunica said he was pushingto have his country’s law changed by the end of the month, so that Belgrade could cooperate with the tribunal.

But the revelations of former Senator Bob Kerrey’s involvement in a massacre of women and children in Vietnam haveraised the question of war crimes committed by our own citizens. Earlier this week, Human Rights Watch called forthe investigation of the former Senator, and possible prosecution.

And well-known author and columnist Christopher Hitchens has just come out with a book calling for the trial ofNixon’s national security advisor Henry Kissinger.

These cases raise the question not only of whether American citizens are guilty of war crimes, but also whether theUnited States should participate in the International Criminal Court.

The International Criminal Court was negotiated by 150 countries in Rome in July, 1998. 139 have signed so far, and30 have ratified it. An additional 30 countries are necessary to bring it into force.

President Clinton signed the treaty in December, but the Bush administration is not sympathetic. Secretary of StateColin Powell said last week that the treaty was flawed and that the U.S. would not ratify it. And Senator JesseHelms and other conservatives in Congress have warned that the U.S. will retaliate against any country who ratifiesthe treaty, by withholding U.S. foreign assistance. A few days ago, the U.S. was voted off the U.N. Human RightsCommission for the first time since the Commission’s founding in 1948. Many believe that the move is the result ofWashington’s increasing "unilateralism," including the Bush administration’s position on the ICC.


  • Reed Brody, Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch.
  • Lee Casey, partner at Baker and Hostetler in Washington D.C. and author of a series of editorials in theWall Street Journal. He testified before Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1998 on the International CriminalCourt. And he appeared before international tribunal on the former Yugoslavia at The Hague.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation