THE LAW OF POWER
- View SourceTHE LAW OF POWER, NOT THE POWER OF LAW
Thursday-Friday, March 3-4, 2005
Let's go back to 1946. An International War Crimes Tribunal had just
been established in Nuremberg, Germany, to punish the aggressors who
began a war. Now, when you open the door to the courtroom, you see
Hermann Goering as the judge. Standing under Goering is the lead
prosecutor, Julius Streicher. His material witnesses include Hess,
Geobbels and Himler.
The defendants are the leaders of the Warsaw ghetto uprising of 1944
and the Polish government of September 1, 1939. The leaders of the
uprising are charged with resisting an occupation and the Polish
government officials are charged with shooting back after their
country was invaded by Germany.
All court officials are members of the Nazi Party. They include a
few Poles who lived in Poland for only a short time because they
fled their country of birth and formed Polish opposition groups
while living in Germany, all the time becoming rich because of
German Nazi money being lavishly donated to their cause. The court
states that the defendants will be given a fair trial.
Sound preposterous? Yes it is, but a similar scenario is occurring
right now in Iraq.
The government of the country of Iraq is being put on trial by
quislings and other U.S. apologists. Some judges and jurists have
only recently returned to Iraq. They needed road maps to find
I say the Iraqi government is being put on trial because, to this
day, not one internationally legitimate action has taken place that
has deemed the current bunch of Iraqis who were recently "elected"
to be a government. To many, the Ba'athists still represent the
In 1991, as terms of a cease-fire in the Gulf War, Iraq was ordered
by the U.N. to rid itself of what was deemed "weapons of mass
destruction." It did. By 1992, Iraq told the world, "We don't have
any more." Today, we all know Iraq told the truth.
An embargo that took the lives of almost two million people was in
place from 1991-2003. Today, we know that the embargo was based on
U.S. lies and was wrong.
With all that knowledge, the U.S. invaded Iraq in March 2003. More
than 100,000 Iraqis died from the military intervention. All killed
because of lies.
Months after the invasion, Secretary-General Kofi Anan of the U.N.
deemed the invasion "illegal."
Let's put all these pieces together. The U.S. attacked and occupied
Iraq without provocation. And, the act has been labeled illegal by
the head of the international governing body that regulates
international legal matters. The infrastructure of Iraq has been
destroyed, along with thousands of houses and buildings. Today,
schools, hospitals, public transportation, utilities, and many other
aspects of daily life are in shambles because of the actions of the
aggressor nations, the U.S. and, to a much lesser extent, Great
Now, it's time for a war crimes tribunal. But, the one being set up
is similar to the fairy tale scenario I previously mentioned. The
victims are to be put on trial and the aggressors and their stooges
will run the trial. It's quite simple: things are ass-backwards.
The U.S. has killed some members of the Iraqi government and
kidnapped others. Of those kidnapped is Saddam Hussein, the main cog
in the U.S. 15-year demonizing of Iraq that led the American people
to celebrate a slaughter.
Saddam was illegally kidnapped in December 2003. Since then, he has
been in a secret jail and only allowed to see a lawyer once. His
captors have broken many international laws in keeping him in
Over the 15 months he has been imprisoned, Saddam Hussein has been
sent millions of letters from people worldwide offering wishes of
good will. The U.S. has only delivered four to him. They were from
his family and were heavily censored.
Currently, Saddam Hussein's active legal team consists of about two
dozen lawyers. There are more than 2,000 lawyers, from many
countries, working on his behalf behind the scenes for no pay. They
have donated their time and effort because of the travesty about to
occur in Iraq.
Ziad al-Khasawna is the head of the legal team that works out of
Aman, Jordan. The group is called "The Defence and Support Committee
of President Saddam Hussein, His Comrades and All Prisoners of War
and Detainees in Iraq." The organization's name may be long-winded,
but it is relevant considering the illegal incarceration of the
Iraqi government and tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians.
On February 28, 2005, Al-Khasawna spoke to the Foreign
Correspondents' Club of Japan concerning the plight of President
Saddam Hussein. Al-Jazeera News covered the event and published an
article written by Juoian Ryall on its website on March 1, 2005.
Following are statements given to the assemblage by al-Khasawna:
According to international law, Saddam Hussein and his government
are still the legitimate leadership of Iraq and everything that has
happened since the start of the occupation is illegal.
The oppression of Iraq is not based on any international law but was
made under the pretext that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
Iraq confirmed it had no weapons of mass destruction, so that means
that what is going on there now is the law of power, not the power
The head lawyer then went on to describe how he has not been allowed
to see his client, despite numerous requests. He told the group that
it is difficult to defend Saddam because the occupation authorities
have placed many unreasonable restrictions in the way.
Curtis Doebbler is the leading U.S. attorney on Saddam Hussein's
defense team. Recently, well-known peace activist Ramsey Clark was
added to the squad.
On January 20, 2005, Doebbler issued a statement that covers many of
the illegalities and irregularities of the upcoming trial. Here it
is in its entirety as published by www.uruknet.info:
Update on the Representation of President Saddam Hussein
Dr. Curtis F.J. Doebbler
Member of the Legal Team representing Saddam Hussein
January 20, 2005
Although continued attempts are being made to establish access to
the President of Iraq who has been held without access to a lawyer,
only one meeting has been arranged more than one year after the
detention began. This meeting took place with one of the lawyers of
Committee under strict monitoring (both visual and audio) whereby
two US military officials were present at all times. This meeting
was not under conditions that meet the minimum standards for access
to legal counsel provided by international law (e.g. in article 14
of the ICCPR). Neither has this meeting been followed up with
additional meetings. It is estimated that counsel need at least
several hours of daily contact with their client to be able to
consult with him and to facilitate the preparation of his defense.
Unless such access is immediately provided all charges against the
defendant should be dropped because of the serious violations of his
Furthermore, legal counsel's inability to have access to evidence or
formal charges also contributes to the irreparable violation of
defendant's rights. For more than one year, and despite statements
by United States and Iraqi government officials that huge amounts of
evidence exist, no access to any of this evidence has been granted
to defense counsel.
Finally, legal counsel for the President continue to dispute the
legitimacy of the Iraqi Special Tribunal for the following reasons:
1. The tribunal is the result of an illegal invasion of Iraq which
unequivocally violated international law, namely article 2(4) of the
Charter of the United Nations. Attempts to justify this use of force
as somehow justified by Iraq's reaction to UN Security Council
resolutions are inconsistent with statements of the majority of both
the permanent members of the UNSC and the total membership of this
body and are devoid of any legal basis. To satisfy basic principles
of justice any court concerned with trials in Iraq that have
resulted from the United States' illegal use of force must be able
and willing to try American's who have committed crimes against
peace, including American President George W. Bush.
2. The tribunal is illegal because it is constituted outside the
ordinary Iraqi judicial and as the result of steps by the United
States as the occupying power in Iraq to interfere with the existing
judicial power in Iraq in a manner that renders it liable to violate
international human rights and humanitarian law. An occupying power
is forbidden from destroying the judicial of an occupied territory
and replacing it with a judicial with allegiance to itself that will
not prosecute its own soldiers who have violated international law.
Nevertheless, the United States did just this in vetting all Iraqi
judges for their political opinions and affiliations and removing
those judges who disagreed with the occupiers' political opinion.
This action contravenes general international law that provides that
an occupation is not sovereignty and therefore prohibits the
occupier from changing the institutions of government when the
changes contribute to the violation of international law.
3. The extraordinary nature of the Iraqi Special Tribunal is
evidenced by the fact that it would have been illegal even under the
Iraqi Administrative Law of 8 March 2004, except for the special
dispensation which is given in that law. Despite the dispensation,
however, the Special Tribunal does not meet the minimum standards of
international law required for a fair trial and is thus illegitimate.
4. The Iraqi Special Tribunal does not meet the requirement of being
a competent, independent, and impartial tribunal. It is not
competent because it has been established by an occupying power in
violation of international law as an attempt to usurp the
sovereignty of the Iraqi people. It is not independent because it
his been established by the United States as the occupying power and
not a sovereign Iraqi government and because it lacks the authority
and will to trial United States citizens who have violated
international law by illegally invading Iraq. It is not impartial
because the judges remain anonymous and "faceless judges" have been
held to be prima facie violation of the requirement of impartiality.
5. The Iraqi Special Tribunal also violates international law
because it denies defendant's basic fair trial and due process
rights. Defendants have not been able to meet their lawyers in any
meaningful way. Evidence of torture and mistreatment of defendants
has not been investigated. Defendants have been denied facilities to
prepare their defense. Defendants have not been charged. Defendants
have been denied access to any of the alleged evidence against them.
All of these failures constitute violations of defendants' rights.
6. Only a tribunal created by international mandate and with truly
impartial judges sitting can try a head of state who has been
captured pursuant to an illegal invasion of his country. The Iraqi
Special Tribunal is not such a tribunal and constitutes a serious
violation of international law.
At the end of December 2004, Mr. Ramsey Clark formally joined the
defense team efforts. He will be responsible for legal action taken
in the United States and contacts with the press in the United
States. He will also advise the legal team being assembled in Jordan
under the auspices of ISNAD.
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