It’s been 8 years since Bush got into power and next week he will be walking out of office with the most disastrous record of the last 43 US presidencies. He leaves the American (and world) economy in dire straits, he has wasted precious time to fight climate change and he has continued to steal money from the poor to give it to the rich but on the top of all this he has lied to his citizens and to the rest of the world, he has led an illegal war against a sovereign state, he has open illegal prisons where he has justified torture and denied elemental human rights whilst mining the credibility of the democratic world.
How big is the impunity with which the American president, called by some leader of the free-world, can violate international law and human rights? How big can be the credibility of the democratic world when our leaders are not responsible for what they do?
In my opinion the impunity of the American president is inversely proportional to the credibility that the “democratic” system can have. If Bush can do what he has done and his acts remain unchallenged our political system loses credibility. Then, our political capital when criticizing Chinese or Russian governments is not enough to legitimise our arguments.
Saddam Hussein was executed because of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, Slobodan Milosevic was charged with crimes against humanity, violating the laws or customs of war, breaches of the Geneva Conventions and genocide, George W. Bush has led an illegal war based on lies that has caused the death of 4000 US soldiers and around 1 million of Iraqis and imprisoned thousands of people without any charges and will be allowed to enter history not as a criminal but just as a dumb US president who fulfilled his duty.
Or will he not?
The Americans are not going to bring his former president in front of the court; the Spanish didn’t do it with Franco, the Chileans didn’t do it with Pinochet and the Serbs didn’t do it with Milosevic. Time did justice to what Franco did, a Spanish judge brought Pinochet to trial and it was the international criminal court who dealt with Milosevic. We can’t wait Bush to be judged by the time. Not because he might escape the judgment of history but because immediate history needs justice to be made if we want to be able to continue to preach our vaccine to the problems of the world.
The impunity has been administered to kings of the past, dictators and oligarchs. Democrats can’t apply impunity to flagrant cases of war crime and crimes against humanity. Otherwise, by becoming partners in crime, we are destroying the basis of our political system, that is rule of law. If democrats are not equal before the law and law is to be applied to only some, our political system is doomed. Then we can go to other countries saying how good democracy is and surprise ourselves when they don’t believe a word we say.
For all this; Bush should be brought before the International Criminal Court.
Now, arguing for Bush’s conviction is easy, the problem is HOW to do it. Not much has changed in today’s political arena that can make us think that a group of countries could stand up and collectively ask to bring Bush to the International Court. Arguably, Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Iran, Gaza and other few could but since they are the “axis of evil” they would not be taken seriously. What if the call could come from inside the “democratic” world? Our leaders will never dare to do something like this but the bloggers are starting to be political actors and a coordinated action from the blogsphere could at least raise the issue loud enough so that when Bush leaves the office on the 20th of January there is enough pressure out there to at east make him sweat a bit.
Worth a try?