Mixed Up in Wrongdoing
More of Steve Bell at the Guardian.
"The judgment given by the high court yesterday in the case of Binyam Mohamed opens up the real prospect that the international law and rule of law transgressions of the "war on terror" will unravel in British courts. Never before has so much been disclosed of the real extent of the British government's complicity even though much of the hearing was in closed sessions using special advocates and the only judgment we have access to is the "open" one.
Binyam Mohamed is the only British resident left in Guantánamo Bay. Although all the other residents have been returned the US has refused to bring him back to the UK on the grounds that he is to be put on trial before a military commission which could impose the death penalty."
More in "The shame of British complicity"
The American people still do not care, but should: From Nuremberg to Guantánamo: International Law and American Power Politics
The US played an important—but decidedly mixed—role in the history of international lawmaking and enforcement. American officials, in cooperation with other victorious Allies, ran the Nuremberg and Tokyo tribunals to put an international legal veneer on retribution against the Axis powers. But if horrific violence against civilians could be criminalized and punished, there was a clear double standard in the fact that no similar retributive process was mounted to account for the horrors caused by the bombings of Dresden, Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The US supported the establishment of the UN to provide for global peace and security, but forged an exception for itself and the other four permanent members of the Security Council in the form of veto power. The veto provided a political shield from accountability and was utilized countless times to foil calls for intervention on behalf of populations at risk. American officials operating in the UN contributed to the formulation and passage of international laws, while a powerful coterie of domestic officials opposed international law and institutions in principle. In the 1940s and 1950s, domestic opposition was led by but certainly not limited to old-school conservatives from the Midwest. The Midwesterners were soon buttressed by Southerners motivated to contest the "radical" principle of universal human equality, which menaced beloved local traditions of racism. This domestic opposition congealed into a logic that international law contravenes the status of the Constitution as the "highest law," subordinates the will of the American people to foreigners and can lead down the slippery slope to "global government" that would threaten American sovereignty."
Never in Our Names