War Crimes

Report from North Vietnam

I arrived in Hanoi on the evening of 30 December 1966. The following afternoon I inspected bomb damage in Hanoi. This was the result of raids on 2, 13 and 14 December 1966. We were informed that some 450 bombs had been dropped altogether in the course of these attacks. The 2 December raid hit a doctor’s house near the centre of Hanoi by missile, injuring the doctor himself and severing the foot of a child. The 14 December raid damaged the Chinese Embassy, among others; it was possible to see the ...

Technical Aspects of Fragmentation Bombs

In Vietnam the Americans are utilizing a new type of anti-personnel arm based on the following principle: a hollow metallic envelope into which are cast certain projectiles such as ball-bearing-like pellets, needles, etc., numbering into the hundreds. These explode on the ground or in the air to fire the projectiles in a sunburst pattern for many metres. The effects of the projectiles are insignificant on fixed installations. Two types of these weapons are principally in use in Vietnam. The...

The United States in Vietnam 1944-66: Origins and Objectives of an Intervention

The United States in Vietnam 1944-66: Origins and Objectives of an Intervention ... The intervention of the United States in Vietnam is the most important single embodiment of the power and purposes of American foreign policy since the Second World War, and no other crisis reveals so much of the basic motivating forces and objectives - and weaknesses - of American global politics. A theory of the origins and meaning of the war also discloses the origins of an American malaise that is global in its...

Outline of the General Introductory Report

After a brief introduction recalling the origins, the composition, the competence and the procedures of the Tribunal, the report contains two parts: ...

The rules of law which apply. ...
The crimes charged. ...

Part 1: The rules of law which apply ...
Crimes against the peace and wars of aggression ...

Definition : Crimes against the peace are thus defined by article 6 of the Nuremberg statutes: ‘planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression, or a war in...

Inaugural Statement

Our Tribunal was formed, on the initiative of Lord Bertrand Russell, to decide whether the accusations of ‘war crimes’ levelled against the government of the United States as well as against those of South Korea, New Zealand and Australia, during the conflict in Vietnam, are justified. ... During this inaugural session, the origin, function, aims and limits of the Tribunal must be clarified: the Tribunal means to explain itself, without sidetracking, on the question of what has been called...

Aims of the Tribunal agreed at the Constituting Session, London, 15 November 1966

We constitute ourselves a Tribunal which, even if it has not the power to impose sanctions, will have to answer, amongst others, the following questions: ... Has the United States Government (and the Governments of Australia, New Zealand and South Korea) committed acts of aggression according to international law? {59} Has the American army made use of or experimented with new weapons or weapons forbidden by the laws of war? ... Has there been bombardment of targets of a purely civilian...

Speech to the First Meeting of Members of the War Crimes Tribunal, London, 13 November 1966¹

Allow me to express my appreciation to you for your willingness to participate in this Tribunal. It has been convened so that we may investigate and assess the character of the United States’ war in Vietnam. ...      The Tribunal has no clear historical precedent. The Nuremberg Tribunal, although concerned with designated war crimes, was possible because the victorious allied Powers compelled the vanquished to present their leaders for trial. Inevitably, the Nuremberg trials, ...

After Pinkville

On 15 October 1965, an estimated 70,000 people took part in large-scale anti-war demonstrations. The demonstrators heard pleas for an end to the bombing of North Vietnam and for a serious commitment to negotiations, in response to the negotiation offers from North Vietnam and UN efforts to settle the war. To be more precise, this is what they heard if they heard anything at all. On the Boston Common, for example, they heard not a word from the speakers, who were drowned out by hecklers and...

Foreword to the 1967 International War Crimes Tribunal

"We are not judges. We are witnesses. Our task is to make mankind bear witness to these terrible crimes and to unite humanity on the side of justice in Vietnam." ... With these words, Bertrand Russell opened the second session of the International War Crimes Tribunal, in November 1967. The American people were given no opportunity, at that time, to bear witness to the terrible crimes recorded in the proceedings of the Tribunal. As Russell writes in the introduction to the first edition, '... it is in...

Free Speech and Hate Speech

False and ridiculous charges are no real problem. It is the unconscionable critics who reveal unwanted truths from whom society must be protected" Noam Chomsky in Deterring Democracy ... A False Sense of Self-Righteousness ... Intellectuals in the public eye remind us how we should thank our lucky stars for our democratic system with freedom of speech and press. Not only should we cherish this relative freedom, but we should ensure our high standards are met elsewhere through economic or military...

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - War Crimes
+