The ‘Hague Invasion Act’

July 23, 2009 at 2:24 pm (tWP) (, , , , , )

icc_the_hagueThroughout the Cold War and even during the XIX century, the left movements always differed on Socialism. The Republicans were the moderates and the Socialists were the radicals. Later on the Communists showed up and they took the place of the radicals. Finally and in turn, the Anarchists took their place.

The consequences of these ideological struggles was always to advance towards extremism and to prevent alternative power solutions to conservative and labour governments. In modern day Europe, left wing governments do not cave in to far-left parties even to make coalitions. Apart from a few exceptions communist parties do not form governments and the neo-marxist para-anarchist left is banned from moderate governance.

There are those on the left who forever dream of the red triangle of anarchists, communists and socialists working together to keep the right and the conservatives out of power – à la Spanish Republic. But these are utopians unable to come to terms with the fact that even if such an incoherent coalition lasted, the public opinion would soon punish the conciliation and, either place their votes on more radical left parties, or more likely, grow the conservative parties to take their place.

This ideological incompatibility serves us as a parallel for today’s international ideological discussions. We had discussed how humanitarian Trotskyites and democratic Trotskyites occupied different sides of the Atlantic idealism. The Iraq War put the former against the latter, although there were some exceptions, namely in France and Germany, where advocacy for an end to Iraq’s Baath regime was in place. Later on, America became more vocal of its distaste for Europe’s humanitarian universalists and proceeded to put into law.

The “American Service-Members’ Protection Act” – also known as the “Hague Invasion Act” – was passed in 2002 but it is with the ICC’s recently reinvigorated pursuit of “international criminals” that controversy has begun in full. Would the ICC have the nerve to prosecute American military personnel or American political leaders? Would the American administration go as far as to “rescue” its citizens from the Court?…

Other than the total non-cooperation of the US government with the ICC, the Hague Invasion Act further states US aid to signatory parties is cancelled, despite there being an exception for NATO allies, bilateral US allies and states pledging not to apply the ICC statutes to US nationals.resized_505_bashir_bush3

One wonders if the ICC would indulge in such amicable exceptions…

Idealists rarely agree and can never work together. Their unwillingness to compromise assures their integrity but also does a disservice to the people the idealists claim to represent, since absolute solutions guarantee no results. Universal jurisdiction not being a sine qua non condition for the existence of the ICC, its work might actually be more useful and tolerated.

In the end it is a good thing these two schools are irreconcilable but let us keep in mind why: because universal absolutes cancel each other out.

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