Blogs > Liberty and Power > Selective Prosecution of War Crimes

Aug 29, 2006 4:24 pm

Selective Prosecution of War Crimes

In Saddam Hussein’s war crimes trial for the 1988 Iraqi “Anfal” campaign that gassed Kurdish villages, his defense lawyers have argued that Iraqi forces were really attempting to strike Iranian forces and the Iraqi Kurdish pesh merga militias that were in and supported by the hamlets. In other words, the lawyers are asserting that the innocent Kurds who were killed were collateral damage in an effort by the Iraqi government to rid its territory of Iranian fighters and their Kurdish allies during the Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s. Curiously, this defense sounds similar to Israel’s defense of killing more than one thousand Lebanese and perpetrating widespread destruction of Shi’ite neighborhoods, apartment houses, water services, electrical power stations, ports, factories, roads, and bridges in Lebanon in its efforts to punish Hezbollah. Yet Saddam Hussein is on trial for war crimes and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is still in office.

Read the rest of Ivan Eland's newest op-ed.

comments powered by Disqus