Letter to US Senate
On May 10, the US House of Representatives by a vote of 282 to 137, passed HR 1648, the so-called American Servicemembers Protection Act, designed to kill the International Criminal Court now being formed to carry out promises made at Nuremberg by the US and its Allies that aggression, genocide, crimes against humanity and major war crimes would never again be allowed to go unpunished. The act seeks complete exemption for US nationals and threatens economic and military sanctions against nations that choose to support the Court. Sponsors of HR 1648 have relied on arguments that are demonstrably false and intended to frighten the public into believing that the proposed new court poses a threat to US personnel and interests. The exact opposite is true.
All of the arguments against the court have been meticulously examined by outstanding legal scholars who have reached the conclusion that it is the US interest to join the new Court as quickly as possible. Reference to some of these expert opinions can be found on Numbers 3, 8 and 10 of my articles listed on my website shown below. Particular attention is invited to the positions taken by Monroe Leigh, former Legal Advisor to both the Pentagon and State Department, whose views appear in the latest issue of the American Journal of International Law (Vol.95, vol.1, PP 124-131.) His conclusions have been endorsed by ten former Presidents of the American Society of International Law - our oldest and most prestigious law journal.
A peaceful world requires international laws that apply equally to everyone. It will now be up to the US Senate to decide whether it wishes to accept the House amendment that grants immunity to Americans and penalizes those who support the rule of law. What kind of a world do you want? Now is the time for those who support the ICC to inform their Senators, and the public, on this subject.
BENJAMIN B. FERENCZ
A former Nuremberg Prosecutor