Tutu: Send Bush And Blair To The Hague
Archbishop Desmond Tutu has publicly called for former U.S. President George W. Bush and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair to be put on trial at the International Criminal Court in the Hague, for what he calls the “illegal” invasion of Iraq.
“The immorality of the United States and Great Britain’s decision to invade Iraq in 2003,” Tutu wrote in an exclusive for the Observer this weekend, was “premised on the lie that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction,” and instead of bring peace, democracy, or harmony to the region, “has destabilised and polarised the world to a greater extent than any other conflict in history.”
The op-ed comes after Tutu refused attend a global leadership summit in South Africa last week after learning that the former Prime Minister Tony Blair would be in attendance.
“My appeal to Mr. Blair is not to talk about leadership, but to demonstrate it,” Tutu explained in his piece.
“The cost of the decision to rid Iraq of its by-all-accounts despotic and murderous leader has been staggering,beginning in Iraq itself,” Tutu continues. “Last year, an average of 6.5 people died there each day in suicide attacks and vehicle bombs, according to the Iraqi Body Count project. More than 110,000 Iraqis have died in the conflict since 2003 and millions have been displaced. By the end of last year, nearly 4,500 American soldiers had been killed and more than 32,000 wounded.”
The International Criminal Court “is a permanent tribunal to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression (although it cannot, until at least 2017, exercise jurisdiction over the crime of aggression),” explains The Examiner.
In a “consistent world,” writes Tutu, and based on the level of destruction caused by the U.S. and its willing allies, “those responsible for this suffering and loss of life should be treading the same path as some of their African and Asian peers who have been made to answer for their actions in the Hague.”
Neither President Bush nor Prime Minister Blair have responded to Tutu’s comments.