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Blair could face a maximum 30 years jail for war crimes

Brad | 15.03.2003 00:11

Mr Blair could face a maximum 30 years jail for war crimes if he launches war on Iraq without UN backing, international law expert Professor Nick Grief said.



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30 years

15.03.2003 00:17

under what statute would you try him?


Ask Cherie Blair

15.03.2003 00:31

Subject: War against Iraq: would it be legal?

Dear Ms Booth

Would it be legal for the UK and US to declare war against Iraq without specific UN approval?

Look forward to hearing from you.

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Attack would be in breach of law

15.03.2003 01:15

March 05, 2003

Attack would be 'in breach of law'
By Frances Gibb, Legal Editor

THE Prime Minister was told by lawyers in his wife’s legal chambers yesterday that the second UN resolution proposed by the US, Britain and Spain would not authorise war on Iraq, were it to be passed.

Lawyers from Matrix Chambers, where Tony Blair’s wife Cherie practises, said that military action against Iraq would be a “clear violation of international law”.

Even if the resolution overcame opposition by France, Germany and Russia and were passed by the UN Security Council, it would not sanction war, according to Rabinder Singh, QC, and Charlotte Kilroy. The Government will have been advised on the draft resolution by Lord Goldsmith, QC, the Attorney-General, after taking advice from leading international law experts at the Bar.

Under the convention that legal advice from the Attorney-General to ministers is confidential, Lord Goldsmith has resolutely refused to confirm even whether he has given such advice, far less what it is. But he has said that any military action would comply with international law: “The Prime Minister has always made clear that we will, in our actions, comply with international law.”

While the legal opinion from Matrix is that the draft resolution would not authorise the use of force, it is possible that other lawyers take the opposite view. The draft resolution says that Iraq has “failed to take the final opportunity afforded to it in Resolution 1441”.

But the legal opinion by Mr Singh and Ms Kilroy, on behalf of CND and other campaign groups, concluded that this “would not authorise the US and the UK to use force against Iraq if it were adopted”. They added: “In the present circumstances as known to us, if there is no further resolution clearly authorising force, the US and the UK would be acting in violation of international law if they were to attack Iraq.”,,5470-600304,00.html


Get with the story...

15.03.2003 02:00

Everyone knows that the Right Honourable T.W.A.T. lied about 9/11 and did not provide evidence about UBL involvement. The Afghan campaign was an illegal war with the Arabs genocided out of the place. It is impotant to see justice to crimes already committed, and remember that Iraq is a ruse to excuse our collective short term memories...

BBC Hater

International Law against warmongers

15.03.2003 05:19

most of my arguments are specific to the (banana) Republic of Ireland and its constitution, but International law still applies.

Hague convention, Geneva convention, how about your equivalent of our Radiological protection act? and the law banning radioactive (DU) weapons or nuclear weapons.

What laws do you have concerning accountability of the government to the house of parliament i.e. putting the thing to a vote?

how about...

Article 6 of the Nuremberg Charter.

“The following acts, or any of them, are crimes coming within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal for which there shall be individual responsibility:
(a) Crimes against peace: namely, planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression, or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances, or PARTICIPATING IN A COMMON PLAN OR CONSPIRACY for the accomplishment of any of the foregoing;

Leaders, organizers, instigators and accomplices participating in the formulation or execution of a common plan or conspiracy to commit any of the foregoing crimes are responsible for all acts performed by any persons in execution of such plan”

To quote the US Chief Justice, Robert Jackson in his opening speech at Nuremberg.
“The Charter also recognizes a vicarious liability, which responsibility recognized by most modern systems of law, for acts committed by others in carrying out a common plan or conspiracy to which a defendant has become a party.”
Justice Jackson also argued that “ if aggressive warfare in violation of treaty obligation is a matter of international cognisance, the preparations for it must also be of concern the international community”
Professor Francis Boyle adds “Similarly, the Nuremberg Tribunal recognized that conspiracy should be included as an international crime because ‘planning and preparation are essential to the making of war’ ”.
Of the charges against the defeated German forces and leaders he said “We must make it clear that it is not that they lost the war, but that they started it.”
Conversely, we must not see the military victory against Afghanistan or Iraq as a legal vindication of the aggressors and their accomplices. A military victory is not a mitigating factor in a crime of aggression.

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Where would poodle be held?

15.03.2003 08:23

Surely Blunkett wouldn't hold him at the Battersea Dog Home?

The "foreign minister for the US" should ask Nelson Mandela's advice on long-term prison life.

Jailhouse Rocker
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Where to hold the poodle

15.03.2003 09:40

Blair should not be imprisoned in the UK, he and his kind should do a life sentence of hard labour in the middle east, clearing rubble and rebuilding hospitals, villages and sewerage works in countries bombed by the US and UK.

just sentence

so what?

15.03.2003 11:29

Does it really matter if the war is legal or not? Millions of people will still die and lose their homes even if the UN passes a resolution. We can't rely on rich people's courts to stop the war.


Stop sitting on your asses

16.03.2003 08:38

Would not doing anything to stop a war contribute to a possible crime, it's about time we started to examine the supply chain in this war machine.

Doing your best to stop fuel reaching the aircraft, your best to get crappy agency jobs in factories that supply the war machine.... (I do not condone possible acts of poor efficency and not working to your normal full range of agile and diligence of capability)

Wasting time in Army career offices, not just blockade them but go inside waste a few hours of their time, they can not recruit whilst you are doing your fake interview process...(do this at your own risk, I do not condone this type of behaviour at all)

Drive more slowly, not only is this safer and less polluting; you will also be helping the fragile "just in time" supply chain stretch to it's limits....

Blockade airports on grounds of environment, did you know that Nuclear waste is still flown into Manchester airport, this waste could be used in DU bombs. Did you know that Nuclear waste is shipped across london on the Underground (the one used by the post office!!)

Educate people, only a few days ago the defense minister got away with saying that uranium is one of the most abundant elements in the world, had the interviewer been educated in this the minister would have been ridiculed and made the press.,,, education is our best weapon..

Education in basic science will help us all ridicule the politicians.... example: 2 years ago a lady representing the US car industry claimed its simple physics that bigger cars are safer,, had the interveiwer known basic physics the lobbyist would have been instantly ridiculed as the argument would have been you double the mass then you double the energy involved in a collision (if you double the speed the energy is quadrupled).

Anyway go do your best to stop this war, as not doing anything and just watching the war happen is as bad dropping the bombs.....