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Quietly, Obama just made it much easier for the International Criminal Court to go after American “war criminals.”
At ThreatsWatch.org, Steve Schippert and Clyde Middleton have dug up the bizarre and unsettling issuance of an executive order recently signed by President Barack Obama. Executive Order — Amending Executive Order 12425, signed December 16 and released a day later, grants the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) rights on American soil that place it beyond the reach of our own law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Schippert and Middleton note that Obama’s order removes protections placed upon INTERPOL by President Reagan in 1983. Obama’s order gives the group the authority to avoid Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests — which means this foreign law enforcement organization can operate free of an important safeguard against governmental abuse. “Property and assets,” including the organization’s records, cannot be searched or seized. Their physical locations and records are now immune from U.S. legal or investigative authorities.
If the president of the United States has an aboveboard reason for making a foreign law enforcement agency exempt from American laws on American soil, it wasn’t shared by the White House.
Andy McCarthy, former assistant United States attorney for the Southern District of New York and senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, notes at National Review that the limitations that Obama removed are “what prevents law-enforcement and its controlling government authority from becoming tyrannical.”
A paragraph later, McCarthy describes Obama’s actions in the starkest of terms:
This international police force (whose U.S. headquarters is in the Justice Department in Washington) will be unrestrained by the U.S. Constitution and American law while it operates in the United States and affects both Americans and American interests outside the United States.
Some bloggers covering this story are noting that the law enforcement agency to which Obama has extended such extraordinary powers to has had a dismal past.
INTERPOL’s senior leadership was flush with Nazis from the late 1930s all the way into the 1970s. That fact allowed, going Godwin isn’t necessarily relevant to today’s organization. Khoo Boon Hui of Singapore is the current president of the organization, and the current secretary general is American Ronald Noble. Noble is perhaps best known in America for overseeing the Treasury Department’s review of the disastrous 1993 raid and siege of a Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, that left nearly 80 people dead. Noble had cautioned against the initial raid plan as being too dangerous, but the lack of any significant ramifications for federal officials that approved of the raid and allegations of a cover-up have inspired conspiracy theorists to derisively dub Noble “the Enforcer.”
The consensus opinion among those commenting on this development is that the most radical president in American history seems to be intent on submitting American citizens to the whims of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Previous administrations have been very leery of signing onto agreements that would make citizens susceptible to the ICC, due to the possibility that U.S. servicemen could be dragged into show war crimes trials. Such events are obviously heavily politicized, and demands for war crimes arrests can come from any government, even those that sponsor terrorism or genocide themselves.
No finer point can be made about the endemic problems of the INTERPOL/ICC than that made by a recent diplomatic incident that erupted in Great Britain, where an Israeli government official had to cancel travel plans to England because of an arrest warrant issued by an English judge — because of Iranian charges of Israeli war crimes in Gaza. The brief but intense conflict was one Iran helped instigate, as the Persians supplied the terrorists in Gaza with the rockets they used against Israeli civilians, triggering an inevitable Israeli response.
If President Obama and his radical allies in the Democratic leadership have their way, American soldiers could presumably be brought up on charges as war criminals by enemy nations and marked for arrest and deportation by an international police force on American soil. They would face charges in a foreign land without the constitutional protections they fought and bled to protect. The White House seems to be on the bewildering path of giving al-Qaeda terrorists who murder innocent women and children more legal protection than the very soldiers that risk their lives trying to bring terrorists to justice. The asinine court-martial charges being brought against three Navy SEALs based upon the word of a terrorist they captured suddenly make a sickening kind of sense.
It also stands to reason that Obama’s seeming willingness to put American soldiers’ lives in the hands of a corrupt international community could also be brought to bear against his political enemies. Foreign investigators of dubious intent, and our own left-wing extremists, have long branded officials of the previous administration “war criminals” for actions they’d taken in the war on terror. It is entirely conceivable — perhaps even likely — that these same organizations and enemy governments that went after 25 Israeli government officials through INTERPOL and the ICC would quickly move to indict a wish list of current and former U.S. government officials for alleged “war crimes.” Former President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney would obviously be at the top of such a list of politically motivated suspects, but such a list could just as easily include General David Petraeus, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, congressmen, and senators.
As the Iranian gambit has shown, Obama’s bizarre assault on U.S. sovereignty could have disastrous repercussions. We can only hope that his fetish for weakening this nation can be stopped before American politicians and servicemen are made pawns by our enemies.
Bob Owens blogs at Confederate Yankee.