Europe, News Watch, Side Feature

International Criminal Court (ICC): A Tool in the Hands of the U.S.

International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague/ The Netherlands has issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

This week, it’s the 20th year after the brutal invasion of Iraq led by the United States and the United Kingdom. The war, which resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands of civilians, was based on deception and a blatant lie that Iraq under Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The end result: countless dead, a destabilised country, a region that still is a turmoil and a simple “sorry” of the war criminals.

Today the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague/ The Netherlands, which the U.S. played a leading role in its establishment, has issued an arrest warrant against the Russian President Vladimir Putin for its war in Ukraine. U.S. President Biden said that the Russian president has “clearly committed war crimes” and said that the arrest warrant from the ICC is ‘justified.’

However, the U.S. doesn’t recognize the court it has formed. It has established the court and later withdrawn from it and even actively worked to undermine its authority. While the U.S. has supported the prosecution of war criminals from other countries, it has refused to subject its own military personnel and officials to the jurisdiction of the ICC. Also, it does not recognize the authority of the ICC to investigate or prosecute American citizens for crimes committed outside of the United States. In addition, the U.S. interferes with the work of the ICC. For example, the U.S. has threatened to take action against ICC officials and has imposed sanctions on individuals associated with the court.

The same applies for Western countries who unlike the U.S. did ratify the Rome Statute and recognised the ICC, like the UK. So, in theory, the UK is obliged to cooperate with the ICC and to abide by the court’s decisions and rulings. However, the UK has also expressed its concerns about the ICC’s jurisdiction and has taken steps to protect its military and political interests, particularly in relation to potential ICC investigations and prosecutions of UK nationals. So, translated to the practical reality: there was no arrest warrant issued by the ICC against former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair or for other officials of the UK for their war crimes committed in Iraq. In 2016, the Chilcot Inquiry, a British government inquiry into the UK’s role in the Iraq War, concluded that Blair had overstated the case for war and that the UK’s involvement had been based on flawed intelligence and inadequate planning. But the Chilcot report did not make any legal findings or recommendations for prosecution and to this date, there have been no criminal charges or ICC investigations against Blair for war crimes in Iraq.

The U.S. and other Western countries are selectively applying the “international law” they themselves designed. They easily bent it, disregard it, or use it to serve their own interests, and especially when it comes to U.S. interest. They subjugate other nations to follow it while these laws don’t have any effect on them: others are accountable for their actions, but they are not. This makes the ICC and the so-called international law and the principles of the United Nations Charter and the alike, nothing but a tool in the hands of today’s tyrants.

For the time being, these criminals can get away with their war crimes, genocides and crimes against humanity. Allah (swt) said:

[وَلاَ تَحْسَبَنَّ اللّهَ غَافِلاً عَمَّا يَعْمَلُ الظَّالِمُونَ إِنَّمَا يُؤَخِّرُهُمْ لِيَوْمٍ تَشْخَصُ فِيهِ الأَبْصَارُ]

“And never think that Allah is unaware of what the wrongdoers do. He only delays them for a Day when eyes will stare [in horror].”[TMQ Ibrahim: 42].

But not for long, the upcoming Khilafah Rashidah (rightly guided Caliphate) State upon the method of the Prophethood will bring light and justice to the world after the world was plunged in to darkness and oppression, and it will account the wrongdoers and the modern tyrants for their tyranny, repression and bloodshed.

Okay Pala
Media Representative of Hizb ut Tahrir in The Netherlands