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January 19, 2020

Note: Justice Talking's grant funding expired in 2008 and the project has been closed. This website is an archive of the entire run of Justice Talking shows through June 30, 2008.
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Featured Program

Photo by: ICC-CPI / Wim Van Cappellen
And Justice for Some: The U.S. Battle with the International Criminal Court
Last Featured: 8/29/2005

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Note: Justice Talking ceased production on June 30 of 2008. Link information on this site is not maintained and is provided for historical interest only. Although correct when posted, The Annenberg Public Policy Center makes no claim as the the accuracy or continued availability of any third party web links found on this site.

A special broadcast from NPR’s Justice Talking and Radio Netherlands, the Dutch International Service. Since World War II, the United States has often led the international community in pursuing justice for genocide and other atrocities, and helped lay the foundation for the International Criminal Court (ICC). President Bill Clinton and the United States negotiated significant changes to the ICC’s Rome Treaty before signing it in December 2000, and vowed to continue efforts to improve the court. Yet two years later, President George W. Bush “unsigned” the treaty. The State Department says it fears politicized actions against American soldiers and government officials. Critics say the U.S. policy shows a lack of interest in international cooperation and hurts international efforts to enforce tough legal standards against those who commit terrible crimes.

Herman von Hebel is senior legal officer in chambers at the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia. (The views he expresses in this debate are his own and not those of the ICTY). In his previous capacity as legal counsel at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he took part in the negotiations for the Rome Statute, the treaty on which the ICC is based, and chaired the working group on the definition of war crimes. He also participated in the 1999-2000 ICC Preparatory Commission meetings and chaired the working group on the Elements of Crimes. He is co-editor of “Reflections on the International Criminal Court.”

Ruth Wedgwood is the Edward B. Burling Professor of International Law and Diplomacy and director of the International Law and Organization Program at the School for Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University. She is also a member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee, the U.S. Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee for International Law, and the Defense Policy Board of the Department of Defense. She was previously co-director of studies at The Hague Academy for International Law in the Netherlands.

Closing Quote
"Men and nations do behave wisely, once all other alternatives have been exhausted."

— Abba Eban

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Special Announcements
Justice Talking’s last broadcast & podcast was June 30, 2008.
Rome Statute Basis for the International Criminal Court
War Crimes Act of 1996 18 U.S.C. § 2441 - U.S. law on war crimes
Geneva Conventions of 1949 Post World War II agreements on just military conduct
International Criminal Court
Human Rights Watch
International Red Cross
Cato Institute
US Department of State
National Center for Policy Analysis
Amnesty International
Council on Foreign Relations
Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know
by Roy Gutman (Editor)
From Nuremberg to The Hague : The Future of International Criminal Justice
by Philippe Sands (Editor)
The Limits of International Law
by Jack L. Goldsmith, Eric A. Posner
The Tension Between Security and Liberty in the War on Terror
Immigration and Policy
The Cuban Embargo