Friday, February 8, 2013


OMNI GENOCIDE NEWSLETTER #1, JANUARY 8, 2013.  Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace and Justice.  

My blog:
War Department/Peace Department
National/International Days

Contents #1  Jan. 8, 2013
Genocide Convention
Al-Ani and Castellino, Genocide in Iraq
US and International Criminal Court
Nazi Gypsies Genocide
Israel, Holocaust, Asylum Seekers, and Refugees
Hedges:   Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Technology
Goldhagen, Worse Than War, Book and Film
Film on Reconciliation in Rwanda
Semantha Power’s Book America and the Age of Genocide
Johnstone:  Against War to Prevent or Stop Genocide
Sam Totten vs. Genocide
    Book:  Interviews with Rwanda Survivors
     Book: Darfur
     Book:  Nuba Mountains People
     PGEF: Post-Genocide Educational Fund
Alison Des Forges, Genocide in Rwanda
Alice Walker on Rwanda, Congo, Palestinians
UN International Justice Day, ICC, USA

Prevent Genocide International 
Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (relevant links) 

Adopted by Resolution 260 (III) A of the U.N. General Assembly on 9 December 1948. 
Entry into force: 12 January 1951. 
List of parties to the Convention (UN status report), Nations that are NOT party to the Convention (this website)

Art. I: Crime under International Law 
Art. II: Genocide defined 
Art. III: Punishable acts 
Art. IV: Responsible individuals 
Art. V: National legislation 
Art. VI: Tribunals
Art. VII: Extradition 
: Prevention and Suppression 
Art. IX: Disputes submitted to the Int'l Court of Justice 
Art. X: Languages 
Art. XI: Signature, ratification and accession 
Art. XII: Territories 

: Entry into force
Art. XIV: Time period in effect 
Art. XV: Denunciations 
Art. XVI: Revision 
Art. XVII: Notification 
Art. XVIII: Deposit and transmittal 
Art. XIX: Registration

The Contracting Parties,
Having considered the declaration made by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its resolution 96 (I) dated 11 December 1946 that genocide is a crime under international law, contrary to the spirit and aims of the United Nations and condemned by the civilized world,
Recognizing that at all periods of history genocide has inflicted great losses on humanity, and
Being convinced that, in order to liberate mankind from such an odious scourge, international co-operation is required,
Hereby agree as hereinafter provided: 
Article I: The Contracting Parties confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish. 
Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. 
Article III: The following acts shall be punishable:
(a) Genocide;
(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;
(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;
(d) Attempt to commit genocide;
(e) Complicity in genocide. 
Article IV: Persons committing genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals.
Article V: The Contracting Parties undertake to enact, in accordance with their respective Constitutions, the necessary legislation to give effect to the provisions of the present Convention, and, in particular, to provide effective penalties for persons guilty of genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III. 
Article VI: Persons charged with genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III shall be tried by a competent tribunal of the State in the territory of which the act was committed, or by such international penal tribunal as may have jurisdiction with respect to those Contracting Parties which shall have accepted its jurisdiction.
Article VII: Genocide and the other acts enumerated in article III shall not be considered as political crimes for the purpose of extradition.
The Contracting Parties pledge themselves in such cases to grant extradition in accordance with their laws and treaties in force. 
Article VIII: Any Contracting Party may call upon the competent organs of the United Nations to take such action under the Charter of the United Nations as they consider appropriate for the prevention and suppression of acts of genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III. 
Article IX: Disputes between the Contracting Parties relating to the interpretation, application or fulfilment of the present Convention, including those relating to the responsibility of a State for genocide or for any of the other acts enumerated in article III, shall be submitted to the International Court of Justice at the request of any of the parties to the dispute. 
Article X: The present Convention, of which the Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish texts are equally authentic, shall bear the date of 9 December 1948. 
Article XI: The present Convention shall be open until 31 December 1949 for signature on behalf of any Member of the United Nations and of any nonmember State to which an invitation to sign has been addressed by the General Assembly.
The present Convention shall be ratified, and the instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
After 1 January 1950, the present Convention may be acceded to on behalf of any Member of the United Nations and of any non-member State which has received an invitation as aforesaid. Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations. 
Article XII: Any Contracting Party may at any time, by notification addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, extend the application of the present Convention to all or any of the territories for the conduct of whose foreign relations that Contracting Party is responsible. 
Article XIII: On the day when the first twenty instruments of ratification or accession have been deposited, the Secretary-General shall draw up a proces-verbal and transmit a copy thereof to each Member of the United Nations and to each of the non-member States contemplated in article XI.
The present Convention shall come into force on the ninetieth day following the date of deposit of the twentieth instrument of ratification or accession.
Any ratification or accession effected, subsequent to the latter date shall become effective on the ninetieth day following the deposit of the instrument of ratification or accession. 
Article XIV: The present Convention shall remain in effect for a period of ten years as from the date of its coming into force.
It shall thereafter remain in force for successive periods of five years for such Contracting Parties as have not denounced it at least six months before the expiration of the current period.
Denunciation shall be effected by a written notification addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations. 
Article XV: If, as a result of denunciations, the number of Parties to the present Convention should become less than sixteen, the Convention shall cease to be in force as from the date on which the last of these denunciations shall become effective. 
Article XVI: A request for the revision of the present Convention may be made at any time by any Contracting Party by means of a notification in writing addressed to the Secretary-General.
The General Assembly shall decide upon the steps, if any, to be taken in respect of such request. 
Article XVII: The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall notify all Members of the United Nations and the non-member States contemplated in article XI of the following:
(a) Signatures, ratifications and accessions received in accordance with article XI;
(b) Notifications received in accordance with article XII;
(c) The date upon which the present Convention comes into force in accordance with article XIII;
(d) Denunciations received in accordance with article XIV;
(e) The abrogation of the Convention in accordance with article XV;
(f) Notifications received in accordance with article XVI. 
Article XVIII: The original of the present Convention shall be deposited in the archives of the United Nations.
A certified copy of the Convention shall be transmitted to each Member of the United Nations and to each of the non-member States contemplated in article XI. 
Article XIX: The present Convention shall be registered by the Secretary-General of the United Nations on the date of its coming into force. 
Text: U.N.T.S. (United Nations Treaty Series), No. 1021, vol. 78 (1951), p. 277.

Relevant Links:
The Genocide Convention in 35 languages 

Kofi Annan's April 7, 2004 Action Plan to Prevent Genocide On the 10th anniversary of the 1994 Genocide In Rwanda, Annn announced his Action Plan and announced the future appointment of a Special Advisor on Genocide Prevention.

Prevent Genocide International


Genocide in Iraq: The Case Against the UN Security Council and Member States

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Genocide in Iraq: The Case Against the UN Security Council and Member States [Paperback]

Abdul Haq al-Ani (Author), Tarik al-Ani (Author), Joshua Castellino (Foreword)

Book Description

 March 1, 2013
Imposing sanctions on Iraq was one of the most heinous of crimes committed in the 20th century. Yet it has received little attention in the Anglo-American world. Despite the calamitous destruction resulting from the sanctions, no serious attempts by legal professionals, academics or philosophers have been undertaken to address the full scope of the immorality and illegality of such a criminal and unprecedented mass punishment. Genocide in Iraq offers a comprehensive coverage of Iraq's politics, its building, its destruction through aggression and sanctions, and an analysis of the legality of these sanctions from the point of view of international laws and human rights laws. It presents a detailed policy analysis indicating how, under Ba'ath rule, Iraq had risen to become--before 12 years of total sanctions were globally enforced--the most progressive and developed Arab nation in the Middle East. It then contrasts that rising nation to the devastated remains left in the aftermath of sanctions, which nonetheless was yet to endure, in 2003, the full force of the American "shock and awe” invasion. The book explains why, in modern times, imperialist powers felt it was necessary to occupy Baghdad. It also puts forward the uniqueness of Iraq as at the heart of both Sunni and Shi'a theology, arguing it was this very centrality of Iraq, which far outweighs the significance of Arabia in socio-economic, religious and geostrategic dimensions, that at the same time makes Iraq a target. It details the building of Iraq by the Ba'ath regime, part of which was done with remarkable speed, putting to rest the argument that other countries in the area were developed at a similar pace. It also details the devastation of Iraq by 2003 after 12 years of sanctions-a devastation so dreadful that by the UN's own accounting, some 500,000 child deaths were due to it; a devastation so pervasive and overwhelming that two of the UN's own key administrators of the sanctions program, Dennis Halliday and Hans von Sponeck, resigned in protest. No other book published in English has made such an in-depth research and comparison of the two eras.

Wikipedia:   “The United States is not a participant in the International Criminal Court (ICC). . . .As of September 2012, 121 states are members of the court and 32 countries have signed but not ratified the Rome Statute.[2] Other countries that have not signed or ratified the Rome Statute include India, Indonesia, and China.[2]

1.                             USA and the ICC
A Universal Court with Global Support > USA and the ICC. USA and the ... Chronology of US Actions Related to the International Criminal Court. 30 Aug 2010 ...

2.                             USA for the International Criminal Court
Today, 119 countries have ratified the Court's treaty, and the Court is taking on ... The International Criminal Court embodies core U.S. values and will bring the ...



German Gypsy Memorial Opens To Honor Nazi's Roma Victims In Berlin's Tiergarten Park By GEIR MOULSON 10/24/12

Germany Gypsy Memorial
German Chancellor Angela Merkel , fourth left, reflected with others in the water during the inauguration ceremony of the memorial to the murdered European Sinti and Roma who were persecuted as 'Gypsies' in Berlin, Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2012. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
BERLIN -- Germany opened a long-awaited memorial Wednesday to the hundreds of thousands of Gypsies, or Roma, who were killed by the Nazis in what one survivor called "the forgotten Holocaust" – and pledged to fight the discrimination the minority still faces in Europe today.
Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Joachim Gauck inaugurated the memorial at an official ceremony in Berlin's Tiergarten park. Designed by Israeli artist Dani Karavan, it features a water-filled basin with a retractable, triangle-shaped column at its center that will be topped by a fresh flower every day.
Panels detailing the Nazis' persecution of the minority surround the memorial, which is located across the road from the Reichstag, Germany's Parliament building, and close to memorials to the Nazis' Jewish and gay victims that have been inaugurated in recent years.
Gypsies were subjected to racial discrimination from the early days of Nazi rule. Before Berlin hosted the 1936 Olympic games, hundreds were rounded up and interned; and in 1938, SS chief Heinrich Himmler set up a central office for the persecution of Gypsies – also known as Sinti and Roma.
It's not clear exactly how many Gypsies were killed during the Holocaust. Estimates range from 220,000 to more than 500,000. 
Their fate drew little attention as post-World War II Germany began to come to terms with the Nazis' crimes, primarily focusing on the slaughter of some 6 million Jews.
Only in 1982 did West German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt publicly declare that Sinti and Roma "were persecuted for reasons of race. These crimes constituted an act of genocide."
Plans to build the Berlin memorial go back to 1992, though the project was delayed by disputes over the design and other matters.
"Unfortunately it is too late now for many survivors of the Nazi terror," said Zoni Weisz, a Gypsy who recalled escaping deportation to Auschwitz from the Westerbork transit camp in the Netherlands in 1944, at age 7, with the help of a policeman.
"But for the few who can see this today, and for their families, this memorial is in my eyes a kind of redress," he said at the inauguration ceremony. Weisz's mother and two younger siblings were killed at the Auschwitz death camp.
The head of Germany's Central Council of Sinti and Roma, Romani Rose, said the new memorial embodies the need to fight anti-Gypsy prejudice in the same way as anti-Semitism.
"In Germany and in Europe, there is a new and increasingly violent racism against Sinti and Roma," he said. "This racism is supported not just by far-right parties and groups; it finds more and more backing in the middle of society."
The minority faces discrimination in Europe's ex-communist east and elsewhere on the continent. In August, police raids in Paris and other French cities dismantled camps used by Roma from Eastern Europe and left hundreds without shelter.
Weisz said that "society has learned nothing, almost nothing – otherwise we would be treated in a different way now."
"I hope that, with the inauguration of this memorial, what I call the forgotten Holocaust will no longer be forgotten and will get the attention it deserves," he added.
Merkel stressed the need to protect minorities, which she said "enrich the diversity of Germany."
"Let's not beat about the bush – Sinti and Roma often suffer from marginalization, from rejection ... Sinti and Roma have to fight for their rights even today," she said. "So it is a German and European duty to help them in this, wherever and within whatever country's borders they live."
The Gypsy memorial's opening follows the unveiling in 2005 of Berlin's memorial to the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust, a vast field of concrete slabs; and the inauguration in 2008 of the memorial to the long-ignored gay victims of the Nazi regime.
A further memorial is planned to victims of the Nazi program of euthanasia of the mentally ill and others deemed "unworthy of life."


International Holocaust Remembrance Day & Combat Genocide


Combat Genocide AssociationISRAEL

Dear friend,
We at Combat Genocide are pleased to commemorate with all of humanity the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Today we mark 68 years after the liberation of Auschwitz, also known in Hebrew as “planet Auschwitz”, one of the most horrific worlds ever created by man.
As members of the Combat Genocide Association a Jewish yet universal organization, we have dedicated the past seven years to educating and teaching thousands of teens and adults around Israel about the moral lessons of the Holocaust. As members of the Jewish people against whom the darkest and most systematic plot of destruction was conspired, and as human beings concerned about the moral reality of our time, we see it as our obligation to work as much as we can to stop genocide and other acts of violence around the world.
Unfortunately, the majority of the Israeli public knows little about the genocides that have occurred before and after the Holocaust. The Jewish spirit weakens due to the lack of interest in the cruel fate of other nations. The result of this is seen in the attitude of Israel towards refugees from the genocide in Sudan. We must arrange these by law and determine the number of asylum seekers to be absorbed every year, in order to maintain the Jewish, Zionist and democratic identity of our state, and to determine the rights of and obligations towards these refugees. "When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt" (Lev. 19: 33-34). 
We have labored over three years formulating the "Bill of Treatment and Responsibility for Asylum Seekers and Refugees". We hope our new government will pass this bill. We also hope that it will officially recognize the Armenian genocide. We look forward to any assistance you could give us in these efforts.
We are very concerned about the torture camps in the Sinai where Ethiopian, Eritrean, Sudanese, and other immigrants and refugees, are kidnapped. During their kidnapping they suffer abuse, which includes beating, electrocution, severing of body parts and possibly harvesting of body organs. During these horrendous events in the last two years, approximately 4000 human beings have been slaughtered.
We acted against it in several ways:
1.      We have approached The Defense Minister Ehud Barak and the leaders of the Egyptian Intelligence in a request to bring down the torture camps )attached please find our letter. (
2.      We have requested and received custody of four Christian Ethiopian girls survivors of torture camps, and who were held at the detention center.
3.      We have given lectures to thousands college students, thousands high school students and thousands of IDF soldiers on this subject.
 This coming March, 650 youth movement members are going on a journey to uncover the routes of the Zionist revolution, the Holocaust, and heroism in Poland. When visiting Warsaw we will commemorate 25 years of youth journeys to Poland and the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, led by members of the same youth movements that we are part of today. Unfortunately, hundreds of young people find it difficult to pay the cost of this journey and the resources of the State of Israel are not sufficient to subsidize everyone who would like to go. We encourage you to make a donation, or help us get in touch with donors or funds that are relevant. We have attached below a more detailed explanation of our journey.
We would also like to be in contact with organizations, researchers, activists and academics involved in the struggle against genocide, especially to bring to justice the Sudanese president who was indicted by the ICC for the crime of genocide.
Wishing you a good year, and a meaningful Memorial Day.
Uriel Levy
Director of the Combat Genocide Association, Israel
2 attachments — Download all attachments  
the eternal fund - keren hanezach.pdf
the eternal fund - keren hanezach.pdf
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“The Science of Genocide” By Chris Hedges
Posted on Aug 6, 2012, Truthdig
On this day in 1945 the United States demonstrated that it was as morally bankrupt as the Nazi machine it had recently vanquished and the Soviet regime with which it was allied. Over Hiroshima, and three days later over Nagasaki, it exploded an atomic device that was the most efficient weapon of genocide in human history. The blast killed tens of thousands of men, women and children. It was an act of mass annihilation that was strategically and militarily indefensible. The Japanese had been on the verge of surrender. Hiroshima and Nagasaki had no military significance. It was a war crime for which no one was ever tried. The explosions, which marked the culmination of three centuries of physics, signaled the ascendancy of the technician and scientist as our most potent agents of death.
“In World War II Auschwitz and Hiroshima showed that progress through technology has escalated man’s destructive impulses into more precise and incredibly more devastating form,” Bruno Bettelheim said. “The concentration camps with their gas chambers, the first atomic bomb … confronted us with the stark reality of overwhelming death, not so much one’s own—this each of us has to face sooner or later, and however uneasily, most of us manage not to be overpowered by our fear of it—but the unnecessary and untimely death of millions. … Progress not only failed to preserve life but it deprived millions of their lives more effectively than had ever been possible before. Whether we choose to recognize it or not, after the second World War Auschwitz and Hiroshima became monuments to the incredible devastation man and technology together bring about.”
The atomic blasts, ignited in large part to send a message to the Soviet Union, were a reminder that science is morally neutral. Science and technology serve the ambitions of humankind. And few in the sciences look beyond the narrow tasks handed to them by corporations or government. They employ their dark arts, often blind to the consequences, to cement into place systems of security and surveillance, as well as systems of environmental destruction, that will result in collective enslavement and mass extermination. As we veer toward environmental collapse we will have to pit ourselves against many of these experts, scientists and technicians whose loyalty is to institutions that profit from exploitation and death.
Scientists and technicians in the United States over the last five decades built 70,000 nuclear weapons at a cost of $5.5 trillion. (The Soviet Union had a nuclear arsenal of similar capability.) By 1963, according to the Columbia University professor Seymour Melman, the United States could overkill the 140 principal cities in the Soviet Union more than 78 times. Yet we went on manufacturing nuclear warheads. And those who publicly questioned the rationality of the massive nuclear buildup, such as J. Robert Oppenheimer, who at the government lab at Los Alamos, N.M., had overseen the building of the two bombs used on Japan, often were zealously persecuted on suspicion of being communists or communist sympathizers. It was a war plan that called for a calculated act of enormous, criminal genocide. We built more and more bombs with the sole purpose of killing hundreds of millions of people. And those who built them, with few exceptions, never gave a thought to their suicidal creations.
“What are we to make of a civilization which has always regarded ethics as an essential part of human life [but] which has not been able to talk about the prospect of killing almost everyone except in prudential and game-theoretical terms?” Oppenheimer asked after World War II.
Max Born, the great German-British physicist and mathematician who was instrumental in the development of quantum mechanics, in his memoirs made it clear he disapproved of Oppenheimer and the other physicists who built the atomic bombs. “It is satisfying to have had such clever and efficient pupils,” Born wrote, “but I wish they had shown less cleverness and more wisdom.” Oppenheimer wrote his old teacher back. “Over the years, I have felt a certain disapproval on your part for much that I have done. This has always seemed to me quite natural, for it is a sentiment that I share.” But of course, by then, it was too late.
It was science, industry and technology that made possible the 20th century’s industrial killing. These forces magnified innate human barbarity. They served the immoral. And there are numerous scientists who continue to work in labs across the country on weapons systems that have the capacity to exterminate millions of human beings. Is this a “rational” enterprise? Is it moral? Does it advance the human species? Does it protect life?
For many of us, science has supplanted religion. We harbor a naive faith in the godlike power of science. Since scientific knowledge is cumulative, albeit morally neutral, it gives the illusion that human history and human progress also are cumulative. Science is for us what totems and spells were for our premodern ancestors. It is magical thinking. It feeds our hubris and sense of divine empowerment. And trusting in its fearsome power will mean our extinction.   For MORE:


1.                             WORSE THAN WAR – THE FILM - Daniel Jonah Goldhagen | Worse Than War
The first major documentary to explore the phenomenon of genocide and how we ... -
2.                              Book reviews of 'Worse Than War' by Daniel Goldhagen and ...
Jan 3, 2010 ... Two new releases deconstruct the decisions and convoluted logic behind the large-scale destruction of human beings. › Arts & LivingBooks -
3.                              Daniel Goldhagen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Goldhagen, Daniel (October 2009). p32,Worse Than War: Genocide, Eliminationism, and the Ongoing Assault on Humanity. New York: Public Affairs. ... -


From: Randall Amster - PJSA
Date: September 10, 2010 9:22:12 AM CDT
To: PJSA Listserv
Subject: [members_pjsa] Info about new film: *Coexist*

Here's information about a film and educational resource PJSA members
Might find of great interest.  *Coexist* ( is a
forty-minute documentary about the current situation of forced
reconciliation in Rwanda.  It gives voice to the experiences of victims,
bystanders, and perpetrators, and challenges viewers to think deeply about
their own perspectives on violence, forgiveness, remorse, and revenge.
The film's target audience is youth and it is apt for adult viewers.

*Coexist* comes with a five-part Viewer's Guide, which includes a
variety of experiential learning activities and supplemental resources,
such as a timeline of the genocide.  There is also a seven-minute introductory film to help viewers understand the historical context of the 1994 slaughter.
. . . .the film's director, Adam Mazo, and Learning Director, PJSA member Mishy Lesser,. . . . how the issues in the film connect to our lives, and how the film
And Guide can be used as tools for reflection, learning, and community-based
action for the prevention and interruption of violence.  

The PJSA is a non-profit organization that was formed in 2001 as a result of a merger of the Consortium on Peace Research, Education and Development (COPRED) and the Peace Studies Association (PSA). Both organizations provided leadership in the broadly defined fields of peace, conflict and justice studies.

We are dedicated to bringing together academics, K-12 teachers and grassroots activists to explore alternatives to violence, and share visions and strategies for social justice and social change. PJSA also serves as a professional association for scholars in the fields of peace and conflict resolution studies.


A Problem from Hell 2002

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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"A Problem from Hell": America and the Age of Genocide is a book by Samantha Power, Professor of Human Rights Practice at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, which explores America's understanding of, response to, and inaction on genocides in the 20th century from the Armenian genocide to the "ethnic cleansings" of the Kosovo War. It won the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize and the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction in 2003.
Power observes that American policymakers have been consistently reluctant to condemn mass atrocities as genocide or take responsibility for leading an international military intervention. She argues that without significant pressure from the American public, policymakers avoid the term "genocide" altogether. Instead, they appeal to the priority of national interests or argue (without merit, she contends) that a U.S. response would be futile and accelerate violence as a justification for inaction.[1]




Power begins with an outline of the international response to the Armenian Genocide (Chapter 1), and then describes Raphael Lemkin's efforts to lobby for American action against Nazi atrocities in Europe (Chapter 2). Then she describes further the difficulties of individuals' efforts to convince Americans and other members of the Allied Powers to recognize the Holocaust, which she explains were compounded by the focus on World War II and anti-Semitic indifference (Chapter 3). She continues in Chapter 4 to describe how Lemkin brought genocide to the forefront of foreign policy issues, leading to the 1948 U.N. Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Chapter 5 describes Lemkin's mounting disappointments and multiplying adversaries until his death in 1959, whereupon Senator William Proxmire and others picked up the torch. She shows how Senator Proxmire and President Ronald Reagan worked to gain support for the ratification of the Genocide Convention (Chapter 7). In the rest of the book, she mainly focuses on individual genocides and the U.S. response in Cambodia, Iraq, Bosnia, Rwanda and Kosovo.
Her work has been criticized by historian Howard Zinn for downplaying the importance of "unintended" and "collateral" civilian deaths that could be classified as genocidal[2]; and by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky for systematically ignoring genocidal projects sponsored by the United States in Guatemala, in East Timor, and Southeast Asia.[3]



1.                              ^ Power, Samantha. A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. pp. xvii-xviii. Basic Books, 2002. ISBN 0-465-06150-8
2.                              ^
3.                              ^

External links

 Fri Feb 8, 2013 7:38 am (PST) . Posted by:
"david sladky" Veterans for Peace

R2P and Genocide Prevention 

The Good Intentions That Pave the Road to War by DIANA JOHNSTONE
Opposing genocide has become a sort of cottage industry in the United States.
Everywhere, "genocide studies" are cropping up in universities. Five years ago, an unlikely "Genocide Prevention Task Force" was set up headed by former secretary of state Madeleine Albright and former defense secretary William Cohen, both veterans of the Clinton administration.
The Bible of the campaign is Samantha Power’s book, "A Problem from Hell". Ms. Power’s thesis is that the U.S. Government, while well-intentioned, like all of us, is too slow to intervene to "stop genocide". It is a suggestion that the U.S. government embraces, even to taking on Ms. Power as White House advisor.
Why has the U.S. Government so eagerly endorsed the crusade against "genocide";?
The reason is clear. Since the Holocaust has become the most omnipresent historical reference in Western societies, the concept of "genocide"; is widely and easily accepted as the greatest evil to afflict the planet. It is felt to be worse than war.
Therein lies its immense value to the U.S. military-industrial complex, and to a foreign policy elite seeking an acceptable pretext for military intervention wherever they choose.
The obsession with "genocide"; as the primary humanitarian issue in the world today relativizes war. It reverses the final judgment of the Nuremberg Trials that:

War is essentially an evil thing. Its consequences are not confined to the belligerent states alone, but affect the whole world. To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.Instead, war is transformed into a chivalrous action to rescue whole populations from "genocide";.
At the same time, national sovereignty, erected as the barrier to prevent strong nations from invading weaker ones, that is, to prevent aggression and "the scourge of war", is derided as nothing but a protection for evil rulers ("dictators") whose only ambition is to "massacre their own people".
This ideological construct is the basis for the Western-sponsored doctrine, forced on a more or less reluctant United Nations, of "R2P", the ambiguous shorthand for both the "right" and the "responsibility" to protect peoples from their own governments.
In practice this can give the dominant powers carte blanche to intervene militarily in weaker countries in order to support whatever armed rebellions they favor. Once this doctrine seems to be accepted, it can even serve as an incitement to opposition groups to provoke government repression in order to call for "protection".
One among many examples of this cottage industry is a program called "World Without Genocide" at the William Mitchell College of Law in my home town, Saint Paul, Minnesota, whose executive director Ellen J. Kennedy recently wrote an article for the Minneapolis Star Tribune which expresses all the usual clichés of that seemingly well-meaning but misguided campaign.
Misguided, and above all, misguiding. It is directing the attention of well-intentioned people away from the essential cause of our time which is to reverse the drift toward worldwide war.
Ms. Kennedy blames "genocide"; on the legal barrier set up to try to prevent aggressive war: national sovereignty. Her cure for genocide is apparently to abolish national sovereignty.

For more than 350 years, the concept of "national sovereignty" held primacy over the idea of "individual sovereignty." Governments basically had immunity from outside intervention despite human-rights violations they perpetrated within their borders. The result has been an "over and over again" phenomenon of genocide since the Holocaust, with millions of innocent lives lost in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, Congo, Guatemala, Argentina, East Timor — the list is long.In fact, Hitler initiated World War II precisely in violation of the national sovereignty of Czechoslovakia and Poland partly in order, he claimed, to stop human rights violations that those governments allegedly perpetrated against ethnic Germans who lived there. It was to invalidate this pretext, and "save succeeding generations from the scourge of war", that the United Nations was founded on the basis of respect for national sovereignty.
Of course, there is no chance that the United States will abandon its national sovereignty. Rather, all other countries are called upon to abandon their national sovereignty – to the United States.
Ms. Kennedy’s lengthens her list by arbitrarily grouping disparate events under the single label of "genocide";, mostly according to their place in the official U.S. narrative of contemporary conflicts.
But the significant fact is that the worst of these slaughters – Cambodia, Rwanda and the Holocaust itself – occurred during wars and as a result of wars.
The systematic rounding up, deportation and killing of European Jews took place during World War II. Jews were denounced as "the internal enemy" of Germany. War is the perfect setting for such racist paranoia. After all, even in the United States, during World War II, Japanese American families were dispossessed of their property, rounded up and put in camps. The result was not comparable, but the pretext was similar.
In Rwanda, the horrific slaughter was a response to an invasion by Tutsi forces from neighboring Uganda and the assassination of the country’s president. The context was invasion and civil war.
The Cambodian slaughter was certainly not the fault of "national sovereignty". Indeed, it was precisely the direct result of the U.S. violation of Cambodia’s national sovereignty. Years of secret U.S. bombing of the Cambodian countryside, followed by a U.S.-engineered overthrow of the Cambodian government, opened the way for takeover of that country by embittered Khmer Rouge fighters who took out their resentment against the devastation of rural areas on the hapless urban population, considered accomplices of their enemies. The Khmer Rouge slaughters took place after the United States had been defeated in Indochina by the Vietnamese. When, after being provoked by armed incursions, the Vietnamese intervened to overthrow the Khmer Rouge, they were condemned in the United Nations by the United States for doing so.
Some of the bloodiest events do not make it to Ms. Kennedy’s "genocide"; list. Missing is the killing of over half a million members of the Indonesian Communist Party in 1965 and 1966. But the dictator responsible, Suharto, was "a friend of the United States" and the victims were communists.
But while ignoring over half a million murdered Indonesians, she includes Bosnia on her list. In that case, the highest estimate of victims was 8,000, all men of military age. Indeed, the NATO-linked International Criminal Tribunal (ICTY) has ruled that the 1995 Srebrenica massacre was "genocide";. To arrive at this verdict, despite the fact that the alleged perpetrators spared women and children, the ICTY found a sociologist who claimed that since the Muslim community of Srebrenica was a patriarchy, murdering the menfolk amounted to "genocide"; in a single town, since the women would not return without the men. This far-fetched judgment was necessary to preserve "Bosnia" as Exhibit A in the case for NATO military intervention.
It is generally overlooked that Srebrenica was a garrison town where the Muslim men in 1995 were not all natives of that originally multi-ethnic town and had been carrying out attacks on surrounding Serb villages. Nor have Western media given much attention to the testimony by Srebrenica Muslim leaders of having heard the Islamist party leader, Alija Izetbegovic, confide that President Clinton had said that a massacre of at least 5,000 Muslims was needed to bring the "international community" into the Bosnian civil war on the side of the Muslims. Those Muslim leaders believe that Izetbegovic deliberately left Srebrenica undefended in order to set up a massacre by vengeful Serbs.
Whether or not that story is true, it points to a serious danger of adopting the R2P principle. Izetbegovic was the leader of a party which wanted to defeat his enemies with outside military aid. The world is rife with such leaders of ethnic, religious or political factions. If they know that "the world’s only superpower" may come to their aid once they can accuse the existing government of "slaughtering its own people", they are highly motivated to provoke that government into committing the required slaughter.
A number of former U.N. peacekeepers have testified that Muslim forces in Bosnia carried out the infamous "Marketplace bombings" against Sarajevo civilians in order to blame their Serb enemies and gain international support.
How could they do such a horrid thing? Well, if a country’s leader can be willing to "massacre his own people", why couldn’t the leader of a rebel group allow some of "his own people" to be massacred, in order to take power? Especially, by the way, if he is paid handsomely by some outside power – Qatar for instance – to provoke an uprising.
A principal danger of the R2P doctrine is that it encourages rebel factions to provoke repression, or to claim persecution, solely to bring in foreign forces on their behalf. It is certain that anti-Gaddafi militants grossly exaggerated Gaddafi’s threat to Benghazi in order to provoke the 2011 French-led NATO war against Libya. The war in Mali is a direct result of the brutal overthrow of Gaddafi, who was a major force for African stability.
R2P serves primarily to create a public opinion willing to accept U.S. and NATO intervention in other countries. It is not meant to allow the Russians or the Chinese to intervene, say, to protect housemaids in Saudi Arabia from being beheaded, much less to allow Cuban forces to shut down Guantanamo and end U.S. violations of human rights – on Cuban territory.
U.S. intervention does not have a track record of "protecting" people. It is easier to imagine an effective intervention where none has been attempted – for instance in Rwanda – than to carry it out in the real world.
In December 1992, a Marine battalion landed in Somalia in "Operation Restore Hope". Hope was not restored, Marines were massacred by the locals and were chased out within four months. It is easier to imagine an effective intervention where none has been attempted – for instance in Rwanda – than to carry it out in the real world.
For all its military power, the United States is unable to make over the world to its liking. It has failed in Iraq and in Afghanistan. The 1999 "Kosovo war" is claimed as a success – only by studiously ignoring what has been going on in the province since it was wrested from Serbia by NATO and handed over to Washington’s ethnic Albanian clients. The "success" in Libya is publicly unraveling much faster.
Like all the R2P advocates, Ms. Kennedy exhorts us "never again" to allow a Holocaust. In reality there has "never again" been another Holocaust. History produces unique events which defy all our expectations.
But what, people ask me, if something that dreadful did happen? Should the world just stand by and watch?
What is meant by "the world"? The Western ideological construct assumes that the world should care about human rights, but that only the West really does. That assumption is creating a deepening gap between the West and the rest of the world, which does not see things that way. To most of the real world, the West is seen as a cause of humanitarian disasters, not the cure.
Libya marked a turning point, when the NATO powers used the R2P doctrine not to protect people from being bombed by their own air force (the idea behind the "no fly zone" UN resolution), but to bomb the country themselves in order to enable rebels to kill the leader and destroy the regime. That convinced the Russians and Chinese, if they had had any doubts, that "R2P" is a fake, used to advance a project of world domination.
And they are not alone and isolated. The West is isolating itself in its own powerful propaganda bubble. Much, perhaps most of the world sees Western intervention as motivated by economic self-interest, or by the interests of Israel. The sense of being threatened by U.S. power incites other countries to build up their own military defenses and to repress opposition militants who might serve as excuses for outside intervention.
By crying "genocide"; when there is no genocide, the U.S. is crying wolf and losing credibility. It is destroying the trust and unity that would be needed to mobilize international humanitarian action in case of genuine need.
DIANA JOHNSTONE is the author of Fools Crusade: Yugoslavia, NATO and Western Delusions. She can be reached at
A shorter version of this article appeared in the Minneapolis Star Tribune on January 25.


We Cannot Forget: Interviews with Survivors of the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda.   2011.
Authors: Samuel Totten and Rafiki Ubaldo, with an Introduction by Samuel Totten
Series: Genocide, Political Violence, Human Rights
Related site:

During a one-hundred-day period in 1994, Hutu extremists murdered between half a million and a million Tutsi in Rwanda. The numbers are staggering; the methods of killing were unspeakable. Utilizing personal interviews with survivors living in Rwandan cities, towns, and villages, We Cannot Forget relates what happened during this period and what the victims' lives were like both prior to and following the genocide.
Through powerful stories that are at once memorable, disturbing, and informative, readers gain a critical sense of the tensions and violence that preceded the genocide, how it erupted and was carried out, and what these people faced in the first sixteen years following the genocide.

An Oral and Documentary History of the Darfur Genocide
 Samuel Totten   2010  Praeger   eBook
An unquestionably important, oral-history collection presents the first-person stories of survivors of the genocide in Darfur, a region in western Sudan where the Sudanese government is accused of abetting the murder of an estimated 400,000 persons.

The atrocities in Darfur are a human tragedy. Hundreds of thousands have died and millions have fled their homes. In mid-2008, the International Criminal Court filed ten charges of war crimes, three counts of genocide, five counts of crimes against humanity, and two charges of murder against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. Al-Bashir is still in office, and the violence against black Africans in Darfur continues.

The genocide in Darfur erupted in 2003 but its seeds had been planted years before. Following years of attacks on their villages, livelihoods and persons, as well as political and economic disenfranchisement by the Government of Sudan, the black Africans of Darfur rebelled. In retaliation, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir had his troops and an Arab militia, the Janjaweed, carry out a scorched earth policy that resulted the in killing of noncombatants, men, women, children, and the elderly. In the process, females of all ages were raped, hundreds of villages were burned to the ground, and over two million people were forced from their villages. By mid-2007, estimates of those who had been killed or had perished due lack of water, starvation, or injuries, ranged from a low of 250,000 to over 400,000.

This two volume set presents the harrowing stories of survivors of this genocide, and includes a collection of official documents delineating the international community's reaction to the crisis in Darfur. The author has interviewed two dozen Sudanese refugees who fled their homes and made their way to the neighboring country of Chad, recording their experiences prior to the war, during various genocide events, and following their escape. Those interviews comprise Volume One. In Volume Two, the author has selected critical documents issued by the United States, the United Nations, and the International Criminal Court, each of which presents critical insights into how the international community viewed the scorched earth policy and atrocities and how it reached to such. An Oral and Documentary History of the Darfur Genocide is an invaluable record of how easily a powerful government can turn against a country's weaker minorities.

?24 illustrations
 Actual stories from Darfur refugees make the horrors of genocide painfully real
 The volume is a work of historical importance, documenting atrocities that should not be forgotten
 The author, a published expert on genocide and its prevention, was one of the 24 investigators with the U.S. State Department's Darfur Atrocities Documentation Project in Chad during the summer of 2004

About the Author:
SAMUEL TOTTEN is a scholar of genocide studies at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. He was a Fulbright Scholar in 2008 at the National University of Rwanda during which he created the Master's Degree in Genocide Studies. His most recent publication is The Oral and Documentary History of the Darfur Genocide. RAFIKI UBALDO is a journalist and independent scholar of genocide studies. A survivor of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi, he has served as an advisor for the implementation of the Master of Art's Degree in Genocide Studies at the National University of Rwanda.

Genocide by Attrition: The Nuba Mountains of Sudan

Few people know much about the government of Sudan's genocidal attack against the people of the Nuba Mountains in the late 1980s and early 1990s. This volume documents this atrocity, focusing on crimes that even human rights activists and genocide scholars do not fully understand. Its detailed examination of the forced starvation of the Nuba Mountains people provides a powerful statement, and will be a resource for professionals who teach the subject. "Genocide by Attrition" provides a solid sense of antecedents to the genocidal actions in the Nuba Mountains. It introduces the main actors, describes how the Nuba were forced into starvation by their government, and tells how those who managed to survive did so. Totten provides a valuable resource for those who understand genocide as a state crime. The interviews provide in-depth stories and revelatory information about what Totten characterizes as genocide by attrition. Among the themes that link most of the interviews are: the discrimination against and disenfranchisement of the Nuba by the government; the destruction of villages and farms; and the impact of the forced starvation. The book also documents the anger and frustration of the Nuba Mountains people at being left out of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement signed between the South and the North, and their ongoing fear that the government might once again carry out a genocidal assault against them.


Dear All,
Attached is a letter to the Atrocities Prevention Board APB), which was initiated by President Obama as part of his administration's focus on the prevention of genocide and crimes against humanity. . . .Sincerely
Samuel Totten
Professor Emeritus
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Letter to Atrocities Prevention Board-12:2012.doc
Letter to Atrocities Prevention Board-12:2012.doc
36K   View   Download  


The Post-Genocide Education Fund
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The ravages of genocide don't end with the cessation of the killing. Survivors must attempt to pick up their lives despite profound sorrow and immense losses of loved ones, family support, homes and material goods. 

Due to having lost just about everything they valued many must start from scratch and do not have the means to pay for a university education. Ultimately, helping survivors of genocide obtain a university education helps individuals to get back on their feet and helps to stabilize their devastated society.

PGEF (The Post Genocide Education Fund) provides funds to enable survivors of genocide, who have the desire and ability, to attain a university education within their own nations. 

We do this in conjunction with You. The generous time, attention, and financial resources that you contribute to this collective effort are why it will succeed. We encourage you to learn about PGEF and get involved in and help support our organization.

PGEF has awarded several scholarships to date, and your support is critical to expanding this progam. Since PGEF is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, non-profit organization registered in the US, your donations are tax deductible as allowed by U.S. law.

Alison L. Des Forges on RWANDA

From SourceWatch

Alison l. Des Forges (deceased) was "a consultant at Human Rights Watch and author of Leave None to Tell the Story: Genocide in Rwanda." [1]
Alison died in 2009 and according to Kenneth Roth: "The very week of her death, Alison was corresponding with Hassan Jallow, the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, about the importance of not ignoring the RPF crimes." [1]




"Alison Des Forges has promoted herself as the expert of experts in all the major trials in Arusha as though she understands Rwandans better than they understand themselves. “Alison Des Forges behaves as if she is Rwanda’s honorary consul,” complained former Prime Minister Faustin Twagiramungu. “When I met her for the first time in 1992, even though she had done her thesis on Rwanda, it was obvious she knew very little about Rwanda.” Supporters of the “right and proper” make much of Ms Des Forges’ vast knowledge of Rwanda and of her selfless dedication. They conveniently forget to mention that she was employed by the United States State Department in 1990 and 1992 and that she maintained close relations with the US National Security Council and the Pentagon throughout the 1990s." [2]
In 1999, International Law In Brief "congratulates human rights advocates Alison L. Des Forges and Gay J. McDougall on their MacArthur "genius grants" announced this week by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation." [3]Also see

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch articles


  1. Kenneth Roth, "A Heroine for Human Rights", Huffington Post, February 15, 2009.

Alice Walker on Overcoming Speechlessness: A Poet Encounters the Horror in Rwanda, Eastern Congo and Palestine/Israel

As the 2010 Pulitzer Prize winners are announced, we speak with the first African American woman to be awarded a Pulitzer Prize for fiction: author, poet and activist Alice Walker. She was awarded the 1983 Pulitzer for her novel The Color Purple. She was written many books since then. Her latest, just out, is called Overcoming Speechlessness.


Dear J.,
July 17 is International Justice Day. It celebrates the International Criminal Court (ICC) and all efforts to end impunity for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. It is also time to celebrate our achievements.

Last year on July 17 and since then we asked you to write to President Obama urging his administration to participate in ICC meetings, including the recent Review Conference in Kampala, Uganda. You sent over 4,800 advocacy messages on the ICC to the administration and Congress. They heard you. After eight years of absence, the U.S. is now an active participant in the Court.

Successful U.S. engagement with the ICC is a major achievement, but it is not enough. The Obama administration has made a good start in renewing the U.S. commitment to the ICC. It has pledged its cooperation with the Court. But the U.S. needs a comprehensive ICC policy which administration officials now say is "too hard" to reach. This will leave the U.S. without a foundation for its work with the Court and unprepared to deal with unforeseen situations and emergencies. The Obama administration early on committed to completing an interagency policy toward the ICC.

Tell President Obama that this International Justice Day is the time to finish what he started: complete an integrated U.S. policy toward the ICC.


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