A two-day conference on obtaining prosecutions of high level American war criminals will open September 13th, in Andover, Mass.
The conference will explore the legal grounds for, and plan for, obtaining prosecutions of President Bush and top officials of his Administration for war crimes.
In the tradition of America’s Chief Prosecutor at the Nuremburg War Crimes Trials after World War II, Justice Robert Jackson, the Conference’s purpose is “to hold high U.S. officials accountable in courts of law and, if guilt is found, to obtain appropriate punishments. "
"Otherwise,” said the Conference’s convener, Lawrence Velvel, “the future will be threatened by additional examples of Executive lawlessness by leaders who need fear no personal consequences” for their actions, leading to “the possibility of more Viet Nams, more Iraqs, and more repression.”
Velvel emphasized, “This is intended to be a planning conference, one at which plans will be laid, and necessary organizational structures will be set up, to seek prosecutions to determine guilt and, if guilt is found, appropriate punishments.”
Attendees will hear from prominent authorities on international law, criminal prosecutions, and constitutional rights who are determined to give meaning to Justice Jackson’s words:
“The common sense of mankind demands that law shall not stop with the punishment of petty crimes by little people. It must also reach men who possess themselves of great power and make deliberate and concerted use of it to set in motion evils which leave no home in the world untouched.”
Topics to be discussed, Velvel said, include:
# What international and domestic crimes were committed, which facts show crimes under which laws, and what punishments are possible.# Which high level Executive officials -- and Federal judges and legislators as well, if any -- are chargeable with crimes.
# Which international tribunals, foreign tribunals and domestic tribunals (if any) can be used and how to begin cases and/or obtain prosecutions before them.
# The possibility of establishing a Chief Prosecutor’s Office such as the one at Nuremburg.
# An examination of cases already brought and their outcomes.
# Creating an umbrella Coordinating Committee with representatives from the increasing number of organizations involved in war crimes cases.
# Creating a Center to keep track of and organize compilations of relevant briefs, articles, books, opinions, and facts, etc., on war crimes and prosecutions of war criminals.
Scheduled to address the Conference are:
# Famed former Los Angeles prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi, author of the best-selling “The Prosecution of George W. Bush For Murder”(Vanguard).