Genocide

2020 Feb 25

The International Court of Justice Case on Genocide in Myanmar

12:00pm to 1:00pm

Location: 

Austin North, Harvard Law School

In November 2019, The Gambia filed a case with the International Court of Justice alleging that Myanmar military had violated the Genocide Convention for years in its treatment of the Muslim minority group, the Rohingya. A United Nations fact-finding mission had found similar patterns of abuse, documenting widespread violations of human rights in Myanmar against minority groups, including crimes against humanity, genocide, and war crimes. The International Court of Justice handed down provisional orders to protect the Rohingya in January 2020. Now, with the backing of all 57 members of...

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Stop Surveillance Humanitarianism
Mark Latonero. 7/11/2019. “Stop Surveillance Humanitarianism.” The New York Times. See full text.Abstract
Mark Latonero – Carr Center Technology and Human Rights Fellow, and research lead at Data & Society – discusses surveillance humanitarianism for The New York Times

A standoff between the United Nations World Food Program and Houthi rebels in control of the capital region is threatening the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians in Yemen.

Alarmed by reports that food is being diverted to support the rebels, the aid program is demanding that Houthi officials allow them to deploy biometric technologies like iris scans and digital fingerprints to monitor suspected fraud during food distribution.

The Houthis have reportedly blocked food delivery, painting the biometric effort as an intelligence operation, and have demanded access to the personal data on beneficiaries of the aid. The impasse led the aid organization to the decision last month to suspend food aid to parts of the starving population — once thought of as a last resort — unless the Houthis allow biometrics.

Read the full article.

Karadzic verdict is a victory for civilization
John Shattuck. 3/26/2016. “Karadzic verdict is a victory for civilization.” The Boston Globe. See full text.Abstract
See latest op-ed from Carr Center's John Shattuck.
 


"In a world rampant with terrorism, Thursday’s verdict in the Radovan Karadzic trial in The Hague is a victory for international justice. The former Bosnian Serb leader was convicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes for leading a reign of genocidal terror during the Bosnian war."

Rhetoric, Ideology, and Organizational Structure of the Taliban Movement
Michael Semple. 1/5/2015. Rhetoric, Ideology, and Organizational Structure of the Taliban Movement. Peaceworks. 102nd ed. Washington DC: United States Institute of Peace. See full text.Abstract
This report examines the evolution of the Taliban case for armed struggle and the minimal adjustments Taliban rhetoricians made to cope with the impending political change in Afghanistan in 2014. It considers how the Taliban might make a case for peace, should they take the political decision to engage in negotiations. 

 

The Taliban movement commands the loyalty of thousands of Afghans and applies resources and men to the pursuit of political objectives, guided by doctrine and inspired by rhetoric. Taliban rhetoric consists of religious and historical references, narratives of recent events, and guidance for Taliban sympathizers. The rhetoric asserts that the Taliban are engaged in a righteous jihad aimed at establishing a divinely ordered Islamic system in Afghanistan. Taliban doctrine focuses on internal affairs and in particular on maintaining cohesiveness. The Taliban are ruthless in enforcing their doctrine of obedience to the amir, or leader. The movement has retained a narrow social base, and its power is concentrated in the hands of mullahs from the Kandahari Pashtun tribes. Any project to build a plural Afghanistan is likely to include an appeal to the Taliban or the constituency they have mobilized. The Taliban’s own attempts to regain power rest on a negation of pluralism, rejection of a popular mandate, and assertion of the divine right vested in their Islamic emirate. A Taliban rhetoric of peace would require addressing the position of the Taliban’s amir, peace as a desirable state, the need for cohesiveness and unity in support of peace, celebration of the withdrawal of foreign troops, Islamic credentials of the government in Kabul, protection of those who sacrificed for the Taliban, peace as conclusion of the jihad, and the new role for the Taliban’s cadres. After 2014, the Taliban leadership is vulnerable to a hard-line challenge arguing that the political system in Kabul is irredeemably compromised by its collaboration with unbelievers.

Psychological Consequences of Becoming a Child Soldier
Federica D’Alessandra. 2014. “Psychological Consequences of Becoming a Child Soldier”. See full text.Abstract
As the civilian population is increasingly targeted in wars, children constitute an increasing quota among the victims of each conflict.
 

More often than not, the horrific practice of targeting civilians during conflict is seconded by the deplorable active use of child soldiers. In some countries, a whole generation of children seems to have grown up without knowing peace. A lot has been written about war-affected people, and the psychological consequences that they bear as a result of these traumatic experiences; yet, a literature that focuses specifically on the psychological burden of child soldiers is only now slowly emerging. While it might be intuitive that war and widespread violence leave deep psychological scars, it is essential to understand what shape these scars take on children. The relevance of the topic is striking at both a humanitarian and a developmental level as ‘lost education can take years to regain, and physical and psychological trauma may be long lasting’.