Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Collective Security, Genocide, and Human Rights Agreement:

Collective Security, Genocide, and Human Rights Agreement:
We do not live in a world where the future is already decided, the future depends on what you do today. There are basically a thousand permutations of possiblity leading to the future for ourselves and our children. A myriad of doors are open and the ones that we walk through today determine the future. What all people everywhere are faced with is a casscade event where time and causality have led us to a turning point of epic proportions. Our actions are magnified wherein small decisions made or not made now can set in motion a series of events, a casscade of events, that lead to larger and larger outcomes, both good or bad. The actions of free individuals working together now can have a greater impact on future events than at anytime in living memory. Utopian views of humanity or Utopian views of the future are unrealistic and destined to fail but without a concerted effort at this time to influence the future for a brighter and safer tomorrow events may lead to a default world that is undesirable and perhaps worse than can currently be imagined. All of the people listening here today have contributed in some way either large or small in trying to end a terrible war and trying to stop a terrifying outcome. We may or may not succeeded. The war is not over and the world is not safe. It is not the end, it is perhaps, the end of the beginning. Without new rules in place to guide the international community hundreds of millions of people will be murdered in conflicts both internal and external, that is, civilians who will be killed by the military of foreign governments and by their own government. War has not gone out of fashion in the 21st Century and the crimes of the last Century will be repeated. In addition, a WWI type scenario fought with nuclear weapons seems more and more likely every day. The United States and the West will be left to clean up the insurmountable mess, that is if they survive. Out of the numerous genocide type events since 1945 none of them have been prevented even after the signing of enough agreements against genocide to wall paper your home. Clearly a different plan is needed. A new international convention on war, genocide, and human rights is in order. A collective military force composed of divisions and battalions from member nations should be created that periodically practices together and is robust enough to defeat a determined foe. The mandate for the use of this new collective armed force is to guarantee the existing borders of member states ONLY. This means that if Iraq invades Kuwait the international force is required by treaty to use force to expell the hostile force and return the borders to their previous location. This mandate alone, enforcing previously agreed upon borders, is the sole mission of the collective armed force and these ground forces may not be used for any other reason. Great care should be taken not to allow the world to be split into opposing camps over this international limited use of force. The net result should eventually be a seventy (70) nation army prepared to defend the border security and border integrity of all member nations. This organization will preclude the necessity of any one nation being the international peace keeper for the entire world and in practice will protect the weak nations from being absorbed by the strong ones. Nations with large standing armies may eventually through mutual agreement shift to a home defense posture in the absence of the need to project large forces over great distances. This process will take place by mutual agreements to reduce gross military budgets by 5% a year for ten years, followed by a few years of consolidation and verification and then continue the same process. This type of environment will not be easy to establish but genocide type events wherein heads of state murder their own citizens are more easily addressed. The international community will place a ten million dollar bounty, dead or alive, on the head of a national leader who uses genocide and mass murder as an instrument of state power. Government ministers and generals will have one million dollar bounties as well. A special fund and special international court will be established for this purpose. The court will use and build upon the Nuremburg Code and definitions to determine when these definitions apply to national leaders and their functionaries. The definitions will be expanded to protect domestic political opponents from elimination actions as well as internal populations. Any head of state who engages in such actions against their own citizens is an enemy of humanity and will be treated as such. Member nations will be required to detain all suspect criminals and curtail all related economic activity. Military force along the lines of the air campaign used in Yugoslavia will be used to actively stop an ongoing genocide by attacking the hostile military force or it's proxy. The certainty by potential criminal heads of state will make the political calculation that genocide and elimination actions such as ethnic cleansing are not going to pay off if they face the certainty of economic sanction, limited military force, and eventual prosecution by the international court or assassination by their own people. An international bill of rights will enshrine the rights of all people to basic human rights including the rights of free speech and the peaceful redress of grievences and other peaceful political activity and any head of state who violates those rights or allows their government to violate these rights in a gross systematic manner such as unlawful imprisonment or murder of their citizens is subject to prosecution by the special court. The provisions for political rights lead to the use of court action against the government leaders but not limited military actions unless the sheer scale of repression crosses the clear lines the court sets for genocide and related crimes. These international conventions will protect small nations, vulnerable minority populations, and political activists from destruction by the power of state leaders who wish to use mass murder and force against their weaker neighbors and internal political opponents. The international military force will probably have to demonstate their resolve to use force to enforce existing borders, but after these first few military actions have taken place and been successful in their limited mandate it will be clear to future aggressors that violating international borders and invading neighbor countries is a road that leads nowhere. Likewise once the aggressive use of limited military force has been used to stop genocide and ethnic cleansing and the criminal heads of state and government ministers have been turned into the international court for the reward or assassinated by their own people, then future potential genocides will be avoided. Mediation of persistent conflicts and border disputes will diffuse potential future conflicts. Nuclear disarmament will preclude a large scale exchange triggered by events similar to those of WWI. This new collective security paradigm will come about in five stages.
First, nations will join the international force by certifiying their borders with their neighbors, then supplying a division(s), battalion, or regiment, depending on their population. Nations will agree to defend international borders without exception, and in principle, to begin mutual defense spending reductions in future years, and eventual mutual nuclear disarmament.
Second, mediation of existing military conflicts and border disputes will go before the special court and will be decided there under binding arbitration rules.
Third, signatory nations will agree to fund and staff the special court with nine internationally recognized jurists and to fund bounties placed upon criminal heads of state. They will agree to arrest all such persons within their borders and exclude economic ties with such persons and their dependents or agents. They will support limited military attacks such as air campaigns to stop genocide when called upon by the special court and then the mutual defense forces to do so. There is no mandate for the military overthrow or invasion of a nation.
Fourth, nations will agree to honor the international bill of rights to protect lawful speech and lawful political activity within their own borders. Nations will release all persons designated as political prisoners, and in return all past violations of human rights MAY be waved by the special court by mutual agreement.
Fifth, nuclear disarmament will take place in stages once all nuclear nations join. Nations with many thousands of weapons will reduce to one thousand total. Nations with hundreds will reduce to one hundred, and the rest will reduce to one only. The next step several years later will take place after the nuclear fuel supply has come under international control, from mining to enrichment to fuel production and all future construction and operation of civilian nuclear power. An international corps will be charged with design and operation of all nuclear power plants of a standardized design and be charged with securing all nuclear materials. Then nuclear nations will reduce by a factor of ten their weapons so that two nations have one hundred devices each and a few others have ten. The third phase eliminates all existing stocks save the two largest, which will be dismantled and placed under international control until the devices expire due to natural deterioration. If any nation manages to break the treaty and begins building nuclear weapons the treaty nations may reassemble the remaining 200 nuclear devices and use them if necessary to stop the emergent nuclear threat. All member nations will allow weapons inspections in all instances.
Finally, All nations who wish to may agree to one or all five of these aspects of mutual law but any nation that wishes to remain within the mutual security agreeement MUST agree to ALL FIVE of these aspects within TEN (10) YEARS time from the start of membership. Member nations are not bound to protect non-member nations from invasion but they are bound to support the provisions dealing with genocide and related crimes.
These agreements will not change the world overnight, but when entered into in combination with economic development programs the synergy of economic and military cooperation will create advantages for members that other nations and their citizen populations will find desirable. One aspect of the New Marshall Plan is the drive to increase the health, longevity, and stability of national populations in developing nations to near parity with those of the developed world. It is necessary for a mechanism for the people of failed states to exert their collective will to participate, even in environments controlled by hostile corrupt leadership. The international community may hold a vote within any nation with a life expectancy in the bottom 50% of nations by agreement, or if not allowed to by a hostile government, then by electronic means such as by cell phone with a majority (50%) of the population of age participating in the vote. If 70% of the people voting (out of at least 50% of the citizens) vote to participate in the New Marshall Plan then a mechanism for making that state a ward of the international community should be set into motion and the existing government hierarchy and ruling elite should be peacefully persuaded with monetary inducements and potential sanctions to allow a caretaker government to be appointed by the international community and the nation building program with clear numerical goals of a known methodology and duration be set in motion. Any nation with a life expectancy that is 80% of the world average is immune from such plebisite. Smaller disfunctional nations are the logical choice for such peaceful intervention and any nation with a population over 100 million is also immune from plebisite. It is probable that collective security and the New Marshall Plan will take a generation to reach a tipping point, that is the errors be ironed out and enough momentum gained that the ultimate goals of peace and prosperity appear to be attainable. Choosing the first battles and the first national projects carefully will allow time to grow the staff and expertise necessary to succeed over the long term. Choosing the nine international jurists from among member nations will be done by mutual agreement and those established judges from stable independent judiciaries with the most votes will be chosen. Decisions of the nine member court will be made by a majority vote. Choosing corrupt or incompetent judges will mean the court is fated to fail, while the choice of wise, cautious, and fair personalities will mean domestic peace and tranquility. Very small member states with populations below ten million will have one half a vote each. Judges may be removed by a unanimous vote of their peers on the court or by a three fourths majority (75%) vote of member states. Rash or unjust use of military force will result in a breakdown of the international force and refusal of member nations to participate. Evil men will still rule nations but their actions will be constrained by the possible consequences of judgements by the court of violations of the five provisions and limited military action or personal legal sanction. It is certain that member nations will be tested from time to time. People act in their own self interest so it is only when leaders and citizens believe that these cooperative agreements and joint projects pay dividends to them personally will they be enthusiastic signatories to these agreements and initiatives. All human constructs are artificial and thus prone to failure, but if the use of force is made in a limited and conservative manner on a case by case basis and is neither too ambitious in application nor too hesitant as to be perceived as ineffective, then these agreements will over time have the desired effect of greater international peace and prosperity without creating a world superstate and preserving the rights of individuals and individual nations to self rule and self determination. The basic political unit of expression and action is the individual and not the state. Free and fair elections potentially provide a continuous change in leadership according to the wish of the people and make armed revolt and civil war unnecessary. The use of state power to subjugate the individual and by extention subjugate entire national populations and enslave or murder them has become more easy with the increasing power of technology in the 21st Century. A mechanism to curtail this power and stop hundreds of millions of innocent civilians from being murdered for political and economic gain is necessary. It is hoped that the crimes of the previous hundred years will not be repeated and that an international court will be able to stabilize and harmonize the world community without creating an all powerful world government that could itself be used as a means of political and economic subjugation.
Marshall Gregory Thomas

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